American at Heart

It’s been a long time since I’ve been inspired by an interview. But last week I watched an interview with Gene Simmons that hit close to home. For a while now I’ve been very dissappointed to see the direction this country is going in. It’s like all the things I loved so much about this country are being done away with. I hate how the country is becoming less and less patriotic. Ever since I was 7 my biggest dream was to live in the United States. To move to the land of opportunity. In this country your fait is in your own hands, not in the hands of the government. In this country your success depends on how hard you work, yes you will fail many times before achieving success, but as long as you keep at it you will get there. I worked my butt off saving up every dime to get to live my dream and be a citizen of the land of my dreams. I’m still working hard towards realizing that dream, it’s not a simple process. I worked any job I could get and do the best in everything I do. It’s taken me on some strange but wonderful journeys. One of the things I worked hard on was learning how to speak English perfectly without an accent. Coming in to this country I was the outsider and I had to assimilate to the culture, which I was proud to do. I’m still learning more about the culture every day and I love it! It makes me so mad when people come here and try to get the usa to assimilate to them. We speak English here! When you’re an immigrant you learn the language and the culture of the country, the country isn’t supposed to learn yours! But lately that’s the way immigrants have been thinking. And not even legal immigrants! Illegals seem to be calling the shots now, and it disgusts me that our president is not only letting this happen, but giving illegals a free pass to stay! I didn’t come to this country for free handouts, don’t get me wrong, I don’t want pity from the president and just give me citizenship. I want to earn it and am going through the mind numbing and expensive process of immigration the way people should. It shouldn’t be easy to get into this country. Just like it isn’t easy to get into the best schools. You think they should just let everyone in Harvard? Or just the people that have worked the hardest for it? Exactly. When I watched the interview with Gene Simmons it made me so happy to see a fellow immigrant so proud of this country like I am. Watch this interview! I agree with every word he says and am glad someone finally has the guts to not be “politically correct” and says what needs to be said.

Interview with Gene Simmons

Turning off my iPhone

Bzzzt.. First thing I heard this morning… My phone. It was still early, but as I tried to doze back off, I went down the list off what “bzzzt” could be. What if I had an important email, what if it was my mom trying to get a hold of me? That was it, I couldn’t go back to sleep. But I didn’t want to look at my phone just yet. I wanted to stay in “sleep mode” just a little bit longer. I moved to my other side and was immediately greeted by little brick, licking me in the face. I lifted him up off the bed to take him outside. Like a true unemployed hippie, I walked outside in my bright pink robe and neon yellow spotted rain boots. A little embarrassed I stood with Brick as I watched people drive by, patting my hair down. They’re probably going to work, I thought. I bet they’re wondering why I’m standing here in my robe on a Monday morning instead of going to work like normal people. I took Brick back inside and climbed back into our warm comfortable bed. Brick made his way under the covers and snuggled up against Charlie. I went ahead and checked my phone. Nothing.. Just some trivia crack games, words with friends, a couple snap chats and texts from my best friends before they’d went off to work earlier that morning. I started playing a few games. It amazes me how I can waste hours just being on my phone. I go from app to app, just wasting time. Refreshing the feed on facebook, continuing on to Instagram, and then pinning the wedding dress I would someday want to wear, and trips I want to take. The more I’ve been thinking about it, the more I’m starting to despise my phone. Though I don’t want to live without it. Google is my hero, I can’t tell you how many times I search translations, and many questions that pop into my head throughout the day. Also I wouldn’t know where to go without the GPS on that thing. And most importantly I can contact my family at all times. Still.. It seems every since I’ve had an iPhone, my mind has just been running non stop. I don’t know if I’m 24 going on 70, but I’m already missing little things I used to enjoy in my childhood, not being sure if I’m even completely out of that yet. Me and my dad used to spend hours at cd stores, listening to songs on several CDs and carefully selecting one to buy, to then take turns to get to play it in the car. Now I just go on my phone and boom there is the song I want. I don’t ever have to wait for songs to come out anymore, which has made me appreciate music a lot less. I used to be excited for months waiting for a cd to be released, ride my bike to the store, listen to each song, buy the cd and go home and listen to it until I could sing each song. I feel like this is just one example of many things that has made me such an impatient person. I want everything now! Being annoyed with myself I forced myself a few weeks ago to rent a book. I used to love to get lost in stories when I was a kid. To my surprise, I still do. I guess all the boring books in highschool and college had just discouraged me. Just reading a few pages, I feel my mind settling down. Laying in bed tonight, instead of watching tv while playing games on my phone until 3am with my mind going a 100 miles an hour, I’m reading in silence. My favorite person sleeping next to me and my little puppy having his face smushed up against my stomach, curled up in a little ball. I’m so grateful for the things in my life, it feels good to take the time to realize what you have every now and then instead of worrying about what you don’t. I really gotta turn my phone off more often

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Sam in Nature?

After sitting in the house for the last couple of days getting over being sick, I’ve been reading “wild” by Cheryl Strayed. I guess the combination of that and not having been outside for days had made me crave smelling the fresh air. Yesterday I got a call from my best friends in the whole world that they signed me up for the little rock marathon!! Of course that just made my craving for the outdoors bigger. When I was breathing through my nose waking up this morning I was filled with excitement to get my 12 miles in today. After all we’ll be getting some icy weather the rest of the week. Since reading “wild,” I’ve suddenly gotten excited about the idea of backpacking.. Even though I’ve never as much as went camping before.. The idea of sleeping in a tent and shared showers has always kept me away.. And don’t even get me started about the bugs! But if Charlie would go I’d feel safe! Even though I would somehow have to figure out how to keep my under arms perfectly shaven.. I’m not about to become a cave woman! With romanticizing the idea of backpacking I figured I should probably practice.. I looked to see if there were any trails close to me. I was enthused to find out that there was actually several trails around me!! Mostly not longer than 3 miles. That seemed too short to even get in my car for. Today I drove to the longest trail I could find that was close.. A good 11 miles! Perfect, I would only have to add 1 mile to do my 12 run today. Convincing myself I was over my cold I drove to the trail to begin in the 30 degree weather. The weather wasn’t gonna bother me, after all I was wearing layers of clothes. After finally finding the trail I read the notes on the board. It explained there were 2 loops, one of 5 miles and one of 11. Without even thinking twice, I decided to dive into the 11 mile loop. I started and realized it was a lot harder than I thought to “run” this “hiking” trail. Deciding it would keep my mind busy jumping over puddles and rocks I continued. After about 5 miles my music stopped.. No service.. I took my headphones out and realized I needed to be listening to nature anyway. This was a mistake, I was frightened by everything I heard, squirrels running into trees, birds flying off, and even the sound of my hair swishing back and forth against my layers of sweaters. What could be out here.. Mountain lions! First thing that popped into my head every time I heard leaves move. Why didn’t I carry a weapon? I started thinking, what if there was someone hunting here.. Thinking he saw an animal and shooting me! What if it was hunting season! I tried to figure out when hunting season is, but I had no clue.. Could that be why my car was the only one parked at the trail? Or what if there was a crazy serial murderer just waiting for girls like me that are stupid enough to go run on a deserted trail alone without cell service. I thought about putting my hood on so I could be mistaken for a boy, but as I grabbed the hood of my sweater I realized it was pink.. Bright pink.. That wouldn’t work. I had to stop thinking about all the negatives, after all I was already 7 miles in. Only 4 miles and I was off the trail.. Right? I was trying to remember if it was really a loop, did I read that right? By mile 9 I took my phone to see if I could get any service, but it wouldn’t turn on.. The batteries were dead. I little panicked I realized it was about to get dark, what if I wouldn’t get back to my car and it’d be dark!? What if Charlie had been calling me? He would be worried cause the run has been taking me longer than usual. I started trying to pick up my pace, and there I went, face forward on my hands and knees onto the rocks and mud. Immediately I bounced back up, feeling my shoulders ache. But I felt proud, in a weird way, like I just overcame that fall. Just popped right back up to continue running. But then the worry of the sun setting came back, still no sign of the end of the trail. I stopped to read the small text on the diamonds I had been faithfully following along the trail. It only told me that I’d be fined with 10000 dollars if I would take it off the tree.. That’s it! No other information. I started thinking about the walks in the woods I used to take with my parents and grandparents, and how there was always a sign every half mile or so letting us know where we were. Here there was no sign.. No way I could ever know where I was.. I told myself to stop being so dramatic, that’s when I saw a sign saying there was a stop sign coming up. Yes!! I was about the cross the road!! But no, it was a crossing leading to other trails, 3 other paths to choose. I just went straight, hoping this would lead me to my car. For a second I stood still, thinking maybe I should go back a couple miles where I saw a road, I could wait until someone drove by. Or.. I could have faith that I was almost at the end of the loop, like I thought I remembered reading. I kept running forward, and to my relief, around the corner I saw my car!! There it was! Victory! I did it! 11 miles on the trail, I ran another extra mile to complete my 12 miles for the day and jumped in my car, right before sunset. I was so proud! I could’ve done the 5 mile loop and have been smart, But I would’ve missed out on this competition with myself. When I watch the biggest loser, I always feel bad that the contestants don’t realize how much they can do.. I’m the opposite, I think I’m a superhuman sometimes. Thinking I can take on any challenge.. It’s not always good, cause I’ll get angry with myself if I can’t make a 14 mile run and only do 10 for example. I don’t know why I do these things, I don’t know why I’m so idiotically stubborn.. But it got me where I am so far.. Living in the USA like I always dreamed of with the man of my dreams and an annoying little cute puppy. I will sleep good tonight 💪

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Pennsylvania Dutch?

Didn’t think I would be posting a more exciting travel post than New York City… But I think I loved these last couple of days more than being in the big city! After 2 days of seeing everything we could cram in 48 hours, another show plus a 5 hour drive this was the result:

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We overslept for our first show in Pennsylvania, so skipping breakfast we put on 2 shows and felt starved after. Natalie treated me to an amazing Denny’s breakfast/lunch. We hung out there and planned our next route. We found the cutest little bed and breakfast for a reasonable price in Amish country! We got there before dark and were so excited!! The place was gorgeous!! A cute little cabin with 60 acres surrounding it. It was called the Plant and Herbs farm.

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After a little workout, we enjoyed some tea on the front porch. For late august it was just a mild 62 degrees.

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We asked the owner if there were any good places to eat. She pointed us to the yellow creek inn, which was a little restaurant with home cooked meals. They also had cheesecake!! Yumm! As usual though, I ate way too much and was too stuffed to eat dessert. But we took it home and had it as a midnight snack with some hot coco..

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It took a little while to relax once we got back.. When we walked onto the porch a bird flew out of his nest, which almost scared me to death. I screamed so loud I’m surprised nobody came to check on us… When I opened the door I let some kind of giant flying bug in. I’m no hero when it comes to bugs, and turns out, neither is little country girl from the Deep South Natalie ;) both of us were jumping around with rolled up magazines in our hand, trying to defend ourselves from this monster ;) when we finally got it it was time to relax.

The next morning at 7:30 we woke up to the smell of fresh coffee. Mrs Plant was already fixin us breakfast!! When we got out our “first course” was on the table

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After fresh fruit she had made us a spinach, bacon and ham omelet with a cherry strawberry cobbler as dessert.

Halfway through breakfast mrs plant got a call that there was a shooting down the street!! Omg, we just came out of nyc and there’s a shooting in this tiny town!! Mrs plant told us to lock the doors and stay inside. So we just went back to bed. We got up and had some more coffee on the porch and then went on to Volant and new Wilmington to check out the Amish.

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We shopped all day in little amish shops and had a blast! For lunch we had some more home cooking and then went back to shopping

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It was the cutest little village with lots of antiques and home made things
And CHOCOLATES!!

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We were told to go down the Amish back roads. We stopped at a little road stand where an amish dad and his sons were selling fruits vegetables and jellies. They were so nice to talk to. We drove up to some little stands at the Amish’ homes, where little girls were running around in amish clothing. They looked like little dolls. We saw a boy mowing the grass with a horse and buggy.

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On our drive we also came by this old little school house, from the 1800’s

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It was an overall amazing day!! We enjoyed every second of it. I even found my street sign ;)

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Then onto our last 2 shows in Indiana. This has been an amazing trip and I’m so thankful that Natalie took me on it. I’ve learned and seen so much more of this beautiful country!! 😊

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In a New York minute

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If we’re friends on Facebook you have probably seen my insane posting and checking in the last couple of days. I felt like our trip to New York City needed to be documented ;)

We stayed about an hour and a half out of the city in a small village called fishkill. When we got there Friday we were pretty tired from the drive. We decided not to go into the city until Saturday. After a week of doing kid shows we got dolled up and treated ourselves to some wine downtown.

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After a relaxing night, we got up the next morning and headed towards the city!! I looked up a place close to the subway we could park for 10 bucks the whole day. From there we hopped on the subway. Just 2.50 took us all the way into town. Our first stop was Greenwich village, where we got some coffee to get ready for the long day

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From there it was just 2 miles to ground zero. So after finishing our coffees we walked that way. The weather was perfect! About 75 degrees and a little cloudy. Ground zero was very impressive. Where the towers had been was now a waterfall monument that went down into the ground.

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There was one of these for each tower. We looked around and there was people taking selfies with it in the background.. That looked a little awkward.. Not really the place for a duck face selfie right?

After that we walked on to Wall Street, after getting Natalie some band aids for her already blistered feet. After wall street we walked on to the Staten Island ferry. I found out we could take that for free! Being Dutch it’s in my blood to find the cheapest deals of course ;) so we hopped on the ferry to Staten Island and got an awesome view of the Statue of Liberty

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After the ferry ride we were starved!! After all this walking we thought we deserved some carbs, so we walked to little Italy where we enjoyed some delicious pasta. The people at the restaurant were all Italians and spoke Italian to each other. There was an old crippled little man walking around with a bowl of fresh Parmesan to put on the pasta.

After dinner we planned on going to Times Square, but since it was already 10 we decided to head back instead.

We hopped back on the subway. Everyone in the subway kept to themselves and was either reading, sleeping or listening to music. All of a sudden a woman raised her voice and said her and her kids needed money and food. There was a lady sitting down with take out Applebee’s. The women wanting money walked up to her and asked her for her food!? The lady got mad and said she sees her begging constantly on the subway with new made up stories. Once the woman got off there was a man who came on with wide spread eyes asking for money. People gave him some change.. He shook his head and walked out at the very next stop.. Guess some change isn’t enough for crack?

Around midnight we got back to our hotel and fell a sleep as soon as our faces hit the pillows.

The next morning we went to the same place to park, but the parking guy told us in broken English that it was gonna be 25 today.. I asked why and he told me cause it was an event day. I asked what event was going on since I hadn’t seen anything happening outside. He paused and told us there were a lot of bars in the area… Weren’t those there the day before too when parking was 10 bucks? Yeah.. So we didn’t fall for that scam, and found another 10 dollar parking lot.

First stop Central Park! Where we found a cute spot to eat some lunch. Natalie was wanting to eat a bagel and smear like a real New Yorker.

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After our lunch we headed to Times Square!! Where all the excitement was. We shopped all day and planned and a big sushi dinner in Chinatown. After some subway confusion we finally got to Chinatown and probably looked like zombies walking down the street. Chinatown looked pretty ghetto so we ended up in little Italy again and had another nice dinner there.

After dinner we headed back to the hotel. What an amazing weekend! We walked about 12 miles this weekend so this morning we treated ourselves to a pedicure. As cheap as I am we got the 25 dollar package at walmart ;) there was an old grumpy Asian lady working there.. She looked at Natalie’s eyebrows and forced her to get them waxed.. And the charged her for it! Only in New York?

Anyways.. After an unforgettable weekend we are now on our way to a simpler life in amish country Pennsylvania.

A day on the Canada border

So today was to me the most excited part of the tour!! Even more exciting than D.C which is really hard to beat.

We left Watertown, New York today and went up to Morristown. A small village on the border of Canada. We got to the library and could actually see Canada from there

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The people in Morristown were some of the nicest people I’ve met. It was such a small town and all the people seemed to know each other. Coming up here we’ve been excited to see how the Amish live and have seen many carriages here. We asked the locals if the Amish had a little community somewhere, but they just live in town. The amish people that live here, are the most conservative. For example, they’re not allowed to wear buttons on their clothes!! But instead wear safety pins. The amish will buy a house and disconnect the electricity and take out the plumbing, so on our way to our show in canton we were of course paying close attention to each house we passed by. After just 15 minutes we saw one!!

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See the carriage on the right!!?? And on the porch there are overalls and underwear hanging out!! There were several houses like this on our drives today. We also saw some big farms. We were told that whenever the amish build a farm they call it a farm raising. The whole amish community will come out and build it in just a day!! The men will do all the work on the farm and the women will take care of the men and prepare a lot of food for them. It’s all team work. To us the carriages alone were already amazing!!

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After our show in canton, another cute little New York village, a lady and her grandchildren took us to eat ice cream on the town square. A two scoop cookie dough ice cream!! Yum! I could eat one again right now.

In the morning, Darlene, one of the Morristown locals, had invited us to come swim at her place. We got the their house, and the kids were already waiting in the yard. They were excited to be spending the afternoon with us. Their home was beautiful! With an even better view

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We went down to the water and went for a swim!! COLD!!! OMG the water was freezing. But we did it! We swam in St Lawrence River, which separates the USA and Canada.

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Yes! That is Canada behind us! What a difference with going down to see the Mexican border… Mexico’s gotta get their stuff together ;)

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If I ever have to sneak into the us, I now know I’ll choose Canada to swim from, even though the water is a little colder. And I found out the Amish don’t participate in social security.. So I could always become Amish? ;)

Anyways.. After we got out of the cold water, Darlene took us back up to her house where we got to use her hottub, overlooking the St Lawrence river we just swam in.

To top it off Darlene made us Margaritas!! And also a cheese and pretzel plate and garlic bread with cream cheese. It was like we were on vacation! The people here are so nice!!

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On our way to Utica, NY Natalie suddenly slammed the breaks.. An eagles nest!!! We saw 2 eagles and an eagles nest!! Of course this needed to be documented.

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Arrived at our hotel for the night in Utica, we’re pooped! Another day of adventures tomorrow!! I love getting to be a part of the Sockrockerz this summer :)

Update!

Haven’t written a blog in over a year!! What!!? Just a quick catch up: last year me and Charlie moved to his hometown in Alabama. I thought I had lived in the south living in Texas.. But this is a whole different kinda south! And I absolutely love every little bit of it. We live in a small town right now close to Charlie’s parents. Charlie’s mom has taught me some amazing southern cooking. So you’re probably expecting I’ve gained about 50 pounds?? Running these crazy hills down here helps even things out ;) my favorite is breakfast!! Biscuits and gravy, grits with butter, bacon and eggs!! YUM!

On the music side of things, me and Charlie have started a duet called “BamaDam.” We’ve recorded in Nashville at sweetsongnashville studios. It was an amazing experience that no one can ever take away. I’ve learned so much with the help of great people.

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Right now I’m doing a tour with my friend Natalie. We met at Western Texas College in Snyder, where we both worked in the bookstore. She has set up her own children’s show called “the Sockrockerz”

So far we’ve traveled through Virginia, Washington D.C, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and are now in New York close to the Canadian border.

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The shows are in small town libraries. The kids that show up are always so excited! The love getting to dance and jump around, and it’s great for the parents too, cause after the show, the kids have no energy left haha

I’ll be back! (To visit)

Sup y’all!!

Just wanted to share about my shows this last weekend. Both were so fun!! I played at Corky’s in Odessa on friday. There was such an awesome crowd. I really had a great time playing. Since I’m gonna be moving I’d been working on some new songs that seemed to be appreciated. AND! I was on the Marque! So cool :D

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The next day, Saturday  I had a gig in Snyder, TX. Everyone I knew there came out, and it felt like old times. We used to all Jam at the belle and me and Zane Green and Eric Deleon would open for the bands. It feels so good to see how we’re all still fighting for our dream. This time in Snyder I played at an awesome little bar called the Buffalo room. I was a little nervous in the beginning, cause I wanted all my friends there to just absolutely love the show. It meant a lot to me that everyone showed up.
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Now it’s time to pack up! Only a few more days and we’ll be moving.  I’m so excited for this new beginning. Of course I will make trips back to see my Texas family :)

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Oh yeah and don’t forget to get my album on iTunes!!!
https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/sam-from-amsterdam/id600085914

Much Love,
Sam

 

First Single Out!!

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It took a while but finally I sent my first single “Only 21″ out to radio stations. I made a special little package :) here’s one that JB from 99.7 in Abilene posted a picture of on twitter yesterday

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I got many more to send out, just need to know the radio stations where y’all would like to hear my music on :) So far I’ve sent it to:

95.7 Big Spring
KSUZ Snyder
91.1 Snyder
103.1 San Angelo
96.1 Odessa
99.1 Midland
105.5 Stillwater, ok
99.7 Abilene
107.1 Amarillo
KWBY Stephenville
95.9 Ft Worth area
105.7 Beeville Badlands
105.3 Lubbock
and a couple more :)

It’s also in http://www.bigstar97.com where you can request it!!! It was the coolest feeling when I heard it on there a few days ago.

bigs

 

I got another cool announcement but I gotta keep that quiet for a little while ;) Wish I could tell everybody already.. but anyways

here is the link to my very first single “Only 21

Much Love,

Sam <3

3 weeks until the move!!

bffOnly 3 weeks left, until I’m leaving Texas! Me and my boyfriend will be moving to his hometown in Alabama. Texas has been good to me, but I’m excited for a change. There are so many people I’m gonna miss, but I guess y’all will just need to come visit me ;)

Good thing there will be many people there that I know, like my long lost friend Angel!! Also I’ll be close to the very talented Tawny and Natalie!! And of course my boyfriend’s sweet family :)

This weekend I started saying my first goodbye’s to my best friends ever!! Steph and Lauren. They were the first friends I got when I moved to this country, and we’re still so close. Friendships like those need to be cherished! We were talking this weekend how it’s crazy that we are all 3 so completely different. Running is pretty much the only thing we all have in common, but I think that makes our friendship even stronger. We can not see each other for months, and then when we get together it feels like we just saw each other the day before. I’m gonna miss you girls!!  <3

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