Today is the last day of my job at Senator Hatch's office. Wow. I really can't believe this day is finally here. It has been a long, hard, and very insightful 8 months. I am so glad I worked here, and I am so glad for the lessons learned, and I am also glad to be moving on. Crazy how fast time goes by. Here's to new adventures! :)
This Easter Sunday was so fantastic. There is something special about the spirit of Easter that is even better than Christmas, which is saying a lot because I really really love Christmas.
This year was a bit different for me because I am the ward choir director in my ward, so for Easter, I was asked to put together a program that would take the place of the talks and musical number in Sacrament meeting. Well, it was quite the process putting it all together. After Christmas, I had a difficult time getting people to come back to choir. We didn't really get a good group there until the beginning of February, and by good group I mean anywhere from 10-15. We then were supposed to sing every month as well in Sacrament meeting, so we did (one of the times was ward conference), so by the time I got to thinking about Easter, it was probably the end of February. I picked out the 5 songs I wanted and was really excited about the program. The only problem was that people did not come consistently enough for us to learn the music really well, and also, 2 of the songs that I picked were pretty hard and the choir was just not going to have time to learn them well, despite the time already spent on them.
With that looming over me, and only a month until Easter, I dropped the 2 hard songs and added just one song, He is Risen. The only problem was, now that we had spent all that time on the 2 songs we dropped, we had to still learn 3 songs. So we learned 3 songs on March 25th, and still had to work on Jesus the Very Thought of Thee that we had practiced before. I am not gonna lie, I was stressed. I was so worried that it would not turn out! All I wanted was the program to be beautiful, help the congregation feel the spirit, and have the choir members be proud of their performance.
We did not practice the next week because it was Conference Sunday, so we decided to come at 10:30 on April 8th, the day we performed, to run through everything and hopefully get it all down.
So I had my accompanist learning 4 songs, and one I sprung on her 3 weeks before. She then texted me on Saturday telling me she couldn't play He is Risen and wondering if we could do a hymn instead. I started to panic, haha. So I told her it was no big deal, but I couldn't change it so last minute. I was already so stressed about all of the last minute-ness of the program! So I called our good friend Linda and she said she would play it the next day. Miracle. Rosemary also said that she and her siblings could add another song with an instrumental piece (which was soooo ridiculously beautiful).
I got to church at 10:30 on Easter, and all the rooms were still full. We had to wait until 10:45, but that worked out well because people come late, so everyone was pretty much there by the time we started :) We started practicing, and it was generally good, but definitely some trouble spots. I kept praying that the people in our ward would feel the spirit no matter how we sounded.
As we were doing our final run through before church, I was blown away at how great they sounded and the spirit they emanated. It was incredible. There are no words for how amazed I was.
Sacrament meeting was beautiful and perfect. The bishop spoke of Christ's last week on the earth, what he went through, and what it meant for us.
I know that the Easter program turning out was a complete miracle, and yes, Linda played amazingly on He Is Risen.
I am so grateful for my Savior. I am grateful we get to celebrate his life, and more specifically his Atonement for each of us every Easter. I know Jesus Christ lived. I know he came to this earth so that he could atone for each and every one of us; for our sins, our sadness, our loneliness, and any other problems or hurt we may experience in this life. He did it so that we would not be condemned by our human imperfection. He did it so that we could grow and change and develop into the people that he sent us here to become. I know He is merciful and kind and that He loves us each unconditionally. I love Him and I'm so grateful for Him!!
Today is my 23rd birthday! And to celebrate, my mom and I were able to go shopping for birthday clothes, and I just wanted to let you know that I think my mom is the coolest ever. We ended up buying matching sunglasses (not the ones pictured above) and having just a fantastic afternoon together. She is the most thoughtful and wonderful woman I know and I am so lucky to have her as my mom!
I love free stuff. It just makes anything you get even better! For example: a frisbee is fun and awesome, but a frisbee you get at a parade that is just thrown to you??? SUPER awesome. It applies with every scenario.
Yesterday was free cone day at Ben & Jerry's, and imagine my delight when I looked up locations of Ben & Jerry's and the only one in the whole state of Utah is at the Gateway mall! Needless to say, I went during my lunch break. And don't worry, I ate my lunch at my desk before going as to not spoil my appetite, because I know you were fretting about that. My momma definitely taught me right!
So I just wanted to say thank you Ben & Jerry's, for delighting my tastebuds and stomach with your delicious ice cream. It was even more delicious because you gave it to me for free.
No, I'm not pregnant, and yes, this post is about babies.
Lots of girls my age have started to have babies in the last year, and 3 of my siblings are married and have lots of kids.
As I watch people have babies, I can't help but wonder why there are so many different ways to prepare for having a baby. You can find out the gender, or you could wait. You could have it in a hospital, or do an at home birth. I know for me, I am not patient enough to wait to find out, and my philosophy is that I will be just as excited finding out from a sonogram as when it comes out. I will just know 6 months sooner, or however long it is til you find out. And as for hospital or stay at home? I am a hospital type gal. If I can get drugs in me, I am so all for that.
What are your thoughts and why? It is a mystery that I don't think will ever have a solid answer as everyone is different and all situations are different. Just thinking about babies today and wanted to share.
This last weekend I went to Arizona to visit my sister Erika and her family. They are moving to Singapore on March 23rd, and so it was so great to see them. Here is a quick summary of the weekend:
- Left at 6am and drove for 12 hours. - Got to the house during my nephew's science party, and it was awesome. - Stayed up until 5 am helping Erika get ready for the baptism stuff the next day - Andrew got baptized! I can't believe I have 3 nieces and nephews that are baptized. Best thing he said afterward, "I am so glad to be a member of the church! And James is just a guest." James is his 4 year old little brother. - Amelia's half shaved head. James cut all the hair off of half of her head and so she had a sideways mullet - business on the right side and party on the left. So cute. - Having warm weather where no coats are necessary and I even went outside and laid out. It wasn't super warm, but warm enough. I can not wait for summer. - Audrey was blessed. She is such a beautiful baby. She is now 6 months old and almost 11 pounds. Tiny little girl! - Shared these YouTube videos with my family: Boys will be Girls, Neature Walk, and Guy on a Buffalo. Love them. - Drove home today, and at a Circle K that we stopped at, there was one bathroom in the gas station and there was a sign on the door that said, "Open door slowly. Restroom May Be Occupied." Whaaaaaat?! Awesome. So funny. We laughed pretty hard about that one.
Overall a fantastic weekend, and I am also glad to be home, even if I'm not excited to go back to work. I can't wait until May where I get to move down to Provo and start EFY.
It's that time of year again. The time of year where you feel like you've put on your winter weight and you could just hibernate for the next month survive off the new found thin lining of blubber on your body.
Resolved: 3 weeks with only one dessert a week.
I have been eating far too many sweets lately....and by lately I mean since Thanksgiving. Yeah. It has been a rough winter that way.
And yes, 3 weeks doesn't sound very long....but that is also 21 days. Sounds a lot longer now, doesn't it? I'm just justifying myself but I don't care.
I hope all of you are having better luck with your winter hibernation, or less luck. However you want to look at it.
Society dictates fashion. Irritating isn't it? Well, I'm sick and tired of other people telling me what styles I have to wear, and how short they need to be. Now don't get me wrong, I love new styles and I especially love getting new clothes, but I hate shopping because most styles are immodest. And it irritates me to no end.
So yesterday I decided to take destiny into my own hands.....and make my own clothes. I know. Daring! Adventurous! But those are 2 words that often describe me, so I'm going for it.
I will let you know how it all turns out, but here are the patterns that I bought yesterday, and yes, I did buy more than I probably should have, considering I have no idea how good I will be at making these, but I really don't care. I was excited, and when I get excited about something it is hard to contain.
Cute, right?! I can't wait to go get fabric and get started on these.
I have also recently bought a guitar, and I am fully intending to learn how to play it. I have dreamed of being able to play the guitar since high school and now that I own one, I will be the next Taylor Swift.
It's kind of nice not having school so that I can focus on doing things that I have wanted to do for a while but never had time to do. Especially because that time will all go away once I start EFY again this summer.
“Creative expression can also represent the celebration of our gratitude to God for our gifts and talents.”
—Neal A. Maxwell, “Creativity,” New Era, Aug. 1982
“Creation brings deep satisfaction and fulfillment. We develop ourselves and others when we take unorganized matter into our hands and mold it into something of beauty. …
“The more you trust and rely upon the Spirit, the greater your capacity to create. That is your opportunity in this life and your destiny in the life to come.”
—Dieter F. Uchtdorf, “Happiness, Your Heritage,” Nov. 2008 general conference
This last year, I have realized how many tragic car accidents there are on an every day basis, and it has become something that I worry about all the time.
I lost my best friend Vanessa in a car crash, some of our good family friends had a son in a terrible car accident, but so far he is slowly recovering, and a woman at my work lost her brother last night in a car accident.
I know that accidents do happen, and that sometimes there really was nothing that could have been done to prevent it, but can I beg everyone who reads this to be so careful. Please. I love you all and I don't want anything to happen to you. Also have your friends and family be aware of just how deadly it can be. It terrifies me that I will lose someone else that I love dearly because of the recklessness of the other people on the road.
Don't take those you love for granted. Take advantage of every moment with with. Tell and show them how much you love them.
I know that we are so lucky to have the knowledge of the Plan of Salvation, and I believe it with all of my heart. I know that we can live with those that we love again and that this life really is a short time in our existence. That doesn't change how painful it is to lose those we are closest to. There is always that pang of sadness that comes out when we see or hear or taste something that reminds us of them.
So remember that next time you're on the road. Please, drive safe.
I have decided that I strongly-dislike talent shows. I don't necessarily mind watching them, I just hate the pressure that comes with participating. When people know that you sing, they say, "Hey! You should do something!" and you say, "I don't have anything ready to perform, or an accompanist" and they say, "who cares?!" Well, the people watching, and more importantly, I do.
It is stressful trying to find someone to play or pick a song that you won't need someone to play for you. Also, I have mostly sung classical songs which I do not want to do for the talent show.
There is far too much pressure for ward talent shows, and I for one do not appreciate it.
1. Downton Abbey: I can not thank Allison enough for introducing me to this lovely British early 20th century based show. If you love Jane Austen, give it a look.
2. Documentaries: My brother Jeff is the ultimate nerd and I have made fun of him many times in the last 6 months for choosing to watch documentaries....pretty much daily. (This is the result of having access to Netflix. It's a gift...and a curse) Imagine how I am eating my words now when the other day, a documentary about Egypt came on while I was hanging out with Jeff, and I watched the whole thing. Yes. It was shameful, but at the same time awesome. Since then I have watched another one about Egypt (don't blame me, blame my semester abroad for my obsession with anything about Egypt or the Middle East) and also one about Ben and Jerry's ice cream and how it came to be. In case you have not had a chance to watch these, let me share my new-found knowledge:
Egypt: They found a new shaft in the Great Pyramid of Khufu. They spent days designing a robot to go through the shaft so that they could see what was behind the blocked end of the passage way. They drilled a hole through it aaaannnnnddddd..............found another blocked passage way. They were all extremely excited about it, while I was frustrated after watching an hour and a half to find out what was behind it to find nothing. Oh well. Still interesting.
Ben and Jerry's: Basically they were 2 guys that had no direction (Ben teaching art after dropping out of college and Jerry being rejected from med school twice) and so they decided to start their own company. This one really was interesting too if any of you have 45 minutes to kill and a Netflix account.
3. The Bachelor: Now don't judge me. This is my guilty pleasure show. I have loved it for the last 3 years and I am not about to give it up. I mean, come on, how can you not enjoy the crazies that decide to go on this show? If they decide to go on national television, i reserve the right to watch them while on my couch in my sweats and critique every action and word that comes out of their mouth. Also on that topic, I think Ben is a tool and he is going to choose Courtney, who is a woman tool, and they will not make it to After the Final Rose. Also, how weird was the vow thing with her this week?? Right??? Super weird. And the fact that he didn't think it was weird makes him weird.
I love this blog for a multitude of reasons. First, I love that she is so stylish and modest at the same time. Second, she has a lot of good insights into a lot of topics such as family and the gospel. She also loves the movie You've Got Mail as much as I do, so I believe we are kindred spirits. I loved her most recent post about love and making it last, so here is a link to it. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!
Today is a day that I have had a lot of time and opportunity to really internally analyze who I am and what I am doing here on this earth. I have become even more aware of my weaknesses and at the same time more determined to overcome them. I have a goal this year to read the Book of Mormon 3 times through, and so far I have been slowly going through. Today, I read about 5 or 6 chapters in Nephi, and can I just say how much I love the scriptures? They bring peace to my heart and joy to my soul. Today has not been the easiest day, but having that spirit from the scriptures allowed me to have the opportunity to feel the Lord's love in my life, despite the challenges that come my way.
Life is not easy, and I don't know about you, but I often times make it much harder than it needs to be without realizing it. Sometimes we just need to get out of our own ways and our own heads. I over analyze everything aaaallllll the time.
Yesterday at church, there was a comment made in Relief Society that has really stuck with me: "Progress. That is what distinguishes us from others without religion. Our church is all about progression." I forget this far more often than I should. I want to be perfect now, I want to have answers now, but sadly, that's not how it works.
A wise friend of mine said today, "you've got to put in a lot of necessary work before the answer comes". Makes sense right? "The Lord can't move a parked car", we have to first study and work for the answers before they are given. I am grateful that we even have the opportunity to receive personal revelation, even if it does take lots of work to earn that blessing. 1 Ne 10:19 "For he that diligently seeketh shall find; and the mysteries of God shall be unfolded unto them."
This is kind of an all-over-the-place post, but it's just some thoughts that I have had today that I wanted to put out into the universe. It has been a very enlightening and gratitude for the gospel day.
Today has been one of those days at work where all I want to do is cut off my nose so it stops running and being stuffy, suck out my sinuses, and go home to put on my sweats, eat soup, and watch a great movie like Sleepless in Seattle. Stupid winter colds, they sneak up on ya and BAM! You have zero motivation and social skills. And yes, when I am sick I am extremely dull and not fun to be around, I don't know about you.
Lots of people have been doing this on their blogs and I decided it was a fantastic idea. So here is my year 2011:
Bought a MacBook Pro
Started on a bowling league team at BYU called the Kool Kidz with Splendor, Pleasure, and Danger. I was Butter, and we dominated the dancing of the bowling league. You heard me.
Yes- these are our trophies made by Nostradamus for us because we were the best dancers of the season. Very prestigious award.
We had a sweet Superbowl party at our apartment
Went to a Justin Beiber party dressed like him
The peak of Jimmermania
Festival of Colors with Mallory and Jeff
Turned 22! Had a sweet Price is Right themed party. The Plinko board almost didn't make it, but luckily I had lots of help.
Sang in the Women at the Well for my Stake - Foolish or Wise
Had my last classes on BYU campus
Cassie and Chris were my ComD study crew for the last 2 years of college. Love them :)
Moved back to Sandy
Was a BC at EFY (that was pretty much my summer)with the best team ever: Dan, Brooke, Tia, Maggie, Brad, Kendall, Cesar, Kellie, Andrew, Alex
Highlights: Send it On White pant Wednesday Hats at Game Night Tia and I eating a piece of pizza after the counselor didn't have enough money for the pizza place Boy band singing at dances Having walkie talkies Jamba runs The dances Singing The One with Kellie Buying my beautiful new Nikon camera
EFC Disneyland trip!
Graduated from BYU
My best friend Vanessa died in a car accident on her mission
Really started working at Senator Hatch's office
Was called as the choir director for my Ward
Tried out for Li'l Abner and got the part of Daisy Mae at Draper Historic Theatre
Thanksgiving with the parents, Jeff, Jim and Sarah's family, and Megan and Bailey Bradshaw
Performing in Li'l Abner - it ran for 3 weeks and was so much fun
Saw the Blue Man group with the fam at Kingsbury Hall
Went to Tyson's cabin with Sam and Dallin and some friends for New Years
2011 was a really crazy, sometimes super difficult year, but I had a lot of good experiences and definitely grew in ways that I was not expecting. Here's to another year of surprises, good and bad, and lessons that need to be learned as well as experiences to enjoy!