My story goes viral!

Well, at least semi-viral. We’re not talking a million hits, but I can’t complain about 14,000 views.

This is a story I shot, reported and edited back in late March. It took a couple of weeks, but all of a sudden the views have skyrocketed! I’m still not entirely sure where it got posted, but it was definitely exciting to be the most viewed story for the week of all the Barrington stations.

I did read through all the comments. I found it interesting that the main debate was whether Sports Stacking is a sport or not. I’d say, given the dedication it takes to practice, the hand-eye coordination it takes to be quick and the level of competition I saw just in the couple of hours I was there, it’s on the same level as any other sport. It might not require tackling, but these kids take it very seriously.

Beyond that, they really do it for the love of the game, or in this case, the love of the sport! There’s nothing but trophies as rewards. Despite the hours it takes to travel to competitions and the amount of money that goes with being away from home: hotels, food and gas, these parents deserve a big trophy too. One mom said it best when she told me, ‘people have told me, what a cheap sport! You just need some cups.’ She then couldn’t stop laughing!


Morning stroll through Glen Eyrie

I woke up early enough to go on a morning hike this morning! CJ took me to Glen Eyrie, which I’ve heard about, but never been to. Sadly, a couple of my favorites got deleted, but I got some awesome photos out of it! It’s a hike you can only do if you’ve reserved a spot for the day. The hike starts with a creaky bridge suspended about 10 feet off the ground. After, it looks like a normal hike but it’s so icy currently, it’s not the easiest to trek. Because it’s near a waterfall and still shady in a lot of spots, there were a few times it was more like ice skating, but an amazing frozen waterfall at the end makes the slipping and sliding worth it.Image



Welcome Back.

It’s no longer cherry or fire engine red, but the fake red hair is back.

And, hopefully, so is my urge to write, photograph and share way too many details about my personal life.

Getting into trouble for having a blog as an intern made me really wary. I now realize I pushed too far, but those who know me, know I don’t get into trouble.

Blogging as a journalist isn’t easy. Where’s the balance between not discussing work, not showing a bias and not being boring?

I’ve decided my life needs a kick start and a kick in the ass.

After all, you can’t be a fiery fake redhead without causing a little trouble.

The Inner Geek

You know those people who were popular in high school?

I wasn’t one of them.  I’m aware I wasn’t one of them; just as aware as I was at the time, and it didn’t particularly bother me.

That’s a blatant lie. It bothered me a lot.

You know those really popular kids who pretty much failed at social interaction in college because they were just used to being accepted as cool and, all of a sudden, their cliques weren’t there?

I wasn’t one of them either.  I came to college knowing exactly who I wanted to be, how I would portray myself, and nothing was going to make me stay the same geek that, deep down, I truly was.

That lasted for about a week.  See, the problem with having an inner geek is that it’s pretty much impossible to ignore.  At some point, the nerdom will rear its ugly head, and you’re back to being the same girl who snickers awkwardly, loudly, all the time.

Luckily for me, my social ineptitude and inability to notice subtle ques at when to stop talking actually helped me meet some of the best friends I will ever have.  And now I’m hoping I haven’t become one of those kids who has trouble letting college go.

I saw the signs.  I knew this part was coming.  This year, there was a lot of wallowing in the ‘lasts.’   But what I’m not used to is life without orientation.  Almost 22 years of first days, meet-and-greets, and training means I’m waiting for my introductory course into adulthood.

Fortunately for my post-grad self, I’m terrible at waiting for anything. It’s time to make things happen.

*Insert awkward stance and geeky laugh here.*

Bring on the Whirlwind

Before I even fully got the chance to embrace my internship with Missouri DNR‘s Communications team, it’s already time to start my next adventure.  I’m so excited to get started at FOX21’s KXRM in Colorado Springs!  In the next two weeks, it’s finishing my last few days, packing up the house, and uHauling my belongings, Tiggy, and Trix (my VW Bug) about 12 hours to the apartment that sounds best online.  Stressful?  Yes.  Exciting?  Definitely.

But before all that happens, I want to share the highlights of my internship.  When first premised with the idea of helping to update the state parks websites, I couldn’t be more excited.  I’d be hiking, photographing, and exploring the trails, traveling to parks that I’ve been semi-surrounded by for the last four years, and getting a taste of the dream job: environmental journalism.

It’s been everything I’ve expected and more.  Between getting way too close to snapping turtles:

Finding awesome sunsets:

And even a sitting hummingbird:

I’ve earned a new title.  But my new nickname has nothing to do with any of those photos.  Apparently, I’m the bug woman…

I’m embracing it.

I’ve loved getting to experience some of the parks; capturing the last footage of one before the recent floods put it underwater.  The one downside has been the overnights in remote towns.  While I appreciate getting a bed to sleep in and a place to edit each night, I’ve seen far too many horror movies in my years to enjoy so much quiet time.  The perils of a traveling journo, I suppose. But given my favorite photos, I say the self-induced scares are worth it:

Until the next adventure ensues…

A Farewell to (Al)Arms

I set at least 5 alarms.  Everyday that I have to be up early, I set at least 5 alarms.

Whether it’s my 4:30 am shift at the station or 9:30 on Tuesdays for class, I find that unless I can hit the snooze at least 5 times, I really don’t wake up for the day.  Especially with early shifts, until the third of five snoozes, I haven’t even noticed I’m touching anything outside of my dreams.

My sister and I both do this.  I blame our parents, whose voices, in high school, progressively got louder with each attempt to wake us from the dead.

I also don’t exactly know how to break the habit.  I put the phone on the other side of the room.  I’ve tried different tones.  I even hide it in different places.

But, for now, my five will change to four, and hopefully soon to three.

For this, is my farewell to (al)arms.

Eyjafjallajokull: During the Eruption