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ABQ Pride 2014

2014 marked the first year that T-Mobile sponsored Pride events around the country.  Pride is typically celebrated in the month of June to commemorate the Stonewall riots, which occurred at the end of June 1969.  This year marked the 45th anniversary of the Stonewall riots.

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As the site Diversity champion, I partnered with co-workers from both Albuquerque sites to celebrate at ABQ Pride.  I’m proud to say we were the pioneers across the country.  Aside from my role, I am proud to celebrate with my LGBT friends and family.

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My friend Anneke and I got to hold the ribbon while one of our VPs cut it to signify the kickoff of the parade.  T-Mobile was the premier sponsor of the parade.

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I carried our Mobile for Equality banner the whole two miles, even made it in the Albuquerque Journal.  Well a part of me did.

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It was hot, but we had a lot of fun throwing goodies and waving to the folks along the way.  My friend Denia kept the crowd pumped with her cheers!

Like I said, it was a family affair.  I got to hang out with all my peeps at the end!

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Atticus, wake up!  You’re gonna miss all the fun!

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The kids had fun playing in the kid zone.

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Atticus was even repping T-Mobile.

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Happy Pride!

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Tent Rocks

Fifty-five miles northeast of Albuquerque you’ll find some pretty cool geological formations known as Tent Rocks.  The official name is Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument, Kasha-Katuwe means “white cliffs” in the Pueblo language Keresan.  While slightly off the beaten path, Tent Rocks makes for an excellent day trip.  Allan and I went there this spring as a sort of pre-birthday trip.  With so many great places to visit in our Land of Enchantment, this was definitely a bucketlister.

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I’d recommend bring a camera.  I took the photos you see here with my phone camera, but Allan took his DSLR to make sure we got some really good shots.  It’s a beautiful place.

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Lots of great lighting and natural angles to play with.

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We explored every nook and cranny.

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I’d wear good shoes and comfy clothes.  You’ll have to navigate some narrow spaces.

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The strata is awesome.

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Tent Rocks gets its name from the tent shaped tips that are left after erosion.

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The hike is legit, but as Miley Cyrus says, “it’s the climb.  It’s steep, but short and worth it when you get to check out the views from the top.

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I wouldn’t recommend it for small children, but I look forward to bringing our kiddos in a few years.

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We went in March.  I’d recommend layers.  I fluctuated between two sweaters, one sweater, a flannel and a tank top.  Hats, shades and of course water.  A beard if you’re Allan.

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Panorama shot.

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After that hike, we deserved a margarita or two or a carafe.

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The food at Tomasita’s near the Railrunner Station is delicious.

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And the service is top notch.

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After lunch, we stopped in POP Gallery to see some of Allan’s pieces and visit with the gallery owner.  Our last stop was the outlet mall.  It was a birthday trip after all.

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Tent Rocks rocks.  Check it out!

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2014 Concerts: 3 Doors Down, One Republic and The Script

You guys know we go to a lot of shows.  So here is my first review of the 2014 season.

Way back in January (I really need to keep up on my blogging!), we saw an acoustic set of 3 Doors Down.  We saw them last year at Sandia Amphitheater with Daughtry.  These guys consistenly put on a great show regardless of the venue.  Isleta Resort worked great since it’s winter and this was a cozy acoustic set.  The guys are Southern, very down to earth, and very appreciative of their fans.  The lead singer Brad often refers to the audience as my friends.

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Some of my personal favorites:  Let Me Myself, Be Like That, Let Me Go, Away From the Sun, It’s Not My Time, Loser, Kryptonite, and When I’m Gone.  They did an awesome cover of Metallica’s Nothing Else Matters.

And of course my favorite, Here Without You.  I’d recommend 3 Doors Down any day and I hope they come through again.  I’ll be there.

Up next was One Republic and The Script on 5/31 (same day as ABQ Pride).

As is our custom, we pre-gamed/tailgaited in the parking lot.  Gina H (you have to specify with Levi who has 4 billion friends), Levi, Allan, Jessica, and Mandy.

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We were supposed to see American Authors, but our tickets said the wrong time.  I was so mad.  One set of tickets said the show started at 7pm.  The other said 8pm.  Grr.  I wrote a letter to the VIP lady at Isleta Amphitheater.  Curiously she was so accommodating when we were buying a VIP area for BSB, yet had absolutely no response when I contacted her about this show.  Rude.

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Anyway, we missed American Authors.  So here they are.

The Script was next.  I LOVE The Script.  I saw them last year at the same venue, but someone kept talking so I really tried to enjoy them this year.  And I did.  Gotta love those Irish.  20140531_202756

My favorites:  The Man Who Can’t Be Moved, Hall of Fame, and For the First Time.  My favorite is an ultimate drunk dial anthem (hey that’s a good blog idea):  Nothing.

Here is the set list.
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Between sets we ran into these lovelies (my friend Yvette and her sister Natalie).

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One Republic closed the show.  Saw them last year (see a trend) at Sandia.  Consistently, good.  Another recommend.  Favorites:  Good Life, Apologize, and Stop and Stare.  Set list.
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Stay tuned for Part 2 featuring Backstreet Boys and Avril Lavigne and Part 3 featuring Paramore and Fall Out Boy.

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From ‘Lope to Lobo!

It’s back to school time.  I love seeing all of the back to school photos on Facebook.  I’m a little jealous; I wanna go back to school.  Guess, I have to live vicariously through my family.

Everyday we ask Cyan about school.  She loves it, but you can’t always tell.  Her responses:  Good.  Played.  Everyone.

My brother Santiago is in 10th grade.  He wasn’t that thrilled.  What teenager is?  I’m looking forward to going to his football games again!

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My sisters are back to school too.  This time, both at UNM.  Sarah joined Meghann as a Lobo!

But I think she’ll always be a Running ‘Lope at heart.  Sarah graduated in early May and I’m only now getting to brag write about it. I’m so proud of her for moving away from home, getting to experience college life, making life long friends, travelling, playing volleyball, volunteering, leading, and earning a degree.

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While at Lamar Community College, Sarah was the Student Government Secretary/Treasurer.

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We drove up to Lamar, Colorado to see Sarah graduate.

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She and her friend Kaila were mistresses of ceremonies at the 2014 Antelope Night.

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Cyan loves her Auntie Sarah.

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During the program, she kicked back with her Auntie Meg.

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Sarah and her friend Erika were roommates for two years.  Erika grduated the previous semester and was working on another degree. I know Sarah misses all of her friends.

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We took the customary family photos.

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Uncle Si-go

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After the ceremony, we hung out at the pool.

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Then Meg, Allan and I hit up a local bar.

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The next day we were back for commencement.

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Sarah gave the benediction.

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Someone fell asleep;)

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Besties (Erika, Morgan, Sarah and Mikaila) and teammates!

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And cake!

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Congratulations Sarah!

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That’s all folks!

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You Ain’t Never Had A Friend Like Me

I can usually tell when someone has never suffered from depression (or any other mental illness).  They make ill-informed, asinine comments like:

– Life is too short to be depressed.

– (Fill in the blank) has it worse than you.

– Life is so wonderful, how can you be depressed?

– Snap out of it.

– You just need to (fill in the blank).

And on and on.
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The same thing happens with regard to suicide:

– Suicide is selfish.

– Anyone who commits suicide is a coward.

So yeah, that’s how I can tell that someone hasn’t suffered that pain.  And you know what, I’m so glad they haven’t.  Because it’s awful.

But I’m not so glad they say hurtful things.  I don’t think the comments are coming from a hurtful place.  It’s a place of misunderstanding.  It assumes that mental illness is rational, that it can be reasoned with.  It can’t.  Suicidal ideation and suicide are horrible and people who suffer from depression and their loved ones should try to get help.  But I don’t think it helps anyone to judge something we don’t understand.

Obviously, these are my thoughts in response to the death of Robin Williams, who really needs no introduction.  I have no idea how Robin felt.  I wish him peace.
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What I do know is that he was brilliant and funny.  I can think of so many great performances. FernGully, Mrs. Doubtfire, Good Will Hunting, Dead Poets Society, Nine Months, Toys, Aladdin.  What a wonderful gift to share.  Remarkable humor, intelligence, and kindness.

We sure ain’t never had a friend like you.
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