Looking Back at 2018

Another year has come and gone. 2018 was a good year for me. So many things took place this year. One of the most exciting things that happened was I found I was pregnant with my first baby. I also got to travel and take part in fun races. Here are my highlights of 2018.

Pregnancy
My boyfriend and I always talked about having a baby, but we didn’t know it would happen so soon. My boyfriend wanted a boy and I wanted a girl. I was thrilled when I found out I was having a girl. This is a blessing and I can’t believe our little one is almost here. I spent the majority of 2018 being pregnant and while I did miss out on a few things, I will cherish all the little moments with my baby. For example, the first time I heard her heartbeat and saw her on the ultrasound, the first time she kicked, and when my belly bump started to get bigger.

Moving
Another thing that happened in 2018 was that my family and I moved out of Montebello. This was after living there for almost 10 years. We moved about 20 minutes from Montebello and while I do miss my old city, I am very happy and comfortable in my new city. Only bad things are that I live further from my boyfriend and my commute to work is a bit longer. When I was in Montebello, I was able to leave my house 5 minutes before starting work and get there on time. Now I need to leave at least 25-30 minutes before I start work. I give myself the extra 5-10 minutes just in case there is traffic of construction going on.

Travel
In February, I spent the weekend in Orlando by myself. I had gone to Orlando before back in 2017, but this was my first ever solo trip. The reason I went to Orlando was to take part in the Disney Princess Challenge. This is a series of races hosted by Run Disney. I ran a 10k on Saturday morning and then a half marathon on Sunday morning. I really enjoyed my solo trip and I’m so glad I got to experience it before becoming a mom.

In March, I ran a half marathon in San Diego. I normally travel with my family or friends, but this time I went with my boyfriend. This was our first weekend away together. It was long overdue. We have been together for 5 years and that was our first trip. Hoping we can take more weekend trips with our baby girl in the upcoming years.

I decided my last trip before the baby’s arrival should be a fun one. What could be more fun than almost a week in Las Vegas? In August, I went to Las Vegas with Giovanna for a few days. There were many things I couldn’t do like drink or ride on the New York New York roller coasters, but I still had fun. The best part of the Las Vegas trip was getting to see the Backstreet Boys in concert. I also got to try a lot of good food and we walked so much every day that I was always walking at least 10,000 steps, which was my goal.

Running
I ran almost 300 miles. I’m sure if I hadn’t been pregnant, I would’ve ran more. Regardless, I am still happy that I was able to run 300 miles. Not only that, but I was able to run one half marathon, one 10k, and two 5k races while pregnant. I wasn’t going to let my pregnancy slow me down!

At the beginning of 2018, I did my best half marathon 2 hours and 9 mins in Pasadena. This was so close to my goal of running in under 2 hours. I’m hoping that in 2019, I can reach the goal. I know this will require a lot of training runs from me, most of which will take place in the summer.

As I mentioned earlier, I did the Disney Princess Challenge in Orlando. I love to challenge myself. This was the first time I ran 19.3 miles in 2 days! What makes the Disney Princess Challenge runs even more fun is the fact that you get to run through the Disney parks and take pictures with the characters. I got to take pictures with Anna and Elsa from Frozen, Belle and Gaston from Beauty and the Beast, and even Buzz Lightyear to name a few. I won’t take part in the races this year, but I plan to be there in 2020!

In 2018, I ran the LA Marathon for the first time. I did not run in under 5 hours like I had planned, but I did improve by 6 minutes over my first marathon. Not going to lie, this was a tough marathon for me. It didn’t help that at the start of the run, I did some have pain in my left knee. I also didn’t follow my training plan as well as I should have. That’s okay, every time I run a marathon or any other race, I always learn ways I can improve my time and my training. The hills after mile 20 were the worst. Now that I know what to expect, I will definitely train for that in 2020.

Concerts
I went to see Brad Paisley in concert with my mom. My mom isn’t fan of country music, but she really likes Kane Brown, who was one of the openers for Brad Paisley. I had to choose between going to see Tim McGraw (my favorite country singer) and Brad Paisley. I decided to see Brad Paisley and it was worth it. He is such a great singer live and entertaining. I really like the song he sang with Carrie Underwood, who sang her parts via satellite/video.

Seeing the Backstreet Boys was the highlight of my Las Vegas trip. My only complaint is that I wish the concert had been longer. They played some of their newer music, along with their classics. It’s great to see them still together after all these years. They are touring this year. They are scheduled to play in Anaheim and Los Angeles. I’m hoping I can see them again. Fingers crossed that I make it to their concert.

Favorite Movies
Normally I am the kind of person who waits for movies to come out on DVD or Netflix instead of going to the movie theaters to watch. In fact, most of the time I only go to the movies once or maybe even twice a year. This year, I ended up going to 7 movies, which is a lot for me. Who knows if next year I will be able to watch as many movies since I will have my little one. Of course, I will make an exception to watch the new Avengers movies. Here are the movies I went to watch in 2018. The little kid movies are the ones I took my sisters to go watch.

Sherlock Gnomes
Black Panther
50 Shades
Hotel Transylvania
Avengers Infinity War
Goosebumps 2
Crimes of Grindewald

2018 was a memorable year for me. I can’t wait to see what 2019 will bring for us!

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Las Vegas Trip

A few weeks ago, I went to Las Vegas for the week with Giovanna, my travelling partner since 2012. It was my second time going to Las Vegas. It was fun, but so hot! I think it was 105+ every day that we were there. Thank goodness it wasn’t humid.

The last time I went to Las Vegas was in November 2017. That time I went with my family, my mom, three of my sisters, and my grandpa. We stayed at the Circus, Circus hotel. We only went for the weekend and it was because I had the Rock and Roll 5k and Half Marathon. This time, we went to have fun.

We stayed at the Treasure Island hotel. Our room was nice, but we were on the 22nd floor. The view was great, but it felt scary being so high up! In our hotel, there was a gym and a pool. We went to the pool twice and I went to the gym once.

I loved going on the Eiffel Tower at the Paris hotel. It was so awesome being able to see all over Las Vegas, from the strip all the way to the mountains. It was a bit scary to be up so high, but the view was so worth it. I wanted to get on the High Roller, which is a ferris wheel near The Linq, but Giovanna didn’t want to go because of how tall it was.

The highlight of my Las Vegas trip was going to the Backstreet Boys concert. I grew up listening to them,but this was my first time seeing them in concert! I had so much fun, my only complain is that I wish the concert had been much longer!

Some other things that we did were go to the ice bar, see the dolphins, lions, and tigers at The Mirage, see the Marvel Station at Treasure Island where they had props from the movies, visit the Welcome to Las Vegas sign, and visit the garden at the Bellagio .

I pigged out so much! One of my favorite places to eat at was called Hash House a Go Go. They have huge pancakes there, big enough for two or three people to share. I got a cake milkshake from Black Tap on the Venetian, a huge slice of pizza from Pinup Pizza next to Planet Hollywood, cupcakes at Sprinkles, and creme bruise at the Venetian . Next time I would love to go to the buffet at the Bellagio.

We walked soo much! It ranged from 13,000 steps to 20,000 steps! That was my form of exercise. The first day was tough. We were mostly exploring and by the end of the night, my feet and back were killing me!

One thing I wish I could have done was go on the roller coaster at the New York New York hotel. I had so much fun when I went on it last time, but unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get on it. Oh well, maybe next time.

This Las Vegas trip will be my last trip for at least the next six months. I was originally supposed to go to Orlando again in November, but I had to cancel that trip due to unexpected circumstances.

Looking Back at 2017

A lot of people say 2017 was a bad year, but for me personally 2017 was a great year! Here are a few things that happened in 2017.

Graduated from Cal State LA with a bachelors degree in history
After so many years of going to school, both back in community college and Cal State LA, i could finally say I got my degree. It was tough at times, going to work part time and going to school full time. To make things harder, I didn’t have a car for most of my college years, which meant i was usually going to school and work on the bus. It took me a little longer than I had expected to get my degree, but better later than never right?

Got a job at my local gym
In August I decided that I needed to get a second job because I wasn’t getting enough hours at the supermarket where I was cashier. So i decided to apply to a few local areas. Someone I knew from the gym where I have been going since 2016 told me they were hiring there. I decided to give it a shot even though I felt there was no way they would hire me. I was wrong. Within two weeks of Applying, I got hired! I was so happy. For three months, I worked both jobs. It was hard at times, but I decided to stick with it. At the end of 2017, I decided two jobs was two much and I needed to pick one job. My choice was easy. I picked the local gym.

Which brings me to this major thing i did in 2017. I finally left the job I had for 5 years.
This was pretty scary, not going to lie. I was not happy at this job, I spent all year being miserable, but I was too scared to quit. I had originally planned to quit in May after my graduation, then I decided summer I would get more hours so I Should stay a little longer. then decided I would quit in September, that didn’t happen either. I said I would quit around Thanksgiving, that didn’t happen either. I finally said that I would quit December 31, and i didn’t want to keep postponing it. I gave the manager my two weeks notice on December 15, 2017, the whole process was easier than I had expected. December 31, 2017 was my last day and it was a really long 8 hour shift. Before I quit, they gave me a certificate for being there five years. It was bittersweet. On one hand, I was happy to be getting away from retail life and rude, demanding, self entitle customers, but I will miss the friends that I made while working there.

I ran my first marathon
I never thought I would one day be able to run 26.2 miles, but on my 26th birthday, I decided I wanted to celebrate turning 26 years old in a big way, so that’s when I decided to run a marathon. My first ever marathon was in Long Beach, California and it took me about 5 hours and 17 minutes to finish. it took me four months to train for it. I thought this would be my only marathon ever, but I signed up for the LA Marathon, March 2018, and I am currently training for that.

Went to Orlando for the first time to attend Wrestlemania
I went with my friend Giovanna. We have gone to Portland, Oregon, Washington DC, and now Orlando together. We went to Universal City Walk, where I had the best tasting milkshake ever, red velvet with a red velvet cake. Yum! We also went to Universal Studios, where we went on so many rides and got to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I tried butterbeer for the first time. Besides Wrestlemania, we also went to Monday Night Raw, NXT Takeover, and the WWE Hallf of Fame. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity and I had so much fun. We got to meet a few wrestlers at one of the events, inclduing Baron Corbin and R Truth. Wrestlemania was amazing. Our seats were so close. We got to see Undertaker retire, Seth Rollins vs Triple H, Hardy Boyz make their return, John Cena propose to Nikki Bella, and many other things.

Went to Las Vegas
I had never been to Las Vegas, which is crazy because I am 26 years old and most people go there for their 21st birthday. I never had much interest. Until I decided to run the Rock’n’Roll Half Marathon and 5k. I went with my mom, grandpa, and three of my sisters. My mom drove us there and it took forever to get there. I had fun there, i didn’t gamble once, but i did have fun walking around and trying the all the different drinks. One of my favorite things that I did was getting on the roller coaster at the New York New York hotel.

Visited San Francisco twice
The first time was with my family, my mom, three sisters, and brother. We did all the touristy things, like visit the Golden Gate Bridge and the Full House/Fuller House house. We ate crepes and clam chowder, which was super good. The second time I went, it was only with my grandpa and my sister Destiny. I went to run the San Francisco Half Marathon. It was one of my best races. I can’t wait to go back to San Francisco this year. It is a much nicer place than i ever thought. It is one of my top favorite places to run.

Went to a Tim McGraw concert
Tim McGraw is by far one of my favorite country singers. I had the chance to see him and his wife Faith Hill in concert at the Staples during the summer. I loved it. It was so great seeing them. I was so happy when they announced they would be coming back in 2018, I have to see them again. I also discovered a new singer whose music I love. Her name is Rachel Platten and I feel like her song Fight Song is my theme song in life! Haha

Watched my two favorite soccer teams play each other
Went to the Coliseum in Downtown LA with my sister Angelina to watch Real Madrid vs Manchester City. Manchester City won, but it was fun just seeing them. While I was there, I ran into my friend from work and his friend, who is a manager at my old job.

These are the major things that happened in 2017. I was also blessed to meet people who I now consider my friends, I lost a couple friends, but made new ones. I spent time with my family, boyfriend, and friends. Hope 2018 is just as good or even better than 2017 was!