Top 10

things that make me a who I am

Friends

*Friends*

Friends are an important part of who I am today. The friends you surround yourself with growing up shape you and who you become. They show you the things you like about people and things you don't like. I was lucky enough to grow up with some pretty great friends. I am still friends with most of them today. There is one person in all of the pictures above and her name is Logan. I have been friends with her since I was one year old and we have been best friends ever since. After middle school she went to a different high school and it was different not having her around everyday. Now we have to make time to see each other but it helps that we live a couple blocks away from each other. That was fun growing up. This friendship makes me appreciate friends and what they stand for. She shows me who I want to be and who I don't want to be.  

Family

*Family*

Family is around you your whole life, so it shapes you into the person you are from the very beginning. I am lucky that my family is really close. I have 7 first cousins and we are all best friends. I mean we have our fights sometimes but we cant stay mad at each other because we are family. I can't say who I am closest to because I am close with all of them in different ways. My mom's family is spread out over the country and isn't that close, but my dad's family is super close with tons of  relatives who grew up in Santa Rosa. A close family is really fun during family gatherings like holidays, and birthday parties. Some of my best memories are with my cousins. Having a close knit family makes me appreciate family and the values it has. Also having 7 cousins lets you have a bunch of people to turn to or talk to when you need someone.

Sports

*Sports*

I have been growing up around sports since I was a baby. My Dad started playing baseball at Cardinal Newman high school, then he played for Cal bears, and then he played for the minor leagues. In one of the pictures above his name is listed in the bottom left corner. However,  my sport is volleyball. I started playing volleyball in 4th grade and fell in love with the sport. My Mom plays tennis so I have two parents who grew up playing sports. You could say that not playing sports wasn't an option. I'm lucky that I found a sport that I love, it would have been bad if I was forced to play a sport I didn't like. Playing volleyball for Empire Volleyball club has shaped a big part of who I am. It has taught me how to be a good teammate and how to put others before myself. The team aspect of sports is the best thing about the club. My coaches Kathy and Bob are the best coaches I have had. They make me want to be the best athlete I can be. Also, growing up around sports has given me some incredible memories.

Great Grandparents

*Great Grandparents*

My Great Grandparents are my Dad's grandparents. They lived around the corner from me and I loved them with all my heart. My great grandmother was the sweetest human I have ever met. She had this voice that was no one could imitate. She could touch her toes until she was 90. I remember walking down there with my Dad and her making us peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and sometimes she would have a treat for us like butterscotch pudding. She had the best butterscotch pudding! My great grandfather was a little different. He was the kindest man and he loved my great grandma with his whole soul. She always wore pearls and he would always do what she asked of him. They had two chairs that were right next to each other in front of the television. He always had pickles and chili-cheese fritos. He always had wafer cookies too. He always made me laugh and smile. Whenever he would see me he would kiss me 3 times,  they meant "I love you." I was heartbroken when they died and I miss tem to this very day. But I have some great memories with each of them and I wouldn't trade them for anything. I'm glad I knew them.  

Art

*Art*

I was first introduced to art at a young age but watching my cousin draw cool things made me want to be good at art. She is going to the Academy of Art in San Francisco. Art came naturally to me and it became a way for me to escape. Now, when I am happiest I am listening to my music and drawing. I love art and the things it can do for people; it is also a reason why I want to travel to see the different kinds of art in the world. Art makes me happy and I'm happy I have it in my life.  

The Lair/ Camping

*The Lair/ Camping*

The Lair of the Golden Bear is a Cal alumni family camp that I have been going to for 8 years. Sadly we will not be going this summer. But the past 8 summers of it have been a blast. The camp lasts one week and the week we go to is week 3 Camp Blue. There are three camps: Camp Blue, Camp Gold, and Camp Oski. Blue and Gold are rivals and we compete in different events throughout the week. there is men's and women's softball and the biggest game is the men's softball blue vs. gold on Friday before we leave. There are many things to due there such as swimming, hiking, fishing, massages (for adults), volleyball, tennis, paddle tennis, talent show, basketball, ping pong, etc. The list goes on. It is basically a week full of fun. The first year we went we met my Dad's college roommate Brad DeJardin. His family is now a close family to us. His kids are good friends with me and my sister. This camp showed me true fun and let me make friendships that I will never forget.

Disneyland

*Disneyland*

Disneyland is the one place that makes me feel like a little kid and I think that it is "the happiest place on earth." Me and my sister were just surprised with a trip to Disneyland and it was amazing! It makes me happy and I feel like it is the one place where it is okay to be a kid. It is truly magical.  

Hawaii

*Hawaii*

We went to Hawaii this past summer and it made me fall in love with traveling. We went snorkeling in a cove and it was an unforgettable experience. We rented an underwater camera and I got to take some great pictures of  things like: octopus, turtles, and different kinds of fish. This trip opened my eyes to new things and I want to experience all different things in different places around the world.

Dad- Hard Times

*Dad- Hard Times*

When I was in 4th grade, my Dad finally realized that he was a alcoholic. He and my Mom sat me and my sister down and told us that he would be leaving the house for while. I thought they were joking so I laughed, unaware that he had already packed his bags. This was one of the hardest things me and my family have had to go through. Luckily he didn't move far away, he found a place close to home. But that didn't change the fact that he wasn't here. I remember calling him before bed crying asking him "When will you be coming home?" He didn't know, neither did I. But my Dad pulled it together and has been sober for 5 1/2 years. This experience has made me appreciate my Dad and made me realize that people can have the strength to change.

Music

*Music*

Music makes me happy. My mom plays the piano and sings really well. When I was little she would sing me to sleep and I would always pick the longest song because I didn't want it to end. She always plays the piano and I love listening to it. Music makes me lost in thoughts when I'm listening to it. I love listening to music while I draw. Different kinds of music make me appreciate different cultures. I think musicians are brave because they have the courage to share their souls with the world through their music.

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