Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 Year in Review

Everybody does these things so I thought I’d join in on the fun. Except, it’s really hard to try and remember things from a whole year! I’ll try my best.

Favorite movies of the year: The Avengers and Les Miserables. I’m no movie expert and I don’t even watch very many, but when I saw both of these I just wanted to sit back down and watch it again. {Also those may be the only 2 movies in the history of my life where that has happened.}

Favorite TV show this year: Bones. Still the only show I’ve ever followed.

Favorite Book: I can’t even remember the books that I’ve read… but 2 of the books I read last semester for school were muy excellente! The Sociological Imagination by C. Wright Mills and the Anatomy of Peace by the Arbinger Institute. {Might I say that one of my favorite parts about 2012 is that I actually really enjoyed the books that I needed to read for school... we’re on the right track, folks!}

Ok that’s enough of those…

hmm 2012.
You rocked.

At the beginning of the year I just lived at home and worked. I thought I was going to hate it, but turns out it wasn’t bad at all. I ran in the color run which made me sick for 2 months, In March I switched last minute from running another half marathon to running a 10k (because I couldn’t breathe) and loved it! Such a great distance for people like me who hate training. I was a cast missionary for the Mesa Easter Pageant, went to Diamondbacks Fan Fest and got bumped into by Justin Upton in the clubhouse (he’s a big fella) and was actually pretty busy with all sorts of who-knows-what. In April I went up to Rexburg for school. But first drove through Colorado and went to a Dbacks-Rockies game at Coors Field. I was in school from April to the end of July. School is my favorite - 95% of the time I love everything that comes with it (especially in retrospect)! The learning, the friends, the roommates, the independence, the adventures and all that jazz. I got to come home one weekend for one of my best friend’s wedding receptions. Then I had a 7 week break where I came back home and worked, went to some Diamondbacks games, decorated Harry Potter cupcakes (that was a highlight of the year fo sho) and went to the 2012 edition of the Cousins Weekend in Mesquite, Nevada. Then back to school it was from September to December. I had the best apartment of roommates I have had thus far and loved and learned so much from all of them. I also had the hardest semester of school thus far – my classes seemed to be in beast mode. I really learned what I was made of and prioritized my life and realized school had to come before fun and I needed to take it more seriously. And I enjoyed almost every minute of that ;)! I also lived in snow for the first time – it’s not so bad. The semester flew by at lightning speed and when it was over I spent a few days in Utah with the cousins. Then came home to a new house and spent Christmas eve and Christmas morning at the cabin. And to end the year with a bang, today Mariah and I made superhero skirts! 

Color Run and Phoenix Marathon 10k

Kymber and Michael's Wedding
Fall Semester 2012
Harry Potter cupcakes, Diamondbacks game, Superhero skirts

2012 you were good to me and taught me a lot. I thank you for your time.

Dear 2013, I’m ready for you! I have a good feeling about you – and it’s not just because I’ll be graduating with my Bachelor’s degree!  Show me what you’re made of  and I’ll show you what I’m made of! Bring it! :) 

Friday, December 14, 2012

A little change of perspective never hurt anyone...

My family moved last weekend. Weird, right? We lived on good'ol 25th street for 15 years! It's kinda sad... I mean... we made a whiffle ball stadium in our backyard. And we had an NCAA tournament bracket made out of duct tape on an entire wall in our basement. Those right there are just sad to leave. And raise your hand if you ever played lava monster with us downstairs in the pit. Or slid down our stairs with pillows and sleeping bags. Or took part in an epic nerf gun fight with dozens of nerf guns and hundreds of darts over the entire basement floor. Or were chased down the long wood floor with a tailless scorpion from a mean older brother. Or ever walked into our house on a Saturday morning to hear Disney music blasting to every square inch of the house thanks to a very loud, centrally located stereo. Or ever simply walked across the street to our house for lunch (or to miss seminary) in the Poston days. Or ever walked into our laundry room in utter amazement at all the random crafting things and odds and ends my mom had hoarded over the past few decades. Let's just say, lots of good memories were had in that warm little home.

But alas, it is no more.

Over the past few weeks I've been thinking about how weird it's going to be to go home at Christmas to a different house, to one i've never even seen. Will it be home?

Yesterday I went to the temple and as I was waiting in the chapel (I live in Rexburg, you have to wait at least an hour no matter what time of day you go) I opened up the Bible Dictionary to the word temple and started reading. As I read "...Only the home can compare to the temple in sacredness" my whole perspective changed. It just hit me that it doesn't really matter where home is, the size or location of the four walls that surround you aren't what matters. To me home isn't a place, it's a feeling. It's the warm, comfortable, welcoming atmosphere of being with your family. I was reminded that our homes can be a house of the Lord wherever they may be. Memories and good times will come no matter what - they don't depend on the place, but the people and the spirit.

It was a very comforting reminder and change of perspective. I'm grateful for those moments. 

When I get home, instead of thinking of all the changes because we no longer have room for half of our Christmas decorations, i'll just be grateful we have the opportunity of being together this Christmas. We have truly been blessed. (And probably the fact that this whole moving mess has been longer and more stressful than we anticipated has made us more welcome to the fact that it finally happened.) Who knew good things come from stress, uncertainty, and change of plans? (Easy for me to say, I wasn't home for all of it... bahahaha).

See you next week new house!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Adventures in a Straw Maze

 Last night we were invited to go to the straw maze. It sounded fun enough, I had never been to one before and I figured it would be fun to test my directional skills in the dark. So I went.
Ariel view.. during the day.
Well. Turns out straw mazes are actually HAUNTED straw mazes.  I wouldn’t know though because my little friend, Tony, conveniently left that part out when he told me about it.  So we get there and wait in line for 45ish minutes. I was fine until one of the creepy character people came and stood RIGHT behind me. The people around me ran away while I just stood there, looking straight ahead, frozen. Tony and Jarhed started laughing at me – and mistakenly said my name. Mr. Creepy man heard it and repeated it – so then I ran. And he ran after me, calling my name in a sinister voice.

We took this picture later on in line, when I got my hearbeat back.. see how he's just staring at me though?? Creeper.
Memories from a haunted house I went to in highschool came flooding back to my mind - I was being chased out of the house with a vicious man with a CHAINSAW.

 But then, I really DID hear a chainsaw. I don’t remember what I did, but everyone was laughing yet again and said they just wanted to go in with me because my reactions would be funny. So not cool – I need better friends. Ha – just kidding. But I did feel like I was about to enter the Triwizard Tournament. I was sure I was not going to make it out alive. I began compiling crazy scenarios – and past Bones episodes really made that easy.

Before I could escape my imagination, we were at the front of the line and had to enter through a swinging tin door.  

I must have used up all my “fear” neurons while waiting in line, because the actual thing wasn’t that scary.

Except for one part. I was at the front (yeah seriously, who would have thought I would be the brave one in the group? Not me) and we got to one of the characters – I walked past him but everyone else ran away. Well shoot, now I’m alone. But that’s when I heard it. First a thundering of footsteps  then A CHAINSAW. I was hightailing it out of there… but he was following me! There were like 3 groups of people right there in that little intersection and I ran right into some stranger and grabbed onto his jacket. And didn’t let go for like 2 minutes while he just laughed at me (But I’ll just add that he was one of the people running away too… and everyone was running and screaming). Fear does strange things to you I guess.

Then I decided I should find my friends. So I left him and found them soon enough. They pushed me back to the front and we continued on. We met dozens of interesting people - freaky bride, a man with a heinous laugh, a psycho doll, a joker on stilts, a regular joker, a pig (probably the most startling except for the chainsaw man – whom I did NOT get a good look at), a gorilla, lots of just creepy painted bloody faces and more.
When we were around the bride, Kayley screamed Tony’s name – the bride heard it and started calling him too. Ha. Payback.

After 45 minutes we were still not out. And I swear the characters were starting to recognize us. That could be because I talked to them every time, though. But really it just became frustrating and not frightening. When we finally made it out, it was just Paige, Jarhed, Tony, Kayley, Kate and I. Everyone else had made it out long before. (But i'm going to make myself feel better by saying it's because Jason had been through it the day before so he knew the way and everyone else just followed him)
I guess our directional skills are not really skills. We went in many a cirlces. 
But all in all, it was a pretty fun night! 

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Talk of the Town

So. General conference this last weekend. So good. So so so good! But I feel this way every time… There’s just something wonderful about listening to our leaders direct and guide us through the inspiration of the Lord. It’s always one of my favorite weekends ever! Especially this one because I was in Utah. (More on that later… maybe :)

ANYWAY, there was one certain aspect of this little conference that has been the talk of the town, probably the talk of Mormons everywhere! (and sadly, it’s not the new announced temple in Tucson, making SIX in AZ… we passed Idaho, baby!)

Nope, not that. But something that has been mentioned in every class of mine, in the library and in line at the testing center. I hear bits and pieces of these conversations every time I walk across campus (all four times a day). It’s EVERYWHERE.

It’s the new missionary ages.

Not going to lie, my heart did a little skippy thing when I heard President Monson announce this little fact on Saturday morning. 18 years for boys (if they have graduated high school) and 19 years for girls. So crazy!

Why so much emotion, though? Maybe I just think it’s weird because my whole life it’s always been 19 for boys and 21 for girls. Maybe it’s because it’s going to change the whole culture at church schools and in large populations of LDS single adults. Maybe it’s because I’m really interested in how it’s going to change -- How many more girls will go? Will this add more or less pressure for girls? Will the girls who stay get married super fast? Will people start marrying people their own age? Will this change the stereotypes of sister missionaries? Will more high school sweethearts get married? Will girls start getting less education? Is there already an outpouring of 19-21 year old girls talking to their bishops? Will there be a mad rush to the MTC from June to September every year? And how long will it take for these changes to occur? Will boys still attend school for a semester or two to try living on their own before they leave?

I don’t know. I still think it’s crazy to think about.

But this is what I know: There’s a reason for all of it. And it's a good one.

And this is what I think: This will increase the number of missionaries out in the field because there’s a need for more. The church is steadily growing. And society is getting more and more wicked and strange...  And it’s not going to get any better. We need to become stronger and get this gospel out to all corners of the earth. It’s time to prepare. We’re in the public eye right now with Mitt Romney in the presidential election; we need to use this to our advantage. We have the greatest message here on the earth; we need to share it with everyone! The time is now! The Lord needs more. And although this change will change the dynamics of the people serving, it's not about the people. It's about the work.

Wonderfully, exciting times! I’m definitely grateful to be a member of this church. And the blessings of continuing revelation. 

Monday, October 1, 2012

School is taking over my life

Actually it's not present tense, it has already happened.
Both last week and this week I have literally planned out just about every waking minute of everyday. And if something ends up taking longer or shorter than planned, problems ensue.

How do I have time to blog? I don't.
Back I go, memorizing the 12 cranial nerves: names, numbers, functions, locations.

The time has come... the time I honestly thought might never happen... I love school... but... i'm officially ready to be done.

On a lighter note, which nerve do you use for gambling?

(the vagus nerve) bahahahahahahahah!!! Ok, not that funny... but still.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Friday, September 14, 2012

1 down, 13 to go! :)

It's one week into the semester, yet it seems like it should be halfway over by now! Busy busy busy! Last weekend I kinda had a bad attitude about school starting, change is always kinda weird for me... It takes me a while to get settled I guess.  But there's no going back now so I might as well just enjoy it, right? :)
 I'm going to be soo busy! But busy isn't bad... AND i'm really excited for my classes! I say that now... wait 2 months or so and I might be singing a different tune.

I’m taking:

One of the most challenging classes for most psychology majors (and the teacher takes a little too much pride in that fact), Behavioral Neurobiology. It even sounds hard. That class in and of itself is going to be a LOT of work, and very time consuming, but should be really interesting too. The brain is fascinating. Wish me luck.

*Social Psychology -- which I am most excited for! People watching, why do people do what they do? Why do people act differently in different situations? These are the things that interest me most in psychology! Plus my professor is a very funny French guy. I LOVE French people! I had him last semester & he’s one of my favorite people ever!

*Adult development -- It’s giving me a fear of turning old. And it makes me want to drink milk every single day. I better buy Nesquik or something stat! :)

*A sociology class that I never remember the name of – This little class is… interesting. Well yes, it is interesting because sociology is interesting.  But the set-up to the class is different than any I’ve ever had. He’s the kind of teacher who jams his classes super tight at first… I mean, I was sitting on the ground the first day for crying out loud! But he knows so many people will drop that first day that it all pans out in the end. He starts with a lecture comparing his class to teaching kids to swim by pushing them into the deep end… then goes on to introduce a killer research assignment that scares away a quarter of the class. Nice. But the weird part is… Even if you do ALL the assignments PERFECTLY, you can only get a c in the class. Saaaay whaaaatt? In order to get a B you have to do all the assignments correctly, and then do some additional work, approved by him, that corresponds to things we talk about in class.  (i.e. extra research assignments; book reports; GRE or grad school prep, etc.) To get an A you have to do all the assignments correctly, even MORE additional work than B status, then, during finals week, you have to go to his office with all of your work in a portfolio and explain to him why you deserve an A and defend your position. He takes the whole “taking learning into your own hands/Know and DO/unto à into/take a step into darkness” thing to an extreme level. Well, Mr. PhD, Challenge accepted. Plus, he’s also rather funny and I’m sure good habits will derive if nothing else.

*Book of Mormon. Self-explanatory. I love the Book of Mormon and there is always so much to learn… this is bound to be a great class.

So there you have it. My next 3 months in a nutshell! I’m very excited! :)

Happy weekend! 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Keeping it Classy in College

Remember my "classy" goals for 2012? Well this may or may not have anything to do with those…  But it’s funny nonetheless!

My five roommates and I all spent the weekend unpacking and getting settled into our apartment. None of us knew each other previously, so we got to know each other and laughed a whole lot. We also proposed the idea of making Sunday dinners together.

Sunday came and Megan decided to go ahead and be the first to make our weekly Sunday dinner. Well our apartment was still kind of a mess; there were empty and half empty boxes everywhere (and still are for that matter). So when she went to set the table, we weren’t sure if we were all going to fit. Kayley quickly announced that she would just eat on the couch.  But before she could even finish, Megan responded, “NO! This is our good Sunday meal. We will all sit down at the table. It’s one day a week for 30 minutes, you can do it.” (or something to that effect… I don’t quite remember now). I laughed at her quick INSISTINCE on eating a proper meal and made a joke about how classy we would become because of it. Before long, everyone started in on the classy jokes, except Megan. She took them in lightly but underneath she was becoming COMPLETELY DETERMINED to make this meal classy.


She started setting the table. “We need ambiance” so she brought in a lamp from her bedroom and turned off the lights. 
We all decided to play classical musical softly in the background... (i'm getting cultured and classy)

“Does anyone have placemats?” Uhh… no we’re in college. Who has placemats? So she went into the bathroom and pulled 6 green hand towels and set them under the plates.

“We need flowers or something” I offered to gather all the toothbrushes and put them in a cup/vase for a floral-like centerpiece, but she declined my invitation.

As Kariann is putting a bagged salad on the table, “It can’t go on like that, put it in a bowl!”

As Megan is searching through the knives trying to find 6 that match, Kariann adds, “We’re eating spaghetti we don’t need knives.” To which Megan replies, “That’s not the important thing, we need a proper table”

All the while the classy jokes from the peanut gallery were firing in rapid succession. I was almost on the ground I was laughing so hard.

Then it was dinner time. Classy meals can be delicious as well. This one sure was.

Pinky's out. Classy dinner #1 was a success! Thanks Megan! :)

Next week Kariann is going to make a Chilean dinner.  When it’s my turn I’ll probably make pigs in a blanket and have everyone sit on the floor on a blanket or in a fort. Haha I kid. Sort of. 

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Techno Shower Raves

This is a view of our bathroom. 

Does anything seem weird or out of place here? Anything at all? Pay no attention to the overflowing trash can… it was the only one we had when we first moved in.

No? How about in this one?

Take a look at the location of that light switch.

It’s OUTSIDE of the bathroom.

 There is only one explanation… the bathroom was designed by an only child. No human with siblings or roommates would ever put a light switch on the outside of a bathroom.

If one of us suffers a seizure before the semester is over, it’s probably from the techno strobe light experience we receive every so often. 

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Serious case of the diamondbacks blues...

So I live in Idaho now... and mostly there are 3 things that I miss about AZ. My family, the sun, and the Diamondbacks. Oh and the 3 week American history tour my family is currently enjoying... but i'm receiving a hilarious play-by-play from Mariah, so it kinda makes it worth it. A little. Ok not really, but i'm over it. 

But out of all of those I'm fairly certain that the one I miss the most is.... the diamondbacks. Maybe because I can still talk to my family and know i'll seem them soon. and because every once in a blue moon the sun comes out for a day or so. but i'm missing THREE QUARTERS OF THE ONLY 2012 BASEBALL SEASON THE DIAMONDBACKS WILL EVER PLAY! I am not handling this very well. I check the scores pretty often, but it's just not the same.  I don't know how the individual players are doing. I'm missing the EXCITEMENT. Whoever says baseball is not an exciting sport, obviously.... just... I don't even know what to say.... they just don't know anything. There is a rather large section of my heart devoted to baseball, the Diamondbacks in particular. And there is LOTS of excitement. My heart has started racing many a times during these games, launching me to my feet, with my hands on my head. The walk off homers, the crazy catches, the strikeouts or ground-balls to get outta jams, come from behind wins, rookie moments, throwing base runners out, sweeping a rival team, clutch hits, the driving energy as they round the bases. Momentum is not something you can read about on the play-by plays, it's something you need to experience. Plus all the season fluff. You know, the jokes and pranks the players play, Ryan Robert's fierce vein popping facial expressions, the fist pumps, the dog piles, the outfield sandwiches, the legends race, Mark Grace and Derek Sutton's rants, the brawls, the suspensions, pitchers nailing players in the head, managers getting kicked out of games. Everything. I'm missing it all. 

(Photo Courtesy of the Diamondbacks fb page... who ALWAYS posts pictures, making my case of the dback blues 50 times worse!)

First on my agenda when I go home will definitely be a Diamondbacks game! And an outside BBQ... even in the 115 degree weather! I'm SOOO stoked!!!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Spoke too soon...

Well my friends, it was too good to be true... Rexburg is no longer warm. In fact, it didn't even get above the 50's today. Seriously I don't even know how it is possible to drop 45 stinkin' degrees OVERNIGHT!! But anything is possible in this Idaohan town. Yesterday there were RECORD HIGH'S around the state and tonight we have to bring our flower planters in because it's suppossed to get BELOW FREEZING. I haven't been able to entirely wrap my mind around this concept. But at least i'm being cultured.  Later tonight i'm supposed to go on a date to the park to play kickball and volleyball. But it's just too cold, windy and now raining.. so we'll be doing an indoor activity now. It's June and we're stuck inside because it's too cold to be outside... I live in Idaho now.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Summer lovin'

Today is a GLORIOUS day! Why you ask? Well how about because it's 90 degrees in Rexburg!! 90!! Mmmhhmm! It's BEAUTIFUL!! I just want to put on shorts and bask in the beauty! I'm seriously so happy. One downside... our apartment doesn't have air conditioning. It's a slight bummer, but i'll take it over barely surviving the coldness of April. May was bipolar... 70 one day 40 the next. Here's to hoping June stays this warm forever!! :)

Friday, May 25, 2012

This is why this is my major

"Magicians pull rabbits out of hats,
Psychologists pull habits out of rats."

They rhyme. & I love to rhyme.

So maybe something good came from the little albert experiment after all.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy 100th Arizona!!

100 Years
Celebrating Arizona's centennial

100 years ago today
was a proud moment for the US of A
the 48th & greatest state was born.
Mighty ARIZONA – for all to adorn!

With its natural beauty, a glorious sight
One of a kind sunsets almost every single night!
Sedona’s red rocks make a worthy companion
To our wonder of the world – the one & only Grand Canyon!
Pine trees up north, saguaros throughout
Help this place stay lovely – even while in a drought!

With dry riverbeds 10 months out of the year,
to us a creek is a river & a REAL river is just weird!
Water sources are dirty & green in this lovely place
except lakes Powell and Mead – Our saving grace (thanks NV & UT)

Oh Arizona: Where natural disasters are never a concern
but 10 minutes outside leads to a blistery sunburn!
where 5 days a year it not just rains but POURS!
& all the neighborhood kids run quickly outdoors.
If you don’t like dust you should probably move…
because we have dust storms on steroids… called a haboob!

We take pride in being the wisest state in the nation
recognizing daylight savings time is just an irritation!
Also for making the bolo tie the official state neckwear
& having more boats per capita than any other state – how queer

3 cheers to this glorious state I love
with towns you’ve probably never heard of…
Pima, Jerome, Kingman, Globe & Bisbee??
But each with hundreds of years of their own history!
We’re home to the legendary shootout at the OK corral
Where Wyatt Earp probably left many with a low morale.
We also host the lost Dutchman mysterious tale
With the whereabouts of the gold mine no one can nail!

I love this state in it’s scorching hot glory
& that my friends, is definitely a true story!
With history so neat
This state cannot be beat!
This desert landscape is usually a beauty
& with our perfect winters we probably sound snooty!
Arizona sure has a lot to give..
That’s why it’s the NUMBER ONE place to live!

Here’s my ode to my favorite state!
Where many more wonderful years await!

Happy 100th Arizona!!

Ps. There are Native Americans galore
& mormons there are even more!
We have the suns, Cardinals, and Diamondbacks!
Go to a game and eat some crackerjacks!
The spring training cactus league is grand
& many important people have roamed this land
The dbacks won a championship… that was fun
Ok now I really am done.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Classy and Cultural 2012!

Apparently this is the year for c’s.
So, In addition to my efforts to become more cultured, I’ve chosen another goal for 2012. The word is class. Ha, how classy. This idea stemmed from a wonderful quote by the one and only Audrey Hepburn, a very classy lady.
‎"For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone.”
Well actually I read that quote and my thought process went something like this… I like Audrey Hepburn. She’s got class. I’m a fan of class. I am not as classy as I want to be. AHA. Goal for this year… be more classy. In addition to being cultured. They will go hand-in-hand.
So there. Now you understand.
Anyway, I googled the word class and what did I find? The definition “stylish and elegant”
Well that’s not exactly the definition I was thinking. Here’s my version:

1. Speak kindly and carefully. Think before speaking. Choose words carefully. And stick to the good’ol saying,”If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” Gossip, name calling, and insensitiveness seem to be the opposite of class. Stay away from negative thoughts and feelings.

2. Say thank you. Let others know you are grateful for them and what they do for you. Including Heavenly Father who has given you the greatest gift of all. Gratitude.

3. Seek Wisdom and learning. In addition to my 50 classic novels, spend more time in the Book of Mormon and old conference talks. Religious, political (Presidential campaign this year) and cultural studies!

4. Spruce up. Exercise regularly & take care of your body. Stay clean and elegant. Dress up on random days. This does not mean being vain… no, no, no. If you feel good about yourself, you will act better. Fact.

5. Shine. Find the confidence to be who I want to be. Respect myself so others will too.

So this really may not have anything to do with Audrey Hepburn at all. I want to become the person I want to be and know I can be. I want to improve my relationships with my Heavenly Father, my family, and my friends. I want to be more self-assured and comfortable with myself so I can be the Instrument I need to be in the Lord’s hands to do the work I came here to do.

Bring it 2012! It’s going to be one classy, cultural ride. & it’s going to be AWESOME!