Wizard Wednesday is BACK

Due to popular demand and request, I have decided to resurrect Wizard Wednesday and discuss one of my favorite things in the world--Harry Potter.

I'm currently watching Teen Wolf right now and season 3 is SO GOOD. I just watched the 3A finale and cannot stop thinking about it. Anyway, Teen Wolf has a very cool intro, and someone used it as inspiration to make a Harry Potter style one. Enjoy!

Also, anyone reading this blog might not be aware that in the past few years I filmed several Harry Potter fan films (living the dream here) about Lily Evans, Harry Potter's mother. A trailer is below for one of the films in the series but you can see them all here.


My Top 3 Skills

(according to Amanda, my roommate)

1. Tripping
2. Convincing myself I will suddenly have more time or energy.
3. Popcorn


That Time I Met Carrie Underwood

You should know I'm writing this from heaven, because I met my idol and then promptly died, but I realized this was something I absolutely had to document, 1) You can still blog in heaven apparently, 2) because I've written about all the other Carrie Underwood concerts I've been to and, 3) I MET CARRIE UNDERWOOD AND IT WAS THE BEST DAY OF MY LIFE. So yeah, you bet I'm going to write about it.

The story to previously accompany this post is here, about the time when my mom and I drove to Reno to see Carrie Underwood in concert because she had announced no Utah dates on her tour. That post ended with me finding out that Carrie Underwood had in fact announced a second leg of her tour, with Salt Lake City, UT being the last date of the Storyteller Tour.

Now let's fast forward seven months to November. SO MUCH has happened in my life since that last concert. I filmed a web series, met my now best friend and roommate (which means I also moved out), went to Guatemala, filmed a Harry Potter short film?!?!? It was already the best year of my life by far, and I just felt like it was my year. As I always did before every concert of hers I went to, because I'm an official Carrie Underwood fan club member, I entered to win a meet and greet with her. I think I had done this like 4 times before and been unsuccessful (they randomly choose 10 winners). So I entered the meet and greet and then basically put it out of my mind as much as I could.

Now let's go to November 18, 2016, that very fateful day. They close the meet and greet entries two weeks before the concert (which was happening on November 28), and I remembered this had happened and figured I'd check my email just to make sure I hadn't gotten anything about it. They always send an email whether you win or not, just to let you know. So I checked my email and there was a little email that I opened and it said this:

And then I'm pretty sure my heart stopped beating for a solid minute (and then started beating again because I realized I couldn't meet Carrie Underwood if I died). I was chatting Amanda at work--bless her for dealing with my insanity--and sent her this (exact wording):

A: yes
A: plz
A: i can tell

And I WAS freaking out SO SO much. Now remember, this is all happening at work at my desk which is in a pretty open area, and wow I was not dealing haha. I was getting so emotional, so I took my phone and went into an empty conference room and just was BAWLING. I called my mom--bless her too, because I've called her so many times and have sounded the exact same when things have been terribly wrong, so naturally she thought something was terribly wrong.

Me (through all the sobs):  a;ldkf ja;lkd la;f ;aldkf a (translation: I just won a Carrie Underwood meet and greet!)
Mom: Kailee, what's wrong?! I can't understand what you're saying!
Me (taking a deep breath so I can get a few words out): I. just. won. a. Carrie. Underwood. meet. and. greet. (tears ensue again)

There are few times I have ever cried that hard in my life, and they have usually been when I've been at very huge lows. But there I was in a conference room, crying the ugliest tears you ever did see, but feeling like the happiest girl in the world. Possibly finding out I was going to meet Carrie was cooler than actually meeting her. It was just an unbelievable thing and I will never forget that day or those feelings for as long as I live.

Oh, and I totally left work pretty much right after that happened, because finding out you are meeting your idol kind of makes you a non-functioning human for hours days weeks forever.

That sentence is not even a joke either, because I had so much anxiety ensue over those next ten days. My emotions were SO HIGH. I was super nervous that somehow it wasn't going to happen (people with anxiety often think something bad is going to happen, even if they have no logical reasoning to back it up). I had dreams about it not happening or happening, every night (I often have had dreams about meeting Carrie Underwood in the past, but these were now a daily occurrence). My excitement over finding out I was going to meet her was then replaced with a fear of me thinking that I was not going to meet her and that it was all just a big mistake.

FINALLY, the day before the concert, I got an email about the meet and greet, giving me all the details and taking away so much of that anxiety (thank goodness!). And then...

I got to the concert venue (the Maverik Center in West Valley City where I've seen Carrie at twice before) pretty early because they said if you were at all late for it, they wouldn't let you in. Obviously my paranoia got the best of me and I was there like an hour early. But! my mom had the tickets (I had given them to her for safekeeping, I was so scared I would lose those tickets) and I needed my ticket to get into the meet and greet. She got stuck in traffic and I was SOSOSOSOSO stressed that she wouldn't make it in time (thankfully I explained my situation to the ticket people and they were very nice and said if my mom didn't make it in time they'd still let me in for the meet and greet). But she made it with like ten minutes to spare, yay! Unfortunately she couldn't come with me to the meet and greet (you both have to win one, unless you're a minor) so then she just had to wait while I had the greatest experience of my life.

There was a group of about 15 of us and they took us downstairs. I talked to a few of the people and one girl had been to a ton of meet and greets, it was like her thing. Surprisingly, I think most of the people in our group were seeing Carrie in concert for the first time (vs. me who was seeing her for the SIXTH time because i'm such a great fan). They took us to the merch table where we could buy our merch sans lines and also buy something for Carrie to sign. This was actually great because I had just brought one of my cd covers for her to sign so I bought an 8x10 poster that she could sign instead. I didn't get a shirt or anything because I had one from the last Storyteller concert that we had gone to just six months ago (and even then, for Carrie Underwood concerts I like to buy my merchandise online beforehand because it's cheaper and then I can go to the venue already wearing it).

They then took us down to the meet and greet venue. And let me just say that for all the nerves I had been feeling for the days up to that point, I was just feeling chill and excited. It was nice. We waited in line and the rules were that we could record or take pictures of anything when we got in there, and Carrie would sign one thing and they'd take a picture for us that they would send to us later. While in line I got to talk to Carrie's assistant Mina (can you say dream job?!) about some of the stuff she does for Carrie. She's worked for her since 2009!

THEN..it was time. It was my turn to go in and I cannot believe how chill I was. I will never understand but always be grateful that I didn't have a heart attack right there. I went in the room and THERE WAS CARRIE. She was very nice and it honestly happened so quickly and is a little bit of a blur but she signed my picture and we joked about the weather and I told her I'd seen her in concert 6 times and always came with my mom, which she thought was very cool. And then they took our picture and we hugged and then it was done! It was crazy quick. But it was awesome. (man, I can't believe I actually met Carrie Underwood.)

After that I met up with my mom, who was so excited for me and then we went down to the concert! We had general admission tickets on the floor (which, I can never see a Carrie Underwood concert not on the floor anymore because it's just too amazing to do it any other way). And the way they did general admission for this was actually great because it wasn't super crowded, and the stage was like an oval in the middle, so you could kind of move around and follow her wherever she went. Like anywhere you were standing was good! It was such an incredible concert, obviously, and it was pretty much exactly the same as the one in Reno, except for some different costumes, which I loved because that concert was literally perfect.
We got a picture with one of the opening acts, but I am the worst and I can't even remember his name. *face covering emoji*

It was one of the best days of my life and I will cherish it as long as I live. If you want to see some video footage from it, you can go HERE. Also, I'm just so glad that I have seen Carrie Underwood with my mom every single time. It's now like really special for me and I'd never want to go with anyone else! Also, nobody else is allowed to see my insane self at a Carrie Underwood concert. They're just the best days of my life. Can't believe how well it all worked out. And also if you read to the end of this, kudos to you because it is SO LONG. Anyway, Carrie Underwood is amazing, and November 28, 2016 was the most incredible day of my life, the end.



I came across my blog and realized I hadn't been on here in so long that my google doesn't even autofill the website anymore. :O (I wish I could do emojis on here haha). However I've always done my yearly recaps on here and wanted to continue that tradition.

Best moments of 2017 (there are videos related to a lot of these that are all linked below):

Filming a Beauty and the Beast styled wedding with a bunch of other great vendors. It turned out so pretty!

A video shoot inspired by the fabulous tv show Good Girls Revolt

Having a killer Valentine's Day party. I've never really been a huge V-Day celebrator before, but Amanda is super into it which helped my attitude. It definitely ended up being the best Valentine's I've ever had.

Watching SO MANY tv shows! such as: Game of Thrones, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Schitt's Creek, Sweet Vicious, Jane the Virgin, The Carrie Diaries, GLOW, Veronica Mars (still need to see the movie!), Don't Trust the B**** in Apt 23, the end of PLL (boo - to it ending and also the ending), Big Little Lies, The Handmaid's Tale, Freaks and Geeks, Riverdale, The OC, and Stranger Things s2 - these are not in order of importance because there are several shows on here I can't even rank I loved them so much.

Producing, filming and editing Stoneybrook Revisited: A Babysitter's Club Fan Film for AJP. We had an all-female crew and things were so efficient that we had several hours of down time on set. It was also my first time filming a series in traditional camera format and I am so pleased with myself for how cute it turned out.

Going to New York with Amanda! The best part of this trip was seeing all the friends that lived there (and the LA friends who were there the same time as us) and also getting to see some really excellent theater - Present Laughter, The Play that Goes Wrong, Puffs, and The Phantom of the Opera. Also getting to go to the GORGEOUS Frick Collection. The best part about this trip was that since we had both been to New York several times before, we didn't have to do any of the touristy things and just did exactly what we wanted to do. It was honestly so much fun.

SIDNEY COMING HOME! My sister had been serving an LDS mission for a year and half in Arizona but it was a huge highlight of the year to have her come home in May.

Getting raises at both of my jobs (main and side)!

The lantern festival in May. We got hired to face paint at this and made some killer tips and also got to float some lanterns. The event was slightly disorganized but it was so much fun because of the people I was with.

Taking a very chill hike with my family on Memorial Day. We normally get together with the whole extended family for every single holiday and it was nice to celebrate this one with just us.

Seeing Carrie Underwood for the 7th time in a surprise concert on June 17, 2017. More details in a later post, because this is a story that deserves its own.

Spending the majority of the year working on Lily Evans and the Stroke of Midnight. This was 100% the best part of my year. I LOVED filming and editing this film and I am so sosososo happy with how it turned out. We had a crazy amount of hiccups in the production process and so many things went wrong. But man, it was awesome, which was largely due to the people. Our cast and crew were great, and so many of our friends flew in to help us on set. It was so fun to work on something together in one place and it definitely bonded us all.

Turning 26 in October!

Growing out my nails! This is probably my biggest success, because anyone who knows me knows I have been an incessant nail biter since my early days of life. It's definitely a process but my nails look and feel so much healthier and I actually love them.

Getting the love of my life - my ipad - and learning how to illustrate on procreate.

Watching Stranger Things and celebrating Halloween in October. Also helping Amanda with all her Costober stuff was super fun.

Remaking the Parks and Rec intro with my family, continuing that new annual tradition.

Writing and directing a very cute Christmas short in December! We just filmed it one morning and did it with a bunch of our friends. I'm really proud of this because I put the whole thing together, made it happen, and it honestly was super fun to do.

Celebrating New Year's Eve with Kamille and Amanda in our pjs.

Honorable mentions: fidget spinners (my golden snitch one!), Simply Kenna's youtube videos, the chipmunk filter in snapchat providing us way too many nights of endless laughter, me eating vegetables a few times this year and liking it!, the delicious smoothies from Dancing Crane, my ipad (I really love it), the #metoo movement and everything happening for women right now, youtube (I'm finding myself obsessed with managing channels

I love this blog because it gives me a voice that I don't often use to speak out loud, and I kind of miss that. So I may be posting on here a bit more often that I have in the past. I'm really trying not to give empty promises this year so hopefully I can stick to it! (also honestly I don't even know if anyone reads this anymore, but I always wrote for myself more anyway.)


It’s Time to Talk About It: Lessons Learned from my Eating Disorder

I don’t talk about it very often, but since the National Eating Disorder Awareness (NEDA) Week theme this year is, “It’s time to talk about it,” I figured a post was in order. If you want to read my eating disorder story, you can find it here. I wrote that post four years ago. Since then, I’ve had my fair share of struggles, relapses, and lessons learned. I decided to write a little bit of what I’ve learned, because I think a lot of it relates not just to eating disorders, but to life in general. #relatable

Lessons I learned from my ED:
Express your emotions or they will express themselves in unhealthy ways. My eating disorder has never been about the food. I’ve found that for me when i’m feeling triggered or relapsing, it means I’m feeling insecure, I need attention (in the way that I just need to know people care about and love me), or it’s my anxiety manifesting because I’m afraid to face the real world.

TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF: YOU are an investment. The amount of time and care you put into yourself is what you’ll get out of it. If I don't take care of myself, my eating disorder is going to try and take care of things for me.

Always be prepared with a backup plan and a team of people to help you. I’ve had two big relapses in the past four years. The first time, I didn’t see it coming, I avoided dealing with it when it came, and by the time I went to therapy a month later, everything was completely out of control and it took me several months to get out of it. The second time, I had learned from my mistakes, so when I saw the signs I immediately made a therapy appointment and told people who could help me. I did what I could to prevent that relapse from happening, but eventually it still came and it was definitely hard, but I got out of it much much quicker because I was prepared. I was also ready to just admit it was there and face it head on right away.
Being recovered doesn’t mean you’re invincible, it means you’ve learned how to say no and get a handle on your weaknesses. Triggers and relapses might happen, and that is OK. Just be ready when they come, and don't be afraid to ask for help from several different sources either.

Hard things suck, but part of being human is doing hard things. This isn't me telling people to just "get over it," but hard things in our life are inevitable. I wouldn't be half the person I am right now if I hadn't had an eating disorder. So while I wouldn't wish on anyone else or wish it back on me, I'm grateful I had it because I'm a much better and stronger person than I would have been otherwise.

Know your limits, and accept them. This.is.so.hard.for.me. One thing I love about myself is that if I want to do something, I do it. I teach myself how, I find ways to do the thing, I go around the no. I have several interests and I love doing as many different things as I possibly can. This is great until you realize that actually doing everything isn’t possible and will probably just cause a meltdown and force you to then do nothing to compensate (true story, don’t try this at home). I’ve had to learn the hard way how to accept what I can and can’t do and now instead of matching my limits to my workload, I changed it around and I match my workload to my limits. Realizing and deciding that ahead of time has made all the difference for me.

Sometimes you just have to trust. Trust yourself, trust your loved ones, trust your doctors, trust God that things will eventually be okay, better, and easier. No matter how unhealthy or dangerous something is, leaving a comfort zone behind is HARD. For a while, it’s harder to move forward than it would be to just go back. And when I first recovered, over five years ago, I went back and forth on recovery A LOT. The only way I eventually I got out of was by continually trusting, and forcing myself to keep moving forward, no matter how scared or uncomfortable I was. When I think about how long I struggled, and how off and on I felt with recovery, I realize how much of a miracle it was that I was able to recover. An eating disorder feels extremely hopeless and impossible to ever get out of, and I couldn't do it until I started putting every single bit of trust I had into a higher power. I made it out and now I live a fairly normal life. And I know that if I could do it, then anyone else can do.

It is worth it. It does get easier and so.much.better. The Vlogbrothers once said that “bad news happens all at once while good news happens slowly.” It takes time to see progress. I won’t lie and say life is perfect now, because it is NOT. I still get triggered. I can’t skip meals because there's a good chance I'll skip more if I do. Some mornings I wake up and the last thing I want to do is eat breakfast, and I have to pull open the list on my phone of reasons why I can’t just relapse again. Because it was something I did for a long period in my life, it’s never going to stop being an option in my head. I think about it often. I think about the people I’ve hurt, and I remember the hardest, worst, and most horrible days. Those memories don’t leave me.

But it’s worth it when I think about how I don’t get scared anymore every single time I eat food. For five years food was a constant fear and thought in my head, and now it’s just food. When I see a relapse coming, I can recognize it and ask for help right away. It’s worth it because now my life is mine. I’m in control, and I get to choose what I want to do with it. Few things are more freeing than that.

I’m talking about it because I want others to know that they can too. There’s a huge stigma in talking about mental illness, and if sharing some of my story is a step to changing that, then I'm more than happy to do it. Thanks for reading, and if you or a friend would like help or more info on eating disorders, you can go here (or email me!).
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