Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Shower

Think about it. The shower really is a sort of secret world.

You never really see anyone else shower (hopefully), so you don't really know what anyone else does in the shower. I mean, obviously they bathe themselves and get clean, but, for example, what order do they do it in?

I've thought about this many times while in the shower. I have a natural routine, and can't imagine doing it any other way. First off, I'm not the kind of person who gets in the shower and then turns the water on. If you do that, you run the risk of getting sprayed by freezing cold water--not high on my list of things I want to do. So, I turn the water on, get in when it's the appropriate temperature, and get myself completely wet. Then, I wash my hair, leaving the shampoo in my hair to sit while I wash my body, starting with my neck and moving down my body. I rinse off both body and hair, put conditioner in my hair, and let it sit while I wash my face. Then I rinse it all off, and get out. This is the only way that feels right to me.

However, I'm sure you do it differently. And I will never know. And that, my friends, is why the shower is your own secret world.

You could be doing it wrong, but is there really a right way? Who's to say? To you, whatever you do in the shower is the right way to do it. And no one is going to convince you otherwise.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Secret #4

Sometimes I like to do things the hard way.

For example, sometimes** I enter things (like into spreadsheets in excel, printing a bunch of envelopes, etc) into the computer by hand.

Maybe I just don't trust the computer to do it right (or my ability to tell the computer how to do it right), but I think its more to validate myself, to feel like I can accomplish something without the need to use some fancy mechanical technological whing-dingy dealie-bob (say that 10 times fast). I just like to do stuff on my own.

**By sometimes I mean if I can get away with doing it while at work, and always when I'm at home.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Secret #3

Words to the song "Silent Night":

Silent night, holy night.
All is calm, all is bright
Round yon virgin, mother and child.

When I was little, I thought there was a period after bright. Which meant, in my head, that "yon virgin" was round.

Which confused me, because I thought that Mary was supposed to be "fair." It just didn't make sense.

When did I realize what it really meant?

Probably sometime in high school, if not later.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Kids

Instead of studying tonight, I started blog surfing. It seems that most blogs out there are for families to post pictures of their kids on, and especially for people who've just had babies. Strangely enough, I've come across a lot of blogs about people who are infertile. It doesn't seem like something I'd blog about, but whatever floats your boat. Oh, and along with the baby blogs, it seems like all the other ones are Asian teenagers, mostly girls.

I am not a part of any of these qualifiers. Should I stop blogging?...

At any rate, I've learned a few things.

One of my biggest fears is that I'll have ugly kids. Qualities I hope my children don't have:

1) Razor teeth. Some kids just look like they could rip you to shreds and eat you alive. Those kids scare the crap out of me.

2) Big heads. Some kids have the most gigantic heads! And tiny little bodies. It's just not right.

3) As a subset of 2, I hope my babies don't have weirdly shaped heads. Some babies have the sideways cone head, or gigantic protruding foreheads...this one isn't as important cuz some kids grow out of that, but...yeah.

Ok so maybe I'm a little harsh. I just want cute kids. It's kind of a crapshoot, really. Some of the most beautiful people I know have the ugliest kids, and vice versa.

And I'm pretty sure I'm just saying things that all of you are thinking, you just don't want to say. But that's what I'm good at.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Secret #2

Fact 1: I live in a town house, and it has 3 levels. Heating this thing is a nightmare. The top floor gets really hot, the middle floor is pretty cold, and the basement is freezing. I've complained to myself about how much it costs to heat this place for awhile, as well as the fact that I don't get to use my winter quilt because it gets really hot upstairs.

Fact 2: My apartment has 3 bathrooms. One on the main floor, and 2 that connect to the bedrooms upstairs.

The connection I made between the two today: I may have complained about how it's hot upstairs, but it's so much better to sit down on a warm toilet seat than a freezing cold one, especially when you just come in from the cold.

Get to the chopper!

Somehow my old job has managed to remove me as an author on their blog, but still hasn't terminated me.

I really couldn't care less except for the fact that it makes it so I can't see my time card for my new job, which is really getting old. So, if you work at the Math Lab, give someone a hard time for me about not terminating me yet. It can be your Christmas present to me.

Happy Holidays.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Secret #1

This is the beginning of an experiment. Sometimes I just don't know what to write, but I really want to write. I have a friend who has "confessions" on her blog, so I've decided to do secrets of my own. While I can't promise any of them will be juicy, or used to blackmail me, or even interesting, maybe you'll glean just a small part of who I am from it. So, here goes.

Secret #1

I've never cried in a movie.

I don't plan on it ever happening, either.

I've never cried during a play, concert, or any other activity of that sort.

It's not that I'm a heartless rock, although I have considered the possibility. Perhaps I can realize the fact that the characters in the movie are usually fictional. I'm not really sure what it is.

And there you have it. My first secret.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Don't touch that door.

I'm not a feminist by any stretch of the imagination.

But sometimes, I just want to open my own door.

Is that bad?

Monday, November 23, 2009

A Bathroom Saga

[flush]

I wash my hands.

I go to dry my hands off.

I reach for the towel, and watch as it knocks a roll of toilet paper off the top of the toilet and head right for the waiting toilet bowl.**

Do you ever see something happening, but do nothing about it because you know that even though you are watching it happen right before your eyes, your reflexes just aren't fast enough to keep it from happening?

Welcome to my life.

**Note: luckily, roll of toilet paper hits edge of toilet seat just right and lands on floor. Phew.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Wait...what?

It's funny, the misconceptions we have as children.

I've discussed this with a few people lately, and I'd like to share my findings.

This all started when I thought about the things that I always thought were characteristics of every family simply because it was how it was in my family. For example:

-I thought that the Dad was always older than the Mom.

-I thought that while the Dad was older than the Mom, your parents were still the same age.

Why did I think these things? Because that's how my parents are. My Dad is only a few months older than my Mom. When I found out that some people's parents were different ages, and especially when I found out that their Mom was older than their Dad, it really freaked me out. Even to this day, it's hard for me to fathom marrying a man younger than me. The age difference thing has lost its potency to me, but only because I've always dated guys who were older than I am.

I was discussing this with a coworker the other day and he told me about an experience he'd had as a child. Growing up in a Mormon family, it was always understood that you didn't play outside on Sunday. You just didn't do it. Apparently, one Sunday his neighbors were out playing in their yard. And bless his little heart, Michael went outside and reprimanded them, because that's what he had always known.

Along the same vein (vane? not sure which it is), it's always funny to watch movies not made for children (I'd originally put "adult movies" and decided that might not be the best descriptor...) that I watched as a child. I realize now how much I didn't get back then. And strangely, there's some stuff I still don't get just because I didn't get it as a child. The movie Mission: Impossible still baffles me a little bit, because I just didn't really know what was going on when I watched it as a child. There are a lot of movies like that.

I think that's all I have. I'm sitting in the library, putting off the paper I have to write and test I need to study for. I'm sitting in the loudest part of the library, but I'm here because there are comfy chairs. The chairs are worth the prices paid: loud people, and I'm by these huge windows, which means I'm freezing cold. But at least I'm comfortable. That's what's important.

Monday, November 16, 2009

On Thanksgiving

I can tell it's about Thanksgiving time.

How?

It's not the Christmas decorations filling every store and building on campus.

It's not the Christmas music played by all my coworkers.

It's not the changing of the seasons from Fall to Winter.

It's not the falling leaves all around, or the frosty mornings, or the occasional snow fall.

It's not the irresistible urge to gorge myself on turkey, potatoes, gravy, stuffing, cranberries, corn, and pumpkin pie.

It's not the cornucopia of activities available for me to do (that was a play on words: double meaning right there).

It's not the ending of the Football season, nor the start of Basketball season.

It's the fact that I can't seem to bring myself to do any homework at all.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

The BFG

Whenever I walk on campus, I see people who are shorter than me. Being nearly 6 feet tall, this isn't hard for me. However, sometimes I'll see those girls (usually) who are practically 5 foot nothing, and whenever I do, I always think,

"Man, that girl is so small!!"

Then today I realized: I wonder if when those girls see me, they think,

"Man, that girl is gigantic!!"

I wouldn't be offended if they did--it's true.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Touch me!

I think I have a curse.

Something about me attracts couples. That alone could be bad enough, but these are always couples who just can't seem to keep their hands off of each other. I really am a bit baffled as to why and how these people seem to find their way to me.

For example, on Halloween I went to a friend's party. There were not very many couples there--maybe one or two. At least one. How do I know? There were probably 50 party-goers crammed in a living room about 15 feet by 10 feet, if that. Because there were so many of us in such a small room, pretty much everyone was touching a different person on all sides, which meant none of us could really move much. For some reason, I managed to end up having an entire half of my body being taken up by this couple determined to essentially grind on each other...and in turn, on me. So, as was natural, I moved. Don't worry, they found their way back to me! This happened probably a good 3 or 4 times.

Maybe I just naturally ooze pheromones that only affect those already in a relationship? Perhaps this pheromone of mine heightens the high of their already raging hormones. It remains a mystery.

Either way, as I said the other night, I just make people want to touch each other. I didn't ask for it. But I'm trying to find a way to make it work to my advantage...if you think of anything, let me know.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Time wasting.

We all do it. Maybe I'm just prejudiced to the ways in which I do it. Most of my time-wasting is spent listening to music, Facebooking, playing Nonograms, or generally just not thinking about what I'm supposed to be doing (usually homework). Currently, I'm blog writing to waste time.

Maybe I just don't like being part of fads. I only ever read Twilight because I was on a camping trip and hadn't brought anything to read with me, and someone had it with them. But something in me just refuses to do everything everyone else is doing (Harry Potter excluded), even if it's entertaining. For example, there's a website called "My Life is Average." These kinds of websites have been springing up all over the Interweb, where there is a common theme (F My Life has people who have crappy things happen to them, Makes Me Think has people who have inspirational or ironic things happen to them, etc.), they're all set up to look exactly the same, only with a different color scheme. For some reason, these sites have become very popular, especially among high school and college students.

And I just can't bring myself to read them, at least not consistently. I read FML for a little while. I read a few MMT's, and I'd spent a fair amount of time on MLIA. But, while they may be slightly entertaining, I have no desire to use them to waste my time. Perhaps it's the idea that some people can and do waste SO much time on these sites that makes me not want to.

Am I a time-wasting snob? Should I be worried about my prejudices toward these things?

I don't think so. I have enough with my current time-wasting habits, like blog writing, to worry about the *potential* time wasters. At least you get something out of it. :)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Stupid things parents do that actually work

I realized today how many stupid things parents tell their children to do. I'm not talking like, "Hey little Jimmy, see how fast you can run at that wall" kind of stupid thing, but things to make their kids feel better, or be entertained, etc. These are a few examples from my life:

Child: "My (insert body part) hurts."
Parent: "Count to 100."
This never did anything to make me feel better, but by the time I finished, it usually didn't hurt anymore, or at least as much.

Parent: "(Name of child), go get me (insert needed object). See how fast you can go; I'll time you!"
Child goes to get object, usually rather quickly in order to "make good time."
However, this soon turns into,
Child: "Mom, I'm gonna get (object). Time me and see how fast I go!"
Downside: parents never actually time their child. But at least the kid thinks he or she is super fast.

This one's a little more situational. I remember when my brother got the Chicken Pox. He had one particularly itchy spot on the top of his head, and my mother tried many things to keep him from scratching. In the end, she gave him his teddy bear and told him to scratch the bear where he itched (on the top of his head). I don't know why this worked, but I'm assuming that it did. How do I know this? Because when I got the Chicken Pox, my mom did the same thing to me, and I remember not feeling so itchy.

These are just a few examples of experiences I'm sure we all had as children, without which, our childhoods would have been bleak and painful.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

I like to...

I attended a "home ward" today, and I realized something during the testimony meeting.

For 99% of children who get up and bear their testimony, each will say the exact same 6 words to start off the testimony.

When I was little though, I always thought we were supposed to say

"I like to bear my testimony."

Not

"I'd like to bear my testimony."

I don't know when it was that I realized that you were supposed to say the second instead of the first, but was I the only child who had this misconception?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

My Confession

Alright, I'll admit it:

I have an addiction...

to music.

Just about every night, I get ready for bed about midnight. However, I don't usually get to bed til about 1. Why? I'll be listening to music, and I'll just want to hear one more song. Then another. Then another. I just can't stop. And the next thing I know, I've blown an hour playing solitaire whilst singing along to my favorite songs.

Besides the sleep I lose, though, I'm not so sure that this addiction is such a bad thing.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Through your eyes

Do you ever wonder what you look like to other people?

I mean, sure I've looked at myself in the mirror a few times. I know what I look like when I'm looking at me.

But what about when I'm not looking? I think if I ever had an out-of-body experience and saw myself walking down the street, I might not recognize me. I don't know what my mannerisms are: how I walk, how I speak, the way I move my hands when I talk, etc. Well, kind of, but only how they look and sound while I'm me.

When I was little I always used to wish that I could spend a day in someone else's body. I don't know why, but I always imagined spending a day in the life of my sister, Jenni. I don't know what it was that made me pick her, but I always wished that I could see me through her eyes. But this switching bodies wish wasn't just so I could see what I looked like. In fact, that was a very small part of it. I suppose I'm just (and always have been) very curious as to how everyone else sees the world. I want to know how other people perceive things. I want to know how situations that affect me one way affect them. If you know me, you know I'm very unique. Does the way I would interpret a situation completely differ from the way another person would? How much would it differ?

Also, I want to know how other people see. Stephen always used to say I was so weird because my pupils are always unnaturally large. I'm pretty sure that my pupils are almost always nearly twice the size of just about anyone else's pupils (anyone else being anyone who is in the same situation and lighting as me). I've never thought it was a problem. I still don't. Stephen has a theory that I can't see color as well as everyone else. I disagree, but I'll never know if I do or if I don't, because I'll never be able to see through someone else's eyes.

This isn't to say that I'm not happy being me. I love being me. But, being me, I'm very curious about...pretty much everything. And this just happens to be one of those things.

Perhaps one day when I get to create my own worlds (keep your fingers crossed), I'll allow people to do that. You can switch bodies with someone for one day, just to see what it's like. I think that would be pretty cool.

Monday, September 28, 2009

A week of happiness and gratitude

I'm always disappointed when I check my friends blogs and they haven't posted lately. Then I realized that I haven't posted in awhile. I doubt anyone really looks forward to the random ramblings of my mind, but why not take the chance that one of you just might?

The problem with posting a blog is that you have to have something to write about. I seem to be lacking a topic, which may or may not be important in this situation.

Last Monday I was talking to a friend about how we could be more positive. We decided that in our planners (which actually match, how precious), every day that week, we would write at least one, if not more, positive or happy or good thing that happened that day, or something we were grateful for. Here's my list.

Monday: Today I rediscovered dancing for fun! Not worrying about who I'm dancing with, or who I'll be dancing with at DanceSport, or majorly stressing about my technique was fantastic!

Tuesday: Today I understood most, if not all, of lecture in Physics! Also, I did all of my homework all by myself, which is a big deal.

Wednesday: Today a guy in my dance class who is fantastically good danced with me, and he told me that I was doing really well. Also, I bought a gigantic bag of candy corn. :)

Thursday: Today I saw Sam's (my roommate) play, and it was fantastic. I have a new found appreciation for "The Taming of the Shrew."

Friday: Today I learned Hebrew and Greek dance styles, and it was tons of fun! Also, I saw "Into the Woods," a play that I've been wanting to see for awhile.

Saturday: Today I sat/stood on the second row at the football game! At the game, people had "Cougar Tails," which are basically gigantic maple bars, and one of my friends was drinking a Fresca. After the game, I went to the store and bought doughnuts and Fresca. What a good choice.

Sunday: Today I took a long needed nap, and I got to cross stitch. Also, I discovered a fantastic song called "Beautifully" by Jay Brannan. (Little did I know when I discovered this last night, that I would be listening to it ALL DAY today, and that I would love every second of it!)

I'm not sure if this made me more positive, but I would like to think that it did. I know that I had to put a valiant effort into remembering what had happened in my day, and that I tried to remember all the good things that had happened. What I wrote down wasn't everything by any means, it just was the highlight of the day. Either way, I know it made me happier to spend my time thinking about how happy I can be.

:)

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Get Through It

These first two weeks of school have already been incredibly hard. Not only do I have the stresses of school (which have increased tenfold from every semester I've ever had), but there's a lot going on in my personal life as well. It's hard to concentrate on school (my roughly 6-10 assignments due every week) when I've already got so much going on in my head. However, as many of us have experienced, one of the blessings of trials is that they drive us closer to the Lord, and sometimes closer to those around us. I've experienced a few very close friends becoming distant, one even completely non-existent in my life. It hasn't been easy, but it's taught me to appreciate and to grow closer to the ones I still have, and also to learn how the people you didn't know can very quickly become good friends.

One thing that has really helped me lately, actually, was reading through some of my old blog posts. Not like I think I'm a really talented writer or anything, but I have had some insights that remind me where my priorities need to be, or that I need to look at some things in a different light.

Also, the making of my new blog could not have come at a better time. Really truly, if I need to smile, all I have to do is go to that site. :)

Lastly, I found this quote the other day, and I found it very comforting. So, I'll share it with you.

"No matter how difficult the problems that surround you, the Lord knows how to resolve them. As you exercise faith, doing what you can, He will help you handle those things within your capability. He will bring into your path priesthood leaders who can counsel and advise, friends who can give you support, and parents who can provide answers. Through the avenue of prayer and the path of inspiration, He will help you know what to do. It is a process that takes time to master, but knowing that it exists should give you great comfort as you face the difficult decisions you must now make in life."
--Richard G. Scott

Friday, September 11, 2009

Here goes

So, I've made a new blog. Not one to replace this one, but it has a different idea behind it. It was inspired by a girl from work-in fact, I'm pretty much copying her. But imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Basically what it is is a collection of pictures, quotes, and anything else I want to put on there of things that make me happy. If I'm having a rough day and need to smile, I just look at these things. And I think I'm ready to share them.

It's still a work-in-progress, but I figure that I should share my happiness with others. Enjoy. :)

dragonsanddinos.tumblr.com

Monday, September 7, 2009

Moving around

I recently moved into a new ward. Along with the change of apartment, living situation, and roommates, there comes a new ward: full of new people, who are full of potential to be your close friends.

I don't know if it's just because I'm so physically close to my old ward, but I find myself...tired of the new ward situation. It's not that I don't like to meet new people; that's not true at all. But there's just something about being with a person who already knows you. When I go to visit my friends from the old ward, I don't have to remind them of my name, or tell them my major and where I'm from (unless they're Stephen Anderson, who managed to know me for nearly a year and even date me, and somehow not know what my major is).

I know that if I never talked to anyone new, I would never have old friends, but that doesn't make it any easier. I think I go through phases with wards. My Freshman year I was a complete recluse, but then Jerusalem allowed me to get to know everyone (probably because we all lived together). When I got back from Jerusalem, I was a total recluse again and didn't know anyone in my ward. The next year, I decided to be super social, and I was good friends with pretty much everyone in my ward. Now I'm at this year, and I don't want to fall into the recluse stage of my life again. As much fun as it was...yeah it actually wasn't that much fun. Looks like I simply have to force myself to endure through the small talk, and perhaps, once again, I can find some best friends in this new ward; surely, I will.

This situation reminds me of a song I learned in choir in elementary school. It goes a little something like this:

Make new friends,
But keep the old.
One is silver
And the other is gold.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Dragons

I realized today that there are just some things that I will never understand:

The fact that we live in a 3 dimensional world, space-time is in a 5th dimension, and there are 10 dimensions (that we know of). I can't even imagine a 4th dimension, let alone 10.

The time-space continuum in general.

Why it's so easy to forget the things you want to remember, and so easy to remember the things you want to forget.

Why some people just rub you the wrong way, no matter how hard you try.

Feminists.

Vegetarians.

PETA.

How my love for dance and my talent in the area don't seem to correlate with one another very often... :/

Why I keep staying up late to write blogs when I have class at 8 AM three days a week.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Lyrics

Sometimes I like to use song lyrics for my status on Facebook or Gmail, as do many other people I know.

However, I was thinking the other day. If you don't cite the song, artist, etc...are you plagiarizing?

Also, what would be the correct format?

Just a thought.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Counting

I worked for the grounds crew this summer.

As a result, I encountered a lot of bugs. Bugs don't bother me too much, so it's not really a problem. For example, one day I sat and watched a spider lay eggs for a few minutes while I rested in the shade. And another day, I was picking up these really pesky seeds that are little black balls. And this is where my blog post came to be.

I was picking up these seeds, and it was in the shade and under a bush, so I couldn't see particularly well. I was picking up tons of seeds, and all the sudden I felt something moving in my hand, where I had put all the seeds. Apparently, I had mistaken a rolly polly bug (apparently also known to some people (weirdos) as potato bugs...don't know where that one came from) for a seed, which was totally legit, because a rolled up rolly polly bug and these seeds were exactly the same size, shape, and color. I touched the rolly polly, and he balled up again, and I watched and waited for him to come "back to life."

And this is where my thoughts wandered. Do rolly polly bugs have some kind of system of how long they wait until returning to normality? I mean, this bug was on a flat and unmoving surface and waited a good minute before moving again. Do they count to sixty? Then I got this image in my head of a rolly polly bug counting to sixty all rolled up, just waiting. And I'm not talking how you counted to sixty in the fourth grade while waiting for your turn on the swing. I'm talking counting Mississippily (one, mississippi, two, mississippi, three....etc). And then I realized that I wasn't working, and I was talking to myself again.

So I put the bug down, and went back to my weeding.

Monday, August 10, 2009

In the process of...

As events transpire in my life, I discover something about myself, and also about others around me. Oftentimes, I look forward to a certain event, feeling, activity, etc. However, I find myself so ready for the result that I forget about the process.

For example, I spent the first few months of my summer being ready for it to be over. I was looking forward to an event at the end of the summer, and I just wanted to be there. However, about halfway through the summer, that event fell through. And I realized that I'd wasted all that time being impatient for the event, I had hardly made anything of the first 2 months of summer! I'd forgotten to enjoy the process. Since then, I've done my very best to make the most of the rest of this summer, and now I don't want it to end!

I think I say too much, "I can't wait until..." I think those words are dangerous. Once you've said them, you've practically committed yourself to at least some small amount of apathy for all events occurring before what you are waiting for arrives. What makes that so dangerous is that you never know what can happen. We all know that life throws surprises at us, and often, they're quite good. And if you spend your time being apathetic, you may miss something wonderful. It makes me think of a scripture in Hebrews, chapter 13 verse 2:
"Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. "
I think this scripture not only has implications to us to be kind to others, but I can see it in a different way. Strangers can mean more than just people; it can mean anything unfamiliar, strange, new, etc. Let yourself experience new things, different things. If not, you may "entertain angels unawares."

As my summer draws to a close, I look back and see the process. We often don't realize it when we are in the process, but just about all the time, you're in the process. Of what this process is may change, but you're always in a process. I think the important part is realizing this fact, and remembering that change takes time, love comes softly, and happiness is a choice.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Whistlers

I always feel like people who whistle are mocking me.


Maybe that's because I can't whistle.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Habits

I love watching people.

Sometimes, though, I watch myself. I'll catch myself doing something, and wonder why in the world I'm doing it. Not that what I'm doing is stupid or bad, but quite often, it's strange. What are some of these quirks, you may ask?

1. I talk to myself. I know everyone does this, but I'm not quite sure if most other people do it to the extent that I do. Most people probably make statements to themselves (I can only assume what others do, because it's not often that I'm in someone else's head). I do the same, but then I find myself explaining my statements. To myself. As if I didn't already understand them.
For example, the other day I was in the shower, where I find I talk to myself the most. I took more shampoo than I needed, but used it anyway. Then I proceeded to explain to myself that people only ever do things on purpose or on accident, and then I tried to decide whether me taking too much shampoo was on purpose or on accident, only to decide that it was purposefully an accident. See, I'd meant to take too much (which will be discussed in a bit), but I didn't anticipate so much coming out of the bottle. An accident, only on purpose...I still don't think I've managed to figure this one out yet. However, that is your small insight into the workings of my mind.
Now, this explaining doesn't happen on a rare basis. It happens daily. Multiple times a day. But that's just me.

2. As mentioned earlier, I always take too much shampoo. I know how much I need, but for some reason, I always take and use more than that amount.

3. Whenever I go to open a door, if at all possible, I will use my left hand. Don't ask me why.

4. If I'm listening to music, or have a song going in my head, I play the song with my fingers, like I'm playing the piano. My mom used to call it my tic, and I've done it since I was in high school. I never think about it, until someone asks me what I'm doing, to which I usually respond along the lines of, "I'm playing...the...song...? Don't ask."

5. Sometimes, when I'm really concentrating, I drool. It usually happens when I'm playing the piano. I just get so focused, and then next thing I know...*slurp!* I usually catch myself before anyone notices, but it happens on fair occasion.

6. When I'm cold, I put my hands in my armpits. Most people think that it's weird, but I say it's effective! I know, it reminds people of the movie Superstar, and they expect me to start smelling my hands or something. But I don't really sweat that bad, nor do I like the smell of sweat/B.O., so that's not what I'm going for.

I love discovering these things about me. It's like, even though I've been living with me for almost 21 years now, there's still stuff that I don't know about me, or that I surprise myself with! Most people who know me know that I'm not very predictable. And now you know it's not just you I surprise; it's myself, too!

P.S. If you've noticed me doing things that I'm probably not thinking about, but that could potentially be amusing, you should tell me! Like I said, I love learning these things about me. :)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Another addition to the list!

I had forgotten about the dynamics of a home ward. In student wards, you usually don't have the crazy old ladies, like the one who sings opera style every hymn so that everyone can hear her, or the one who tells stories for her Sunday School lesson that may or may not be a little sketchy, or the one who had brain surgery and says things at times that may be just a little inappropriate.
Or you have the old men falling asleep, and even the middle-aged men. And the young men, now that I think about it...
And actual 12 year-old deacons passing the sacrament, with 16 year-old priests blessing it!
And last, but not least, the noisy girls in the back row. The ones who are always laughing. I'll always fit in with those girls, whether they be 14 or 40. And now I know where I got it from - my mother. :)

Another thing that I love is how my niece says, "Grandpa". Somehow it turns out sounding like "Frawmpuh," and it makes me laugh every time. Kid has the cutest voice, I swear.

Also, just as a documentation of my life, I almost ran over a beaver the other night! I was driving home (it was actually about 3:30 AM; I was driving home from the Harry Potter premier) and I came around a corner, and it was crossing the street in the middle of my lane! I couldn't completely swerve and miss it, so I just aimed the middle of my car right over the top of it. I don't think I hit it, but that had to be quite a terrifying experience for the poor little guy. I'm not 100% sure it was a beaver, because it was rather small, but it was either that, or a very wet mole. I choose beaver. But cool to see, all the same!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Love it!

I love being home.

Why?

I couldn't make a list that long. But here's a few reasons, which are hardly comprehensive, but do scratch the surface.

-Lakes. Oh, the lakes. And no pools! Getting home from swimming and *not* smelling like chlorine is glorious. Not only that, but the lakes are absolutely gorgeous.

-Driving home at night (in my car, by myself, another thing I love) and seeing a raccoon cross the street. Don't see that in Provo. Love it, even though I hate coons. Ha ha

-Watching my dad with his dogs. I love seeing people do something they love, and my dad is such a passionate person. He loves working with his dogs, which makes me happy. :)

-The sound of my niece laughing. Although she's not always here when I'm here, she is this time. And she has the cutest laugh!

-Time. Relaxing. Both of which I don't get a lot of back in Provo. Oh, and the whole "hardly any responsibilities" thing. I don't have to go to work! I still have roughly a week left, and I can't imagine going back to work.

-Old friends. I was talking to one of my best friends and realized that he knew me back in the days of my blonde hair. In fact, most of the people here have known me that long. I don't think there are more than 10 people in Provo who have seen me with blonde hair. It's just nice to know that I go back so far with someone, and that I'm still in constant contact with him.

-Talking with my mom. Anyone who knows me well knows that I'm always talking to my mom, whether it be on the phone or texting, but it's so nice to be able to talk to her in person.

-Living in a house. It's so great to not be in an apartment. I don't have to worry about not stomping on the floor for fear that the people below us will hear, nor do I have to wonder what the strange sounds coming from the ceiling could possibly mean the people above us are doing. Not to mention having my own room (how I painted it in high school, and with an actual bedspread), my own bathroom, and a piano in my house!

-Not living in a college town! Not living in a big town! So much less traffic! Anything related to there being less people here, and the fact that the people who are here aren't 90% college students.

-Seeing my brother. I hardly get to talk to him, and he's been around a lot, which has been so great.

-Denny's! Triple Chocolate Meltdowns! Both of which I can get in Provo, but I can't get them with Travis there. :)

For now, that's it. I still have a week left here, so I'm sure this list will continue. Until next post, you can be jealous of how wonderfully blissful my life is.
:)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Not as angry as it sounds...*



Looks like we've got a lot to worry about. How long has this swine flu epidemic going on, and we're at 14 dead in the UK? Sounds like something to really be worried about.
Guess what? 301 people under the age of 15 alone died in the UK between 2000 and 2002 of cancer. Maybe we should be getting our priorities in line, here...

*Yeah, the title is a disclaimer. I know this post sounds angry, but I promise it's not. It was just something I was thinking about.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Surprise!

It feels like it's been forever, although it really hasn't been that long. A little over a week I guess.

I've been thinking lately about surprises. This won't come as a surprise (Heh. No pun intended) to at least one of you (you know who you are), but that person is the one who got me thinking about it. He asked me what has surprised me lately. My initial reaction: nothing.

But I decided to start looking for them. Not like looking out to be surprised, but more like looking back to see what surprised me. And what I've found is that much of what I now call surprises, I've always called tender mercies before. Maybe those aren't always surprising, per say, but it does surprise me just how much I see the Lord's hand in my life.

I could go on about all the things I've been surprised about, but I'm gonna go with just this one.

I'm surprised, every day, at how something so complex as the gospel can still be so simple. Sometimes I feel like there is so much to know, and that I need to find a way to find it all out. But then I realize...I know so much already! And the basics...that's really what it's all about, anyway. As long as you stick to the basics, the "complicated's" take care of themselves.

Just a random thought.

Monday, June 29, 2009

My new roommate!

She's actually not that new...she's been a part of our "family" for a few weeks now, but I just decided to incorporate her into my life.

Her name is Patsy. she's about 2'6", and she's made of cardboard. I found Patsy at work, and brought her home to stand in our window.

After a few weeks of Patsy being boring and only being made of cardboard, I decided to spice up her life a little bit, and it has turned into a weekly event (going for 2 weeks strong now).

This was her first outfit:



And this is the one I just made for her:



Patsy wears some of the funniest shirts around. I help her out a little bit, but in all reality...she's the genius behind it all.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Fashion Notification!

Maybe I'm just not as up-to-date in fashion as I should be.

But I really don't understand this:



Scarves. I understand scarves in the winter: when it's cold outside. But I keep seeing people wearing scarves, now...in June. Yesterday I saw a girl wearing a scarf. It was about 93 degrees yesterday. I think my favorite part was when she took it off as soon as she got inside the air-conditioned building.

Is there something I'm missing? Could this be one of those things that no one ever told me about? Or perhaps we're taking some small advice from Middle Eastern people, who always wear long sleeves and pants and head coverings when it's hot.

I guess now that I think about it, the most fashionable things aren't always the most practical ideas. E.G. Leg warmers (who wants to put more clothes on their legs while working out?), dog clothes (they've already got fur, and they're not people), string bikinis (not good for use in actual swimming), bangs that cover your eyes (usually, it's useful to see), etc. The list goes on and on.

I guess it's a good thing I'm so practical.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

High as a kite...

Stoned wallabies? Really?

I love this article. But my favorite part is what people said on the bottom. Made my day! Hope it does the same for you. :)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Cats...?

I'm not exactly sure what the phrase, "The cat's out of the bag" is supposed to mean.

I mean, who puts a cat in a bag in the first place? I think a bag would be the last place I'd put a cat. It's not like any cat is going to go into a bag peacefully.

And imagine what it'd be like to let the cat out of the bag! I'm sure it'd come flying out of that bag like a bat out of hell, claws a blazin'.

In all reality, I do know what the phrase means. But who coined it? Who thought, "Well, I've had this secret, and I finally told people. How could I say that? Hmmm...Got it! 'The cat's out of the bag!' Definitely the best way to put it."

My opinion? Not really.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Feet

Today I was sitting in the library studying for a test. I was also listening to my iPod. I'd been listening to it for awhile, just sitting there reading through my notes. Then, some movement caught my eye, so I looked down near my foot to see what it was. That's when I found out: it was my foot.

"That's weird." I thought to myself. "I'm not telling my foot to move..."

Not only was my foot moving, but it was moving to the beat of the music that I was listening to. Sometimes I think of things that I know I'll want to blog about, but I know I'll forget them if I don't write them down somewhere, and the most convenient place for that happens to be my phone. This is what I wrote:

Do you ever realize a part of your body is moving, even though you're not telling to, and didn't know until you saw it moving?

I'm not talking reflexes here, kids. I'm talking about major amounts of continuous movement. I sat and watched my foot move for the rest of the song. I wasn't aware that I was telling it to move...the strange thing is that this happens to me fairly often, and not just in my feet (although that's usually where this phenomenon occurs). My best guess as to why it happens is one or both of these reasons: 1) I dance so much that I don't even realize that I'm dancing non-stop, and/or 2) I have been a musician all my life, and I can't help but feel the beat of music.

I'm not really sure if this happens to anyone else...but this is me we're talking about here. The odds of me being abnormal are pretty high. :)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Lonely, yet never alone

"I know that I am not alone, but still I feel lonely."

That's a line from one of my favorite songs. I've been thinking about the idea of being lonely or aloneness for the past couple of days.

As each of us moves through our lives, we lose people who are important to us, through various means. The Lord brings people in and out of our lives with purpose and meaning, and sometimes it's hard to understand why He would do so. However, we must have faith in the Lord that the trials we have been given in life are for our benefit and learning.

One of my very favorite General Conference talks was given this last April by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, entitled None Were With Him. In it, he talks about how Christ suffered alone, for each of us. This is something he says near the end of his talk:
"Brothers and sisters, one of the great consolations of this Easter season is that because Jesus walked such a long, lonely path utterly alone, we do not have to do so. His solitary journey brought great company for our little version of that path—the merciful care of our Father in Heaven, the unfailing companionship of this Beloved Son, the consummate gift of the Holy Ghost, angels in heaven, family members on both sides of the veil, prophets and apostles, teachers, leaders, friends. All of these and more have been given as companions for our mortal journey because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the Restoration of His gospel. Trumpeted from the summit of Calvary is the truth that we will never be left alone nor unaided, even if sometimes we may feel that we are. Truly the Redeemer of us all said: “I will not leave you comfortless: [My Father and] I will come to you [and abide with you].”

As I find myself lonely at times, I know that I can turn to the Lord. Something else I have learned is that we must consciously choose a way out of being lonely, and not to allow ourselves to wallow in self-pity or despair. Once again, as I have said so many times, and will never stop saying, we cannot wait for our circumstances to change. We must find a way to at least like, if not love, the happenings of our lives.

No longer forward nor behind
I look in hope and fear;
But grateful take the good I find,
The best of now and here.
--John G. Whittier

Another thing I've been thinking about lately is agency, and how our agency and that of those around us effects us all. Often our decisions have an impact on our lives only, at least for the most part. However, on occasion there are decisions made by others that greatly influence our own lives. And again, on occasion, sometimes the decisions made by others aren't necessarily what we want, or what we would have wanted them to choose. How do we deal with this? In Elder Dallin H. Oaks' talk Timing, he gives counsel on how to do so:
"Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ prepares us for whatever life brings. This kind of faith prepares us to deal with life’s opportunities—to take advantage of those that are received and to persist through the disappointments of those that are lost. In the exercise of that faith, we should commit ourselves to the priorities and standards we will follow on matters we do not control and persist faithfully in those commitments, whatever happens to us because of the agency of others or the timing of the Lord. When we do this, we will have a constancy in our lives that will give us direction and peace. Whatever the circumstances beyond our control, our commitments and standards can be constant."

I also found this quote the other day:

There is only one way to happiness, and that is to cease worrying things which are beyond the power of our will.
--Epictetus

I won't lie; the past few days have been extremely hard. I don't expect things to change anytime soon, as much as I would like them to. However, as was said in my sacrament meeting today, one of the greatest blessings of affliction is that it will drive us closer to the Lord and His comfort. And I have the greatest example to look toward: my Savior. I'm not sure who said it, but Jesus partook of history's bitterest cup, without becoming bitter. I hope to be able to do my best to follow His example in all that I do, at the same time allowing Him to take me by the hand and lead me through my life, all the while helping me to become a better and stronger person.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Walking

This morning, I was walking to work. I was in a bit of a hurry, because I was slightly late, and also didn't know exactly how long it would take me to get there, seeing as I'd never walked there before. Because of my hurry, I was obviously walking rather quickly.

I saw some EFY boys playing some kind of game, and I discovered that as I watched them and tried to figure out just what it was they were doing, my pace slowed, even if only a tiny bit. But it slowed. I'd taken my mind and eyes off my goal, and it set me back. I realized that I didn't have time to slow down. I didn't have time to stop and see what they were doing.

I can look at this in a few different ways.

First, taking my eyes off my goal. Something I discovered about myself today is that without something to work towards, I am useless. At my secretarial job, I have to enter data every day. All the sheets of data are in separate folders, each dedicated to a different person. There, I have a goal. I know just how much I must complete, and I have a specific time in which I would like to finish this work. I have similar situations with things like classes, other jobs, etc. However, if I don't know how much I must complete, or if what I have to complete is ambiguous, I have absolutely no drive to get any part of it done. Without a goal, I'll never know just how high I can reach.

Second, lately I feel like all I do is rush. I get up early in the morning, but not early enough, so I have to rush to get ready and then out the door, with no breakfast. I work for four hours, and then I rush off to class. After I get out of class, I rush to the next job. I get off work, and then I can finally relax. The sad part is, I'm so used to rushing that I get home and I can't relax because I always feel like there's something I should be doing. I got home today and I was walking back to my apartment from my mailbox, and just about fell over because I was so physically tired. I need to find something that lets me relax.

That's a nice segue into the last point. Take some time. Relax. Live your life. But most importantly, enjoy it.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Trials

Just before I went into class today, I stopped to fill up my water bottle. I was really thirsty, but I waited until I'd finished filling up my water bottle before taking a drink out of it. And then I realized something.

Dogs (and lots of other animals, but we'll focus on dogs for now) have it hard! When I'm really thirsty, I just want to chug water. How difficult to be extremely thirsty, and to have to drink like a dog. That can hardly be thirst-quenching.

I suppose however, that there must be opposition in all things: even for dogs.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Sucess!!

A bit ago, I blogged about creeping under someone's umbrella, not really ever planning to do it, since I already have my own umbrella. Well, today it rained. I came out of the building in which I have church, and stood just under the eave, umbrella open and ready, waiting for the crosswalk to let us go. Then all of the sudden, my personal bubble was being invaded. I looked to my right, only to behold a guy who I did not know, but who was standing uncomfortably close to me in order to stand under my umbrella.

At first I was irritated. Who does he think he is, standing so close to me? He was literally touching me. I didn't know him! How dare he! And then I realized: this was my dream come true! Someone had finally done what I had always wanted to do, but didn't think anyone would actually do. Thereafter, I gladly shared my umbrella with him. Sadly, we parted just after we crossed the street, but those two minutes together may or may not have changed my life. I never found out his name, but to whoever he is: thank you.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Trip to Arches!

So, I went to Arches National Park this last weekend to camp and hike. It was great fun!! Here's a few pictures!

This is Cory, Colin, me, and Kaylee at the north window.


So, Colin somehow got the idea for me to do his hair in a bunch of little ponytails...don't ask me why. This was the team who worked together to do it: Cory held Colin's hair back for me, and Kaylee shined the light on his head so I could see what I was doing.


This was the finished product. Oh Colin...haha


This is Seth and Kaylee and I at Pine Tree Arch.


This is the whole group that went at Landscape Arch!


I swear, Seth climbed everything there. This is one of the many (he's the one way up at the top) places he climbed up and people way down below were taking pictures.


This is the whole group at Delicate Arch. This is the one you see in pretty much every picture of Utah...ever. And it's on the license plates. The hike up was so hard. Uphill the whole way, and hardly any places to rest in the shade. But it was worth it.


Everything about the trip was so beautiful. This was my first experience in a Utah National Park, and we've got lots more trips planned for this summer. I'm stoked!!

One thing I thought about on this trip though, was pictures. We took lots of pictures, and I've been lots of places where there are lots of other tourists, every one of them taking tons of pictures. And I realized--how many peoples' pictures have I been in? How many peoples' memories will I unknowingly be a part of? It's just so strange to think about...just a thought.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Words

I just spent a fair amount of time reading the blog of a girl I do not know. I don't even know where to begin.

From what I can gather, this girl is 24, unmarried, fat (her words, not mine), and completely and utterly unhappy. Why is she unhappy? From what I've read in her blogs, it is because not only is she unmarried, but she's completely undesirable and un-dateable. She keeps an official tally of how many dates she's been on, and it's "embarrassingly low." There were four posts on her blog: one about a completely failed date (her first, and "not her fault that it was so bad"), one about her failures at cooking, another about another completely terrible date (also, probably "not her fault"). And then the fourth was dedicated to describing the characters in the book Pride and Prejudice, and how every girl in this world can associate herself with one of the main female characters. For those who aren't familiar with the characters (and with this girl's description of them), a brief synopsis:

-Jane: the eldest sister, meek and beautiful, but not vain.

-Lizzie: headstrong and beautiful, also not vain. Both Jane and Lizzie attract men like flies to..well, you know.

-Mary: plain, untalented, and doomed to forever be a spinster. Unnoticed by all men because of her plainness, and...well, I'll just give you the girl's words: "And since beauty (or "hotness") is the only thing guys really care about, she is often left out in the cold."

-Kitty: pretty, boy-crazy, and vain. Also, a follower--she does whatever her younger sister, Lydia does.

-Lydia: the youngest of the sisters, boy-crazy, stylish, fashionable, and beautiful: and she knows it. Lydia attracts men, partially because she practically throws herself at them.

Her next statement is rather depressing:
"I am a modern Mary Bennett. I feel like I do have talents and interests, which I try to develop, but in the end, I am plain, and thus undesirable. So I am stuck here, living alone with my parents and family. And I don't see it changing anytime soon."

Wow. I can't believe that someone could possibly be so...self-loathing, perhaps? Bitter, definitely. This woman has to be one of the most depressing people to be around, ever. And this is not because of her personality, and *certainly* not solely because of her looks. Why, do you ask?

Because she cannot see any good in herself.

If she wonders why guys do not like her, perhaps she should stop looking in the mirror and start reading her blog. Someone so cynical and bitter about her life, her looks, and herself has decreased her attractiveness exponentially. I find it hard to believe that a guy has never liked her. She simply refuses to believe that she could possibly be desirable.

I have wanted to write this post for a couple of days, but haven't. And surprisingly, this blog was what prompted me to write. The purpose of this post is not to criticize this girl, although she does need help. My purpose in writing is this: if we do not like the circumstances we have been given, we can either wallow in our misery, or create the situations that we want.

First, I think something that has a huge effect on our lives, and not just in situations like this, is our attitude. Life isn't about the situations that are given to us; it's how we react to them. You can choose your attitude at all times. Someone cannot make you mad, you choose to be. And on the opposite end of the spectrum, someone cannot make you happy without you first consenting to let their actions affect you in that way. You choose your reaction, and then you live with the consequences of your reaction.

Second, we cannot be passive. If you don't like something, do something about it! Don't sit around and wait for someone else to take the initiative to do it for you. It may never get done. Be your own person. Act for yourself. I'm not saying to act in all your selfish desires, but remember that you control your life. Be the person who recognizes that, and uses it to his or her full advantage.

As a college student, I see both ends of this spectrum. I see people who don't try in classes, and complain when they get bad grades. How quickly the world owes them something, when they happen to be a noncontributing zero. But I also see those who actually try. They make an effort, and often, see their efforts rewarded. As always, there are those all in between, but I think it's the outliers who make the difference.

Be the person you want to be. Take control of your life. And most importantly, have fun with whatever situations you are in. Once again--your attitude is the key.

*Note: don't think that I'm an expert at this. It's simply something I've been thinking about lately.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Lessons

Things I learned today:

1. A packet of Top Ramen is 78% of your recommended daily sodium intake!! Wow.

2. Buying a head of lettuce is much more cost effective (and stays good longer) than buying one of those pre-made and mixed packages.

3. There are wonderful people in this world who will do you favors, even if they do not know you (and also if they do).

4. I would love to cross the equator--to the southern hemisphere. I want to know what it's like to see the sun in the northern sky.

5. Well, I didn't learn this, but I had just another confirmation: I love the Gospel. The Lord has blessed my life in so many ways, and I can never thank Him enough for everything that I've been given. :)

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Weekend Trip!

So Sam and I went on a little vacation to St. George for the break between semesters. We spent a few days in St. George, and even went to Vegas! I was born in Vegas, so it was fun to go back, but I don't know that I'd ever go again. It was one of those experiences you're glad you had, but that you probably wouldn't want to repeat. But it was fun, I promise. Here's some pictures for proof!

This is Sam and I going out to the pool on the first night there. It was a pretty sweet setup, and we were excited!


Sam and I had a fashion photo hour while in the hot tub. This is just a glimpse into the fun we had...


The St. George Temple! We hit up 2 temples in one day (this one and the Vegas temple). It was pretty great, to say the least.


We had a fashion photo hour at the temple too. Wait, who am I kidding? We have fashion photo hours everywhere we go. I love this picture.


The Las Vegas Temple! I loved this one too. I love all the temples, though. :)


Another cool shot of the temple. Gotta love it.


This is in the Bellagio. There was this awesome garden. Funny thing was, none of the plants were planted in the ground! After looking closely, I noticed that all the flowers were just sitting in pots, all really close together. Interesting. I guess it makes ground keeping a lot easier though...


And last but not least, probably my favorite sign from the whole trip. When I saw this sign coming into Vegas, I laughed for about 10 minutes (no really, ask Sam). I had to get a shot of it coming out.

Although not the best, you can still kinda tell what it says. For those of you who can't tell, it says: "If Christ Be For You, Who Be Against You?" Made my life.

Overall, a fun trip, and a great excuse to get out of Provo before we started school again. Now it's back to the grindstone!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

A Social Experiment

I've been thinking about social experiments lately. I was involved in one a bit ago, and it was rather entertaining. My roommate and I stood in an elevator for about a half an hour and did things that people wouldn't normally do in an elevator. For example, I stood by the numbers and waited for someone to get on. When anyone got on, I'd ask them what floor they wanted, and then I'd ask them if they were sure. Then I'd spend the entire elevator ride trying to convince them that it wasn't the floor that they wanted.

In this spirit, it was yesterday as it was snowing that I thought of this idea. I wonder what people would do if you tried to creep under the umbrella that they were holding. At first, I pictured myself trying to get under the back of someone's umbrella. But as I considered it more, I realized that people hold umbrellas mostly to the side and forward, taking either the back left or right of their umbrella for themselves, which makes creeping under the back almost completely impossible. This leaves pretty much only one option left: to simply stand and/or walk next to them under their umbrella. While not quite AS strange as trying to get under the back, it could still be rather disconcerting for some people.

Which, as anyone who knows me even a little bit knows, makes me incredibly happy. I thrive on making people feel awkward. And so, I hope to take this idea and use it as soon as is humanly possible.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Unnecessary?

Working as a secretary in the Math Lab, I've come to realize characteristics and habits of people in general. Or at least, as Americans, BYU students, college students, or however you want to classify them.

For example, we provide services like a pencil sharpener, 3-hole punch, stapler, tape, etc. On occasion, our stapler runs out of staples. This is where the problem becomes apparent. Some people, rather than asking for staples, simply ask for a new stapler, one that has staples in it. Really? Every time this happens, I can't believe it. And, surprisingly, it happens quite often.

Here's another example. We check out books and calculators. When someone wants to check out a calculator, we ask if they want a graphing calculator (the really nice fancy-schmancy kind) or a scientific calculator (the less fancy kind, but that still works very well, and does more than most students need anyway). I can always tell when people DON'T need a graphing calculator. When I ask they think for a second and say, "Ummmmmmm......graphing." If you have to think about it that long, you don't need it.

This is what it comes down to: we can't stand not having the best of the best, and if something breaks or malfunctions, we don't think to take the time to try to find the problem, let alone try and fix it. Growing up, I almost never had the luxury of having the best of anything. And if something broke, we fixed it or learned how to deal without it. The General Authorities have been warning us for the past 2 General Conferences at least that we need to learn to do without, to make things last, etc.

I always get emails about how we should prepare food storage, get ready for huge natural disasters and economic crashes, and I hate them. That's not what this is. This is a call to people to learn how to be self-sufficient, and how to not be so...snobby is the wrong word. But it really bothers me that people always have to have the newest of everything. I don't know the word to describe it. Living simply has always been my preferred way of life. I think things would be so much easier if we all learned how to live with what we have, to appreciate things, and that we don't have to have everything.

Just a thought.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Change

Something I've learned recently is how fast life can change directions on you. You don't even see it coming, and then, BAM! Something happens that changes everything you thought you had planned. It can happen in a matter of seconds, and in those few seconds--your life changes completely.

In times like these, I think there are a few options of what to do. One, you can make a rash decision. Thinking that because things have changed so quickly, you must likewise react quickly. Without considering the consequences, all reason goes out the window and the first thing that comes to your mind, you do.

I do not suggest option number one.

I don't know how many other options there are. I'm just going to shoot straight to the point, though. Making decisions about change is not easy. I can't think of anyone who really enjoys large changes in their lives. This post makes me think a lot about a blog post I read a long time ago, that I still think about to this day. I'd recommend reading it. You can read it here. (Just click on the word here) I don't know this guy, but he's a friend of a friend. And I think that his advice is priceless.

As of late, I made a decision that has affected me greatly. It was a decision I didn't want to make. Inaction had lasted me for only so long. I waited for inspiration. I asked for it for a long time. And I've learned something. Sometimes the Lord waits for you to do something first. I took action. I had a plan. I knew exactly what to say, what to do. And then I chickened out. I called up my home teacher and asked him for a blessing. He came over, and from the moment he started to speak, I knew what I had to do. And as soon as he had left, I did what it was that I needed to do. I didn't wait until I had time to start doubting what I knew. And although it was hard, and had an outcome of which I was fairly certain, but didn't want to happen, I know it was the right thing.

I listened to a talk the other day by Elder Dallin H. Oakes about timing. He said how sometimes, we do the right things at the wrong time. Because of this, we may feel like the thing that we knew was right was wrong, when in all reality, it actually wasn't. It just wasn't the right time for it. I think this may be the case with my situation. I feel like where I was was right. So right. But it just isn't the right time. I don't know when the right time will be, or if it will even come. But I do know one thing: the Lord will lead me to do the right thing, at the right time, and He will let me know when it is. And that's what gets me through this day, and the next day, and every day after that. My faith.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Reasons to Smile:

--When I walked home last night, it wasn't that cold, even though I totally expected it to be.

--I went to the Senior Recital of a friend last night, and the music was amazing. As was the company.

--I'm done with my Medals exams.

--Because I can.

--I had orange juice yesterday. I love juice.

--The semester is almost over!

--It was snowing earlier today, but now the sun is out and it's warm outside.

--I played a wicked awesome April Fool's trick on a friend today. Although short-lived, quite hilarious.

--I'm listening to Michael Bublé. Enough said.

--My parents, sisters, brother-in-law, niece, and nephew will all be in town this weekend. I couldn't be happier about that.

--General Conference is this weekend. What could make me smile more than the opportunity to get direct counsel from men chosen and inspired by God?

--I get to spend much of my free time with an amazing person. It blows my mind how lucky I am to have him around.

The funny thing is, at the end of each of those, I wanted to put a smiley face - :)

I really am smiling. This list doesn't even scratch the surface, but I figured I'd share. I hope you can find something(s) that made you smile today.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Temples

The other day, I discovered a few pictures of the Salt Lake Temple that I really liked, and I rediscovered my love for the temple. A few of them are fairly similar, but I love them. Enjoy!

I'd never seen this picture before, or anything even like it. I love it.


The next few pictures all have the same general idea, but I couldn't pick a favorite, so you get all of them! :)




Really?

So, sometimes I wonder who makes ads, and more importantly, who approves the ads they make. For example:

There's a thing called "Choose to Give" at BYU. Basically what it is, you give money which goes back to other students who are struggling financially. That's a pretty worthy cause, right? Sure. So, they have tons of ads all over campus for the whole week that they're advertising, and sometimes they have some pretty good stuff. However, this year, epic fail. Are you ready for it? Here it is.



Let's think about this for a second. "Are you struggling financially?" Ok, maybe this will be an ad for a job, or some way to make money. Oh no. Pretty much, we get, "You don't have any money? Great! Take that money that you DON'T have, and give it to someone else, who also doesn't have money!" That just doesn't seem like the smartest way to go about doing this. I don't know if it's just me, but even though I'm not necessarily struggling financially, I didn't want to give any money, just because of this ad.

*Side note: I swear this isn't me being selfish or anything. I do understand that there are students in need, and I would like to help them. This post is about people who don't know how to make ads. That's it.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Question:

What happens if a deaf person breaks their hand or arm? Are they "mute" for 3 months while they wait for their hand to heal? Or are they only half mute?

Even worse, what if they lose the limb completely?

This is the kind of sick thing my mind comes up with. Figured I'd share.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Sharks

This post has some graphic pictures of a dead shark and a fish, just so you know. Don't say you haven't been warned.

Every Wednesday, I have my Biology lab, in which we dissect different animals. This last week, we dissected a shark. So, my lab partner and I cut open our shark, and started identifying the different organs. Oftentimes, we have a rule in our lab: you can't cut open any of the organs. Don't ask me why, but almost always, we aren't allowed to dissect the actual parts of the animal. So anyway, we were feeling around inside, and I got to the stomach. I was feeling it, and said to my partner, "Hey...I think there's something in here. Feel this." He felt it and agreed, but as we weren't allowed to cut it open, we kinda passed over it. Later on, I got back to the stomach, and started feeling again. I knew there was something in there this time. How did I know? Well, I had 2 main evidences: I definitely felt a tail, and whatever was in there had a spine. I showed this to my lab partner, and we called our TA over. She began to feel it, and agreed with me--there was something in there. We wanted to know what it was. But there was that little rule: no cutting open organs.

As we all know, I have many mottos in life. One of them: rules are made to be broken. My TA looked at the shark, looked at me, and said, "Cut it open. If they ask, it was an accident." We cut open the stomach. Lo and behold, a halfway digested fish! It was probably one of the coolest things I've ever seen, hands down. And guess what? I got some pictures, just to share with you.

This is the shark, and on the bottom right corner area is the fish we pulled out of it.



This is the fish from inside our shark's stomach. The curled up part is its tail, and it's kind of missing its head...oh well.


This is the inside of the shark, with our fish near the hole it came out of. The color quality isn't the best on it, but it's as good as it's gonna get.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

DanceSport!

This weekend, I did DanceSport! For those of you who don't know, DanceSport is a ballroom competition that BYU puts on every year, and it's a really big deal. On Friday night, I competed in Bronze Quickstep, and my partner and I made it all the way to Semi Finals! We're convinced that we would have made it to the Finals, if the judges had picked the right amount of couples (they were supposed to pick 6, and they only picked 5). But we did really well. On Saturday, I competed in the Triple Swing and the Waltz (I was supposed to compete in the Samba, but my partner wasn't able to make it). We only made it through 2 rounds of the Triple Swing, which was kind of disappointing. In the Waltz, we were dancing up a level, so I was sure we'd be cut after 2 rounds. Well, we made it through to the FOURTH round! We were pretty happy. Overall, DanceSport turned out pretty well. I only got pictures of the waltz, and here are a few. They're a little far away, but we're the couple wearing bright yellow. :)















Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Clouds

I love looking up at a dark and dreary sky, and seeing that tiny spot of blue sky just beyond, and realizing that behind the clouds, there's always that blue clear sky.

As I walked to work yesterday morning, it was frigidly cold, and the sky was filled with dark gray clouds. I love clouds. Clouds are so ambiguous, dynamic, always changing, and they never cease to fill me with wonder and joy. As I often find myself doing, this particular morning as I walked, my eyes scanned the sky to take in the beauty above me. And then I saw it. The 3 small spots of the brightest blue sky, shining through a tiny break in the clouds. Every time I see that, it blows my mind. It's the same as when you're in a plane, far above the clouds. It's hard to imagine that the people below you, underneath those clouds, can't see the blue clear sky that's just above them. It's just hard to imagine that above all those gray clouds, there's still the blue sky. We often don't see things deeper than below the surface, or at least just what we can see.

I know this sounds like another one of those blogs that I post that tell you to enjoy life, to see the happy side of things, to see "beyond the dark clouds of the trials of our lives, to the happiness and joy of the blue sky just beyond them." I suppose it could be one of those. But it's not what I was going for. What I was going for, was the "look beyond the surface and realize that there's more to things that just what you see" idea. Yep. That's it.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Fruit

Everyone knows, or at least should know (and if you don't know, you're about to find out) that the white part on the orange (between the orange part on the peel) is the part that is the best for you. It's got the most vitamins and what not. Most people peel this part off, because it doesn't necessarily have the best taste. Or any taste, for that matter. However, as of late, I've been making an effort to leave any white stuff left on my orange after I've peeled it. I figure it's my attempt to be healthy. Or something.

The other morning, as I was eating my breakfast, I was thinking about this idea that the part that no one likes to eat and that everyone always picks off is the best part for you. And it got me to thinking...does that mean that we should eat the stringy things on bananas? I hate those things! What other parts of fruits don't we eat? The cores of apples? The stems of strawberries? The green part of cantaloupe? What nutrition are we missing out on? This could be the solution to all our problems...just a thought.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Divide Me

I'm not quite sure how to say any of what I'm thinking right now.

Have you ever felt so conflicted within yourself, that you fear that the two halves of you might tear apart permanently, because they seem to be such polar opposites?

Do you think I'll tear in half vertically, or horizontally?

I cannot make a decision. I have, in essence, two options. Each seems so appealing, enticing, alluring, while at the same time, each has consequences that will potentially bring me great sadness (along with great happiness as well). The positive aspects of each option seems to have what the other is lacking. What I must decide is: what can I live with, and what can't I live without? (I guess also what I can't live with and what I can live without, but they're pretty much all intertwined anyway, right?) How do I decide?

I wish that I could pursue both options at the same time. This is, however, completely impossible. It would include emotional trauma not only for myself, but for others involved. The worst part is how interconnected they are in my head, but how I have to find a way to make them not so, when making my decision. Neither option can influence my decision with the other.

It seems that I love posting cryptic blogs. :)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Reworking the Honor Code

I have a good idea.

Every year, every one of BYU's students has to get an ecclesiastical endorsement, to make sure that we're living the Honor Code (because those who aren't living the Honor Code are going to stop because they know they'll HAVE to talk to the Bishop about it). I propose a new system of determining the level of our honor.

First, a little background. One of BYU's main quotes regarding the Honor Code comes from Karl G. Maeser. To keep from misquoting him, this is what he said exactly:
"I have been asked what I mean by my word of honor. I will tell you. Place me behind prison walls-- ever so high, ever so thick, reaching ever so far into the ground - there is a possibility that in some way or another I will escape; but stand me on a floor and draw a chalk line around me and have me give my word of honor never to cross it. Can I get out of the Circle? No. Never! I would die first."

It is in the spirit of Brother Maeser that I move to make a change in the process of our ecclesiastical endorsements. It is as simple as this: each student will report to Brigham Square at his or her appointed time (perhaps they could get their new student ID card while they're at it?). Each student will be forced to draw a chalk line around themselves, and they must give their word of honor not to leave it. Ta-da! Problem solved! Those who leave their chalk circles will be required to leave BYU. Those who die in their chalk circles...well, now we know who has real honor.

Perhaps in an effort to continue to actually have a student body (seeing as the only ones left at the school would soon die because they could not leave their chalk circles), we should put a time limit on it. I think 24 hours would suffice. You can't stay in your chalk circle for 24 hours? Sorry--now you have to find a new school. You aren't honorable enough.

I think my solution is definitely a win-win-win situation. Win #1: BYU no longer has to worry about enforcing the Honor Code. What better way to judge the honor of its students? Also, how much money could they save from having to employ an entire department to enforce the Honor Code? Tons. Win #2: The students of BYU. These people obviously have such high amounts of honor, they deserve to be around others of such high caliber. Somehow I have a feeling that this could leave BYU with even more "Molly Mormons" and "Peter Priesthoods" than it already has (if that was possible).** This is also possibly considered a win for them in that they don't have to deal with us Hellians who say things like "hell" or "crap" or "freaking" and who leave a boy's apartment at 12:15 on a Thursday night. Win #3: I no longer have to have an ecclesiastical endorsement every year with my bishop, nor do I have to worry about what the Honor Code entails.

Perfect solution? I think yes.

**Optional Win #4: BYU gets translated because the students are just SO honorable and righteous.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Yeah Toast!!

This is what I did for my ward talent show this last weekend. The guitar case was because I hadn't told anyone what I was doing, just that I was going to sing. I figured it was a pretty good facade. Enjoy. :)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Woot

This is a speech Bill Watterson (the guy who does the Calvin and Hobbes comics) gave to a graduating class at Kenyon College. I love it. Just thought I'd share.

Here's the website, just copy and paste. I can't figure out how to get it to link. Ha

http://home3.inet.tele.dk/stadil/spe_kc.htm