Life Bucket List

Click the highlighted blue states to see bucket list items crossed off. States highlighted in dark grey will have items posted soon.

Featured state this week:  Texas!


TEXAS

Bucket list item #14 completed: RUN A 15K : 6/4/16

Just finished bucket list item #14: RUN A 15K!! I can’t believe I just ran 9.3 miles, it was a little rough. I don’t think that much sweat has ever come out of my body my entire life (because of the distance AND the humidity). Pretty proud of running a 15K in 1 hour and 59 minutes, I shaved some time from my 5K and 10K times! Half marathon, you’re next! 

Bucket list item #281 completed: TEXAS STATE CAPITOL : 6/3/16

A friend of mine visited the Texas State Capitol sometime last year and posted a picture and I knew I had to add this beauty to the bucket list. One of the nicest looking capitol buildings I’ve ever seen and I really like the downtown Austin area!

Bucket list item #161 completed: THE ALAMO : 6/3/16

Stepped into the pages of history today and crossed off bucket list item #161 : The Alamo. Such a surreal feeling to find this building surrounded by modern looking hotels and restaurants and to know that this was a place very critical to Mexican-American history. I touched the walls and I felt the importance. What a glimpse into the past.

Bucket list item #512 completed: WORLD’S LARGEST BOOTS : 6/2/16

I guess the saying ‘everything is bigger in Texas’ is true! Bucket list item #512 completed: check out the world’s largest cowboy boots! San Antonio is an interesting place. 😁👢🐎

Bucket list item #178 completed: MIRADOR DE LA FLOR : 6/1/16

It was very cool to visit the birth place of the queen of Tex Mex music and to cross off bucket list item #178 : visit the Mirador de la Flor, a monument built to honor Selena. Que viva la reyna, Selena Forever. I loved Texas because every time I turned on the radio, I heard Selena.

SPECIAL FEATURE ON THE LIFE BUCKET LIST : TRAINING FOR RACES

running

One of my favorite things that has come out of me adding different races (5k, 10k, 15k, half marathon, full marathon) to my bucket list has been the opportunity to train/run when I travel. Pictured here are a few of my favorite places where I’ve gone running (Texas, Nevada, California, and of course Arizona). Check out 5 Reasons To Add A  Race To Your Bucket List if you need some convincing 🙂

Bucket list item #414 completed: RIPLEY’S BELIEVE IT OR NOT MUSEUM : 12/7/15

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Life bucket list item #414 completed! Check out the Ripleys Believe It Or Not museum in Dallas! It was full of fun facts! And those who know me, know that those are my favorite kind of facts! Haha great time!

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Fun fact about sharks: Two-thirds of a shark’s brain is dedicated to its sense of smell.

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Fun fact: the tallest man in the world was almost 4 feet taller than me lol

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Bucket list item #502 completed: SIXTH FLOOR MUSEUM : 12/5/15

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I know I’ve been in Dallas less than 24 hours but I’ve learned today that if you are going to do 1 thing from my bucket list (in dallas) it absolutely has to be this one. Life bucket list item #502 : go to the Sixth Floor Museum. It is a museum in the very room where Lee Harvey Oswald shot and killed President JFK. There are no pictures allowed, and everyone has personal audio as you are guided through the museum. It is a POWERFUL, haunting and emotional experience. Highly recommend it.

Bucket list item #506 completed: REUNION TOWER : 12/5/15

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Life bucket list item #506 completed! Go to the top of Reunion Tower in Dallas and see the 360 degree view of the city! I basically have every observation deck in the world on my bucket list because I love the way the wind feels this high up and the views are always spectacular

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I love the way it feels up here at 561 feet.

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Reunion Tower in downtown Dallas was pretty awesome. Dallas is pretty cool! 😊

Bucket list item #259 completed: FORT BLISS IN TEXAS : 11/15/14

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Fort Bliss was such a cool place to visit! There was a ton of army vehicles and helicopters everywhere. Definitely recommend you come and check out the 2nd largest army base in the USA if you are ever in Texas. They also have a really cool museum!

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Bucket list item #279 completed: WYLER AERIAL TRAMWAY : 11/14/14

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Life bucket list item #279 completed! Take a ride on El Paso’s only public aerial tram: Wyler Aerial Tramway. This was my first time going on any sort of aerial tram and I’m a little scared of heights so it was definitely an experience. It was awesome though, I would highly encourage anyone to ride it! I tried to convince my mom but she’s boring 😉

Bucket list item #263 completed: FRANKLIN MOUNTAIN PARK : 11/14/14

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Excuse my awkward as hell pose lol (the guy who took my picture was VERY attractive) but I’m in Texas y’all!
Life bucket list item #263 completed! Visit Franklin Mountain State Park! It is the largest urban park in the USA. Beautiful place, I’ll have to come back and hike some trails.

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ARIZONA

Bucket list item #509 completed : PARTICIPATE IN ‘TAKE YOUR CHILD TO WORK DAY’! : 4/28/2016

Ididn’t think I’d be crossing off this item this soon in my life but luckily my job is super cool and letting me bring my little sis (from the Big Brothers Big Sisters program) to work today! We got to check out flight simulators, airplane hangar tours and food trucks!

I love my job and it was so great to give her a glimpse into my work life. Thanks Honeywell for organizing! 😎

Bucket list item #20 completed AGAIN : RUN A 5K! : 5/11/2016

What do hair braiding and a 5K finisher race medal have in common? Check out my blog post about the most amazing Treat Yo’ Self 5K: Esprit de She! This race is hands down one of the best races I’ve ever ran in because you totally get pampered and feel so good about yourself after you cross that finish line. I highly recommend it to everyone!

I may not have been the first one across that finish line, but I finished. 

Happy Mother’s Day to the most adventurous soul I know Thank you for everything. A social media post isn’t enough to thank you for everything you’ve done for me so I wrote a blog post that you can check out here. It’s still not enough but it’s still nice to look back at all of our adventures.

Bucket list item #257 completed: SEE NEIL DEGRASSE TYSON! : 5/19/2016

Last week I was able to cross off bucket list item #257 : see my hero (and man crush monday!) Neil deGrasse Tyson in person! I attended his lecture in downtown Phoenix. He talked about science, engineering, movies, popular culture and about just life in general. He was such a good speaker, really funny and inspiring too! He also spent way more time than he needed to answering questions from the audience. A real stand up guy. Thanks for the lecture, NDT! Also I’ve started following him on Twitter because he is HILARIOUS.

Bucket list item #323 (again) completed: BE ON A PANEL! : 5/18/2016

Had the opportunity tonight to cross off life bucket list item #323 (again) : be on a panel! I was on a panel with a few of my Phoenix blogger friends and spoke about my journey as a blogger, the blogger boot camp I participated in, what I’ve learned from my blogger mentor Crafty Chica and the benefits of attending conferences. Thank you Collectivo for organizing and thank you BBBSAZ for hosting us! It’s always a great night when discussing whatever it is that fuels our passions. And yes I’m working my way up to the day when I get interviewed by Ellen, Jorge Ramos or Don Francisco lol. 😎

I love my fellow #AZlatinobloggers

Bucket list item #346 completed: PEACH PICKIN’ AT SCHNEPF FARMS! : 6/22/2016

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The little sis and I had a blast this morning at the Peach Festival! We picked peaches, got on a hay ride, and ate some really good food! You can read the full blog post here.

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It was so much fun, I am definitely coming back! There was so much to do : hay rides, train rides, peach picking, petting zoo, pancake breakfast, bakery with cinnamon rolls and pies, and a lot more.  🍑

Bucket list item #56 completed: LEAVE A MESSAGE IN A PUBLIC SPACE AND MAKE SOMEONE SMILE! : 4/23/2016

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So life bucket list item #56 is to leave a note in a public place that will make someone smile or laugh. And I did it last week! Those who have been to Total Wine know that all around the store there are pictures of the employees next to their favorite wines. I figured, since I also love wine so much I should let everyone know as well! So I took a picture of the employee notes and expertly (lol) photoshopped my picture on there. I also photoshopped 2 of my cousin’s faces lol and then we went around the store and placed our pictures next to our favorite wines lol. I stopped by today and they are still there hahaha I hope I made the employees smile lol. It sure made me and my cousins smile. There’s nothing wrong with spreading a little positivity 😊😊

Bucket list item #20 completed AGAIN : RUN A 5K! : 4/23/2016

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The Bubble Run 5K was such a blast. Definitely recommend to anyone who enjoys ‘fun runs’!

Bucket list item #322 completed : BE A KEYNOTE SPEAKER AND GIVE INSPIRATIONAL TALK! : 4/24/2016

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It was a true honor to have been invited to come back and speak to my favorite organization in the world at their Annual Awards Banquet. To the University of Arizona Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers chapter, thank you so much. Thank you for instilling that passion and enthusiasm that I have for engineering, for outreach and for mentoring. I would not be here with all of your unconditional support and whatever I do will never be enough to repay this organization for what it’s given me and for the friendships and familia bonds that I’ve made. Thank you for continuing to impress me every single day with all of your accomplishments. I love being back in Tucson especially when I’m surrounded by my favorite group. Thank you for the invitation to come and speak, it was truly a humbling experience to come back full circle (freshman to alumni to keynote speaker). I love you all and can’t wait to see how you impact the world in the future. Cheers to SHPE UA and to all of you who will agree with me when I say that SHPE is life. 💙

Bucket list item #53 IN PROGRESS : START A MUG COLLECTION! : 10/17/2016

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Having some serious U of A withdrawals now that I’m back in Phoenix from a great weekend in Tucson. To try to cope with these withdrawals, I’m using my alumni mug which brings me closer to completing life bucket list item #53 : start a useful collection! I currently have around 25 different mugs that I’ve collected from my travels and as gifts from friends! Here are just a few of them. 😊

Bucket list item #20 completed AGAIN : RUN A 5K! : 10/16/2016

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First trail run completed! The 2nd annual Respect Run was super fun and had some BEAUTIFUL scenery! I felt like i was hiking!

SPECIAL FEATURE ON THE LIFE BUCKET LIST : TRAINING FOR RACES

running

One of my favorite things that has come out of me adding different races (5k, 10k, 15k, half marathon, full marathon) to my bucket list has been the opportunity to train/run when I travel. Pictured here are a few of my favorite places where I’ve gone running (Texas, Nevada, California, and of course Arizona). Check out 5 Reasons To Add A  Race To Your Bucket List if you need some convincing 🙂

Bucket list item #23 completed : UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA FOOTBALL GAME IN COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING SUITE: 10/10/2016

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I always say that my life is amazing because the people that I surround myself with are amazing. Tonight, my friend Dana is the amazing one and the real MVP. Thank you so much for inviting me and helping me cross off bucket list item #23: see a U of A football game in the VIP suite!!! Thank you Dana and the College of Engineering for making this possible. Everything is amazing right now. Let’s go cats!! Bear down!!

Bucket list item #323 completed : BE ON A PANEL! : 4/9/2016

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Today I was on a panel and and had the opportunity to share some knowledge worth spreading (that’s me in the center 😁). I participated in #RLDC2 (Regional Leadership Development Conference) that I helped to plan at ASU with my favorite organization (SHPE). I shared information and advice on how to transition from high school to college and shared some advice I was given when I first started my engineering journey. Fantastic group of students, just look at all of that engagement and raised hands. Thank you SHPE Phoenix and SHPE de ASU for all of the amazing opportunities.

Bucket list item #11 completed : LISTEN TO A SPEAKER WHO HAS INFLUENCED MY LIFE! : 3/29/2016

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I had the honor of attending a talk by Sergei Sikorsky. His father was Igor Sikorsky and was wihout a doubt one of the most influential people in my current industry : aerospace. I’m sure you’ve heard of Sikorsky Helicopters. They are legendary. Today was so surreal. I got to hear about the history of aviation from someone who was THERE. Thank you Marguerite for telling me about this event. I got to shake this man’s hand, thank him for his contribution to aerospace and I even met his wife and got his email.

Bucket list item #21 completed : RUN A 10K! : 4/7/2016

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Bucket list item #21 : run a 10k COMPLETED!!!!! Run the Runway was so much fun! I met my time goal and got my first medal friends I’m so happy! 😎

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When your love of airplanes coincides with your love of bucket list items. What an awesome 10k!

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Check out more photos of this awesome (and very unique) race here!

Bucket list item #320 completed : MONSTER BUBBLES! : 3/20/2016

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I spent my morning crossing off bucket list item #320 : check out the monster bubbles! It was so awesome! They are these huge life size gerbil balls that are 9 feet tall and you get inside and tumble around. It was super random but I had a blast! It’s such a workout because I felt like I was wading in water! Definitely recommend! Maybe I’ll have my birthday party here. Check out the full blog post here

Bucket list item #122 completed : OSTRICH FESTIVAL! : 3/12/2016

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Crossed off life bucket list item #122 this morning when I checked out the infamous Ostrich Festival in Chandler! It was so much fun and I highly recommend it! Lucky for you, tomorrow is the last day so go check it out (more info here: Ostrich Festival Chandler AZ). There are ostriches, emus, racing pigs, petting zoos, OSTRICH BURGERS (which are delicious), beer, rides, bird shows and a lot more! 

Bucket list item #353 completed : WIN 1ST PLACE IN TRIVIA! : 3/17/2016

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After years and years of playing trivia and getting to 2nd and 4th place, tonight we finally got 1st place!!! It was not easy and we definitely didn’t expect to win but tonight 4 regular members of SHPE Phoenix walked in to World Of Beer in Tempe, and 4 WINNERS walked out! So proud of us! And of course when you have 4 engineers playing trivia, you’re bound to have a super#nerdy name lol. Tonight we were Love Pi (as in the number 3.14 lol)

Bucket list item #147 completed : COVERED PARKING SPOT! : 3/15/2016

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This entire week has been so amazing because it’s the closest that I’ll probably ever get to crossing off bucket list item #147 : get a covered parking spot where all the managers and important people park! These spots are auctioned off at work every year (money goes to charity and spots go for $500 minimum!!). It’s a real luxury haha but it’s been so wonderful parking so close to the building entrance. A huge thank you to my friend Kelsey for making my dream possible and letting me have your parking spot for a week. You rock!

Bucket list item #45 completed : DINE IN THEATRE! : 2/26/2016

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Finally completed life bucket list item #454: watch a movie at the AMC dine in theater! It was so awesome, I’m not sure if I can ever go back to regular movie watching. It was so cool to sit back in a reclining chair, drink a margarita, and eat wings and fries while watching Deadpool. Awesome time, highly recommend! Yamille didn’t want to take a selfie with me because she was mad that I was 30 minutes late and almost made her miss the beginning of the movie because I got lost in the parking structure and had to run up 8 flights of stairs in order to make it to the movie right as it was starting.

Bucket list item #20 completed AGAIN : RUN A 5K! : 2/20/2016

Making our tutus for the Color Fun Run 5K!

Team Schweddy T is so ready for the Color Fun Fest! This is our ‘before’ picture! 😄

Here is our ‘after’ picture! It was so much fun but I’m not sure why most of the paint was on our head lol the Color Fun Fest was such a blast and I shaved off 2 minutes from my last 5K! Woo, so ready for the next bucket list item: a 10K in April! P.S. – I only stopped twice during the run, once to get water and then again because I got some of the color powder in my mouth and almost choked to death lol be careful out there friends 😂😂

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You can totally tell that I got tired of making my tutu and kind of gave up because it’s so thin lmao but had such a blast at the Color Fun Fest 5k!

My favorite selfie from the Color Fun Fest 😄😄

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Bucket list item #20 completed AGAIN : RUN A 5K! : 10/1/2015

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I loved the first 5K I did so much, that I signed up for another one. And this one was just as great because they had pre-race Zumba!

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The Espirit de She 5k was definitely one of my favorite races. They had the best warm up.That’s me dancing in the front with the capris and off centered race bib.

Pre race portrait! Such great energy from everyone!

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Post race picture! Got some tattoos haha thank you so much for inviting me Kate, I had a blast!

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Bought a bracelet that perfectly describes my life : live with passion.

Thanks again for inviting me Kate! I loved the mimosa bar, the nail polish station, the hair braiding station, and the massage station! Definitely coming back next year! (And I did, and I brought my mom!)

Bucket list item #20 completed : RUN A 5K! : 9/25/2015

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My first 5K was the Night Nation Run 5K and we ran this race to celebrate my friend Tim’s birthday. It was the perfect race for his birthday because it is the world’s first running dance music festival!!!

It was such a fun race because it felt like a party. You get glow sticks and everyone comes to the race in head to toe glow in the dark gear.

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And the music was perfect to hype up the runners before, during, and after the race.

This 5K was also kind of a rave so I kind of completed life bucket list item #46 : go to a rave! This was the only picture I got during the madness and the dancing! 

Bucket list item #322 completed : BE A KEYNOTE SPEAKER AND GIVE INSPIRATIONAL TALK! : 2/17/2016

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Crossed off an epic bucket list item tonight at the University of Arizona College of Engineering Phoenix Preview Night for prospective engineering students! Life bucket list item #322 was completed : be a keynote speaker and give an inspirational talk. Thank you to the U of A College of Engineering for inviting me to come and represent the engineering alumni to talk about why I chose U of A, my experience in Tucson and my graduation bucket list. My favorite part of my talk was when I mentioned that you can judge a company by the products that it puts out and gave examples of the ‘products’ put out by the Arizona Engineering program including my friend Tam currently working in Dubai and my friend Caitlin currently working in the Gulf of Mexico! Pretty safe to say that some of these interested students are definitely going to commit to U of A. Especially after that basketball game tonight 😉 BEAR DOWN!!!

Bucket list item #423 completed : LIVE WORK OUT! : 2/16/2016

Life bucket list item #423 completed! Participate in a large live outdoor workout! My cousin and I went to Fitness In The District at Westgate! It was so much fun and really motivational. We did a mix of different workout styles including insanity and Zumba! My favorite thing the instructor said was ‘Excuses are well planned lies you tell yourself to justify your actions. Don’t be a liar.’ They have free workouts every Tuesday at 6:30pm! Let me know if you want to join us next week!

Bucket list item #81 completed : BEARIZONA! : 2/15/2016

Made it to the infamous Bearizona to complete life bucket list item #81! I’ve been wanting to come here for a few years. It was SO AWESOME. Much better than I expected and I highly recommend it! Bearizona is a wildlife park known for its drive-thru! You drive around in your car and check out wolves, bears, bison, mountain goat and other animals! My favorite animal that we saw was the bison because they are super chill and get really close to your car haha I love Arizona! I’ll post pics/videos when I get home. And yes, that is snow on the ground! 🐻🐻🐻

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My two favorite pictures from Bearizona lol a bison in the top and a deer on the bottom. They are so chill and literally walk up to your car lol. My mom had such a blast haha

More Bearizona pictures! My only recommendations are 1: make sure your windshield and windows are clean and 2: make sure you replace your broken windshield or else half of your pictures will be ruined lol

Bucket list item #490 completed : VISIT TLAQUEPAQUE! : 2/14/2016

Valentine’s Day weekend trip with my mom started off by crossing off life bucket list item #490! Visit the TLAQUEPAQUE Arts And Crafts Village in Sedona! Tlaquepaque is a place in Sedona modeled after the city (by the same name) in Jalisco, Mexico. Tlaquepaque in Sedona iss an outdoor market featuring art galleries, craft shops and really good restaurants. It was cool and my mom liked it! We recommend if you’re in the area and like artsy places. Also I’m not sure why I look ready to run a marathon lol, I went hiking this morning and BARELY showered and changed just now lol

Bucket list item #489 completed : PHOENIX OPEN! : 2/7/2016

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Crossing off life bucket list item #489 required no filter! The Waste Management Phoenix Open was super cool and I also got to hang out with one of my favorite U of A friends Elaine! 💙💙

Feel free to post this as your computer wallpaper y’all lol

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A huge thank you to BBBS and BBBSAZ for hooking us up with free tickets!

I can’t believe the little sis is almost as tall as me! Had a lot of fun at the #greenestshow aka the Phoenix Open!

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Bucket list item #326 completed : GO TO A RESTAURANT AND HAVE THEM KNOW MY ORDER! : 1/15/2016

Life bucket list item #326 completed : go to a restaurant and have them know my order without me having to say anything! (fried rice with chicken, medium spice) 🙂

Every Friday, my work team and I go out to TFF (thai food friday) at Krua Thai and I always get the same order. Today, after about 1.5 years of going there, the waitress knew what I wanted! success lol it was a great feeling haha this place is one of my favorite thai food restaurants in north phx definitely check it out y’all!

Bucket list item #266 completed : KEEP A NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION: NO CHIPOTLE FOR A YEAR! : 1/11/2016

First Chipotle burrito of the year!! Life bucket list item #266 completed : keep a new year’s resolution which this year was to go a year without chipotle. Last year my mom made me a bet that I couldn’t last a year without Chipotle so I made it my new year’s resolution to prove her wrong lol and I did! There were also a lot of people who didn’t believe in me (jerks lol). So you jerks have also been proven wrong. Don’t ever challenge me lol. Thank you sister for picking me up from the airport and for buying me my first burrito! It was as delicious as I remember it! 😁😁😁

Bucket list item #215 completed : GIVE SOMEONE A HEART FELT SURPRISE! : 12/4/2015

So this is what happens when you refuse to tell us when your birthday is. We just choose an arbitrary day and declare it your birthday lol. Happy fake birthday Elaine!! You are so very special to us so we wanted to celebrate with you. We love you! Operation: surprise Elaine with a birthday has been completed! Mission accomplished! 😊😂🎊🎁

p.s. life bucket list item #215 is to give someone a heartfelt surprise so i’m going to count this one, we love you Elaine!! 🙂

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Bucket list item #44 completed : ARIZONA COYOTES HOCKEY GAME! : 11/28/2015

Life bucket list item #44 about to be completed! Go to an Arizona Coyotes hockey game! Thank you BBBS for the awesome VIP suite tickets!

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So this happened tonight lol. The official instagram account of the Arizona Coyotes and I are obviously bffs now. What an awesome game, will definitely be back!! 

The little sis and I are so ready for our very first arizona coyotes game! Huge thank you to BBBSAZ for hooking us up with awesome VIP suite tickets! Woo! Also, the little sis chose this black and white filter lol

Bucket list item #219 completed : TURKEY DAY RACE! : 11/26/2015

So ready to complete life bucket list item #219: run in a turkey day 5k !! Thank you for letting me borrow your turkey hat LoryAnne Banuelos it’s a big hit! Lol also tune in to channel 10 we are going to be on TV!! Hahaha

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I did it friends and I got a new PR!! life bucket list item #219 completed! Finish a turkey day 5k!! And I’m pretty sure I was on TV lol Woo!! Now time to eat 5000 calories lol

Bucket list item #342 completed : SNAKE BRIDGE IN TUCSON! : 11/7/2015

Life bucket list item #342 completed! Walk through the infamous snake bridge in Tucson! I had never actually seen it while I was studying at U of A but a friend of mine mentioned that I should check it out before I graduate…I never did so obviously I had to come back as an alumni! Pretty cool bridge! Rafa made me run across a street with no crosswalk and laughed at me when I got scared because I thought we were going to get run over lol but then karma got him back because he got scared later in the bridge because when you walk in through the back (where the rattle is) there is a speaker that senses movement and makes a super loud rattling noise lol

Bucket list item #86 completed : GO TO A SYMPHONY // #302: SEE A SHOW AT ORPHEUM THEATRE! : 10/15/2015

I finally checked out a symphony! I went with friends to the Halloween at Hogwarts Phoenix Symphony event! It was magical. Baby Hagrid (me) made an appearance and was joined by Millicent Bullstrode, Moaning Myrtle and some muggles. Also simultaneously completed life bucket list item #302: see a show at the Orpheum Theatre!

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Bucket list item #344 completed : PUMPKIN PATCH! : 10/11/2015

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Life bucket list item #344 completed! Live out my childhood dream of going to a pumpkin patch!! My parents never took me when I was a kid, and rather than wait for when I have kids to take them…I did what any responsible adult would do: I took myself hahaha 😂 and my sister, cousins and nieces joined me! It was such a blast!!! More pictures to come! I’ve heard from other people that I should go to Schnepf Farms because they have a way bigger pumpkin patch but I thought Tolmachoff Farms was a decent size. I’ll def be going to Schnepf Farms to cross off a bucket list item of picking peaches pretty soon though so stay tuned! 😊😊🍊🍊

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My sister took this candid shot of my little cousin and me on the ladybug train lol probably my favorite part of everything at Tolmachoff Farms lol definitely worth the $2 I paid to ride it!!!

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We were all just SUPER excited to ride the lady bug train lol…well mostly me hahaha what a blast

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You know we had to LOL!!!

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Selfie with the horse before he tried to eat my hair lol

All in all, today was such a great day. Everyone needs to go to a pumpkin patch at least once in their life. IT IS SO MUCH FUN. 🍊🍊

Bucket list item #405 completed : GIVE A SCHOLARSHIP TO A DESERVING STUDENT! : 9/28/2015

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I had a fantastic meeting the day that this picture was taken. A few months ago, my friend Jaime tried to hustle me into paying his registration to attend the SHPE (Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers) National Conference. His little hustle gave me the idea to start the ‘Garcia scholarship’ and of course I added it to my bucket list: give a scholarship to a person who deserves it. After a few weeks of getting the Garcia scholarship ready, I mentioned my plans to my friend Erick. He suggested that I contact SHPE UA alumni and ask them to donate and create a scholarship fund to send even more members to the conference. I LOVED this idea. I reached out to alumni and together we created the SHPE University of Arizona Alumni Scholarship. Tonight we were able to give 3 students scholarships of $415 to pay for their flight to Baltimore. So happy to be in a position to help members attend a conference that has helped me grow so much as a person and as an engineer. You all deserve scholarships and so much more. I will never stop being impressed with how much you all help your community and your peers. As one of the scholarship winners said ‘SHPE is life’. Thankful to have spent the evening with my very favorite group at U of A.

One of the coolest things happened after I posted this on my instagram account…the official instagram account for SHPE National reposted us!

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I just wanted to formally thank everyone for participating in the very first year of the SHPE UA Alumni Conference Scholarship. Together, Mario, Lucio, Jose, Steven and I were able to raise $1,250 to give three scholarships of $415 to three deserving members. We had 20 students apply and it was very difficult to choose winners because as we all know from being involved in SHPE UA, all of the members of SHPE UA are very strong candidates. Thank you again for donating, reviewing scholarships and for sharing the information about this scholarship.

Also, Ricardo as well as another anonymous entity donated two more flights at last night’s meeting. So in total, FIVE students are going to the National Conference with help from SHPE UA alumni! FANTASTIC JOB EVERYONE!!

Winners of the scholarships were:
Karina  – sophomore Chemical Engineering
Victor  – junior Aerospace Engineering
Fermin – junior Biomedical Engineering

SHPE UA is doing big things and I’m so very happy that we are able to help. Thanks again!

Bucket list item #13 completed : BECOME INTERNET FAMOUS PART 2! : 9/19/2015

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My friends and I made it onto the www.geekswhodrink.com official website for getting 4th place in trivia! It was a very exciting moment because we are hoping to one day compete in the annual Geek Bowl!

Bucket list item #13 completed : BECOME INTERNET FAMOUS! : 8/25/2015

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This is amazing. I still can’t believe it y’all. Life bucket list item #13 completed. BECOME INTERNET FAMOUS. A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to be interviewed by LATINA Style Magazine for a piece titled ‘Quality Education Linked to STEM Success’ in their ‘Latina Leadership in STEM Careers’ section thanks to my favorite organization: Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE). I am beyond humbled and grateful to be considered and listed among such impressive Latinas. Really honored to be able to thank The University of Arizona on this sort of platform for the quality education I received. Definitely check out the full article here. I am in a fantastic list with very successful Latina leaders. Can’t even really put into words the pride I feel to be next to these women so early on in my career. STEM is amazing and my job rocks! Like I said in the article: being a positive role model knows no boundaries.

I also got featured on their Instagram account, feel free to follow them for more inspirational and positive stories!

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Bucket list item #475 IN PROGRESS : PARTICIPATE IN ANNUAL GEEK BOWL TRIVIA COMPETITION! : 9/17/2015 geeks-who-drink

We participated in our first ‘Geeks Who Drink’ event (basically trivia but a thousand times better) in order to prep to complete life bucket list item #475 : participate in the annual Geek Bowl Trivia Competition which is like the ultimate trivia competition held every year! We did really well for our first time, scoring 4th place and winning free drinks, comic books, and endless glory!
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Bucket list item #218 completed : BUTTERFLY WONDERLAND! : 9/13/2015

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My little sister and I visited Butterfly Wonderland: the largest butterfly atrium in America and it was so cool! I learned so much about butterflies including the fact that they can taste with their feet.

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Huge thank you to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona for hooking us up with free tickets and just for everything else that they do! They truly are amazing, check them out here!

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Bucket list item #380 completed : ADULTS NIGHT OUT AT THE AZ SCIENCE CENTER! : 9/4/2015

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My friend and I checked out ANO (adults night out) at the AZ science center where it’s an adult only zone with a bar, a riveting lecture and a chance to explore the exhibits with no kids! It was great! They have these the first Friday of every month and it’s totally free. We highly recommend! Also, fun fact: vaccinations got their name due to the fact that doctors took cowpox and injected it into people so that they wouldn’t get sick with smallpox. Cow in Spanish is ‘vaca’ and this led to the name vaccination.

grossologyAlso got a chance to check out the Grossology exhibit. Super cool! Fun fact: mucus is made up of 99% water and 1% other stuff.

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Bucket list item #422 completed : PARTICIPATE IN A FANTASY FOOTBALL LEAGUE! : 8/26/2015

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It’s go time!!! I participated in a fantasy football league! We started off with a live draft which I think was the most fun part of the process. We did this at the restaurant Twin Peaks which was great because they gave us $20 for having our draft party here! Woo! I ended up in 10th place out of 13 people but I count it as a win because it was my first time! 🏈🏈🏈

Bucket list item #421 completed : GET FEATURED ON ARIZONA HIKING : 8/23/2015arizona-hikingI got featured on @arizona_hiking and it was the best day ever because Arizona Hiking is the BEST Instagram account for hiking in Arizona. Best believe ever since I started following this account I’ve been wanting to be featured. They have the best pictures to really showcase how beautiful and diverse Arizona is!

Bucket list item #150/151 completed : GET MY OWN WEBSITE/START A BLOG : 8/20/2015

Thanks to the encouragement of my friend Juan, I took the plunge and purchased a domain name to cross off bucket list item #150: get my own website! And soon after, I crossed off bucket list item #151: start my own blog! This blog started off as www.mairaLBL.com where LBL = life bucket list, but it has now transformed into www.EnthusiasticAboutLife.com! Thank you all for sticking it out with me 🙂

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Bucket list item #93 completed : ARIZONA CARDINALS GAME : 8/15/2015

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After 23 years of living in Arizona, I finally crossed off this bucket list. I am a big Arizona Cardinals fan because I believe in rooting for the home team when it comes to professional sports. It was great because I got the opportunity to go to the game with my little sister thanks to the generosity of the donors who support Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central AZ!

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Bucket list item #158 IN PROGRESS : GIVE  A TED TALK! : 8/3/2015

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Had such a blast returning to my high school La Joya to speak to the freshman class about my high school experience and my journey after. It felt so good to return to the place where it all started. Thank you Lynette Turnbaugh for inviting me to come and speak to these kids. It was an honor! Go lobos! And it was so good catching up with Nate Lucca, David Meza, Charles Solares, Jesse Arellano, and Bridget Recio! 🙂

Fave part of my talk: We had a mean girls moment where I made them close their eyes and raise their hands if they were nervous about starting high school lol.

Excited to be on my way to completing life bucket list item #158: give a TED talk.

Bucket list item #118 completed : GO KAYAKING! : 8/1/2015

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I went kayaking for the very first time in Prescott at Watson Lake! It was awesome but tiring and my wrists hurt because apparently I don’t know how to kayak haha

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Bucket list item #27 completed: MEXICO FUTBOL GAME! : 7/12/2015

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I FINALLY DID IT! I went to go watch a Mexico game in person!! I’ve been wanting to go to one for so long and wow was it an experience! Such a great atmosphere with such dedicated fans. I walked in with a borrowed jersey and walked out with a headband, a flag and a jersey haha VIVA MEXICO!!

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Bucket list item #399 completed: VISIT ALPACAS OF THE SOUTHWEST! : 4/3/2015

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i visited the famous Alpaca Farm in Kingman and it was so awesome!!! Alpacas are so adorable. Today I learned that the only reason that alpacas are around today is because a few thousand of them were hidden after the Spanish tried to eradicate them way back when. I love fun facts. Highly recommend this place if you’re on your way from Phoenix to Las Vegas. Super random but super cool. Also, make sure to buy yourself some alpaca socks, your feet will thank you.

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Bucket list item #109 completed: ENJOY A GAME IN A SUITE! : 6/19/2015

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Loving the suite life! Thank you BBBSAZ and Perini Building Company for hooking us up and helping my little sister and me cross off a bucket list item! Awesome way to watch the Phoenix Mercury game!

Bucket list item #26 completed: START A TRENDING TOPIC! : 6/18/2015

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I always thought it’d be on twitter talking to Lady Gaga but LinkedIn is good too lol does this mean I’m famous in New York? 🙂

Bucket list item #166 completed : SKI SHOT WITH FRIENDS! : 6/6/2015

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Taking a ski shot at Twin Peaks was So. Much. Fun.  I don’t think I can ever go back to taking a regular shot again lol. If you’ve never done a ski shot, please go do one. Great experience. No hands!! Lol

Bucket list item #358 completed : WATCH A MOVIE AT A DRIVE-IN! : 4/3/2014

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Life bucket list item #358 completed! Watch a movie at a drive in! What an awesome experience! Definitely coming back! Get Hard was a lot better than i thought it would be! Totally recommend you all come to a drive-in at least once in your life! It’s perfect for a friends’ night out, family night out, or even a date night. West Wind Glendale Drive-In was pretty cool! Get there early to get a good spot. 🙂

Bucket list item #54 completed : GO TO A SPRING TRAINING GAME! : 3/29/2015

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Life bucket list item #54 completed! Go to a spring training baseball game! Super fun but super hot lol. I highly recommend that everyone take a hat and sunglasses and a ton of sunscren lol. I had a great time with the SHPE-PHX crew at my first ever spring training baseball game!

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Bucket list item #118 completed : GO ON A PEDAL BOAT! : 3/28/2015

It was such a blast, especially since I went with my little sister! We went to Kiwanis Park in Tempe and Wheel Fun Rentals hooked us up with a free rental because we are part of the Big Bros Big Sis program! Definitely recommend renting a pedal boat, it’s super fun! Unfortunately, Wheel Fun Rentals is no longer at Kiwanis Park but Tempe Town Lake has similar items to rent!

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Bucket list item #294 completed : VISIT AZ STATE CAPITOL MUSEUM! : 2/21/2015

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Life bucket list item #294 completed! Check out the Arizona State Capitol Museum! It was pretty cool with free admission and I got to learn a little bit about Arizona history. Plus, the building is really nice and it is near the Phoenix botanical gardens (which is also on my bucket list).

Bucket list item #349 completed: NFL FAN FEST : 1/31/15

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Thank you Tim for suggesting I add this to my bucket list! Had such a blast and have a new found love for the sport! Life bucket list item #349 completed! Check out the Superbowl festivities! I think this year was the perfect time to go because Superbowl 49 was hosted in my home city! There was a ton of cool things to see and we even saw Katy Perry (from a distance). Got to run around, see some cool football memorabilia, and take cool pictures. The block party was also pretty awesome. I recommend everyone go to the NFL experience at least once in their life, even if you aren’t a football fan!

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Bucket list item #37 completed: BECOME AN ORDAINED MINISTER : 1/29/15

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LOL this bucket list item absolutely cracks me up. Guess who just became an ordained minister!? Ever since I saw that episode of ‘How I Met Your Mother’ when Barney is an ordained minister and is able to marry Lily and Marshall, I knew that I had to get that same level of power. It was super easy, I got my certification online with the Universal Life Church and I am now able to marry people (which is life bucket list item #280 if anybody wants to help me cross off that item lol), I can also perform baptisms and exorcisms, among other interesting things lol.

AND UPDATE!! I WILL BE OFFICIATING MY FIRST WEDDING IN JUNE 2016!

Bucket list item #220 completed: ICE SKATE AT CITY SKATE : 1/17/15

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I’ve gone ice skating before but I had never been skating outdoors so it was super exciting when I finally was able to cross off this bucket list item: go ice skating in Phoenix’s only outdoor ice skating rink: City Skate! It was so much fun and yes those roller skating skills I gained while working at Sonic 5 years ago definitely transferred over! I recommend this place to everyone whether you are going on a date, with friends, or with family. Super fun and there are a ton of restaurants in this area!

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Bucket list item #289 completed: BUY A GROWLER : 12/28/14

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Life bucket list item #289 completed! Buy a growler! This bucket list item was awesome! I learned about growlers just recently and for those of you who don’t know, a growler is a container for beer. Small history lesson: in the late 1800s and early 1900s, fresh beer was carried from the local pub to one’s home by means of a small-galvanized pail. Rumor has it that when the beer sloshed around the pail, it created a rumbling sound as the CO2 escaped through the lid, thus the term “growler” was coined. The growler that I bought was called Lady O’Grady from BBB. I definitely think it makes the beer taste a lot better and it makes you look cool to stroll into a party carrying a growler lol

Bucket list item #60 completed: WATCH ‘THE BUCKET LIST’ : 12/25/14

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Whenever someone hears about my bucket list, one of the most common questions I get is ‘Did the movie inspire you to create your bucket list?’ And it was always a little embarrassing to admit that I had never actually seen the movie lol so I added it to my list! I don’t know why I waited this long to watch this movie but I’m glad I finally saw it. Beautiful movie and yes I cried. HIGHLY recommend this movie.

“Have you found joy in your life? Has your life brought joy to others?” – Carter Chambers

Bucket list item #146 completed: SHOOT A GUN : 12/21/14

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This one was a super fun one! I interrupted my friends’ camping/hunting adventure at Robbins Butte to go and have them teach me how to shoot a gun lol. They were the PERFECT teachers. Super patient, had a ton of guns, and a lot of experience. With their help, I was able to shoot a watermelon, a water bottle, and hit a bulls eye on a paper target using a shot gun, a 9mm, and a 22. I guess you can say I was a natural 😉 Thank you Noah, Ben, and Tim for being awesome teachers!! It was a lot harder than it looks. I remember being afraid of the recoil from the gun so much that Noah had to ‘prep’ me and pushed me on my shoulder blade to show me how it would feel lol what a blast!

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Bucket list item #90 completed: RIDE THE TUCSON STREET CAR : 12/20/14

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The Tucson streetcar was pretty cool! It’s basically like the light rail in Tempe but better because it’s in Tucson 😉 The machine did steal my dollar so I wasn’t happy about that, but otherwise I had a nice ride to downtown Tucson to grab some dinner! Wish it had been finished while I was in school 🙁 and not the year after!!!

Bucket list item #94 completed: VISIT EL TIRADITO WISHING WELL : 12/20/14

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The Tiradito Wishing shrine is located in Tucson’s Barrio Viejo and is full of history. Pretty cool! I learned that El Tiradito is the only Catholic shrine in the US dedicated to a sinner buried in unconsecrated ground. Read more here!

Bucket list item #3 IN PROGRESS : GET A PRIVATE PILOT’S LICENSE 

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8 pages of notes and 4 hours later, Day 1 of Private Pilot Ground School is complete! Life bucket list item #3 has been officially started!!!
I’m getting that pilot’s license. ✈👊 You know you love your job when you get to work and it literally feels like Christmas.
ground-school-2Day 2 of Private Pilot Ground School was a success!! Reviewed (because let’s be honest I learned most of this stuff in college) some more aerodynamics and aircraft performance material AND got a pretty awesome bag full of textbooks, tools, study guides, AND A PILOT LOG BOOK. I HAVE A PILOT LOG BOOK. ✈✈✈
ground-school-3P.S. it’s also awesome taking the class with one of my best friends! I completed ground school back in December. Next step is to take the FAA knowledge exam, and then get some flying hours!

Bucket list item #310 completed: BE A BETA READER : (various dates)

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Life bucket list item #310 completed. Be a beta reader for a novel. Incredibly honored to have had the opportunity to be one of the first few people to read a novel (titled Positive Pizza) and even more honored that it is a novel written by a dear friend. Beautiful novel. Jacob Shirley I can’t wait for the rest of the world to read what you’ve written.the-carver

Wow just finished round 2 of being a beta reader for my dear author friend Jacob Shirley and his new book The Carver (book one of a trilogy). Super fast read full of VERY interesting characters and stories! The ending was just so unexpected!! Can’t wait for the rest of the books and for your books to become famous and for you to become the next J.K. Rowling!! (P.s. – I’ll send you my thoughts in an email like the professional beta reader that I am 😎)

ALSO!! MAJOR UPDATE!! MY FRIEND IS GETTING PUBLISHED!!! CHECK OUT HIS BLOG AND HIS FACEBOOK PAGE AND ALL OF HIS INFORMATION AND BUY HIS BOOK. IT IS AMAZING!!

Bucket list item #38 completed: METEOR CRATER : 11/18/14

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We made it to Meteor Crater. It is really an unbelievable sight. Crazy to think that a meteor can hit Earth and create a crater 700 feet deep and 4000 feet across in just 10 seconds. 20 football fields can fit inside the crater, jesus. Definitely recommend you all check it out.

Bucket list item #86 completed: BECOME A VIP BLOOD DONOR: 10/20/14

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Donating blood was an interesting experience. I hadn’t ever donated blood because the first time that I tried to donate blood when I turned 18 I passed out and I just never went back. But I was inspired to go donate blood by my cube mate at work who is a ‘VIP’ blood donor which means he’s donated so much blood and has saved a ton of lives. I decided to go and donate blood and I had to recruit a friend to join me just in case I passed out again haha. I donated and felt a little dizzy during the procedure but I got through it and saved 3 lives! I encourage you all to go donate blood, it really makes a difference!

Bucket list item #176 completed: BECOME A BIG SISTER : 11/12/14

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It’s finally official y’all!!! I met my little sister today and she is absolutely perfect. Life bucket list item #176 completed! Be a big sister!! I’m so excited for our friendship, she is seriously just a little ball of sunshine.

I’ve been wanting to be a part of the Big Brothers Big Sisters program since I was about 12 years old. I am the youngest of 3 and I never got to act as a ‘big sister’. I saw a commercial about the program on TV when I was 12 and it looked like such a great program. Once I finally graduated and had my own car, I started the process to become involved. I learned more about the program and now I know more than ever what a great program it is. It’s a program to provide mentoring, guidance, and companionship to a child who doesn’t have that in their lives. I encourage each and every one of you to look into the program and maybe become a Big and change a small child’s life! If you have any questions at all, please send me a note under the ‘contact’ link, I’d be happy to answer!

Bucket list item #82 completed: MERCURY GAME : 7/14/14

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I had such a blast at my first every Phoenix Mercury game. These women are ridiculously skilled and we had such great seats thanks to my great mentors/friends Judy and Bill! I recommend everyone to go to a Mercury game. Not only are they great to watch, there is also a lot of audience interaction involved!

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Bucket list item #26 completed: VISIT KARTCHNER CAVERNS : 7/12/14

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Kartchner Caverns State Park was seriously one of the most amazing experiences ever. Nature is wonderful. I definitely encourage everyone to visit and explore the caves! It’s definitely a whole new world. I got a cavern kiss which is when a drop of dew falls on you inside the cavern. Beautiful place, please check it out! Make sure you bring some comfortable shoes because the tour of the cavern is pretty long but worth it!

Bucket list item #2 completed: BUY A CAR : 6/14/14

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I was super excited for this bucket list item because I definitely NEEDED a car. Those of you who have known me for a while will know that my very first car was a super old 2000 Chrysler Cirrus that was not the most reliable. There were multiple times when my sad little Cirrus just turned off while I was on the freeway. Terrifying to say the least lol. I remember never really offering anybody a ride because I was always afraid that my car would not turn on hahaha. And then when I was driving back to Tucson for my last year of college, my car just DIED. It was so sad and I had to go through senior year without a car which was really difficult lol. So when I finally got a job and was able to purchase my very own NEW car, it was a big deal. I was so happy and am still very, very happy with my Toyota Corolla 2014 🙂 A lot of people have asked me why I chose to go with a Corolla and there are 2 main reasons. #1 they are super reliable (and I needed this) #2: the CEO of Honeywell Aerospace Tim Mahoney owns a Corolla lol

Bucket list item #16 completed: VISIT TOMBSTONE : 6/31/14

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Tombstone, AZ is super sunny, pretty epic, and it’s known as the town too tough to die! Great place with ghost tours, wine tasting, delicious food, and great beer. Highly recommend if you’re trying to get out of the city and want to do something really unique!

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Bucket list item #12 completed : WIN A HUGE CHECK : 6/5/14

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It was an absolute honor working with you four on our senior design project this year. A huge shout out to my team for meeting all of our goals for our project!

I’ve always wanted to hold one of these huge checks and I never thought that winning one was possible but here it is! We won the ‘Innate Art and Beauty of Engineering’ Award. Cheers to a successful Engineering Design Day!

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CALIFORNIA

SPECIAL FEATURE ON THE LIFE BUCKET LIST : TRAINING FOR RACES

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One of my favorite things that has come out of me adding different races (5k, 10k, 15k, half marathon, full marathon) to my bucket list has been the opportunity to train/run when I travel. Pictured here are a few of my favorite places where I’ve gone running (Texas, Nevada, California, and of course Arizona). Check out 5 Reasons To Add A  Race To Your Bucket List if you need some convincing 🙂

Bucket list item #229 completed : VISIT HISTORIC QUEEN MARY SHIP! : 3/4/2016

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Life bucket list item #229 completed yesterday! Visit the historic Queen Mary Ship in Long Beach, California! At one point one of the fastest and multi talented ships in the world. Super cool to step into history.

Bucket list item #451 completed : TOUCH A SHARK! : 3/4/2016

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Life bucketlist item #451 completed! Touch a shark!! It was tiny and harmless but I was still scared haha

Bucket list item #154 completed : AQUARIUM OF THE PACIFIC! : 3/4/2016

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Life bucket list item #154 completed yesterday! Check out the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, California! It was so HUGE and so awesome and so full of super awesome exhibits. My favorite part was seeing the sea otters and touching a little shark! Thank you We All Grow, Coworking on 15th, and Latina Bloggers Connect for taking us here!

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Bucket list item #153 IN PROGRESS : GET TO IMGUR FRONT PAGE! : 9/1/2015

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OMG so the official instagram account for the photo sharing website Imgur liked and commented on my picture AND started following me on Instagram!!! I was so excited that I posted it on Imgur hoping that I would finally complete life bucket list item #153 : make it onto the front page but I didn’t succeed. Maybe next time!

Bucket list item #328 completed : CAMP IMGUR : 8/6/2015

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Going to CAMP IMGUR is definitely a top bucket list item. What is CAMP IMGUR, you may ask? Well it is a part meet up, part festival and part conference in beautiful Camp Navarro in Northern California! I was so excited for this bucket list item because growing up, my parents never sent me to summer camp and after watching The Parent Trap, best believe I wanted to go. So I sent myself to summer camp because I’m an adult and I can do what I want!!  It was awesome!

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Camp Imgur was without a doubt one of the most unique and fun experiences I’ve had so far! So so so happy we came! Grabbed a beer as soon as we got to the campsite and then headed straight to the Arts and Crafts station.

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We spent a lot of time laying in the hammocks in the beautiful 70 degree weather drinking beer.

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Just check out that view from the hammocks.

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Camp Imgur wasn’t playing when they said they would have a smores bar.

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You know I had to work off the extra calories from the beer and the smores so I went on some morning runs and look at that view. My view when I went on my morning run but I got lost and ended up going on a really hard steep uphill trail so my run only lasted like 10 minutes lol.

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I’m pretty sure I had a snow cone at every meal.

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I did some archery.

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Tried solar carving for the first time! It was so awesome creating art with the power of the sun!

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There was an epic pie eating contest lol 

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And beach volleyball!

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And a comedy show!

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The ‘hella funny comedy show’ was HILARIOUS. One of the best parts of Camp! One of the best lines was when the first comedian asked how the idea of Camp Imgur started and since Imgur is a photo sharing website he said ‘did you all just look at each others picture and say WOW YOUR PIC LOOKS FLY WANNA MEET ME IN THE WOODS’ lol

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Not the best picture but definitely a highlight of Camp. We had an astro-biologist (Sanjoy Som from NASA) come and talk to us about Earth and some cool science facts. I love the fact that he emphasized that it’s important to follow your dreams and that no matter what country you are from, as an astronaut you are an ambassador from planet Earth.

There was also a Late Night Imgur (LNI) party!

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There was yoga!

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I met the CEO and founder of Imgur as well as the Community Director!

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I met Alan, the founder and CEO of imgur! He was great! Super nice and even offered to take a selfie with me haha. I also met Sara, the community leader. She was really sweet and super chill. camp imgur was such a success and I’m excited to have been a part of the very first year it happened!

I also got a chance to cross off another bucket list item while at Camp Imgur…

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I’m famous on the official twitter account for imgur lol!! That’s me in the ponytail learning about gifs at camp imgur 😊😊

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We also had a group picture taken by a drone! Overall, a fantastic experience!

Bucket list item #246 completed : VISIT SANTA MONICA PIER! : 5/24/2015

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Santa Monica Pier was so awesome! Beautiful place with lively people, perfect weather, and who doesn’t love the beach?! Wish I could live here.

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Bucket list item #379 completed : RIDE A ROLLER COASTER THE DAY IT OPENS! : 5/23/2015

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This was a very fun bucket list item to cross off because I LOVE ROLLER COASTERS. We came to Six Flags to celebrate my friend Joseph’s graduation from college. His girlfriend is so sweet and planned a surprise trip for him and invited his friends (us) to join. W were the first 250 to ride the brand new ride Twisted Colossus at Six Flags and we got special VIP pins lol!! It was such an awesome ride, that I think it may be my new favorite ride!!!

Bucket list item #208 completed : VISIT GRIFFITH OBSERVATORY! : 2/8/2015

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The Griffith Observatory was super cool! Science rocks! Fun fact: I’m really thin on the moon 😉 highly recommend, it’s free and there is a lot to see whether you are into science or not. Also, the hike there is really pleasant.

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Bucket list item #248 completed : HIKE TO HOLLYWOOD SIGN! : 2/8/2015

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Life bucket list item #248 completed! Hike up to Griffith Observatory to see the Hollywood sign! Pretty cool! I’m such a tourist lol ✌

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Bucket list item #252 completed : HOLLYWOOD WALK OF FAME! : 2/7/2015

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I found Emilio Estefan’s star! Life bucket list item #252 completed! Walk the Hollywood Walk of Fame! Super cool but Beyonce and Lady Gaga need a star ASAP. It was super fun to just walk around here (there were WAY more stars than I thought there would be). Also, I have a hilarious story from walking on these stars that I will not post on here for the world to see, but definitely ask me in person lol.

Bucket list item #253 completed : MADAME TUSSAUDS IN HOLLYWOOD! : 2/7/2015

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Got the chance to check out Madame Tussauds in Hollywood and see the celebrity wax figures! Super awesome and they looked SO REAL!

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Bucket list item #278 completed : ATTEMPT TO ESCAPE THE ROOM! : 2/7/2015

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We weren’t able to escape but it was SO MUCH FUN. I recommend this to everyone. We got locked up in a room and had 1 hour to escape using clues in the room. WE WERE SO CLOSE. I’ll be back and I will escape. If you are into solving puzzles and using clues/investigating, definitely try this! We did it in LA, but there are are opportunities in Arizona!

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Bucket list item #281 completed : VISIT THE LAST BOOKSTORE IN LA! : 2/7/2015

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Life bucket list item #281 completed! Visit the Last Bookstore : California’s largest used and new book and record store! It was honestly a book lover’s dream. You can’t beat $1 books and awesome archways made of books. I was like a kid in a candy store.

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COLORADO

Bucket list item #89 completed: VISIT THE ORIGINAL CHIPOTLE : 12/29/14

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Life bucket list item #89 completed!! Go to the first ever original Chipotle in Denver!! I was super excited to cross off this bucket list item, not only because I love Chipotle and I was hungry….but because THIS IS WHERE IT ALL STARTED. THIS IS WHERE THE MAGIC STARTED. This Chipotle was tiny but you could see the history, and the employees were super nice. My chicken burrito was amazing.

Bucket list item #213 completed: SAND DUNES IN COLORADO : 8/2/14

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Exploring the Great Sand Dunes in Colorado to se the tallest dunes in North America was SUCH A BLAST. I literally felt like I was in the movie Aladdin haha. This was a trip I took with my friend Tim to visit Maggie (and we are taking another trip but this time to visit Maggie in Europe!!! I swear she is always working in cool places). Anyway, this was a trip we took and it was super fun.

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The sand dunes felt magical and it was beautiful and made you feel small but at the same time made you appreciate how big the world can be just because it looked like the sand dunes went on FOREVER. It was really hard to walk through the sand dunes and we all got tired pretty fast but getting to the top was worth it. We then went sledding on the sand dunes and it was a little scary going all the way down. I recommend visiting the sand dunes to anyone who appreciates and loves nature and those who don’t. I think after you see the sand dunes, you will become a nature loving person

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MARYLAND

Bucket list item #48 IN PROGRESS: PRESENT AWARD AT OSCARS/EMMYS/TONYS/ETC! : 11/15/2015

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A little hard to see, but here I am presenting one of the Star Awards at the SHPE 2015 Star Awards Gala. It was so much fun, I got to hang out backstage with the winners (which included Vice Presidents of huge companies, Chief Engineers, Chief Researchers and CEOs!

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It was an absolute honor to have been asked to help to present these very prestigious awards at the SHPE 2015 Star Awards Gala. On my way to completing life bucket list item #48: present awards at the Emmy’s/Grammy’s/Oscars I’m not picky lol

Bucket list item #498 completed: SEE A LIGHTHOUSE! : 11/15/2015

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I’ve always wanted to see a light house in person and I finally did it this past week! Life bucket list item #498 completed! Check out the Seven Foot Knoll Lighthouse in Baltimore! Pretty cute and tiny lol

Bucket list item #489 completed: STAR SPANGLED BANNER FLAG HOUSE! : 11/15/2015

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Life bucket list item #489 completed! Visit the Star Spangled Banner Flag House where the flag that inspired the national anthem was made! Super cool place! History is great! 

Bucket list item #488 completed: EDGAR ALLAN POE GRAVESITE! : 11/15/2015

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Of course I had to go explore while in Baltimore and cross off another bucket list item. Life bucket list item #488 completed! Visit the graveyard where one of my favorite authors is buried and see his memorial. I’ve always loved reading and I specifically remember the very first time I read an Edgar Allan Poe short story and was absolutely entranced.

Bucket list item #39 completed: RIDE A TRAIN! : 11/15/2015

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First night (Tuesday) in Baltimore and I convinced my CORE team to have ride a train to DC and have dinner there…mostly so that I could cross of life bucket list item #39: ride a train! Lol and yes I got photobombed but it’s acceptable because that is my project lead and he’s pretty cool. Trains are fun, will definitely be taking more in the future!

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MICHIGAN

Bucket list item #428 HALF COMPLETED: RAP BATTLE AT 8 MILE! : 7/24/2015

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‘Now, everybody from the 313
Put your hands up and follow me’

So life bucket list item #428 is to go to 8 Mile and have an epic rap battle with Eminem. I made it to 8 Mile but Eminem wasn’t there, unfortunately. ONE DAY I WILL MEET HIM!

Bucket list item #251 completed: VISIT THE MOTOWN MUSEUM : 11/8/14

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Visiting the Motown Museum in Detroit was super cool! History was made here y’all. ✌🎤🎷

It was the perfect time for me to visit because I had just graduated from college and my last semester of college I took a class on American Music History and learned all about Motown music! This place is small but full of history. Check it out!

Bucket list item #420 completed: BRONNER’S CHRISTMAS WONDERLAND! : 7/24/2015

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During my trip in Michigan, you know I had to stop and check out the WORLD’S LARGEST CHRISTMAS STORE! Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland is a must stop if you love Christmas. There was so much stuff!

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Bucket list item #18 completed: FLY FIRST CLASS! : 7/23/2015

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UMM THIS JUST HAPPENED!!! I FLEW FIRST CLASS AND IT WAS AMAZING. The seats were way more comfortable, there was so much space, the food was delicious (YES WE GOT FOOD), unlimited wine, blankets, and we got hot towels. I love living the good life, I wish this was the only way to fly haha. 

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MONTANA

Bucket list item #407 completed : GLACIER NATIONAL PARK IN MONTANA! : 9/7/2015glacier-national-parkGlacier National Park in Montana is hands down, one of the most beautiful places I have ever visited. Montana is beautiful. Literally beautiful views EVERYWHERE. Thanks for hosting me Sandra!glacier-national-park-9Got to see some of the parts of Glacier National Park that have been affected by wildfires in the past. 

glacier-national-park-5 glacier-national-park-2 Had the privilege of making it to the Many Glacier hotel on this 100th birthday! What a beautiful and historically rich structure. Definitely going to come back and stay here! Went on a super cool hotel tour and learned some fun facts! Fun fact: the Many Glacier hotel was designed to mimic Swiss architecture to encourage people to ‘see America First’ and visit the ‘American Alps’ instead of the Swiss Alps.glacier-national-park-10Some of the wildlife I saw at glacier national park. Tons of cows, 3 bears, a fox (not pictured), horses (not pictured) and a few squirrels (not pictured). AND YES THAT IS A BEAR BEHIND ME.

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NEW JERSEY

Bucket list item #153 completed : INTERNATIONAL IMGUR SECRET SANTA! : 12/9/2015

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Life bucket list item #153 about to be completed! Participate in the international Imgur Secret Santa!! My person is from New Jersey and is a sophomore in college studying biology who loves chocolate and foxes! I got her a super cute fox blanket, some chocolate, and Arizona sticker (obvi lol) and some super cute earrings that look like neurons! So excited, I hope she likes it! Can’t wait to get my gift lol

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I got my imgur secret santa gift this week!! I got a huge book of airplanes, some little mason jar shot glasses, harry potter bookmark, and some U of A stickers! The perfect gift!! Thank you KellieIrene! Definitely participating in the imgur international secret santa again next year!

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NEVADA

SPECIAL FEATURE ON THE LIFE BUCKET LIST : TRAINING FOR RACES

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One of my favorite things that has come out of me adding different races (5k, 10k, 15k, half marathon, full marathon) to my bucket list has been the opportunity to train/run when I travel. Pictured here are a few of my favorite places where I’ve gone running (Texas, Nevada, California, and of course Arizona). Check out 5 Reasons To Add A  Race To Your Bucket List if you need some convincing 🙂

Bucket list item #56 completed : ROLLERCOASTER IN VEGAS! : 10/25/2015

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LOL at Yamille’s face in the front row next to me ahahahahhaa

Life bucket list item #56 completed! Ride The Rollercoaster in the NYNY Hotel in Las Vegas!!! Way better than I expected! Had some good turns and fantastic views of the strip! So awesome! Can’t wait to come back and hit the rest of the coasters!

P.S. – I’ve been to Vegas several times but have never been able to ride a coaster because I’ve always been way too hungover lol

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Tell me this isn’t the most flattering picture you’ve ever seen of 2 people on a rollercoaster LOL friendship goals right!?! 

Bucket list item #32 completed : GO TO A RODEO! : 10/24/2015

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Life bucket list item #32 completed!! Go to a rodeo (PBR2015 world Finals) in Las Vegas!!! Yamille hooked me up with suite tickets!!! It was so awesome but definitely super terrifying to see 2 riders get seriously injured. Got to see the best riders in the world do what they love. It was a little stressful for me because I’m a very empathetic person and I was worried about every single rider lol but all in all it was an awesome time! Everyone should go to a rodeo once in their life!

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It was epic and I learned that in professional bull riding there are people who help the riders mount the bulls and while watching them I thought to myself ‘is it too much for me to want someone to hold me the way that the helpers hold the riders while they are initially mounting the bulls?’ Lol half kidding hahaha it’s just super cute I mean look at how he’s holding him! Lol

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What an awesome experience to see professional bull riding in person! Especially the best of the best in the world finals!!

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Had such a blast at the PBR 2015 World Finals in Las Vegas! The cowboy hat on the lion at the MGM Grand just cracks me up lol Thanks so much for inviting me Yamille! YOU ARE AWESOME!

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Bucket list item #45 completed : GO TO AN AFTER PARTY! : 10/24/2015

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So tonight after the PBR 2015 World Finals, I also managed to spontaneously cross off life bucket list item #45! Go to an official event after party! It was pretty cool! We got to see JB Mauney and a few other bull riders, they had drinks, and a live band with a dance floor! Vegas is great!

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NEW MEXICO

Bucket list item #14 completed: GRAPE STOMPING! : 10/4/15

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AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST MY ABSOLUTE FAVORITE PART OF THE Rancho De Las Golondrinas Harvest Festival was that I got to complete life bucket list item #14 : go grape stomping in order to make wine!!! I feel like my whole life has led up to this moment lol I got to stomp grapes that would eventually be turned into red wine (my favorite kind!!) Also I feel like the flower wreath totally completed this experience. WHAT A FANTASTIC DAY. VIDEO WILL BE UP SOON. IT WAS EXHAUSTING WORK BUT WELL WORTH IT

Bucket list item #480 completed: RANCHO DE LAS GOLONDRINAS: 10/4/15

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So I took a trip with the family to Santa Fe and before going I asked mg cousin if there was anything I had to add to my bucket list. He told me that I definitely needed to add the Rancho De Las Golondrinas which translates to Ranch of the Swallows (birds). It’s a live museum with an hacienda, animals, crops, and costumed workers. Luckily today was the start of their Harvest Festival and they had so many cool activities. No wonder it’s their most popular event, I highly recommend! Live museums are the BEST museums. I got to string a chile ristra , learn a ton about crops, drink some freshly squeezed apple juice from this awesome contraption and a ton of other cool things (pictures coming soon). It was so awesome. Life bucket list item #480 completed.

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I also got a chance to make a flower wreath at the Harvest Festival at the Rancho De Las Golondrinas !!! It was so awesome and so calming and relaxing and I definitely needed this in my life lol and I seriously love New Mexico 😊😊😊 

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I also learned about the history of the water wheel , the history of the loom AND THE HISTORY OF HOW BEER IS MADE. Fun fact: millers who used to work with beer became some of the very first billionaires by distilling wheat to make beer!! Lol learning is fun! I high fived the tour guide after he mentioned that hahaha

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I also made some friends with some alpacas lmao and this time they didn’t spit on me hahaha I’m having such a great time in new mexico y’all I don’t want to leave lol

Bucket list item #477 completed: VISIT THE MIRACLE STAIRCASE: 10/4/15

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Life bucket list item #477 completed: visit the Loretto Chapel which houses the Miraculous Staircase. This staircase is famous because the man who built it is unknown (he built it and then left with no pay and some say he was St. Joseph the patron saint of carpenters), the design is innovative and way ahead of its time (finished in 1878), and it has two 360 degree turns and no visible means of support (thus defying physics and its very existence a miracle). Being the engineer that I am, I of course analyzed the design and then did some research online and I’m not sure it’s exactly a miracle…but regardless it is a beautiful design and a beautiful church. My mom loved it! If you are in Santa Fe definitely check it out!
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My mom is so cute and bought me a rosary at the Loretto Chapel (home of the Miraculous Staircase ) to hang in my car to ‘keep me safe’ 😊😇

Bucket list item #29 completed: ALBUQUERQUE INTERNATIONAL BALLOON FIESTA: 10/3/15

Life bucket list item #29 completed: go to the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta ! What an awesome experience. Saw some fantastic balloons start flat on the ground, get fired up and soar to the skies. I could literally stay here all day and watch the balloons.

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It was all so pretty!

I saw a bear and I had to! Lol BEAR DOWN (literally)

The balloons were all SO HUGE. I had never seen any this close it was so awesome! Everybody seriously needs to come here.

Mom loved the Balloon Fiesta lol I had to put a hat on her so that I wouldn’t lose her lmao 🎈😂

Such cool balloon shapes at the Balloon Fiesta 🎈

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Tell me why I always find Elena in random places lol first Disney, now Balloon Fiesta lol so good seeing you!

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Of course we had to go back to the ABQ Balloon Fiesta Night Glow Session! We got to see the balloons get fired up and glow in the evening! Super cool to watch! I love albuquerque 😊

One of my favorite items that I’ve crossed off on my bucket list so far. 🎈 have I mentioned that I want to get proposed to on a hot air balloon? Future husband, take notes lol

The Balloon Fiesta also had fireworks. What an awesome day/night. 🎈🎆

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Bucket list item #352 completed: WORLD’S LARGEST AERIAL TRAMWAY: 11/15/14

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This bucket list item was one of my favorites. Taking a ride on the Sandia Peak Ski & Tramway: World’s Largest Aerial Tramway was amazing! It was so awesome and the view at the top was breathtaking. Seriously so awesome. Everyone come here. I can’t say enough about the views. The ride itself is about 15 minutes long and there is a person on the tram giving some information about the history. Once you get to the top, there is usually snow and it’s beautiful!

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OHIO

Bucket list item #25 completed: CEDAR POINT! : 7/24/2015

CEDAR-POINT

I made it to Cedar Point, the roller coaster capital of the world! If you know me, you will know that I am the biggest roller coaster junkie. Cedar Point was so awesome! There were so many awesome rides…that make the rides at every other park look like child’s play. If you love adrenaline, you need me to come to Ohio!

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OREGON

Bucket list item #324 completed : POWELL’S BOOKSTORE! : 9/9/2015

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We kept exploring Portland and made it to Powell’s Bookstore! We checked out the largest independent new and used book store in the world! Basically a book lover’s heaven. It was a little overwhelming (lol) but I bought a book, some stickers and a mug! I finished reading ‘The Girl With All The Gifts’ and it was SO GOOD, highly recommend it!

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WASHINGTON

Bucket list item #365 completed : DRIVE ON FLOATING BRIDGE! : 4/18/2015seattle-floating-bridgeI drove on the floating bridge in Seattle during my trip there and it was super cool! I thought it would be a lot scarier but it was really fun and felt super safe (because it is) haha. What a great concept for a road! The engineer in me was completely geeking out haha

Bucket list item #367 completed : MOUNT RAINIER! : 4/17/2015

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Of course I had to add Mount Rainier to the bucket list! Breathtakingly beautiful. Even the drive up the mountain was completely majestic. We were lucky to be able to drive up in April and see a little bit of snow. The snow was SO BRIGHT. Will definitely be coming up here and doing some hikes.

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Bucket list item #362 completed : SPACE NEEDLE IN SEATTLE! : 4/16/2015

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Of course i had to add the space needle to the bucket list! Life bucket list item #362 completed! So awesome!!! 520 feet up!! I’m all about observation decks and make it a point to visit them if I am in a city that has one. The Space Needle has been my favorite so far just because of the amazing views, and how the wind feels when you are that high!

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Bucket list item #364 completed : ADD GUM TO THE FAMOUS GUM WALL! : 4/16/2015

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I found the gum wall near Pike Place Market and added some gum! It was really cool to see in person but I won’t lie…it was kind of gross haha. When I went to add my own piece of gum to the wall I was super careful to not touch any of the other gum haha.

Bucket list item #240 completed: PIKE PLACE MARKET! : 4/16/2015

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Of course the Pike Place Market in Seattle had to be added to the bucket list! Super awesome! This is where Starbucks got its start, and there is tons of delicious fruit, seafood, and dessert!

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Bucket list item ##361 completed : SEATTLE GREAT WHEEL! : 4/16/2015

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Riding the Seattle Great Wheel was super awesome but not fun if you’re afraid of heights…like me lol but the views were incredible!

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