small town girl, big city dreams

a screening,

a premiere,

a moment,

an email,

an audition,

an opportunity.

In the least overwhelmingly long story sort of way, these words capture an incredible story of my current life, a year and five months in the making.

I have always been a dreamer with passions surrounding storytelling through creative writing, filmmaking, acting, performing, dancing, and so forth. Anyone who is any ounce of familiar with who I am probably knows by now that I do a lot of things, which has brought me from my childhood in upstate New York to my current life in Los Angeles. Small town girl, big city dreams. We have all seen that cliché before, yet, it’s a pretty accurate summary of the past two years of my life.

The Hollywood Premiere That Started it All

So to get this story started here, in March 2016, I got invited to the advance screening of a movie out in Beverly Hills and then the official LA premiere the week after at the TCL Chinese Theaters in Hollywood. That movie was a lovely independent dance film called, High Strung. The opening theme sent chills down my spine in that small screening as the impending ability to meet those in the movie the next week seemed so unreal.

I had no idea.

The following premiere was everything I could ever ask for with a premiere. I wrote about the whole experience here.

When most premieres are done and the press online starts to fade into other events, that’s generally the end. I still freaked out when I saw High Strung at stores or even at my local RedBox at home. It’s on Netflix now too, so I highly recommend watching it. That being said, this movie was different…it kept on taking new forms in my life.

The Event That Changed Everything

So, let’s jump ahead to the Dizzy Feet Gala event at LA Live (DTLA) in September of 2016. I was just starting off my second year as a film and television production major at LMU|LA, and already I was feeling pretty amazing about where my college life and forming career was taking me. I was there to film interviews with my friend, Eva for her channel (youtube.com/onthespotinterviews). Among the many we interviewed that day, we were excited to see Michael and Janeen Damian again, whom we had already met during the High Strung premiere. You can watch that interview here:

There was a moment that day that left me completely in shock. This was an invite into being in an amazing movie and in my realm of what seems like a “normal life experience”, this was far outside the realm of “normal”. Everything was about to change.

The Process & Audition

As the whole movie process goes, everything takes time. Months went by and life moved on. However, I kept updated with the process and by audition time, got the opportunity to send in an audition tape. I’m a far stronger actress than dancer, but this was an opportunity that I couldn’t miss so I did want any actor should do…act! I spent countless hours in the dance studios on campus after hours working on a routine. To prep even before then, I spent time at the gym every day for weeks. Even making it to extra Bollywood dance cardio classes helped. My friend, Emily, who happens to be a dance minor helped one day too. This was a level of dedication that left my heart soaring.

 

these things i do… 💃

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dance, passion, hopes & dreams 💃…and selfies

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another dance studio photo 😎

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I couldn’t say anything and even more importantly, I could not get my hopes up. A part of me felt like something great was going to come out of this, but of course, my former experiences with getting involved with acting through auditions have always been not as successful. I have not been getting leads throughout middle and high school. In fact, before getting smaller roles (that I gave full-out back stories for), I had always felt like when it came down to acting, I wasn’t experienced or talented enough. Later into the high school years, that started to change, but only now do I fully realize how important that tricky past has been.

I never gave up. I kept trying to prove myself and improve my abilities. I had a passion for actually creating characters from nothing and transforming myself into them. There are no “small” roles, especially when you embrace any role to the fullest.

So as exciting as everything was, I became overwhelmed with the conflicting moments of trying to not get too excited while being really excited. With an email, my audition was sent. I didn’t hear back, nor get a role. To be fair, that was expected. However, the story was not over yet. The entire spring of my sophomore year was incredibly stressful due to my lack of knowledge of summer plans. While this wasn’t the only situation on my mind at that time, it was definitely one of them. More than anything, I truly wanted to be a part of this. More time passed, I spent an additional month in LA before heading back to NY for the remainder of summer. All the meanwhile, filming had begun in Romania.

While watching the live streams from set and keeping up with the process, I found out when the NYC part of filming was going to take place and that I was still indeed invited to be an extra (or as officially called now, “background actor”). A major perk to living in New York state is being a several hour drive away from the big city. Timing wise, the filming was right before the trip back to LA for the upcoming school year, but my absolutely incredible family worked it all out. The next thing I knew, I was packing once again to a weekend like no other.

The Filming On-Location

I have always loved the idea of being a part of filming movies on location because that is a beautiful combination of work and vacation all at once. Late August 2017, my family and I arrived on a Friday afternoon at the Empire hotel in NYC. Call times were set for Saturday and Sunday and by the time the Monday scenes were set to be filmed, we had to be heading back for last second packing for LA. Exploring the city again was incredible and slightly odd with timing since the last time I was in NYC was a band trip my junior of high school. Now, I’m entering my junior year of college.

The first scene I got to be a part of was at Duffy’s Square… right on Times Square! There is nothing quite like being with a movie crew, standing in the middle of a place I have been watching every new years eve, being surrounded by so many tourists and people with cameras filming the filming process. I was a part of something that I would typically be watching as an outsider thinking, “oh that’s so cool”. One of the coolest things about all of this was the fact that I got to experience this as a young filmmaker AND share this world with my family. It was a blend of what I do in familiar and new ways.

The next day, I took the subway for the first time to SoHo for a couple different locations and scenes. Between scenes and takes, I got an interview with one of the stars of the film, Harry Jarvis, who was an absolute delight to meet.

I’m not used to the interviewing life since I usually film and edit them, but it was a lot of fun. When it came down to being in the scenes, I got a general placement in frame and some directions on what to do. When High Strung Free Dance comes out Summer 2018, keep an eye out for the exterior shots that include my family and myself walking through NYC. The filming took the whole day and night. It was incredibly amazing to see how the process took place on a professional level, while taking role in the midst of it all, intensely observing and living for every second.

…Which brings me to being a film student on a professional set and the observations I made. I’ve worked on various sets before, ranging in professional levels. However, it is amazing how many sets have miscommunication issues that lead to complications with filming. It was outrageously pleasing to be on this set where everyone knew each other, communicated well, and effectively kept on schedule and even got ahead of it often.  I am incredibly impressed by how well-managed the cast and crew regulated. It was inspiring and I took many notes on things that worked well that I can carry with me through future sets. Never have I witnessed such a well-organized group that has inspired me so very much.

The Epilogue

The entire weekend of filming was overwhelming on levels I did not know could exist. It was as if a sea of emotions and memories past, present, and future collided, leaving my head spinning in a whirlwind of feelings. Everything came full circle and even though I was only filming for two days, it felt extra emotional wrapping Sunday night. Like the end of past middle and high school productions, emotional sad vibes of the end sunk in, leaving me back in the post-High Strung sadness I felt after the premiere of the first movie. The whole experience felt incredibly unreal and in more ways than I could describe, so many full-circle moments came into perspective. Of course, this isn’t the end of this whole experience, since upcoming screenings, the premiere, and all of the future releases are still to come. As I sit in my childhood bedroom the morning after getting back and procrastinating from packing to be back in LA, I am realizing that I am still the same self I have always been, but now I am a step further into my “new normal” (which is simply what I call this realm of the “biz” that feels far from normal at all).

I cannot thank everyone who made this possible more than enough. I am incredibly thankful for this life and this experience. I am excited for everything that is ahead. I am living yet another life dream.

Truthful Inspiration

This is truly a story that seems too good to be true, even to myself. Former me (even a year ago!) would have never in a million years expected for any of this to have happened and been real. That is why I have complete belief that whatever it is you want to do in life may not happen in the ways or time frames that you could expect, but they will work their way into happening. Believe, keep hope on your side, stay positive, and persevere. Anything can and WILL happen. When they do, magic happens.

Keep updated with my ever-abundantly-amazing adventures via YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook…basically, every social media @sarahfhamilton. Feel free to leave comments and/or tweet/comment at me as I love to respond!

Keep Dreaming, Keep Sm:)ing!

me

 

 

ADDITIONAL VIDEOS:

Advance Screening & Press Day

Premiere

BTS of Auditioning (when I still couldn’t say anything at all)

Trip/NYC Filming

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the truth about LA

It has already been going on three years since I made the initial decision to attend college in LA. While this is technically a school-based thing where I would always still be partially back home in New York too, seeking a career in the entertainment industry made this decision feel more permanent from the start. That being noted, I went from someone who was living in a completely different realm on the other side of the country, totally afraid and not-too-willing to leave home to someone who accepts living in two different locations as a normal thing at this point.

With the exception of those I met through first year June orientation and the obvious celebrities who most definitely live in LA but I did not know personally, I came to this city not knowing anybody. I had visited briefly, but LA is much different from my hometown and different from even itself from the eyes of the tourist.

These past couple years, I have learned a lot. Quite frankly, I keep having more experiences, opportunities, and lessons every day. Nonetheless, there are some things about living in LA that I did not expect to find out.

  • It can be lonely in paradise. Everyone is pursuing their artsy dreams and passions and while it is inspiring to be around like-minded people, a lot of time is still spent creating your own dreams.
  • The fitness culture is very real. Not only are others always wearing athletic gear and attending the surplus of available fitness classes, but the food surrounds maintaining healthy lifestyles as well! Calories are posted everywhere and there are far more vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, organic, GMO-free, etc. foods available than I ever even knew about.
  • Everyone seems to have spontaneous photoshoots. Partially, because it’s fun and everywhere here is so photogenic, but also, to maintain an image that usually links to creative career endeavours.
  • The weather does in fact dip every once in a very rare blue moon, but that’s when productive, brightly color dressed people suddenly bring out the grey sweats and Netflix.
  • My hair and my skin are LIVING for this dryness! The air is dry and my skin and hair is at a level of perfection that does not exist in humid climates.
  • The weather, mostly, really is perfect ALL OF THE TIME and you can wear anything you want.
  • People don’t judge. Instead, they express themselves however they want confidently.
  • This place is kind of messed up. I may not know too many other places, but LA is a really weird, unique place. It always reminds me of Wonderland…”we’re all mad here”.
  • Just because the beach is close by, that does not mean that you will be able to get there half as often as you would like.
  • It’s chill. Maybe not surfer-chill, but unless you’re on the freeway during rush hour (which is most of the day and night anyways), people are generally pretty calm about everything.
  • Everybody is networking all of the time! If you are anywhere, chances are, most of those around you have a business card waiting to go and a sales “elevator” pitch for something.
  • People know people. This goes for everywhere, but in LA, usually that means that somehow, celebrities of some sort are involved.
  • People are genuinely really nice.
  • “Hollywood” is fake. The glamorous side is real, but in a way that disguises that this is the livelihoods, careers, jobs, and dreams of so many people. There is so much more to the story when it comes down to how everything is run here.
  • It can get overwhelming. There is always something to do and the motivation to do it but there’s no way one can do it all at once. Learning to budget time, money, to-do’s, and even experiences is not easy to do.
  • For a “big” famous city, after being in it for a while, LA seems relatively small.

But most importantly…

  • I really love it here and I know that this is truly the right place for me!

Look, I have learned so much about this place and I continue to learn more and more. It is a land I am proud to call one of my homes.

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being a local LA tourist

College is definitely middle-ground territory in many, many ways, but perhaps, one of my favorite is being part tourist and part resident in LA all at once. Sure, there are plenty of places like the Santa Monica Pier, Hollywood Walk of Fame, the studios of Burbank, and the classic, In-N-Out, but there are also amazing places that I have discovered since being here that are more local-native, so to speak.

Here are some of my favorite spots as a local LA tourist! (*in no particular order and not all specifically in LA, but close enough.)

SIGHTS

  • Griffith Observatory & Park

If you saw La La Land, this is a stop you should definitely make! If you haven’t, go here anyway! Sunsets are a perfect time.

  • Getty Villa 

In Malibu, this lovely museum with incredible views makes you feel like a greek god/goddess and the Mamma Mia soundtrack will run through your head the entire time there.

  • Manhattan Beach

Shops, sand, and lovely views everywhere you look!

  • Playa Del Rey beach

For when you just want sand and spontaneous beach moments with sand, ocean, & lovely sunsets.

  • Santa Monica Promenade

The beach and the pier are amazing tourist spots, but I had no idea that there is an entire promenade area too!

  • The Last Bookstore

In Downtown LA (DTLA), this bookstore is absolutely every reader/writer’s dream come true.

  • LACMA Lanterns

Want to shamelessly take all of the photos? Stop by these classic LA lamps.

  • The Grove & The Americana

These outdoor shopping plazas are incredibly fun with all of their stores and events!

TASTES

*With my orders if they are my go-to’s. Most places, I change it up a bit.

  • K.C.’s CrepesMy order – Iced jasmine green boba tea & apple cinnamon crepe.
  • Crave Cafe
  • Malibu Farm
  • Duke’s Malibu // My order: I split the fish tacos and lobster macaroni & cheese!
  • Alfred Coffee & KitchenMelrose // My order – almond milk iced latte or rose petal tea latte (again, with the almond milk).
  • Lemonade LAMy order – White truffle mac & cheese with blueberry mint lemonade (seasonal).
  • Urth Cafe
  • Paradise Bowls Manhattan Beach // My order – GUACHO (small acai bowl. blend: banana, strawberries, blueberries, acai, apple juice. toppings: granola, honey, strawberries, blueberries, goji berries)

This list could easily be a whole lot longer, so keep checking back for more post like this! if you visit any of these places, definitely let me know in the comment section or tweet it at me @sarahfhamilton.

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Sunday in Malibu

What happens when you turn into a potato with a sad Insta-feed?

You go to Malibu.

A friend and I decided to go on some more spontaneous LA adventures yesterday and visit Malibu! While the traffic wasn’t too bad, parking was a struggle, but eventually, we made it to the pier in time to go to Malibu Farm!

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For those of who who have never been, on the Malibu pier, there is the Malibu Farm restaurant and at the end of the pier, a cute shop and the cafe. The line for the cafe was long, so we chose to wait a little bit for the main restaurant. While we may have missed brunch hours, the ambiance was so cute and beachy and the food was absolutely decadent!

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For dessert, I tried the organic chocolate froyo (which was incredible!) and my friend tried the Honey and Lemon Basil ice cream on a whim for the sake of adventure. It was…interesting…but strangely really tasty! (there was a lot, so of course, I tried a bit!)

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Also, the pier in itself had so many picture perfect spots for random mini photoshoots…

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There is something truly peaceful about Malibu. The perfect cerulean seas, the warming sunshine, and the beach vibes make it a perfect place to visit on a lovely Sunday morning!

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I love spontaneous LA adventures! You can follow them all at my twitter (@sarahfhamilton) and my YouTube channel! (LIVIN’ CA!)

Until next time, Malibu!
me

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A Web Series!?!?!?

Hello!

I am so excited to announce my new web series that I am working on called “LIVIN’ C.A.” which will air exclusively on my YouTube channel! There is so much about to happen in my life and I want to make sure that it’s documented along the way and I wanted to be able to include family, friends, and YOU to show you what i’m up to along the way.

This past year was my senior year and senior year is super amazing but also incredibly overwhelming. For me, I had to not only figure out what I wanted to spend my life doing, but also figure out how to get to that point and find a school that would help me get there. I also had to get into that school and then get ready for it. After applying and looking at many schools, (at that point I was already well aware that I wanted to go into film and television production) I found two schools I really liked, which they both accepted me for the programs I wanted! It was a really difficult decision since, one college was on the east coast and the other was on the west. Being on the east coast my whole life, a few hours away was a major difference than a full plane ride from New York to California.

Thus, The Most Difficult Decision Of My Life So Far had begun to take form and I felt torn between two amazing schools and locations. Even though the weather alone is enough to make some people want to automatically take the flight to California, I still had so much in NY that I couldn’t imagine leaving. From family to friends and this entire lifestyle that I was used to, (not to mention rain storms, first snowfalls, and autumn!) it became quite difficult to figure out where I needed to be. But despite all of the confusion and emotions, I realized that it didn’t change my gut feeling. That gut feeling made me choose the college out in Cali.

Even today, it’s not any easier to think about all of this, but I know that I chose the right path. For what I am going into, no other place could possibly beat out the opportunities. Yes, it’s difficult to accept that I am going to college on the other side of the country, but I love California and the school. Everyone back home fully supports me too. I am beyond thankful that I have this opportunity and I am really excited to start this journey.

So, each week, I will post on my channel episodes of “LIVIN’ C.A.” to show you what my upcoming adventures will bring. Subscribe to automatically be posted when a new episode is out!

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6P-4ps3MdUQDWvvK3ZE6lQ

Take risks, make dreams happen. Sometimes the scariest decisions are the ones that bring us to where we need to be.

New Yorker & Cali Girl,

me

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On the Road!


Hello!

Recently, I went on a trip which so much had happened so I thought I would post about it. Just to name a few places, I visited Boston, Salem, and even the sweet little town of Friendship, Maine! Here is my little travel journal from being on the road!

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We actually started off by going to Pittsfield, MA which was really interesting and cool to see.

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For dinner, we found a Chick-fil-a. I LOVE Chick-fil-a, but they don’t have any in New York, so whenever we’re on the road or somewhere else, this is a must-do!

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The buildings in Boston are BEAUTIFUL and so unique! I felt like I was photographing everything and yet still missing a ton!

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Also, I had to take note of the cute street lamps throughout the city.

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The towers were also really unique and I couldn’t help but wondered how they were decorated on the inside!

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I began to wonder if I was actually in a real city, or actually in a movie set!

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But then, I got to visit Salem, Massachusettes; home of the famous Salem Witch Trials! There’s a really quaint area which has the historical feel to it and that magical charm and I had such a great time walking around the area! (Oh, and for you Harry Potter fans, there’s totally a wand store.) Really though, walking around made me get those wonderfully creepy Halloween vibes and it was only July!

DSC_0052Okay, i’m such a mermaid-freak! This photo just had to be taken!

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This picture turned out way more blurry than I had thought, but nonetheless, American Joe’s Bar & Grill was a delicious stop for dinner!

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aaaaand we’re back in Boston! We stopped into some of the great stores such as the Apple store (second largest in the world, might I add!), the Mac Cosmetics store (hello, new lipstick!) and other spots down the block. I had also begun to realize that I was where they film some of abc family’s Chasing Life! (Starring past interviewees Italia Ricci and Scott Micheal Foster)

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Thus I began the long walk to where they film the exterior scenes of April’s house. During that walk, however, we passed more beautiful buildings.

DSC_0084Check out this original cobblestone pavement!

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Eventually, we made it to April’s house, where I took plenty of pictures and video!

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On the way back from the residential area to the heart of it all, we even passed through some beautiful park areas. I also had to stop for this photo moment because it was just too cool with the buildings reflecting upon other buildings.

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Eventually, night time hit and we headed back to the hotel. However, I got this cool shot by accident and just had to post it!

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So the next day, we drove up to Maine. Specifically, Friendship, Maine. (Anybody seen Casper?) It was so rustic and beautiful and kind of reminded me of Vancouver!

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I visited the ocean too and got great footage, fresh air, and a lovely shell that now rests on a shelf in my room.

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See? Gorgeous!

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Being in Maine and all, we began a quest to find a place to try lobster for the first time. However, there wasn’t really a lot of restaurants to be seen around, but we did find a lot of fishing and boating areas!

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BEAUTIFUL.

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Thus, we finally found this fun little lobster shack with a really pretty view. It’s called Claws, in case you would like to go check it out! Keep in mind, I never had lobster before so I had no clue what to expect!

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…and then this little pinchy arrives! (He’s totally cooked and everything, no worries!) Anyway, eating lobster like this is quite the experience so I won’t say much, but I do advise for you to try it sometime! It’s actually quite yummy!

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I usually don’t take pictures of bathrooms, but this was the exception. I wanted to stare at this wall for a long time.

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Eventually, the day came to a close and we headed back to the hotel. The next day, we set back for home.

To conclude, I really enjoyed this getaway trip! It was a ton of fun and I got to see and do so many really cool things. If you liked this post and would like to know more about the trip, I have a video journal/vlog/thing to go along with it! (For upcoming videos of all sorts, feel free to subscribe!)

For wherever the road takes you…

me

 

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Easy Travel Tips!


Hello!

It’s officially August, which means that I bet plenty of you are looking forwards to some upcoming vacay time! But let’s be real: packing can be too difficult some days! (To be fair, I am actually procrastinating from packing right now, but that’s beside the point!) Luckily, I have been able to come up with some pretty great tips that can help your travels whether it be by plane, car, or whatever form of transportation you’re going by. (Hey, even magical broomsticks work too!)

  

Playlists!

If you’re going to procrastinate, at least do so by making fun playlists for the trip! You will probably want to have something to keep you motivated while packing, peaceful songs to drift to, and then a list of perfect songs for the trip ahead! There is always a ton of car/plane/etc. time, so why not make it fun with music?

 

Bags Galore!

Keep organized! I tend to like using many little bags to store things, which I then put in my major bag (backpack, carry-on, etc.). Using makeup bags are super cute too! This way, you can keep your stuff organized and know where everything is rather than having it all get jumbled up everywhere.

 

Snacks!

Yes…I am talking food here! Find snacks that keep and will refuel you when food is not around. My go-to’s are usually pretzels (for the salty factor), granola bars (for the substantial factor), and some sort of graham cracker (for the sweet factor). Also…

 

Stay Hydrated!

Keeping extra water bottles on hand and some juice packs for flavor is always a great way to feel good while on trips. Although, be aware that if you’re going to be on a plane, they usually don’t accept these things! Make sure that what you bring is OK so that nothing has to be left behind!

 

Notebook!

Keeping a notebook or travel journal is super helpful for when you need to quickly jot something down, feel like writing, or even just want to keep track of your travels. There are plenty of sturdy notebooks out there that you can use. Personally, this is something that I ALWAYS have while traveling.

Those are my key tips for traveling, but of course, I couldn’t end it with just that! Here is a check-list for essentials so that you can remember everything! (You’re welcome!)

Travel Essentials

flip flops

comfortable shoes for walking

bathing suit(s)

shirts

pants

something a bit dressy

underwear

pajamas

sweatshirt

jacket

socks

makeup

makeup remover wipes

personal items (deodorant n’ such)

a book

your phone

earphones

chargers

shampoo/conditioner/lotions/etc.

hairbrush

hair ties

hat

jewelry holder

gum

something to write with

…and everything previously mentioned on this post!

Oh! Remember your camera! That’s a must have!!!!

Happy & Safe Travels!

me

 

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Traveling 101!

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Hello!

As you may or may not know, I have been travelling quite a bit lately and I am sure that I will be since I am attending college out of state next year! With each trip, I have collected some tips and tricks to make travelling a less-stressful and more simpler and fun process! So without furthur ado, here are my top pieces of advice for your next trip!

Packing!
I am a horrible packer! I have a tendancy to overthink everything and end up bringing way more than I actually need! However, I have found that if you try to pre-plan each travelling day/night outfit in advance, it helps a ton! Also, feel free to add some extra things in there to help you feel like there is options. I always bring a sweatshirt, pair of leggings, flipflops, and a go-to shirt in addition to anything else I plan on bringing.

Playlist!
Whether you are packing or in a car/plane/etc, it helps to have a playlist of music for your trip! Also, those songs may remind you of your trip in the future so definitely get some music to-go!

Backpack/Carry-On!
When taking a plane, you CAN get away with not checking bags IF you only bring a backpack and a small carry-on sized suitcase. You save some money that way and still have enough space to bring what you need! However, if they do check your bag anyway, usually if it’s due to a small amount of plane space, they check it for free. Either way, this makes for easier travelling!

Entertainment!
Bring a notebook, writing utensils, a book, etc. Even though you can sleep when travelling gets boring, sometimes, you don’t really want to. Stay awake and find entertainment beyond the comfort of wi-fi!

Snacks & Gum!
If you are on a plane and your ears start popping, gum helps! Plus, having some snacks on hand is always a great idea when you are anywhere that may or may not include food.

Water!
Bring a water bottle. If going on a plane, have it empty and then fill it up after security. This will save you money from  not buying over-priced water and keep you hydrated.

Take Pictures But Live in the Moment!
Take video and pictures all you want but remember to also enjoy the time there rather than just spending all of your time trying to capture everything.

The whole idea of a vacation or trip is to be somewhere else and in a different moment than the norm. Enjoy those moments and let stress stay behind. Pack well, travel well, and all will be well.

“What is your best travel secrets?” Let me know in the comments below or tweet them to me @LockerStyler!

Safe Travels!

me

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Happy Camper

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Hey there!

This past week has been totally crazy busy and also incredibly amazing! Last Friday I had begun my Senior Trip to a local campground to spend the weekend with my friends and classmates. It truly was a really great time but it was also my first time EVER having a camping experience, which was pretty interesting in itself. Any personal ideas I had about camp came from stories and movies so I really didn’t fully know what to expect. But IT IS OKAY to do something brand new and not know what to expect! If you have never gone camping before, hopefully this post will give you some eyesight about it and if you have gone, then I am sure you can relate! (plus, check out all this original photography by yours truly!)

Here are some things I learned from the trip!

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Just because you are in a cabin, it doesn’t mean that it’s going to be “glamping”.

I am probably super biased about this, since, other friends who have camped before tried to convince me that “roughing it” really defines a sketchy tent in the middle of nowhere. In any case, however, when you walk into a bug-filled cabin and a spider drops down right infront of you, (and I am terrified of spiders!) it suddenly becomes the last place you want to sleep that night!

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Showers do not necessarily make you feel clean.

After a slip n’ slide event, I did use the camp showers. Nothing makes you feel more clean than the shower you know is still at home.

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Nature is beautiful.

During the day, there was constant beauty from the lake and trees. As I became less connected to busy life and technology, I became one more with the nature around me and it was actually really breathtaking. I enjoyed 5:30am yoga with friends. It was so beautiful seeing the stars at night.There’s a lot of appreciation for nature that I think everyone should experience.

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Lake Swimming; nuff’ said.

I had never actually gone swimming in a lake before this experience and I didn’t originally intend to, but in order to do any of the water activities, everyone had to take a swimming test. The water was super cold, smelled like fish, and there was definitely something slimey under my foot. But I did it, passed, and it was actually a really great experience.

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Natural beauty is key.

I am a regular-makeup kind of person. Personally, I just love using makeup as an accessory to my look. I wear make up because it makes me feel more lively. However, I gave up on makeup pretty quickly at camp. I am a regular shower taker too, but that too stopped being such a major priority. The natural feeling is really great and it was okay to wear pajamas during breakfast with the entire class and it was okay to not wear makeup fr a while.

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Sleep is unknown.
I love sleep. It did, however, become very clear to me that sleep was rare and unknown during camping, and even though I did become outragously tired, it did get to a point where living in the moment was better than sleeping away the time. Oh, but sleep was incredible after the fact!

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It’s about who you are with, not what you are doing.

The whole reason behind this location for the trip was because of this statement but it was so very true! Spending the weekend with my friends was amazing no matter what we did. There was card games, talking, scavenger hunts, morning yoga and so many things that we did, but what really mattered was the conversations and moments spent with friends.

Overall, the trip was amazing and I was a “happy camper”. Would I go camping again? I don’t really know, but I will hold the memories made this past weekend in my heart.

“Have you gone camping before? What is your favorite tip about it?” Let me know in the coments below or tweet me @LockerStyler!

Happy Summer!

me

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My Trip to Storybrooke, Maine…

Hello!

Recently, I have had the incredible opportunity to visit Vancouver where the show “Once Upon a Time” on abc films. Naturally, I love filmmaking and storytelling and this show has always been such an inspiring and well put together show. There is something so genuine about every little detail about it from the actors to costuming, music, camera shots, etc. Yes, I normally love being in filming locations and backlots, but being in that quaint little area I knew as Storybrooke, Maine had been such an incredible experience that I had to share with you about today.

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First things first: yes. The town is real. Most of the OUAT scenes are either filmed on location in Vancouver or in a studio. The town with the clock tower, Granny’s, Mr. Gold’s shop, the dock and bakery? All of those locations were found on Moncton Street, Richmond, British Columbia. Walking down those streets was such an incredible experience. It actually felt as if I was a part of the OUAT world as well!

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*FUN FACT: “Any Given Sundae” was set up for the FROZEN arc. It’s actually used now as a storage room and a hangout area for the cast during filming! I peaked through the blinds! There’s no ice cream, but there’s a lot of props!

While in Richmond, not only did I get to explore the town, but I got to be in some pretty cool places. For one, Mr. Gold’s shop. When I was there, the cast were filming in the studios, so the town was in its normal state of Steveston’s Village, but there was signs of Storybrooke everywhere. The crew changes around the areas of filming as needed, and while in Gold’s shop (which was actually an adorable gift shop called “It’s Posh!“) I got to see what it normally looks like. The cashier was really nice and told us about filming. The back area of the store was also open, as well as a little courtyard beyond that. A lot of the merchandise was also OUAT-inspired, which was really cool in itself!

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Okay, so of course one morning I had brunch at Granny’s! It’s actually the Cannery Cafe! Sitting in the window spot, overlooking the town as I drank a signature hot chocolate with cinnamon was amazing. They also have amazing hot dogs! Oh, and the signs for the regular stores are actually over the signs for those building’s counterparts. In the back of the Cannery Cafe, I also enjoyed looking at a bunch of signed photos from casts/crews of films and TV shows that were filmed in Steveston.

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If you have the means to walk along the pier, I highly recommend. It’s gorgeous!

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For a couple of dinners, we dined at Dave’s Fish and Chips, which has amazing fish and chips! The service was great and the food was delicious! Plus, it was right next to Mr. Gold’s shop…how cool is that?!?!?

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I also have to note that there are some locations further away that I got to check out. First stop? Regina Mills’ house in Westminster. Down the street, there’s Rumple/Mr.Gold’s house too!

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There’s also a park/beach that they had filmed at several times before that I visited. The sunlight was shining through the clouds, and I knew for certain that Vancouver is such a breathtakingly beautiful place.

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Being in Storybrooke was a undescrible experience that I thoroughly enjoyed. There’s so much to see and do there and the people are so kind. If you do have the means to go, I highly recommend. Just bring a camera: there is so much to photograph. It’s picture perfect.IMG_0708

All in all though, being there felt as if I was one of the characters in the show being a part of my own story, and it got me thinking. You know, we all take actions every single day and those actions have a scenery and it makes up the story of our lives. No matter where we are, everyone has a story that they live through. We are characters and this is the book, movie, or TV show of our life. Deep thought, I know, but it’s a neat way at looking at things.

Live that story.

me

 

DISCLAIMER: this is not a sponsored post and all information and opinions are of my own. pictures were all taken by me February, 2015. I have nothing more to do with abc and/or Once Upon a Time other than the fact that I am an avid fan of it. These written experiences are my own.

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