Behind-the-Scenes at a Runway Show

Okay, this is waaaaay overdue! But here it is! My experience going behind-the-scenes at a runway show in Dallas.

Watch and see what it’s like prepping and running a fashion show!

Fashioned for Freedom is an annual event that benefits My Refuge House in the Philippines.

 

Sit down and chill out!

Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

I had this week booked. My schedule was lit up like a Christmas tree. I tend to do that to myself.

8e55140d93f57db5b34e03717f9958bcb1a1c760d969823a0f8c14a3800bef9d

But this week, on top of my normally busy schedule, I started a new job that required many hours at the beginning of the week to train, I was stressed out about a couple assignments at school not going the way I wanted, and I had a really cool social media job set for this weekend.

Stylecon is a national convention where bloggers, makeup artists, stylists, etc. meet from all around the country. It’s supposed to have a couple thousand attendees at the Dallas one this year. And guess what? I was contacted to run their social media for the weekend! The Stylecon people looked at my Instagram when I applied to volunteer for the event and decided to have me run their Instagram and Snapchat for the event. You can imagine I was pumped! (This goes out to the haters that think social media is useless…)

giphy-6

Also, I had a friend coming in this weekend. My plan?

Run the social media for a national convention, not miss a single hangout my friends were having (which is a lot, let me tell you), go to an SMU football game with my family, not miss my Friday class, pick up an 8-hour work shift, go to church, and study for a few hours. All in one weekend.

Was I stressed?

Yeah, but what else is new?

Did all this happen?

Pshhh, no.

200

Times like this, God likes to tell me to chill. Because I think I am Superwoman and can handle everything all the time, and apparently I can’t.

So I got sick.

giphy-7

I tried to shake it off, but after one of my work shifts I decided to lay in bed, and I kinda just stayed there.

I called my mom, who conveniently lives 40 minutes from SMU with no traffic, and she came to bring me medicine. But after seeing that I had a fever or whatever, she decided to bring me home home.

And here I have been for three days. Just lying here. I had to cancel on 9 people in the last two days. And Stylecon.

I was bummed.

But you know what?

I was forced to chill. I needed that. I need to learn to stop.

tenor-5

Being sick shouldn’t be the only thing that gets me to lie down and do nothing. It’s healthy to just sit and breathe every once in a while, you know?

It sucks sometimes, but there are days that I really need to just stop. And breathe. And think.

I’m slowly recovering, and it helped that my best friends risked their healthy lives to visit me and bring me food, but I realized a few things while sitting in bed:

  • I really wanted to help with Stylecon because I wanted to be cool. But I don’t need to prove my coolness!
  • I got to thinking a lot about this blog and I really want to dedicate more time to it.
  • In Luke 10 there’s a story about Mary and Martha. Martha was super busy doing a million things at once and was mad at Mary for not helping, but Jesus told Martha that Mary was in the right for having her priorities straight and just sitting at his feet. I need to watch myself so I don’t become a Martha. I can’t think that the many little things in life outweigh the important things.
  • Ginger tea is the BOMB. I think I’ve been drinking 25 cups a day.

 

 

How Did We End Up Here?- My SMU Story

Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

Hope. Heartbreak. Drama. Plot twists. Australia. You can find it all below, in the story of how I came to attend Southern Methodist University.

Today was the first day of school for the semester.

I am attending Southern Methodist University.

If you knew my story, you’d chuckle. When life gets ironic or takes unexpected turns, especially for the good, we tend to chuckle. I am chuckling.

sensible-chuckle-gif-1

Halloween. October 31, 2014 was the first time I set foot on the SMU campus. Anyone who visits can tell that it is easily one of the most beautiful college campuses in the US. But I also fell in love with the Arts school. Long story short, after my very first college tour, I was hooked on SMU. As a high school sophomore.

When it came time to enroll, I got in. The acceptance rate is 49%, so I pretty much had a half and half chance.

The problem?

The price.

That’s fine, right? I can just get a scholarship!

Totally! I received a scholarship of $30,000!!! Super exciting, right? The problem:

SMU’s undergrad tuition fees are around $50,000 a year. Plus, they require students under 20 to live on-campus, so add another solid $14,000.

I did not have that money. My parents did not have that money. So off to community college I went, kicking and screaming.

The thing is, Collin County Community College actually turned out to be an amazing experience. I had a bunch of friends by my side in the same boat, and made some new friends along the way. I got to help start a Bible study group on campus and soon became its President. Attending community college was one of the smartest decisions I ever made because of how much money it saved me, and it was a crucial stepping stone into adulthood. I was also so grateful for that extra year I lived at home. It really prepared me for moving out.

But what now? What’s the plan? What happens after Collin?

That’s the question, isn’t it. That’s the thing with community college. You feel like you have multiple senior years because in the end, you still have to figure out where to go to school.

tenor

With some dual credit courses under my belt, I could transfer from Collin after a year. So I had one year to decide where to go. Sounds like enough time, right? It should be, but not for me! No sir, it was approaching the summer and I still had no idea where I was going. I applied to 7 schools- UTD (University of Texas at Dallas), UNT (University of North Texas), TCU (Texas Christian University), Rice University, UT (University of Texas), Tufts University (a school in Boston), and SMU. I was basically waiting to see what the cheapest option would be, because money.

Slowly, financially things got narrowed down. But they got narrowed down too much. Everything was too expensive. Pretty much every school gave me a decent amount of money, but not enough for me to afford going for three years. Even UTD, the cheapest school I applied for, barely gave me money so it was still pricey.

And then I got the call.

giphy

I was in Austin for a Leadership Training week, having a deep convo with one of my girls, when the phone rang. Out of the 100+ students that applied for a transfer scholarship, 25 were being chosen to come in for an interview. One of them, being lil’ ol’ me.

I got pretty much everyone I knew to pray. I had elders in the church on their hands and knees praying for this interview. So you can imagine the stress, huh?

No sleep for Isabel.

Only 10 would be chosen to receive a full-tuition scholarship to SMU for 5 semesters. That’s basically like winning $150,000.

My sister had her driver’s test that morning (talk about STRESSSSSS in the Arcellana family household), so my friend Lacy drove me up for my interview.

IMG_1704

(Photo taken right after the interview, when I was feeling pretty good about myself.)

I got the email soon after.

I didn’t get the scholarship.

I read it over and over and over until my tears blurred my sight. “We regret to inform you…”

Why was I crying? I’m not a very emotional person. But I am a very driven person with very high expectations of myself. I’m also a dreamer. SMU was my dream school. I had worked my butt off at Collin so I could just have a shot at this exact scholarship. I worked so hard. And what was it about my interview? Am I just not likable? What did I do wrong, what did they want?

giphy

I also didn’t know where else to go. It was June by this time, and I had no idea where I was going to live in 2 months. My mom and I crunched numbers over and over. I would have to go into a lot of debt (which we were trying to avoid like the plague) to even go to UTD, which was not even a school I really wanted to go to.

At one point, I started planning on moving to Australia. People thought I wasn’t serious.

I was serious.

tenor-2

I was already emailing friends out there and figuring out where I’d live. But my mom wanted to try for SMU again. She said we might be able to afford it if I commute the 45 minute drive, since I have some scholarships. So we started negotiating for me to live at home. And that’s when my SMU advisor asked me to come in.

Two weeks after I had received that heartbreaking email and the day before my birthday, I was back at SMU. At the same intimidation building that was fancier than the White House.

I was led into the office of Jennifer Lasagna, and when I sat down she put a letter in front of me.

“I’ll let you read that.” She said.

I did read it. Again. And again. And again. (Actual footage of me that day)>>>

giphy-3

I finally decided that I probably forgot how to read and did not understand the letter. “Wait, what?”

She laughed. “You got the scholarship!”

What a turn of events, am I right? I’ll take that as a birthday present.

As it turns out, I was chosen as one of the 10 all along. This whole time, there were 4 or 5 SMU staff members emailing back and forth because some of my credits weren’t transferring and they weren’t sure if they could accept them yet. (Because of me, SMU is having to change some of their policies on AP transferring credits.) They had to tell me no just in case things couldn’t be worked out.

So there you have it! I was absolutely blessed with one of the 10 North Texas Community College Full Tuition scholarships!

giphy-4

The way I see it, God was like “I’m going to humble you first and make you rethink your whole life and really depend on me. Then I’ll show you my plan. It’s great, I promise. We’ll all laugh at this someday.”

Here’s to hard work paying off, God waiting until the last minute to reveal his plans because it helps my heart, and random life plot twists. Here’s to doors opening and closing right when they need to.

Pony up! I’m a Mustang!

Processed with VSCO with m3 presetIMG_1700IMG_1705

My Vienna, Austria Travel Diary

 

Here it is! The third installment of my Europe Travel Diary 2015! (I know, it took me that long to upload this haha!)

This footage was taken when my family and I visited my aunt and uncle in Vienna, Austria in November. My mom helped me film this, so you’ll see me a lot more in the footage. Hope you enjoy!

Filmed with the iPhone 5c and iPhone 6.

The links to the other two Europe travel diaries are at the end of the video.

My Accidental Reverse Bucket List

Now there’s bucket lists, and then there are reverse bucket lists. Things in your life you’ve already done. But I’m going to take it a step further and present you all with my reverse accidental bucket list. These are things I didn’t think would ever happen until they actually did happen. I think it’s fun to sit down and realize all the random cool things that have happened to you. If you want, think of some from your own life and comment a list!

  • Watched the Phantom of the Opera in the theater it was first performed
  • Gotten my writing published in a book (Regarding Franz)
  • Gotten photobombed by a SWAT team in Paris
  • Climbed up a mountain in heels
  • Seen Big Time Rush in Walmart
  • Been messaged by Perrie Edwards
  • Been whistled at by R2D2
  • Seen Billie Piper
  • Been asked to speak in front of 1,000 people within two hour’s notice
  • Been to a fashion show
  • Swam with an olympian swimmer
  • Gotten on the newspaper (don’t remember why)
  • Became godmother to a grouse in Alaska (Google it)
  • Been in a live audience in a TV show featuring Nick Vujick
  • Gotten paid to taste test for Cheetos

London Travel Diary 2015

I’ve always wanted to go to England. I’m kind of obsessed with all things British. So I was so excited to finally get to visit in November! My family and I spent 4 days in London, (including a trip to the Harry Potter studios!!!) and it was everything I hoped it would be. Here’s a little snippet of my time there. Videos on our trip to Paris and Vienna are coming soon!

Random Questions to Ask Your Friends

Random Get-to-know-you questions

Watch out, awkward silences.

P.S. I made these up all by myself 😉 you’re welcome

  • If you had to be renamed based on what you ate for breakfast, what would be your new name?
  • What’s the first thing that pops into your head when I say “don’t do it!”?
  • What restaurant have you probably eaten the most at?
  • What’s a unique skill you have that you wish you could get paid for?
  • What’s your spirit animal when you’re angry?
  • Which celebrity do you want to be friends with?
  • What TV or movie family you think you’d fit in with?
  • Would you rather fight off 3 toddler-sized adults or one adult-sized toddler?
  • What’s your fictional dream job? (super spy, superhero, mermaid…)
  • Would you rather have to act like you just won the lottery every time you saw a vending machine or cry a single tear every time you forget someone’s name?
  • What time period would you most like to live in and what one thing would you want to bring with you from the present?
  • If you had to be roommates with a movie villain, who would it be?
  • If you had to take a bath in a breakfast food, which one would you choose?
  • If you had to be renamed after a name of a restaurant, which restaurant would you pick?
  • What song describes your relationship with food?
  • Would you rather be a bird that can swim or a fish that can fly?
  • Which do you think is the most unnecessary letter in the alphabet?
  • If you had to trade places with one of your friend’s parents, who would that be?
  • If you had to dress like one movie or TV character the rest of your life, who would that be?
  • Which pop star would make the best math tutor and why?
  • What’s the nicest house you’ve ever been in?
  • Would you rather have an ugly car, an ugly house, or ugly clothes?
  • What board game do you wish you could earn money with?
  • What’s the nerdiest thing you’ve ever done?
  • What’s the smartest thing you’ve ever done?
  • What cartoon character describes you when you’re tired?
  • Weirdest thing you’ve ever eaten that you actually liked?
  • Which historical figure would you like to have as a sibling?
  • You’re stuck in the last book you read. What are you doing?
  • If you could master 3 skills right now, what would they be?
  • What commercial would you love to be in?
  • If you had an exercise routine based on the last book you read, how fit would you be?
  • During a zombie apocalypse, would you rather go to an office supply store or a craft supply store?
  • If you had to/got to relive a day from last week, which one would you choose?
  • If you got to scroll through your Instagram feed from 1 year into the future, would you do it?
  • What book would you love to live in?
  • If you had to switch lives with one of your grandparents, which one would that be?
  • Who do you wish could sing you to sleep every night?
  • What store/restaurant would you rather be the manager of?
  • You have to spend the next 24 hours on one app. Which one?
  • If you had to change languages right now, which one would you pick?
  • What first comes to mind when I say “favorite”?
  • If you had a superpower based on the last restaurant you ate at, what power would that be?
  • If you got to talk to your childhood self but only got to share advice using song lyrics, what would you say?
  • What would your autobiography called?
  • What movie genre would your life be and what would it be called?
  • If you had to perform a commercial jingle in front of a live audience, which one would you choose?
  • What would you choose as the theme song for a sitcom based on your year?

That’s all for now, folks! Let me know if you’d like more, there’s a lot where that came from! Thanks for reading!