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  • Happy Mother's Day!

    Happy Mother's Day to this incredible woman who I admire so much. She has supported me in any and every endeavor I have set my sights on, from competing internationally in Irish dancing to musical theater to photography to moving across the country to work on a presidential campaign. I can't imagine what my life would have been without her and her incredible creativity, intelligence, support and love. I learn so much from you and I can only hope to be as wonderful a mother to my children someday. 

    Love you so much, Maumern! Missing you even more than usual today!

    Posted on instagram here.

    Edit: Had to share this salute to all the moms out there that my friend posted today. Pretty goofy, but I echo his sentiments to all the moms out there spreading their mom-umental momness.

  • Lovin' Lately, May 2nd

    A few weeks ago, someone I follow on Twitter posted a feature, "Lovin' Lately." I can't remember who it was, but I've decided to start using that as a recurring post on my blog, too! As they say, "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery." 

    BOOK: Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power by Jon Meacham

    Jon Meacham does a fantastic job bringing one of our founding fathers to life. Although it's a hefty read, he turns historical events and first-hand accounts into an exciting narrative and provides great insight into Jefferson's life. Every couple of pages, I find myself underlining wonderful quotes about democracy or Jefferson's philosophy on life in general. I'm only a fraction of my way into it, but I would highly recommend reading this book.

    SONG: "Hey Rose" by Streets of Laredo

    The name of this band makes me think of the cowboy song my mom sang to me as a lullaby when my siblings and I were little. Plus, the Rose is my middle name! This isn't an official music video, but I think they did a wonderful job intimately documenting their roadtrip. Also check out their song 'Girlfriend,' which I love and has a pretty cool music video itself.

     

    BEAUTY PRODUCT: Surface Bassu Hydrating Oil 

    Now, I'm not very adventurous when it comes to trying new products. Once I find something that works, I tend to keep using it until it's discontinued. But after living with Miss RealTalkFashion, herself, I was introduced to new things without having to buy them! I'm pretty sure this oil was originally just meant for using on your hair as a sort of leave-in conditioner sort of deal, but Kate suggested I use it on my face, too. Boy, does it work for both! With curls, I'm forced to find as many ways to keep my hair hydrated as possible. After using it on my face, as well, I realized that my make up was staying on better throughout the day, too. Miracle stuff. Well worth splurging on!

    RETAIL WEBSITE: Bourbon and Boots
    I bought a necklace recently from BourbonandBoots.com... 

    It says, "I keep a close watch on this heart of mine." (If you don't know what that's from, we can't be friends.) One of the things I LOVE about Bourbon and Boots is that, "You won’t find any mass-produced, 'big box' products... because [they] look for high-quality, 'small batch' creations from small business owners and artisans." For example, my necklace was made by Robinson Lane Designs and the designer, Christy Bournes, commented on my Instagram saying she liked the picture! 


    Well, that's it for my first "Lovin' Lately!" Whoever you are that I saw doing "Lovin' Lately" first, please let me know; I'd love to give you credit for this great blog idea!

  • Happy Saint Patrick's Day: Irish Dancing Flashback

    Every Saint Patrick's Day, I'm reminded of my childhood. I would get the day off (sometimes most of the week) from school and go dance at schools, parties, pubs, parades, retirement homes and any other kind of Saint Patrick's Day celebration you could possibly think of. Why you ask? No my parents weren't letting me run amok; I did Irish Dancing. Think Riverdance or Lord of the Dance.


    On the left, I'm about 6 at my first feis (pronounced "fesh"), or Irish dancing competition, in my class dress. On the right, I'm about 11 years old and have just won the Oireachtas, or the Western Regional Championships, which qualified me to compete at the World Championships in Ireland. 

    When I look back at pictures from my Irish dancing days, I can't believe how young I was! I competed all across the United States, in Canada, Ireland and England. Although I stopped competing in Irish dancing when I was eleven, the lessons I learned growing up at the Claddagh School of Irish Dancing in Ventura, California were more valuable than I could have imagined. 

    Those years of four to seven practices a week, some of which could be up to 5 hours long, taught me much more than how to nurse a blister. Irish dancing helped me learn the power of hard work and dedication. It taught me to be confident on a stage or just presenting myself to others. It taught me to work with my peers as well as with people much older than I. 

    These days, when people find out that I used to dance, they ask for a performance. While I most often won't oblige, I still can't help myself from tapping my feet when on a particularly echo-y hardwood floor!


    Funny little side note: This is me with Maggie Darlington, one of my best friends from Irish dancing growing up. She's now traveling internationally with Riverdance (see her in the middle?)! Also, those are not alien antennae sprouting from our heads, those were Spikes, a form of hair curlers! 


    This is Chelsea Conway, another of my good friends growing up, Maggie and me on stage at either the Hollywood Bowl or the Santa Barara Bowl (we performed at both places). Our dance teacher even called us the three stooges because she said we were joined at the hip!

  • Love Is All I Am

    Valentine's Day often causes a lot of grumbling, stress, and confusion. Yes, it is hard to be single on a day that's supposed to be about you and your significant other. While I fully understand the how societal pressures can build up and turn a day of love into something we hate, I think a lot of people forget that it is a day that can be used to just remind the people around you that you care about them. As my friend posted on Facebook,

    "Thoughts on Valentine's Day: there are those without mothers on Mother's Day and without fathers on Father's Day - so you don't have a Valentine on Valentine's but you do have a seemingly infinite amount of love from friends and family. Carry on. Love is coming."

    Thinking about Valentine's Day and Love and what it means to me reminded me of a song by Dawes I covered a few years back. There are so many lines in the song that really strike a chord with me (hah! see what I did there?). 

    Anyway, let me know what you think of my cover! Who knows? Maybe this'll get me back into playing and recording again... 

  • NYT Magazine's Planet Hillary Cover Is... Out of this World

    I just saw this New York Times Magazine cover retweeted into my timeline and thought had to be a joke!

    Of course, the speedy editors over at Twitchy already had a post up and according to David Joachim of the New York Times, the cover is real.  

    My favorite response to my tweet, so far, was this: 

    For those of you who can't quite call yourself Whovians or for those who don't keep up with poltiics, read this and watch this.

    Well, apparently I'm not the only Doctor Who/political nerd out there!

  • #NowPlaying: MisterWives

    I'm always looking for new music. There aren't many people I can consistently go to for reliable recommendations. My friend, Karl Magnuson, is one of those few people who I can always trust to keep me hip to the latest bands or artists. 

    The other day, I saw that he posted a glowing recomendation for MisterWives, an indie-pop-soul band based out of NYC. I've been listening to them on repeat since. 


    Follow Karl on Twitter and on Instagram, where he has just started a 365 project.

    He posts a 7 second video at the end of each week, with a second of footage from each day. It'll be so interesting to see the way his year unfolds through these videos. Thanks for the new music, Karl!

    Let me know what YOU think of MisterWives in the comments below!

  • 2013, a Year in Review

    2013 was a year of many changes.

    I moved to the East coast. In January, I packed a suitcase, booked a one way ticket to Washington, DC, and lived on my friend's couch until I found a job.

    I started working at Purple Strategies as a digital communications strategist in February. My colleagues there are incredibly talented and wonderful people. I've learned so much and I know this is a place I'll be able to continue to grow. 

    My mother and I went to our very first CPAC in March. Growing up as a conservative in California, it sometimes feels as if there are no other likeminded people your age. This conference was a chance to meet and form friendships with people of all ages who have similar values. It was particularly fun for me, after working on the Romney campaign and becoming so involved with the Twittersphere, to meet so many of the people I had long conversed with online. (Yes, I've been made fun of many times when people ask me, "Oh how did you guys meet?" and I answer, "On Twitter." But hey! They're great people!)

    I had my first snow day. I think I may have had three snow days this past year, actually. Living in California, I've only ever had a rain day... and that was just because the entrance to the valley had mudslides blocking our teachers from getting to school. 

    My sister and I lived together again. Sarah, my younger sister, lived with me from June to August, while she interned in Senator Mike Lee's office. We hadn't shared a room since I was in middle school, but I wouldn't have traded this past summer for anything. I loved having her as my partner in crime. We got to experience so much together! We drove down to the Outer Banks to visit our Aunt, Uncle and cousins; celebrated America's independence on the National Mall and watched the fireworks from the steps of the Lincoln memorial; visited quite a few of DC's most wonderful museums; celebrated her birthday; got caught in summer storms; went to concerts... I'd have to say one of my favorites was getting to go on tours of the Capitol with Sarah as my guide, as she was certified to do that as part of her internship.

    This has been a year of discovery and exploration. There have been some familial ups and downs, but the more people I meet, the more I realize how normal these growing pains are. There have been hundreds of pictures taken, tears shed, TV shows have been binge-watched, thousands of tweets tweeted, new skills learned, articles published, and friendships formed.

    With the love and support of my family and friends, I have had an incredible year of growth and I'm excited about what 2014 will bring. 

     

  • Interview on the405radio with Wayne Dupree and Stacy Rush

    My friend Wayne Dupree, better known to the digital world as @NewsNinja2012, asked me to come on his radio show the405radio for a special series he was doing on young conservatives. There were some other fantastic young conservatives featured in the series like Chelsi Henry, who was interviewed in the first part of the show and Gabriella Hoffman, who came on the show the night before.

    Here is our great introduction from the405radio:

    "You will be in for a real treat tonight. We have two talented female republicans not even over the age of 25 that are making their mark on the Republican Party in different ways. With the Honorable Chelsi Henry, she was the youngest elected delegate "EVER" to Florida's Republican Party. Chelsi has traveled the globe researching business strategies and policies in nine different European countries. Katherine Cresto is a Digital Communications Strategist who worked for the Mitt Romney Campaign as Deputy Director of Digital Rapid Response.

    Sit back and enjoyed these beautiful, talented ladies. I am sure that they are in line to be called serious role models in the community."

    You can read the full post here.


    Listen to my interview with Wayne and Stacy:

  • Favorite #1MVetMarch Photo - Kuruk and the WarFighters Motorcycle Club

    This was by far and away my favorite photo of the day of the #1MVetMarch. Others seemed to agree: 

     



    After taking this photo, I spoke more the dog's owner, Roy "Jolly" Cooper (pictured on the left). His dog is named Kuruk, which means "bear" in Pawnee. Kuruk is a Royalair German Shepherd Dog (GSD) who serves Cooper and many other veterans as a PTSD service dog. Cooper is one of the founding members of WarFighters Motorcycle Club and he serves on their Board of Directors as the National Sgt-at-Arms.

    Cooper told me that he gets "great joy at sharing [Kuruk] with others including children and seniors.  He is a magnificent animal with an endearing, loving demeanor.  Everyone that meets Kuruk is immediately enchanted by him."

    Cooper later sent me this photo of Kuruk, "doing what he does best."  This is the son of one of a wounded warrior who met Cooper and Kuruk by chance. Although Cooper couldn't recall the name of the little boy, he did say that the child was "immediately attracted to Kuruk which is a typical reaction by many, young and old."



    Learn more about WarFighters Motorcycle Club here.

    Learn more about Kuruk and Royalair German Shepherds here.