Some can’t. Others won’t. Will you?

Another early Saturday morning run. This time my alarm went off at 5:30am and I rolled over. Convinced that I could skip the group run and run on my own after I sleep….just a little longer.

About 1 minute later, I sat up. I needed this team, more than they may need me. I got out of bed and headed to Freedom Park. We gather around the parking lot donning our purple dream team shirts, water bottles and sleepy-eyed smiles. Someone asks for a marker, which may seem random, but we know what it is for. We’ve been putting our mark for the number of days since Isabella passed away — today is number 1508.

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We take off on Little Sugar Creek Greenway and I was grinding out 5 miles. Looking into a see of purple overwhelming the path, I notice Levine Children’s Hospital, where Isabella spent many days and night for treatment. My heart breaks thinking of the children and families inside those walls right now going through chemotherapy, radiation, experimental procedures, fighting for their lives.

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I run.

Some can’t. Others won’t. I will fight to end cancer. Will you?

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Photo Walk: Queen’s University

On Friday I had the opportunity to take a digital photography class at Queen’s University with Nanine Hartzenbusch and I really enjoyed it. The class was a great refresher for me about compositional creativity, ideas on lighting, editing, and archiving your work. After the lecture, we walked around and photographed the campus. Here are some of my favorite shots:

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Paris, My Sweet

I just finished reading the biography, Paris My Sweet by Amy Thomas and thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s about a woman working in advertising who takes the opportunity to live in Paris and enjoy the city of light and dark chocolate. What’s not to love about that?

Reading another woman’s journey of finding herself while living abroad made me really think about my journey in life. I have never been a “home-body” and always envisioned myself living abroad, but I obviously have not made that leap yet. in her novel, Thomas says that you have to live a place for a year to feel at home and rooted in your community. I fully agree.

After two years in the Queen City, I definitely have found my niche and feel comfortable in my space. I know my way around Charlotte, and really do love all the different neighborhoods it has to offer. It’s what I call a small-town, big city. It’s big enough to always have things happening, but small enough that once you know your circle of friends, you realize everyone knows the same people. 

Anyway, as much as I love Charlotte, I have been having the itch to travel and for adventure once again. With my 25th birthday looming (okay not exactly…it’s in January, but still!), I feel the need to do something big and celebrate!

So some places on my list to go within the U.S. include:

Chicago

New Orleans

Boston

Nashville

Miami

anywhere out west…..

Salt Lake City

Las Vegas

 

 

Photo Walk in Charlotte

For my birthday I received a Canon Rebel t3 and I was super excited to get a new DSLR, because I have had anything other than a point and shoot since high school.

I fell in love with photography in 5th grade. I remember it clearly because my family went to Disney World and my mom bought me a disposable camera thinking that would last me the whole 4 day trip. Well, I used 5 disposable cameras in that time, so mom then decided it was worth it to buy me a simple point and shoot.

Once I got to high school, I stepped it up and got a Canon Rebel SLR (film) and joined photography club. Then I realized how awesome digital was, and regretted getting a plain film camera. During college I only used point and shoot cameras because that’s what my budget allowed for, however, I always wanted a nice DSLR.

So yesterday, I finally had the chance to break out a nice DSLR! I walked around uptown (downtown) Charlotte with a couple friends and just took in the sights. Here are some of my favorites:

ImageAs soon as I got my new camera, I went to pinterest for inspiration and tips. One pin I came across, was about shooting upward to make buildings look awesome. I loved the idea and when I saw this church across from the Mint Museum, I loved how it was right beside the modern architecture.

ImageThe lighting was perfect for this photo of the Bank of America building reflected on another building uptown. This is my favorite shot of the day!

ImageThe staple Charlotte skyline shot! I have always loved the Charlotte skyline and didn’t know where to get this great shot, until I googled it! I took this from Central Ave.

Balance is key

Over the last couple of weeks I have been trying to get involved in the Charlotte community beyond work. I attended a Charlotte Junior Chamber meeting and jumped at the chance to  volunteer for a prom that will be held for Levine Children’s Hospital patients (coming up on the 23rd), and I have signed up for a painting class using a LivingSocial deal. I have also been attending a couple of churches to try to find the best fit for me.

Besides being overwhelmed with the amount of opportunities in this city for a young woman who likes to stay busy, I have been adamant about working out after work. I just completed the Big Red Shoe 5K, benefitting the Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte and I am  running in the Charlotte Race for the Cure in 3 weeks.

I am reading Kerri Strug’s Landing On My Feet, and  she talks about the triangle she used during her gymnastics career  to keep her life balanced – training, school and home life. She says she is happy when all three elements are kept in balance. I think this is true for all of us – to obtain success and happiness we need to have balance. I know for me personally,  I need fulfillment in  work, exercise, social, and spiritual area of life for peace and happiness. My first week of work was boring because I would come home at 5pm and be bored with no one to talk to and nothing to do.

I am slowly learning my life balance as a young professional. I am getting involved, but don’t want to overcommit myself either. I want to meet new people and try new things, but don’t want to be exhausted all the time.