The Beauty in Balboa

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I had the amazing opportunity to accompany Justin on a model photoshoot in the beautiful Balboa Park this past weekend! It was fun working with Britney and so cool watching her work those modeling skills! One of the reasons why I love second shooting is that I get to keep the photos I take for myself to use for my own creativity! Anyway, enjoy! :) 

WHOOPS, gorgeous disclaimer:
©Nicole Angeles and nicoleangeles.com, 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site's author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

Tanks ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ

 

 

( ・ᴗ・̥̥̥ )

Model: Britney Estell | instagram: @bme745
Location: Balboa Park | Sunny San Diego
 

 

3:14

and above all these put on love
which binds everything together in perfect harmony

 

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This past weekend had me feeling all kinds of emotions and thinking all of kinds of things. Heartbreak, sadness, shock, denial, fear and uncertainty and a lot of times at a loss for words. When I was reading all of the updates and news articles from both tragedies, I couldn't help but feel those emotions and more. But what I was able to find in the dark heaviness of the news were people and stories of love, compassion, unity and no judgment, to help those who were hurting and mourning. This morning at work there was a time of prayer for these past events and hearing a prayer for those people who weren't open to love or feel compassion for everyone really broke my heart because it was just the reality of it. It's crazy stuff and what I'm feeling right now is 100,000,000 times less than the ones who had to find out the loss of a loved one. It has made me appreciate what I have right now and who I have right now---for my boyfriend, my coworkers, my friends, my family, my mom and dad, and my Kuya---every second of every day is always THE perfect time to thank and love and appreciate the ones in your life. I'm a person that overthinks to the max and worries about the little things and the little details, but when it comes to the big picture, it's best to take time to look at it before it's too late.

But yeah, I originally meant for this post to be a bit more light hearted than my last one (venting on life), but I decided to write about this instead because although I didn't lose a loved one during this, it still affected me a lot (I know I'm not the only one) and had me thinking about a lot of things, people and reality of the amount of people who love and the amount of people who hate.

I'll close this one out with that reminder to put on love---to anyone and everyone.

♥︎

 

twenty-seven-ish

Torrey Pines | San Diego

Torrey Pines | San Diego

Hey all (two of you) ( ̄▽ ̄)ノ

It's taken me a long lazy while to write up another blog post...and aside from the semi-laziness, I think I get caught up in figuring out what I should write about, especially since a lot has happened since my last blog spree. 

I guess I wanted to write about some things I've been thinking/feeling and what no better way than to type it outttttt. 

So a few months ago (this originally said couple weeks ago but it's taken me this long to post it) I turned 27 ( o_o) and I thought it would be a good idea to reflect on some things I've learned/observed in the recent years. While there have been so SO many positive memories and opportunities and blessings, I still find myself looking back on not-so-positive-times, dwelling on them and wishing some things did/didn't change. A lot of it has to do with friendships I used to have, areas I used to be so heavily involved in, and sometimes I actually kind of miss the pace of life I had in college (aside from the homework and deadlines..) I just haven't taken the time to sit down and truly evaluate where my life is right now and maybe I don't because I feel like it might be overwhelming. Adulting (yes, #adulting) is an interesting semi-bummer right now. (Not just in those practical areas like managing time, paying rent/bills/loans, work, etc., but in goals and wanting to do things or go places) Anyway, I've been trying to stay in touch with my real passion (music) but I still neglect to practice when I have the time to and lately I've been so lame at keeping in touch with people, which effects me more than it normally would. And I've observed how unapproachable I might seem to people and how quiet, withdrawn and pretty awkward I am now, compared to how easy it was for me to be the opposite. I was loud, smiley, active, hyper, outgoing and enthusiastic and probably a lot more confident. Not saying that I'm not like that ever BUT it's gotten much harder for me to open up or be "approachable," with less of that resting face that I'm usually unaware of (hah). I'm also dwelling on how my health was a lot better back then and struggling to get back into it ( only to find myself getting quite bummed out and de-motivated sometimes). Is it normal to feel a bit out of place in your own life? Like not knowing where you fit in in a lot of areas? Insecurities man...they suck. 

-______-. AM I JUST BEING DRAMATIC?? 

hahaa probably. This is why it's taken me a while to write a blog post...because I've been wanting to write about this, even if it's not as positive as my last posts. But since I can be verbally awkward and speaking my thoughts and ideas out loud never comes out the way I want, writing is the only way I can express it accurately and without feeling as self-conscious as I do. 

BUT ( A BIG BUT)

on a more uplifting note, I can not be any more thankful for having people in my life right now that will always encourage me and be there for me, even in my sulking state (hehe sorryyy). For the times life makes it difficult to stop dwelling on those things, at least I have people to remind me to look forward and trust that He will definitely provide and open doors and make a way. 

P.S. THO:  I wasn't writing all of this to seem like a complainer (I'm not) but it's just being real about what's been weighing in my head. Don't worry all two of you, I know to take everything one step at a time and to stay motivated, which is hard to do sometimes.

I'm keeping at it!! (*•̀ᴗ•́*)و ̑̑

Ash Katchup #1

Photos by Brooke Aliceon Photography

F I N A L L Y . This is my first Catchup of 2016! And it's probably one of the coolest events we've done so far, which was Bryan Lanning's Like a Lion EP Release Party! This was back in January at the Youtube Space in LA, which is very cool in itself. I would love to do something like that more often because it was an incredible night and an awesome time with family and friends and people we met there. I wasn't planning on making a video with my poorly shot, low-res clips from that night but I did...so.. yes. HERE IT IS: 

I had a lot of fun compiling my video and using iMovie for the first time! (Haha.) AND I had a lot of fun fiddling with Garage Band to make the chill background music! Took me a while to finish both simultaneously but I'm hoping to make more videos like that (but with better filming skillZ.) I know I already linked them on my youtube video but just wanted to mention the super nice people we got to meet (aaand shout out to Justin of course):

Justin Critz: https://www.youtube.com/user/JustinCritzMusic
DailyBumps: https://www.youtube.com/user/dailyBUMPS
The Johnson Fam: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChbKYCOnUtou3RPtFXeT73w
SlyfoxFam: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCE5W4yARcuWGCpJITTOfS_w
Ellie & Jared: https://www.youtube.com/user/stylebyellie
Chris Ballinger: https://www.youtube.com/user/BallingersPresent
 Mattie Faith: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCyNUWTRolCPU5FCuJC1pOcg

Honorable mentions: Freebirds catering, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Youtube Space LA, and Designs by McKenna Shae (awesome engraved key necklaces) AND amazing photography by Brooke Aliceon :) Check them outtt. 

Okee!! I hope you enjoyed the quick, shaky video and I'm glad I got to catch you up on ONE of the many 2016 adventures that I've had so far! 

Yaaaeeeeyyy

⁽(◍˃̵͈̑ᴗ˂̵͈̑)⁽

The Day of the Camel

Hallo! Happy Wednesday slash hump day slash mid-week day :)

I've been quiiiite horrible at catching my blog up with past events and adventures and happenings mostly because I never know what to talk about (and I probably forget a lot of them...) I guess in regards to recent events it's been pretty hectic. I've been working on some projects for Easter (which is a pretty big event with a multitude of collateral) along with some other projects for other ministries that have been pretty fun to do. :D The past couple weeks have been pretty tough at work and it took me a good week or so to get back into a regular work rhythm buuuuut still pretty bummed. :/ Anywhoo I've been failing miserably to eat 'healthier' and 'exercise/jog/workout' more...and I don't know why it's harder for me to do it at this point in my life compared to like TWO years ago when I was super disciplined and consistent. My goal is to reach my goal by the end of May (when I move out for 3 months from my place and hopefully move back in---side story in itself) BUT I have done very little to nothing about it. Will power, Niki. WILL. POWER. I have been cooking a little more though and this week I cooked a spinach dip chicken thing from a cooking vid off Facebook and MAN it is the best thing I have ever cooked in my liiiiiiiife. I'm planning on replicating the recipe for Justin sometime back home because it's amaaazing. I also started making smoothies that exhibit a gross-looking color of dark magenta-y brown poop. Still delicious though. 

TANGENT! So, songwriter/musician of the year goes to Gavin James---we saw him perform at the House of Blues in Anaheim last May, opening for Tori Kelly AND MY GOSH this guys' voice is amazing. I'm SO glad we were able to discover that hidden GEM last year and more recently I've been listening to his music again! You must listen to his songs---especially "Nervous" & "BItter Pill." Do etttttt. He's coming out with a full album this month and I'm excited for thaaaaaat. I'm also excited for Phantogram's new album but it probably won't be released until at the end of this year or next year and I'm actually looking forward to Zayn Malik's debut album toooo...the singles he's released so far have been pretty impressive and I can only imagine the rest of the songs being that good. 

Speaking of music, I brought my electronic drum set to my room in Irvine and I've practiced a couple times on it---I'm trying to come up with some parts for Justin's new song that we'd like to record soon and besides that, I have fun playing along a shuffled list of songs off my iphone. I actually have some songs in mind that I'd like to make drum covers of but I don't know when that will be...

OKAY! I realize that this post is pretty random and scattered (but aren't all of them like that?) and I'll let you continue doing more productive things. I'd like to post more on my blog so hopefully I can stop being lazy and indecisive and just do etttttt.

Hope you have a great night :))

 

Fun Fact: I took a short questionnaire for a personality assessment thing and I'm a Camel with semi-Turtle tendencies. Yep. Didn't plan the title to be related but it IS Wednesday after all.

 

 

foe-dee-two

I'M STILL AWAKE --- ( ƅ°ਉ°)ƅ

Hellooo late-nighting-owls, YOU. Before I go to bed I wanted to put together this thought provoking, intense, life-changing GIF of me and my boyfrenn, Juuuuuuuustiiiiin Criiiiiiitz (the way I say his name in public sometimes for embarassment.) It's been January 28th for about 41 minutes now which marks our (yep) 42 months of being together (yes, monthies) and I cannot describe how much of a blessing this guy has been in my life for the past (yussss) 42 months. From adventuring to appreciating everything art and music related to creating art and music to being weird to helping with his photography to disney-ing and everything before, after and in between, I have found so much joy and happiness being at his side and with him at mine. 3 1/2 years, of course has had just as many downs as ups, but by God's grace, we've made it through all of that. A lot of times after we play a show, people will come up to us with compliments on our performance but also at how well we both work together and how we complement each other in music as well as our respective fields (photography & graphic design). No matter how many times I hear it, I don't think I've fully thought about just how amazing that is---to be given someone in your life not only to complement your similarities and differences, but to give you joy and appreciation towards a fellow creation of God and to share an experience and a journey together set by Him. All this to say, I'm just really #hashtaghashtagblessed and lucky to have Justin in my life. :)

LATE NIGHT RAMBLE slash APPRECIATION slash BLESSED: Check. 

Sooo I know I mentioned in my last post that I would update you on the millions of things that have happened in LIFE, as well as post my long overdue photos...buuuut I'm not ready yet! Also, my laptop has been painstakingly slow these past months and it's just so tedious to get anything done on it...so in lieu of showing my creativeness in photos, I will distract you with an awesome cover that Justin made of my favorite Broods song, "Mothers and Fathers." The song is GOOD, Broods is GOOD and his cover is GOOOOD. And I love it because it's a song about growing up, being an adult and how sometimes (honestly, a lot of times) it can be preeeetty hard and confusing. Take a gander with your ears and leave the lovely some love! :)
 

Mother and Father | Broods | Cover by Justin Critz

 

LYRICS:

The nights are getting shorter
I don’t know where to go
I am getting older
And it's starting to show
And ever since I left my mother
It’s much harder to know
How to make my own life here
How to make my own home

I don’t wanna wake up lonely
I don’t wanna just be fine
I don't wanna keep on hoping
Forget what I had in mind
I don’t wanna wake up lonely
I don’t wanna just be fine
I don't wanna keep on hoping
Forget what I had in mind
Forget what I had in mind

I remember a time when a kiss on the hand was enough
Cause we knew we were free
And we knew what it meant to be loved
But ever since I left my father
It’s much harder to know
How to make my own life here
When all I need is home

I don’t wanna wake up lonely
I don’t wanna just be fine
I don't wanna keep on hoping
Forget what I had in mind
I don’t wanna wake up lonely
I don’t wanna just be fine
I don't wanna keep on hoping
Forget what I had in mind
Forget what I had in mind

As faces start to fade
They’re slipping through my hands
It's where my heart was made
And where my feet will always land

I don’t wanna wake up lonely
I don’t wanna just be fine
I don't wanna keep on hoping
Forget what I had in mind
I don’t wanna wake up lonely
I don’t wanna just be fine
I don't wanna keep on hoping
Forget what I had in mind
Forget what I had in mind

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So yes! Great song about growing up in which I will also recommend "Blurry Face" by TwentyOne Pilots and "Wiped Out" by The Neighbourhood--- all three are awesomeee! Okee I should probably head to bed now...thanks for reading about my boyfriend and our foe-dee-two months. Until my next post about more happenings in life!! :)