Speaks To Me Sunday #51

22 May

Ever find yourself in a disagreement with someone? 

Ever feel so completely convinced that you are right

Ever been totally blindsided by the fact that you were actually in the wrong and you have hurt someone you care about? 

Man. It’s the worst. 

And it totally happened to me this week. 

It made me feel like the worst human. Even worse because I thought I was doing the right thing. Realizing I was not only wrong, but had also hurt my friend… Ugh. The worst feeling of all. Of course, I didn’t mean to. But I did. So I had to own up to it. 

Thankfully, I have people in my life who will call me out, talk things through, and love me anyway. I don’t feel deserving of it at the moment, but I am so grateful. 

People are going to disagree. It happens. But there are ways to do that without hurting each other. It just struck me just how essential it is to consider things from all sides, listen to the entire story before reacting, and trust that your friends have your best interests at heart. And most importantly, whether you are “right” or not… If someone feels hurt, your “rightness” doesn’t change that. 

When I first read this quote I applied it to myself. “Yeah! All you people who have done me wrong. So there!” It became much more powerful when I had to direct it at myself. 

I’ve gotten to a point in my life where I consider myself to be a fairly capable communicator, but sometimes I fall flat on my face. No denying that there is always room to grow (as painful as it might be). I am feeling humbled and grateful by the growing I’m doing this week. 

Anyone else experience this? How can you communicate the tough stuff without having to be right, without hurting your loved ones? 

Find me on Twitter and Instagram: @JoannaHackman


Favorite Five Friday (146th Edition)

20 May

Hello Friday! How was your week? Mine was exactly what I needed…


1.  For the first time in a year, I got to go home! My family has come to visit us here in California, but I hadn’t been to Utah since December of 2014 (even typing that makes me cringe). It was far, far too long. I’m so happy we had the opportunity to spend a week kicking back in Salt Lake City with family and friends. Sometimes you really do just need to get out of town. It was wonderful to just be somewhere else for a bit… It was even more wonderful that that somewhere else was home.

2.  One of the best parts of going home is the opportunity to see the small handful of friends that I know will always be in my life. Some of them have stuck by me since the 7th grade! We’ve been through so much together (being a teenager is a tough time, ya know?), and they will forever hold a place in my heart. We are all so different now… Families, careers, homes, and adventures… But we always find our way back to each other. I couldn’t be more thankful for them. (I wish I had gotten pictures with everyone I saw!!)

3.  Speaking of those friends… This year is my ten year high school reunion. Insane. I can’t believe it. I won’t be making it home for the reunion this summer, but it was nice to meet up with my buddies and have my own mini reunions. You certainly realize who is important in your life after so many years away! Part of me wishes I could go to the reunion. There are a few people I would certainly love to see again, but I’m glad social media helps us stay connected. Happy Ten Years, Cottonwood Class of 2006! May the next ten be your best yet.

4.  It goes without saying that a trip home means family time. I’m so lucky to have such a great one! We got to share meals, see movies, reminisce and catch up. I will treasure doing all the “normal stuff” (shopping, driving around, watching TV, waking up in the same house, etc.) that I so rarely get to do with my parents anymore, every conversation with my grandma, aunt, and cousin, and playing with my beautiful niece. I miss them already.

5.  I might have buried the lead… But I was saving the best for last! The whole reason we went to Salt Lake was to be there for my brother as he married an amazing  woman! I am so proud of my big brother and the man he has become. He has fought so hard to create the awesome life he is now living. It was truly a blessing to be there and be a part of Jeremy and Sabrina’s big day. So much joy! I couldn’t be happier for my brother and my new sister!

I’d call that a good week! I hope yours was excellent too.

Happy Friday! 


Too Long To-Do Lists (101 in 1001)

18 May

Anyone remember 101 in 1001?

It was a challenge to complete 101 specific and doable tasks in 1001 days. I hopped right on board when I read about it because I love a good list almost as much as I love crossing things off of it. So, I made this list of all lists… and I got excited about it! Then I forgot about it. Then I remembered and got a few things done. Then I spaced again. Then I conquered a few more things. Then it stressed me out. Then I just kind of let it go, sparing the occasional thought for my lonely list.

I was meant to have finished my 101 in 1001 last December. And I’ll be honest, I didn’t get to cross everything off everything on my list. At first I was disappointed. I felt like I should write a post about it (closure, ya know?), but I was embarrassed that I did not defeat this project. I hate to fail.

Well, I finally went back to look at this insane list, and I realized there were somethings I didn’t even care so much about… Did I actually want to do a Mud Run? Or keep reading Jane Austen novels after I found out I wasn’t a huge fan? Was I going to go back to writing articles for write.com after three years? No! Now, to be fair, I did accomplish a lot of the things on my list! I signed with an agent, I got my passport and went to Europe, I did fun things with my husband, I got a cat… I got two! These have been wonderful moments and memories in my life. Not just things to cross off a list.

So, ultimately I realized… one GIANT list of things I want to do doesn’t work for me. It’s like too much going on in my brain. A short daily list of tasks to take care of works much better for me. The rest of it… traveling, events, family stuff, dreams, ideas… those things don’t belong on a to-do list. Those are for me to journal about at length, to share with loved ones,  to entrust to God, to build in my own time.

I might have “failed.” But it was the best thing that could have happened. I certainly learned a lot! Going back through the list, I got to reflect on all I’ve done for the last few years and truly feel proud. I found out that sometimes I assign myself tasks just to be busy – not because I actually want to do them. Or that our desires do change from year to year. I also got to feel a jolt of excitement about some things I still want to accomplish… writing a children’s book, working on our finances, sending thank you’s to important people in my life, taking a hot air balloon ride! There is so much life to be lived – especially when I’m not concentrating on crossing all of these spectacular moments off a list.

I’m posting my 101 in 1001 below for you to see! There’s a little commentary in red and asterisks by the items I found that were still important to me.


My 101 in 1001:

Act. (1-14)

  • Find representation  (Step 1: start looking) (Step 2: Theatrical Representation)
    • Signed with Element Talent Agency (Commerical Representation) 3/28/13
    • Signed with HTG Artists 11/22/13
    • Signed with Avalon Artists Group in March of 2015
  • Land a speaking role on TV or in a film… did this a few months later!
  • Be in a musical again (As I don’t have complete control over this — I will just do all I can to make it happen!) ***
  • Watch all of AFI’s top 100 movies… maybe not alllll of them.
  • Discover my “type” or “brand”
  • Research 20 actors (10/20) ***
  • Research 10 directors (10) ***
  • Research 10 writers (10) ***
  • Start studying at a studio
  • Take an improv class
  • Take a voice over class ***
  • Start/join a script reading group
  • Find 10 free acting workshops/classes and go to them (10/10)
  • Find 5 new monologues (2/5) … Or a whole bunch of awesome scenes. You need those more.

Create. (15-26)

  • Try something new thing each week for 3 months (Pinterest, DIY, recipe, work out, etc.) (12/12)
  • Blog about the new thing I tried (3/3)
  • Get back into music (learn to read it, take lessons, etc.)
  • Take an art class of some kind
  • Take a photography class (or have your friend teach you to be her assistant at a wedding!)
  • Learn to use Photoshop (quick lesson with Leah/using other apps too)
  • Make a T-shirt quilt
  • Write a children’s book/story ***
  • Come up with a solid idea for a YouTube channel (then decide if I want to create it)
  • Create some kind of art to hang above our bed  (We moved and were able to use our canvas wedding pictures)
  • Sew something using a pattern
  • Make 5 homemade gifts (cards) (5/5) (Changed to cards because I found it to be a better fit!)
Work It Out. (27-33)
  • Work out at least 3 times a week for 3 months (12/12 weeks)
  • Find a sport/physical activity I enjoy (outside of basic working out)  I accidentally began enjoying hiking!
  • Do that activity at least once a month for 6 months (6/6)
  • Work on flexibility with yoga  2 times a week for a month (8/8)
  • Take a dance class
  • Hike to the Hollywood sign (6/22/13)
  • Compete in a mud run… really? 
Learn. (34-39)
  • Learn 5 important things about politics (5) *** (I guess this would come in handy.)
  • Relearn all 50 state Capitals (that’s right)
  • Learn some new things about the decades of the 1900’s — Style, culture, events, people.  (00’s, 10’s, 20’s, 30’s, 40’s, 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, 90’s)
  • Pick 5 countries to research and learn about (5)
  • Pick 5 significant historical events to research and learn about (5)
  • Learn conversational Spanish… or a little French, instead!
Get It Done. (40-47)
  • Get my California license
  • Get a new passport
  • Create a workable budget and stick to it ***
  • Set up an IRA/retirement fund ***
  • Get a life insurance policy
  • Buy my domain name and make my blog my website ***and get an acting website!
  • Save up and purchase a headboard ***
  • Declutter and downsize household items

Positive Growth. (48-51)

  • Say 2 positive things for every negative comment for a week (7)
  • Quiet time/devotional every day for a month (30/30)
  • Memorize 30 verses (2/30) ***
  • Get a plant of some kind (3/14/13) and keep it alive for at least 3 months (3/3)

Food. (52-57)

  • Take a cooking class
  • Make a cake from scratch
  • Successful meal planning for a month
  • Find recipes for 5 healthy treats (5) ***
  • Make cookies from scratch
  • Grow something edible

Go Without. (58-62)

  • Don’t eat fast food for a month (30/30)
  • Go meatless 1 day a week for a month (1/5)… or not?
  • Don’t eat sweets for a month (18/30: made it 18 days and then took an impromptu vacation.) (Started over: 35/30)
  • Go a month without buying anything new (Check this out: Could You Go a Year Without Buying Anything New?) (31/30) January 2015
  • Get up by 8:00 AM for a month (30/30)


  • Travel to Europe (Anywhere really, but specifically: England, France, Ireland, Italy, Greece)
  • Go on a hot air balloon ride ***
  • Finish visiting all 50 states (Maine, Wisconsin) ***
  • Drive down the PCH to San Diego (6/30/13)
  • Save up for a real vacation (Maybe Hawaii? Or Europe trip?)
  • Go camping
Get Dolled Up. (69-73)
  • Learn more about fashion/style and my own preferences… think I got it.
  • Learn to braid my own hair
  • Add more colors and diverse styles to my wardrobe (10/10 items)
  • Try a new make-up look once a week for a month (5/5)
  • Try a new hairstyle once a week for a month (5/5)
Spread Love. (74-80)
  • Send out Christmas cards
  • Get involved in community service
  • Send 50 handwritten notes/letters (50/50)
  • Do 10 random acts of kindness for strangers (10) ***
  • Re-purpose or donate all unwanted clothing
  • Send 5 Thank You cards to people who have impacted my life (5) ***
  • Donate blood
Read and Write. (81-92)
  • Update my blog weekly
  • Keep up with my calendar journal for the rest of 2013
  • Read and review 1 book a month for 6 months (3/6)
  • Read at least 3 Jane Austen novels (2/3)… or find out you don’t actually like Jane Austen very much.
  • Write a letter to myself on my golden (26th) birthday to open in 10 years
  • Start/join a book club
  • Read 30 new books (30/30)
  • Write 25 articles in a week for write.com… or find out you don’t want to.
  • Read at least 3 Shakespeare plays I’ve never read (3)
  • Read at least 5 screenplays (5)
  • Read at least 5 plays (5)
  • Answer the 50 Questions That Will Free Your Mind
For Fun. (93-101)
  • Go to a live taping of something
  • Date my husband (50/50)
  • Try 10 new restaurants in L.A. (10/10)
  • Get a cat
  • See a movie at the El Capitan
  • Go to Rodeo Drive with my mom
  • Go to Neil Patrick Harris’ Haunted Play… why did it close?!😦
  • Attend a movie premiere (Fast & Furious 6 on 5/21/13)
  • Create a new 101 in 1001… NAH!

Cheers to trying new things, failing big time, short to-do lists, and living beautiful, unplanned moments!

Speaks To Me Sunday #50

8 May img_3559-3

Happy Mother’s Day to the most incredible mom I know… Mine! 

I feel so unbelievably lucky to have been raised by a woman who is strong, intelligent, hard working, selfless, compassionate, wise, and brave. 

If you should ever see these qualities in me… I got it from my mama. 

(Also, a hilarious laugh, a bit of sass, and the ability to lose sunglasses like its my job. 😉)

Thank you, God, for giving me this woman as a role model, a friend, and a mother. I couldn’t ask for more. 

I love you more than Angel Pie, Mom! 

What did you get from your mama?! How will you be saying thank you?

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there! 

Favorite Five Friday (145th Edition)

6 May

Oh, Friday. There you are. It’s been… a week… Ups, downs, and people I love. Here we go…


1.  Three years ago today was my first day of training as a Tour Guide (Thanks TimeHop!). I can’t believe I have been lifting the veil of secrecy on some of Hollywood’s hottest filming locations for three. whole. years. I really do love my job and the people it has brought into my life.

2.  My heart has been with my loved ones in Nashville this week as we lost a truly great man. David Compton was one of the most magnificent actors I’ve ever had the privilege to watch on stage. I am even more privileged to have known him as a friend. He was always so alive. In every moment, he showed up, he was present. There was something completely magnetic about him. As I’ve been thinking over my memories of him, I’ve been continuously struck by one thought… This is a man that lived. He always put his whole self out there – on stage and in life. It makes me think of all the times I didn’t. What is the point in playing it safe? What is the point of holding back, being scared… On stage, in front of the camera, in my life. Why wouldn’t we take every opportunity to live, truly live, while we have the chance. I want to live my life as David did. I will honor him by living alive.

3.  My talented and wonderful friend Leah shared a lovely photo she took along with this message:

“A huge part of art, for me at least, is doubt. I doubt my ability, validity, my right to have something to say in my own voice. In this day and age where everything is accessible the instant it is finished I wonder at the artists that worked for decades to perfect a single piece.

That being said: I want to encourage those on the same path that I am on regardless of where.

Go. Do. Create.

It may not matter to anyone else, but if it matters to you then it is enough.

You are enough.”

Yes, to all of that. Leah, you are brilliant. Find her at: http://gunnpointphotography.com/

4.  We celebrated May The 4th Be With You at Disneyland with our pals! It was just what we needed this week.

5.  I’m obsessed with our new “Hey Y’all” pillow. I’m loving finding things that have meaning to us and adding all these personal touches to our home. Y’all became part of my vocabulary while I lived in Nashville… It always catches people off guard here in California.  Which makes it even more fun to say. It’s just a little piece of my life there, and seeing it in my home makes me happy. 

Have a wonderful weekend!

Happy Friday!

Speaks To Me Sunday #49

1 May

This is so my life.

(Except for the songs I can’t make it through without weeping.)

I can’t stop, won’t stop listening to Hamilton.

But really… The tour is coming to L.A. next year, and this fanatic is going to need some tickets. Who wants to start donating to my Hamilton fund?!:)

What is your favorite thing to listen to in the car? Are you a car-singer? And, most importantly, have you listened to Hamilton yet?! 

Let’s talk about it! Comment or reach of on Twitter or Instagram: @JoannaHackman


Favorite Five Friday (144th Edition)

29 Apr

It’s Friday and I’m back! It’s been a really wonderful and exciting week…


1.  Day Dates are a wonderful thing. This week we got to go on TWO of them! We went to see Disney’s new live action version of The Jungle Book, and we loved it! The effects were fantastic, and the kid who played Mowgli was adorable. So glad we went to see it! For our second Day Date, we went to lunch at Moore’s Delicatessen just a few blocks away from us. We’ve had them on our list of places to try for forever. It was totally worth the wait. Pretty sure it was the best tuna melt I’ve ever had. AND they have breakfast… Can’t wait to go back. I think it’s really important to keep dating your spouse, and I love our little outings together. Day Dates for the win.

2. Snapchat has been around for a while now, but I feel like I’m finally getting the hang of it. Or maybe just enjoying it. It’s silly, ridiculous, and superfluous, but it’s a lot of fun! I like playing with the filters and having snap conversations (or chats) with my buddies. So, if you wanna see more of my adorable cats, the adventures of #OhThoseHackmans, or me making a fool of myself… Follow me! @JoannaNichole26. Snaps for Snapchat.

3.  Speaking of my adorable cats… Aren’t they cute?

4.  It’s a good thing they are cute! If they weren’t, they might be in a lot more trouble. They discovered that they could tear into the bottom of our cute little accent chair and climb into it… We had it reupholstered, and they tore it back open less than a week later. (Little monsters.) Well, they have forced me into being crafty. I got some particle board, covered it in fabric, and fit it to the bottom of the chair. Pretty sure they aren’t getting through that! (Did I just jinx myself?) This has sort of created a frenzy of wanting to redecorate our whole apartment. I have dubbed this frenzy “Project Refresh.” And I’m having a blast! We are slowly making changes and adding pieces we like. This is something I’ll keep updating you on as we continue… So, here’s a look at the start we’ve made!

The Infamous Chair

The refinished bottom of the chair.

Our fabulous HP print! More pictures to be added, obviously.

London and Paris prints we had to have.

5.  I am so pleased and proud to share that I made my TV debut this week on General Hospital! It has been an amazing experience, and I feel nothing but gratitude for the positive feedback from the cast and crew and the love and support from family and friends. If you want to check out the episode, it aired on April 28th, and you can find it on Hulu, On Demand, and ABC.Go.com. It means the world to have so many friends tell me they’re watching.:) I love this working actor thing, and I can’t wait for more!

Happy Friday, guys! 


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