Friday, December 5, 2008

Viva Mexico!


I am officially going to Mexico this spring! I got accepted into the study abroad yesterday! This means that I get to spend the first 3-4 weeks of spring term taking sociology and political science classes in Provo, then head down to Mexico for 3 weeks to apply what we learn about international development. We start in a medium sized city (Cuauhtémoc) and live with families and work with schools, orphanages, rehab centers for migrant workers, etc. Then we go to a smaller town and build schools, houses, and do whatever they need us to do. We spend the last week camping in the mountains and helping the incredibly rural and indigenous people with really basic things like digging irrigation trenches. The get time over the whole trip to explore and talk to people and do research for future projects about poverty.
I am so excited, but I definitely need to start refreshing my Spanish!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Home for Thanksgiving

What a relaxing week I had! It was so much fun to be home, even if I was the only sister to make it back to Washington. (I guess that shows who the favorite daughter is, the only one the parents bought a plane ticket for.) It was a wonderful week of sleeping, playing piano, trying my hand at golf and getting thoroughly embarrassed, biking, shopping, getting pampered with the cousins, and relaxing. Thanksgiving was great, and I even got to try my hand at making the stuffing all by myself, but under Mom's watchful eye. I've expanded my repertoire past cranberries to include dinner rolls, stuffing, and even cooking the hairy yams. It was fun to be back in the rain with family!

I came back and my roommates and I started decorating our apartment for Christmas right away. I just love this holiday season!
Now, its time to crack down because finals start 2 weeks from today!

Friday, November 14, 2008

good news from the library

You know those weeks when the good news just randomly comes and ends up neutralizing the stress? I think this week is one of those. Besides the wonderful weather we've been having (a lovely mix of sunny and rainy days) and the fact that I am going home in 10 days, I just got a fabulous piece of news. I got an email from BYU financial services, and I figured it was because they wanted me to pay my study abroad application fee (which they do), but when I logged on, I had a message that they had more money to give away, and are giving me a half-tuition scholarship for next semester! Based on an application I submitted in March, I just made over $1000. Now that's a good deal! Also, it just kind of made my day!

And now, its back to chemistry problems, stock market analysis, and cleaning the apartment...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Break the fast!

I did it! I survived our stake's media fast with the last 2 weeks of school-only internet, church-only music, no TV and no movies. It was rough, and the music was definitley the hardest part, but my roommates and I all made it through. We started going crazy after about a week. We found some creative ways to stay busy, so here is just a sampling of the escapades in #2 during the last 2 weeks.

Getting accepted into the PR program!!
fort-building with every surface in our living room
empty-the-cupboards jell-o with all of our leftovers or un-identified food inside-- cereal, tortilla chips, marshmallow, carrots, etc. Its a delicasy!


We also got really good at spelling words with our bodies, discussing the meaning of life, making a cooking show, interpretive dancing to classical music, making abstract art for our wall, and rubber band face, which I tried to explain to Mom, but it really has to be seen to be understood, so here is a visual of me breaking the record.
video

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Conference, in general


I had the chance to go with my roommates to both sessions of Conference on Saturday. We had fabulous seats and it was so wonderful to hear the words of the prophet live! The weather was wonderful, and it felt just like a Seattle fall day.
We watched the Sunday sessions in pajamas with cinnamon rolls in the apartment. What a great weekend!
Erin and John-- I'm excited for your new temple!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

ode to midterms

Oh midterms, how I love you so,
but sometimes I just wish you'd go.
You come barelling at me like a comet,
Long days in the library make we want to vomit.
The Testing Center walk of doom
just fills my whole day with gloom.
After sweating and fretting in that uncomfortable chair,
and wanting to pull out clumps of hair,
I throw my test across the table,
and get out of there as fast as I'm able.
I barely glance at scores on the screen,
because most days they make me want to scream.
But what is this?
Something must be amiss!
There is an "Awesome!" by my name!
I wish the Testing Center wouldn't play this game.
I walk away with a delightful skip,
I guess that studying made for a good testing trip.
From music to grammar to chemistry,
Midterms please don't toy with me!

If you didn't catch that, its midterm season. I've already made 2 fairly successful trips to the Testing Center this week, with one more tomorrow and 2 early next week. Yay exams!

Friday, September 19, 2008

where in the world...




Ok, so I am currently feeling overwhelmed by too many opportunities, which I guess is a good thing, but still kind of crazy.

The current decision is what I should do this summer. I've narrowed it down to either a field study doing PR for NGOs in South Africa for 3 months, or a study abroad to Mexico where I take classes during spring semester in Provo, then go to Mexico for 3 weeks to work with people in poverty and build schools/volunteer in orphanages/put in irrigation pipes, etc. Both things sound absolutely amazing, but I can't decide which one I would rather do.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

beard buster



This weekend our ward/apartment complex had a shaving cream fight-- the event of the semester. Our apartment still smells like man, but it was totally worth it. Here is the before and after. Can you find me and my roommates? Hint-- look for Cindy LouWho-esque hair.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

back to school...

What a day! Its back to school time, which meant a hike to campus to my peppy new playlist. Five classes, 9 hours on campus, and 16 almost twin spottings later, I trekked home. Even though I'm exhausted and definitely not used to being in school again, I'm super excited for all of my classes this semester. Check back and see if I'm still saying that in two months around midterms, but for now they all seem really interesting with great professors.
At least I didn't get lost and look like a freshman.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

home sweet home

This is our cute new apartment! Please note the oh so classy and sophisticated paper chain, happy birthday sign (the closest birthday is in a month) and the branches in the vase that we cut from a bush outside to bring in a "natural element". Watch out HGTV, I think this takes the cake for best college decorating!
But don't you worry, we have big plans to make this a classy, chic place. Expect big things.
But we'll probably leave the Christmas lights hanging up in the kitchen...

Sunday, August 17, 2008

whitney the wed


The paper chain is done, and so is the most anticipated reunion of the summer! It was wonderful to have my favorite people come visit for Whitney's wedding. The wedding was a classy affair, but of course had a bad dance party involved.
I loved showing my friends around Seattle and hanging out in the days afterward as well. Plus, I'm a total expert at driving to the airport now. And in just a week, the party will keep on going
when we reunite for good in Provo.
RIP Single Whitney




Thursday, August 7, 2008

nature at its finest






A few weeks ago, my parents found a bird nest in the hanging flowers off of our deck and within a day we had a baby bird. We loved to watch our baby and check his progress everyday. My mom even rigged up a McGuyver-esque cover to protect the bird from the rain. Its mother hated us, and we had some close divebomb attacks when we were checking on it.
Baby bird grew feathers and bigger, and then all of the sudden it was gone. Its actually quite tragic,and made worse by the fact that my grandma is convinced that our bird was eaten.

So farewell, baby bird, hopefully you will come visit us again. Your nest is always open.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

apron frenzy




Because I am really a middle aged woman, I have been spending my summer sewing away, creating aprons for everyone I know. I finished the first batch of 8 (6 for the roommates, 1 for the betrothed, and 1 for the lady with the master key). So, behold the fruits of my labors. My mother insisted on taking the picture outside so everyone could behold the beauty of Washington.

Roomies and extras, you can start your fight over who gets which one!

Monday, July 21, 2008

out of the mouths of babes

I officially work with the cutest kids around. Here's proof:

"When I grow up, I'm going to be a superhero"
"When I grow up, I'm going to be Jar Jar Binks"
"I want to be 13 because then I can start a band and be a rockstar"
"I want to be 19 because thats the perfect age"
"We're not goalies. We're defense"
"Sneak attack! Sneak attack!" (during soccer week. They have no idea what a sneak attack is)
"Look at my beard. Its as soft as a rabbit." -a 5 year old girl
"That banging noise must be a chicken running into the door." (it was construction)

Monday, July 7, 2008

whoops...

Logging onto facebook and seeing that 7 people had updated their website info reminded me that I, too have a blog that I should probably update. So, here is a quick update of a summer that is halfway through, by the numbers.

2 trips to Idaho
20 peeling appendages
1 week in singles ward
5 weeks in a row spent avoiding singles ward
2 times peed on my small children
6.5 aprons sewn
2 times breaking the sewing machine
1 Jonas Brothers party
3 mission farewells
8 long goodbyes
4 wisdom teeth removed
2.1 seasons of the West Wing watched (thanks to wisdom teeth)
3 jobs held at once
5 bouts of sickness
3 trips to the doctor
1 fainting episode
341 hymns played (that would be all of them)
39 very strange dreams
7 lotion samples on my hands at one time
53 Mariners games lost
76 lists made
312 references made to things not understood by people in this state
39 rainy days
2 apostles seen
2 BYU basketball players lost (to engagement or the draft)
2 small children I've made cry
97 cravings for chicken coeur d'bleu, the MOA, or a banana brownie shake
255 replies to the facebook thread
11 days until Christian Bale returns to the big screen. RIP Heath
36 days til the mother of all reunions!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

"If we can't laugh at life, we are in big trouble."

Yesterday I finished a book of letters written by Sister Hinckley throughout her life, and I am truly amazed at such a wonderful woman she was. Her testimony and love for her family come though in her everyday actions, and her humor and love for life got her through many difficult times. She is definitely a woman I emulate to become.

"We each do the best we can. My best may not be as good as your best, but it's my best. The fact is that we know when we are doing our best and when we are not. If we are not doing our best, it leaves us with a gnawing hunger and frustration. But when we do our level best, we experience a peace."

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The view from my window


The other day my mom came into my room and was amazed at the tree growing right outside my window. I didn't think much of it because I see that tree everyday, but ever since she mentioned it, I can't help but notice it. Although there are dozens of other trees I can see from my window, this one is the closest, and so often the most overlooked. Where else are there trees like this in my life? So often I go looking for help, when the people I really need are right in front of me. I focus so much on getting out and getting away from here and having a big adventure, when there are so many great opportunities and experiences just waiting to be had that are right outside my window. It is just a matter of changing perspective, looking at things differently, and seeing that what you need more than anything is the thing that was right there all along. Its all a matter of finding the true beauty in your life. I realized that I've been looking at these trees for years and the tree outside my window has always been my favorite, it just took some pointing out to get me to realize that and to take advantage of the wonderful things that are right in front of me. Bloom where you are planted, explore the close things, and don't overlook the beauty that surrounds you.