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Welcome 2012! I’m excited to see you new year! Like every year I like to set my resolutions for the year and for the most part I stick to them (5 out of 7 for 2011), but this year I feel differently. Usually my resolutions read more like a to-do list, and honestly everything on my list this year were things I’d be doing or attempting anyway, like applying to Art Center or eating better. Last year was a big experimental year and I learned and grew a lot from it. This year I feel stronger in myself and who I am and where I’m going and I’d like to try something different.

I’ve been keeping a “bucket list” since I was about 17, every once in a while I add to it. There are silly things on there that when I was 17 I thought I’d never do them (like move downtown), some are entirely aspirational like “live the American dream (marriage, house, kids)”. Either way I haven’t really attempted to go out of my way to complete them, they just are happening as I go- like participating in an art show last year- that was a bucket list item for me as well as a resolution. This year my goal is to complete or attempt (because some take time like learning French or the guitar) one bucket list item a month, that’s 12 for the whole year.

First up for January I am going to cross “karaoke” off my bucket list. Yes I’ve never gone, and to be honest I’m having anxiety about it but we will see how it goes, I think I need to get my hands on a list of songs so I can even see if I know any of them well enough to sing them in front of drunk people at a bar. I’m not really sure what else I’ll attempt this year but I do know that skydiving and riding a motorcycle are coming up this year whether I’m ready or not.

In addition to attempting to cross off some bucket list items this year I feel like I’ve grown out of my personal manifesto I wrote a little over a year ago, so keep your eyes peeled for a new one sometime soon, I’m still brainstorming what I want out of the next chapter of my life. My old personal manifesto really helped me on days when my self esteem was at an all time low or I was stuck in a negative rut or just feeling bitchy for a little bit, its definitely something I want to continue doing for myself throughout my life. And apparently I’m not the only virgo who thinks a personal manifesto/mission statement is a great idea because one of my favorite bloggers GalaDarling just posted about writing your own statement, and its definitely worth the read if you want to set a positive direction for your life and stick to it.

Anyway, I’m really excited to start 2012, things can only go up and I feel like I’m not the only one fired up for a new year to begin around here. What are some things you’d like to accomplish this year? Do you keep a bucket list? I’d love to see your lists!


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I was going to take the leap, but thank you for pushing me off the edge- I needed reason to scream.

bodega <3

“Starting today I promise to never settle for second best, or because it might be the most practical choice for my life. I promise to go after what I want and never give up until I’ve gotten it, whatever “it” is. I promise to live my life to its fullest potential…”

Almost a year ago to date I wrote out a personal manifesto, these are the first two lines. When I wrote these words I thought at the time that I was mostly talking about my love life and choice in friends, with my “career” in there too but only in the most general and far away of terms and “being happy with what I do.” I never in a million years thought that I would go from being pumped about trying to finish college and getting started on my dive into photography professionally that it would lead me to this point in my life. And as I sit and write and actually think about what is going to happen over the next 11 months or so the anxiety and excitement is reaching levels only wine can calm. To explain the severity and depth of the situation I have to give you a couple backstories.

When I took my first photo class in high school our teacher Mr Pic (yes that was his real name, short for Pickering) was constantly talking about art schools and more specifically¬† Art Center College of Design. Art Center is the most competitive and top rated art schools in the country and consistently ranks on every list as one of the best schools out there for design related careers. I never even fathomed dreaming about going to Art Center, I had my dream sights set on Brooks Institute which was cheaper and easier and which has since lost its prestige as a top art school. But here I am, browsing the Art Center admission requirements…

I’ve never been a dedicated student, my 8th grade algebra teacher could tell you that, he used to call my mom constantly frustrated that I would get A’s and B’s on my tests yet fail the homework. I wouldn’t say I’m brilliant, but I’m pretty fucking intelligent and school is generally a bore for me unless I’m being challenged to do my best and only my best work only. Its exhausting though and I generally don’t have the mental stamina to do well in subjects that bore the crap out of me. Put me in a darkroom and give me a deadline though and I will come out with my best work possible after many long hours with no food, breaks, or sitting. Its my passion. Back to my point. Recently the State of California has imposed a new course repeat rule which means you cannot attempt (and withdrawls are counted, AND its retroactive) a class more than 3 times. Unfortunately for me my procrastination due to brilliance, I now do not qualify to repeat necessary classes that I’ve attempted (which offer no alternative) more than 3 times over the millions of years I’ve been at Sac City College. Basically I’m shit out of luck, and trust me, I’ve pushed it.

To be quite honest though, last year after I had to retest for all of my placement tests (math and english because there is an expiration date and I’m like the oldest community college procrastinator on earth) I had come to terms with the fact that if I placed lower than before that it would basically spell the end for me and upper education. And then I started toying with the idea of going to art school as a “back up.” I figured, hey I know its not History, but I do love photography and at least I’d be doing something I truly love doing, right? When I got back my assessment scores and they were just as good as always, no remedial classes necessary, I was actually disappointed inside. Now I knew I HAD TO finish college like the rest of everyone else. Enter new course repeat rules.

Now, here is something FINALLY forcing me to apply myself to something I love. To follow my dreams. To not settle for second best, even though it might not be the most practical choice. To live my life to the fullest potential and pursue everything I want out of life instead of choosing the desk job, house and kids. The thought of dropping 140k on an art school bachelor degree is TERRIFYING to me, its just so unconventional. But at the same time its exciting. I’m one of those people who sometimes needs to be pushed into something because I’m too scared to fail, but once I try and see myself succeeding its really hard to stop me.

So here I go. I’m enrolling in a portfolio development photo class this coming semester at Sac City (might as well suck that BOG fee waiver dry while I can, right?), to help get my portfolio ready for submission for Spring 2013 with an October 2012 deadline…

This is probably the biggest risk I’ll ever take in my life.
This risk is bigger than allowing myself to fall in love.
This risk is bigger than flying across an ocean by myself.
Bigger than walking down that dark alley by myself the other day when parking was scarce.
More dangerous than driving fast on a wet freeway.
Scarier and more intimidating¬† than the trip to South East Asia I’m trying to plan.
More anxiety-inducing than the thought of squeezing a child out of my body one day.
THIS RISK is the risk to end all risks in my mind.
If I can do this, FUCK I can do ANYTHING.

This is one of those life changing pivotal moments that when all is said and done… I’m going to look back one day and say to my kids…

“THIS is the moment that changed the entire course of my life.
THIS is when it happened.”

I could really use a shot right now. ;)