Thursday, December 9, 2010

Who cries at their last class?

Me. That's who. For the geek, the one who sits in the front of the classroom with learning/glistening eyes, the last day of class is bitter-sweet. Bitter because, let's be honest, I really LOVE school. Pay me to learn baby...I will do it. I am sure you are asking if I have considered a PhD. Yes, yes I have. I am still tempted by it, to be sure. But for some reason, the stars have aligned, Almighty has spoken, off to the 9-5 for me.

But, my last class is also sweet. I get to move forward into the unknown. I am not as scared as I used to be about the unknown. In fact, I know it will be refreshing. Not that I am need of a 'new start,' because I love things as they are....but because it means that I will be challenged, something I find to be exhilarating. Challenge for me is like flying in an airplane, looking down at the world below....what a thrill!

And so my dear friends, tonight is my last class of grad school... and I'm sure that I will let out a resounding 'HAZAA' at the end...but in my eyes, there will be tears.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Hair Diary

Ask my cousin Heidi or my Aunt Cindy - they could tell you how they would often long to play with my hair as a child, but I wouldn't let them. It was nothing personal...but the only person that could 'mess' with my hair was my dad.

Since I can remember, I have always had long hair. My Grandma Burton and my mom share a story that continues to be the tale of all hair woes. When my mom was younger, she used to swim all the time, making her platinum head of hair turn a vicious shade of green, at least, that is what my Grandma tells me. All my mom remembers is my Grandma chopping her long hair off. Being thin, her hair often matted to her head, making it seem less like a bob. My mom said she felt like she was a boy until she could grow her hair out again. Ever since then, my mom has been a huge proponent of long hair. Both Jamie and I had no choice....long hair it was.

Growing up in Scottsdale, both Jamie and I lived in the pool. I remember the distinct smell of Ultraswim, the best shampoo and conditioner ever that helped us get all the chlorine out of our hair. I also distinctly remember the smell of Infusium, a leave-in conditioner-like substance that helped mom brush out our oh-so-ever-chlorinated hair. The swimming part of my hair was fun. I could hide behind my long strands in the water, pretending I was a mermaid. The brushing part of my hair post-swimming was SO painful. My mom is this very gentle and sweet lady, so you can imagine that she would slowly, ever so slowly, brush our hair. I think this mild brushing contributed to how tender my head became. I therefore hated when other people would want to play with or attempt brushing my hair.

The only person that I would let get a brush through my hair was my dad. He would brush fast. Like a band aid ripping off, he would take 10 strokes and all the gnarls would be gone. It was amazing. My dad was also the only one who could put my hair in a pony tail or pig tails because there were absolutely no bumps. I remember hating bumps.

Sure, I have come a long way since then. Every time I get close to cutting my hair, I will tell my mom and she will shriek "No, don't do it. When I was 9 years old, your Grandma chopped my hair off....blah blah blah (insert dialogue here) and I will never forget it! If you cut your hair, you will regret it! Don't do it! I love your long hair!"

Alas, I have had my hair cut a couple times since moving away from home. I have never regretted the cutting part. I have, however, regretted the stage where it rests on my shoulders. It is a very awkward stage for hair, almost like the hair is confused. Does it want to lay straight? Decide to be curly? It is just plain awkward, right?

So, lately, I have had the hankering to get a 'professional' doo. My hair is about to the bottom of my bra strap (a little shorter than I have worn it prior to this year). My top layer is just to my shoulders, a little past that awkward length. I keep wanting to do something about it...and then, I will have a really good hair day. I end up smacking myself for even thinking or considering cutting it.

I dressed up in this old-lady shirt the other day that I LOVE. I bought it at the thrift store and it reminds me of something my Grandma would wear. It is a silk pink, gray, black and white blouse with shoulder pads. It buttons in the back and has a high collar and a little bit of a puffy sleeve. With my black pencil skirt, knee high boots, antique jewelry and tailored white coat....I felt very stylish. But then, oh then....there was my hair. I can't describe it. It just sparkled. It laid on my head just perfectly the day I wore this outfit, too.

This circumstance alone convinced me that if hair will get me my dream job!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

1 Down

1 paper down

1 paper to go

1 final to study for and then....


Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Random thoughts

Thought #1: I noticed that when I am with people who are drinking alcoholic beverages, that I generally tend to get my fill of what they are having times 3 in water. Tonight, my Capstone class met at Fiddler's Elbow for one final hoorah and a discussion of ethics in public administration. While some of my comrades enjoyed their on-tap drinks, I dove into a hot chocolate and 5 glasses of water. That's right, 5 glasses. I noticed that I did the same thing at my high school reunion. I was in the bathroom most of the evening. Strange, right?

Thought #2: It is really unnecessary for people to drive 25 in a 30 mph zone.

Thought #3: I love the bathroom stalls in the Tucson Mall on Broadway. It's true! In the stall, they have places where you can sit your child, as well as holders (not just hangers) for purses or shopping bags. I would like to thank the genius who made it possible for me to avoid setting my bag next to the toilet on the floor. Bless you.

Thought #4: I get some sort of weird satisfaction knowing that there is a person I know in the car next to me, or near me. I don't know why....

Thought #5: I plan to walk during my graduation ceremony in May even though I am graduating in December. I am truly a sentamentalist (word I just made up) at heart and find that I have deep feelings about why I should participate in this tradition. While some may think it foolish, or unnecessary, I like the symbolism of walking from this part of my life and crossing the platform to another phase...the unknown part of post-grad. There is just some kind of satisfaction knowing that I have accomplished something....remarkable. It is no surprise that I also enjoy crossing things off lists.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

I will take the cake

SPOILER ALERT: He swears at the end. Those of you who don't like swearing, hit 'stop' after he is done with the Cake or Death skit!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Baby Toe

Every time I drive for extended periods of time, my legs often squawk at me in a way only I can hear. They long to be stretched, shaken and danced out of their motionless state. I generally have ways to keep them from falling asleep. I jitter, stretch as much as possible given the confined space, and I often take LONG stretch breaks when I stop to use the restroom, fill up with gas or get something to eat. On most occasions you will find me at gas stations doing some yoga type moves all for the effort of enhancing my driving experience. If I don't do this, I have old-man-type joint and muscle pain in my legs and lower back that really should only be reserved for old men....sorry guys, but it's true.

I have also noticed that when I do sprint workouts in the pool that I often experience a tingling sensation in my legs. I self diagnose that this stems from muscle stimulation (and sometimes overuse of muscles) and low blood sugar. While I am constantly trying to find a diet that allows me to take full advantage of my strength, I haven't found anything that will take away the sensation of tingles in my legs. I have noticed that the tingles are not coming as frequently as they used to...perhaps a product of my continuous swimming habit. However, there is one thing that still puzzles me. That's the subject of this baby toe. Sometimes both baby toes fall asleep, but mostly it is my right baby toe. I can't seem to get that little guy to wake up.

I bought myself a new pair of tennis shoes (HAZAA, it has been close to 7 years since the last pair). While the comfort of these new shoes is astounding, they certainly enhance the ability I have to feel the asleepness of my baby toe. (Yes, I made another new word: asleepness). In fact, baby toe Blau is asleep right now. I am sure I could conjure up some theories that will back up this mystifying symptom....but as long as I am aware of it, I can call out to it, tell it to liven up and hope that when I wake up in the morning, it will still be its asleepness state.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


I haven't been very politically involved in the past. The last time I voted was during the Presidential election of 2004. Since then, I haven't really felt like I should vote either because I didn't feel like I was familiar enough with the candidates, or because I didn't have enough faith in my vote to really make a difference. I am sure I am not the only one who felt or feels this way.

Right now, I am sitting on a hill near the Union at the University of Utah during their Impact Day, where I have a chance to meet all the candidates running for office. I am surprised that not very many people have come with their issues to discuss with the candidates running. I hear a lot of whining against the government, and especially politicians, but not very many people take the opportunity to come and see what these decision-makers have to say in regards to these issues. I used to be that person. I used to whine about government this, policymakers that....and you know what, it didn't do me any good. I recently had a conversation with someone who decidedly doesn't vote...and yet gripes about government all the time. Sorry sir, you don't have a right to complain. Was that harsh?? I also did not have a right to whine.

As part of my coursework, we discussed citizenship and what it means to be a citizen. While a lot of being a citizen is about family and community, it also means being active. I regret not having been a true citizen of the United States up until now. And I am.

With that said, I laugh at these different political platforms. Laughing really at how simple it is to find out about the issues and what is important to society right now. I find that I am impressed with politicians who have specific items that they are hoping to pass with realistic expectations of how to accomplish those tasks. I laugh and support all libertarians....thank you for your passion. My favorite platform, while I may not be voting for him, was from District #3. He is running libertarian and said "I am not going to blah blah blah, blah blah blah you. I am here to guarantee your rights and if the popular vote is gay marriage, or legalizing marijuana, I am going to guarantee your rights and fight for them too." It was awesome. While I don't support these issues, I too am for freedom.

I also love the Constitution runners. I agree that the principles of the Constitution need to be adhered to once again, but it is SO funny to me that these candidates are so busy dicing and slicing the political parties that I have no idea what their campaign is. While upholding the Constitution, there still needs to be a way to pass these initiatives, whether driven by the two-headed beast or not. I too am for the Constitution.

Republican or Democrat, the main issue I am concerned with is what education is going to look like with the election of these officials. With these 10-year plans that are proposed and part of overall state government initiatives, who is to say that these elected officials will be able to guarantee the successful implementation and support bills in order to keep the initiative going?

Sitting here and listening to these platforms makes me realize that I need to be active in discussing those issues that really matter to me, my family and my future family. Generally, I also feel that "We the People" is a failing idea or principle. Whether or not we agree with "politics" we still have a responsibility to be I feel like I am campaigning....but you get the point. I am for being a citizen.

Do your homework. Get out and vote.

And I will too!!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Anyone looking for a professional cry baby?

If I could get hired to cry for a living....I would blow all the competition out of the water!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Food in Teeth

When I see someone, anyone...including strangers, with food in their teeth, I generally let them know, because Heaven forbid that they walk around with food in their teeth all day! Sure, it is all part of this 'looking good in front of people' idea that we all seem to have in our minds....but that is not the point. The point is, that I would hope someone would tell me if I had food in my teeth, or that my fly was down. That is the hope anyway, right? So, what do you do when someone joins you in the library at your table who smells like last year's socks and team jersey?

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

I'm sorry, but...

Doesn't it seem like when someone is apologizing that it should be just apology? It seems that if the apology is TRULY genuine that someone will just say "I'm sorry." Even if the reason why they were late was due to circumstances beyond their control, apology with REASON really isn't an apology, right? Apologies are frequently followed up by reasons, which by today's standards, have become excuses. "Honey, I am sorry that I forgot to pick up the dry cleaning, but I...," "I'm sorry I am late, but I got a flat tire." While the circumstances may not have been avoidable, the point is that an apology wants for no excuse. It should be what it is. An apology.

Onto a whole other point completely, I can't help but think of what crosses my mind every time I get excited about an assignment. That's right....I just get so excited that I give up other things in my life. Some people think this is abnormal of me...that I would rather study and do an assignment rather than go on a trip. Tripping is fun and exciting that is for sure! I am not at all diminishing the validity and funness of a great trip (I just made funness a word). No, no...I am just merely pointing out that I take a lot of pleasure in collecting data surrounding the implications and changes of educational policy.

As a matter of controversy, sometimes I just CAN'T help but think, "I'm sorry I want to go out with you, but I would rather be studying" ;)

Monday, August 30, 2010

Repercussions of dropping a class

Since I started college, undergrad and everything, I have never dropped a class. It's true. I always thought if I messed with the system, that something would mess up and all my hopes and dreams post-graduation would come to a halt if I dropped a class, or something else really bad would happen. Imagine my consternation when I attended a class and felt like it didn't fit my needs. I, for the first time ever, had to drop the class. I told the professor that while I adored him, I thought the syllabus didn't meet what I was looking for. I hoped that I didn't offend him in my decision. I thought of all the things that could go wrong because I dropped this class, after having invested some substantial hours in the readings, etc. Little did I know that one repercussion would be running into him and his daughter a little awkwardly during a rainstorm, right after my swim class, preceding my bite of protein bar.

First, my hair was wet from swimming. I figured since it was raining, drying it would be moot. Second, I had to make small chit chat as he joked with me (before noticing it was me) if I had room for him and his daughter under my umbrella (which I did)...the chit chat was a reminder to me that I dropped his awesome class, of which I really could have been interested and wonder if I made the right decision. Third, whilst I shared my umbrella with him and his daughter, I didn't notice the huge piece of faux-chocolate that had rested itself ever so carefully on my bottom lip. Upon noticing the chocolate from my protein bar about 5 minutes after we parted ways, I shrugged my shoulders and laughed.

I can rest assured that at least the repercussion of dropping a class was this little awkward interaction, and not something else drastic.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Songs of Worship?

I have the opportunity to volunteer at the Salt Lake temple in the cafeteria. Every once in a while our kitchen staff sings great melodies and hymns, always inspiring....and for some reason, I end up getting songs like Sunshine of Your Love by Cream, Girl by Beck and Angel of Music from Phantom of the Opera stuck in my head. Sacrilegious?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Gum on the Bottom of Shoes

I parked at the Institute building the other day on campus while I ran around distributing fliers for an upcoming 5k I am helping out with. I remember getting back in my car after a 2-hour stint of pinning, taping and running around trying to find out where approved bulletin boards were. Thankfully, I had help and it went a lot faster than I thought.

Upon driving away in my Toyota out of the parking lot, I felt like one of my tires was acting a little wanky. I also observed the klunk klunk klunk sound coming from the front of my car. I surely thought that it was a flat tire, which I have been privy to in many a recent past. I pulled into the median because there was not a shoulder. While it may not have been the safest place, I knew I could at least get out and examine the damage. Upon checking all of my tires, I was bewildered to see that they were all fully inflated. I wasn't really sure what was going on, so I looked a little closer. To my astonishment, my front right tire had a huge "platform" of tar stuck to it. I started laughing. I had never seen anything like it before...ever. I recalled that the parking lot just had its cracks filled ..but the tar was not fresh or anything and couldn't possibly have a disastrous affect on little ole tires, right?

What does one do with tar stuck to their tires? I sure didn't know. Could I have picked it off myself? If not,
should I have taken it in to a tire shop? That almost seemed too easy. I decided to drive to a safer location. Upon my was just too much for me to handle. My steering wheel shook, which made my Relief Society arms shake (made me realize how much I should lift weights), and it felt like my tire was coming off. I didn't get very far until I pulled over to the side of the road and started picking tar off with my ice scraper. But then I had this thought that "one day it will snow, there will be ice on my windows, and I will have forgotten that I used the scraper to get tar off a tire and I would scratch my windows." So, I started using my hands. I didn't get very far before the heat of the day got to me, and I hopped in my car and drove home.

Who would have thought that having tar on a tire is very much like having gum stuck on the bottom of your shoe?

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Fuzzy Socks

I have a good friend who is about to leave to go to Penn State to become a famous writer. I often told him that he needed to start a blog, not just to post information about himself online, but to practice writing. How great to have a portfolio at your fingertips, and to turn some assignments into some great blog posts. He always said that he wanted a blog, but never really followed through with it. I challenged him to start writing for at least 10 minutes a day. If you recall, my very first blog post talked about Nancy Williams, my public opinion professor at Utah State who encouraged us to write for 10 minutes a day, without an internal editor telling you that your writing had to be amazing. My friend was stuck thinking that if he didn’t have anything ‘good’ to write, then what was the point. The point is to get into the practice of writing without an editor, to create that free-flow of thought with no interruptions. We then compiled a list of things that he should write about. From things as silly as “My first haircut was…” to “If my girlfriend were a vampire,” the list is used as a prompt to get him writing. I decided to take the challenge with him. Periodically, I will post writings based upon this list. And while it may not be the best writing you will ever read, I am still very excited to free-flow….ah, like dancing…but better J *I have edited the contents of my unedited free flow as not to confuse the reader

I have always been one of those people who goes to clothing stores and shops by touch. I am drawn to all things fuzzy, small, frilly, colorful and blingy. While I never really purchase these items, it is like a ‘moth to a flame’ and I can’t help but touch in order to appreciate. I find myself having to hold my hands in back of me, clasping them sometimes white knuckled, when I see a piece of art at a museum that I really want to touch. The thought always goes through my head, “I wonder what would happen if I just reached my hand out, ever so swiftly.” But don’t worry, I don’t ever follow through, but the fact is….it is a recurring thought…and surely fear of disobedience is what prevents me from doing it. Regardless, I love the sense of touch.

I once heard a story of a girl who was born without nerve endings, or something crazy like that. The story goes that the doctor said that she had no ability to touch and feel. WARNING GRAPHIC SCENE APPROACHING: One day she woke up and had gorged out her eyes, leaving her blind. GRAPHIC SCENE OVER. The doctor commented that he would never wish this kind of handicap on anyone. Not having the ability to touch or feel….what a tragedy.

During those games of would you rather’ a familiar question asks to choose between which sense I could do without. After thinking about it for some time, I still don’t have an answer. As much as I am fond of touch, I am also fond of hearing. Music is a huge part of my life. It is quite often that I will be driving to some destination, a song will come on, and for that one moment, life is peaceful, serene, happy. Even if happiness is what I am feeling, the music adds and reverberates beauty, simplicity, memory, hope….I could go on. There is not one day that has passed where I am not touched by music. The same goes with birds in the morning, thunder that follows the lightning, the sound of rain hitting the trees behind my apartment, knowing and distinguishing the sounds of a failed starter versus a failed alternator, little children laughing, different kinds of sneezes, soft spoken words, loudness of a sports stadium, distant and near fireworks, flames, water running….I could go on.

Then there is the sense of smell. As one who had the most sensitive smellers in the world, sometimes this is a blessing and sometimes this is a curse. It is unfortunate that I have ability to decipher from your burp, what you had for lunch. It is also unfortunate that I can smell the occurrence of future rotting potatoes. I once dated a guy who yelled at me for throwing out my milk because I thought it had an expired smell. As much as this is a curse, it is also a blessing. Almost as much as music, I love food! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it. I love trying new things and experiencing new tastes. In addition to this love comes an appreciation for new aromas. Some of my friends who visit my apartment often comment of the smell of the hallway. While they may consider it smelling horrid, I can smell when my sweet neighbors from Lebanon make paella and add that fresh shrimp and chili powder. A touch of basil to roasting peppers, the smell of melting butter, balsamic-glazed steaks marinades, orange and lemon peel potatoes, a touch of this a touch of that…..adds to the symphony of aroma I get to smell. And while I have attributed most of my favorite smelling experiences to food…I can’t forget those other marvelous times where I would wake up in the middle of the night in Sierra Vista and smell the rain coming in. I can’t forget the smell of my sweet little niece’s head after a bath, the smell of that amazing apricot gum, the smell of old spice deodorant, leather jackets, clean bathrooms, cement stairwells, old books, the list goes on. Sure some of these things are hard to imagine loving the smell of, but believe me when I say that without it, I would be lost.

Ah and to taste….well, that goes without saying.

‘Tis the ode to what popped into my head when I had 10 minutes to write about fuzzy socks.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Jane Austen Fight Club

No longer good society. Three cheers for this brilliant masterpiece!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Geek Alert

Yuppers...that's me...big time geek coming through. You can catch me in the front row of the classroom desks. When I am not there, I am doing my usual Utah summer craziness. A little catch up on my life from May-June.
  • Started my ethics class. I had three different weekends: Fridays from 5-9 and Saturdays from 8-5. While you may be experiencing an "Oh my gosh" moment, I am sad these are over! Really! We discussed things from different definitions of lying, the ethics of journalism when exposing high profile individuals, ethics of bureaucracy and when it is right to defect in order to protect the common good, public integrity, torture tactics, etc. My favorite discussions revolved around this series called "Ethics in America" put on PBS a while ago. check out the young Peter Jennings!
  • Denver baby: Love the sis! Jamie and Jordan moved to Denver...and I get to visit them all the time! YAY! My first drive that way, I couldn't help but want to pull over at Little America. Seriously, on my drive there, I saw at least 50 signs asking me too. From ads that talked about their amazing ice cream cones, playground and pool for the kiddies, to the ads about having in-house mechanics. I decided that I would only stop over if the man on the mechanic billboard would fix my va voom! Well, Jamie sure knows how to treat a girl. I was certainly the 2nd princess of the home. Of course, we can't forget Allie-bear. She is #1. Jamie took me to the zoo....a fave past time, and we got to play downtown'ish' with my dear middle-high school friend! What a riot...I loved it. Wanna come again and going to. Thanks Jordan for sharing your wifey!
  • My birthday! For my birthday, my parents bought me a flight to visit them...I figured nothing is really gonna get better than being with the rents and bro on my birthday. They always show me a good time. Mom had all these activities including sushi like 3 times in a week (amazing), homecooked roast by daddy...if any of you have had it, you know it is the best in the world, a great attempt at pudding delight (which I requested for my b-day cake), walking and hiking with the bro, hanging with my fancy Aunt Kay, a night at Coronado with mama (girls night) and riding 20 miles with our bikes the next day...sheesh. In addition, my good friend Heidi (now living in Salt Lake) celebrated her birthday in San Diego with another dear friend, Scott Downey, who showed us all the proper way to make steak and chocolate chip cookies (of which I had maybe 10).
  • Spray paint art: my hot little bro is quite the artist. He showed me a thing or two about using spray paint and turning it into art. The little dude is not only hot, but an incredible artist. Go for the gold Bry....
  • Birds are not stupid. I have often told friends that birds have just seemed to get dumber as time has gone by. For example, I drive down the road and see birds harvesting on a new carcass splat on the road. My hope is that as I slow from 55 to 50, that these birds will look up and take flight. Lately it seems that their reflexes have been a little on the poor side. I could contribute this handicap to air quality, loss of habitat, quality of carcass...alas, I used to claim that they were stupid. How much they proved me wrong. While visiting Coronado Beach as part of my birthday visit, a family left their belongings (including food) unattended while the seagulls took charge. I will just let these pics speak for themselves. Moral of the story: birds are not as dumb as I thought.
  • Snorkling date: went on seriously one of the best dates with my long-term distance, no expectations BF to La Jolla. I haven't been on too many dates in San Diego close to the beach....I could get used to it! Didn't really get to see too many fish due to the red tide...but the fish I did see, including my ever-so-water intense date, was quite remarkable! Followed up by one of the best sandwiches with hummus, sun-dried tomato-cucumbers and balsamic vinegar...does it get any better?
  • Beginning of two more classes. HOLLER. What is with me and summer school? I can't help it, I am in love! I just had to take 4 classes this summer. In addition to the ethics class, I am taking Foundations of Education Leadership and Policy, and Administrative Law. My American Government class started in August...right before school starts for fall. Why the rush, you ask? BECAUSE people....I found out that I am graduating in December!! Can I get a whoop whoop. In other words, swoot-woo. And then what? Off to DC baby! That is the goal. That is the dream. East coast, here I come....
  • What the heck did I do....? I don't remember. Oh, school. That's right! Mid-terms, papers, hearing about everyone's amazing vacays, but really feeling like I wasn't missing out cause I love school like that....yup. I also started training to do a 5k swim in August, until I found out that the weekend of the race was my weekend of school. ALAS, I am still training as if I were in it!
  • Went on a date to the incredible Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition, played in conjunction with the Utah Symphony. Amazing! We heard this one pianist from Ukraine, Pavlo Gintov, who wowed me not only in his size, but also in his composition. His poise at the piano was natural, his memorization and movement, astounding. I believe he got 3rd overall. Incredible!
  • Wedding Reception: My dear friend Meta Mitchel got hitched in Phoenix. On my travels to see this incredible experience, I was able to reunite with the SV clan. I can't tell you how much all my peeps mean to me, and how much I thank them all for their amazing service to me! A huge part of my life...aah, the memories. There are just so many feelings. My cup o'erfloweth :) Seeing Meta arm in arm with her EC was a pretty remarkable I most likely will never forget, and we all know about my memory loss issues....
  • There is no July without a little St. George fireworks. Chillin with the family down in the George is one of my fave past times. This year, it was full of girly stuff like, being lazy at the pool with kiddies, going to plays like Pride and Prejudice, putting puzzles together, making up a new nickname for Mama Blau (Grandma Yo Yo), hitting up Tarzan at the Tuacahn....see it people, taking Bryan on a date to see the Last Airbender (good job M. Night, very much like the cartoon), hanging with Jamie's in-laws, getting excited about playing with extended family, hearing the sewing machine of the ladies (aaah, the memory takes me back to living at home).
  • Jazz festival: An annual tradition for me, I got down and funky with the best date ever...Mama Blau! We got groovy to the sounds of Ellis Hall, who was mentored by Ray Charles. Also blind, I couldn't help but love his little screams mid song. It added to the Mo-town funk! Ellis Hall is my boyfriend!
  • Demolition Derby: I'm sorry, how many seats are you saving? Um, 35...gotta problem with that!? What, I gots the fam and the peeps. The marrieds, the singles, the extended....what? There is nothing better!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

All the single ladies....

Oh my goodness, I am still laughing my head off. Enjoy this version of "If guys were like girls."

Monday, April 19, 2010


Dear dirty dishes in the sink, the fuzz growing in my toilet bowl, the dirty laundry piling on my floor, the clean laundry hanging out in the dryer for weeks, the mess of a bedroom, the eligible HOT suitors wanting so desperately to pursue me, the driver's license people, the oil change people, the grocery list that keeps getting longer, the phone calls I have to return....

unfortunately, you all have to be patient with me. I am unavailable for the next 2 1/2 weeks. Hang in there....I will get to you as soon as I can!!



Monday, April 12, 2010


You mean my 12-page paper is due next Tuesday?? Oh dear.....

And that, ladies and gentlemen, brethren and sisteren, is my life right now.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Daylight Savings

I pulled up to church yesterday and noticed that the parking lot was full to capacity. Several thoughts entered my head, including: "Is it Stake Conference?" "Was there some sort of pre-church meeting?" "Why isn't anyone pulling up at the same time as me...I am not that early?" Then it dawned on me...the clock in my car said 12:45 p.m. was 1:45 p.m. I have lived in Utah almost 10 years and have missed daylight savings in the spring almost every year.

Well, at least I am consistent.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


I don't think the flashing lights on a pedestrian crosswalk are just suggestions.....just sayin'.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The LOVE month

I have never really been a fan of Valentine's Day. All this hubbub to proclaim love to people that should really know that I love them anyway. That is why I have declared the month of February LOVE month. A big month of just pouring out love to my peeps and even to strangers. So far, LOVE month has ROCKED. Ever since the infamous Valentine's Day of 2009, I couldn't help but realize how much more fun Valentine's Day is with really good friends.

Keri Payne, my BFF from high school, came out to see me. Talk about LOVE! Her amazing hubby and children let her come and spend some crazy girl time with me....ME!! The laughing till it hurts philosophy rings so true when we are together. Just a couple highlights:

  • We visited my favorite consignment shops. Really, I could use some more pink objects in my house...and these little hidden stores are the perfect places to find such items. If you have never been to great consignment or antique shops in SLC, let me know....I will tell you where they are and even go with you. Though we didn't hit all of them in one day, some beauties are Emilie Jayne, Home Again, Secondhand Chic, Now and Again...I could go on...but those are my faves. A new one also opened up around 2100 South and 900 East, but it is a little pricey.

  • We tried on clothes at Decades, this amazing vintage store on State street that really only carries vintage-wear. Talking with the owner, I asked him where he gets all this amazing stuff. He said he used to go to estate sales, where the elite of Salt Lake City collected amazing clothing, jewelry, purses, shoes, hats, name it and he would buy it. He then told me that now, people just bring things in to the shop. It was unbelievable the amount of cool things he had. I found this flirty and fun black dress and Keri found some sensational jewelry. We were talking about how fun it would be to take pictures, but the owner told us that camera's are banned from the store...makes sense I guess....I think people would have WAY too much fun ;)

  • We went to my favorite Italian restaurant, Cafe Molise that is right in the heart (get it) of downtown Salt Lake City. This is my favorite place for several reasons. First, instead of using an overwhelming amount of heavy marinara sauce on their spaghettini, they use a light garlic-butter sauce and then squeeze fresh tomatoes on top, adding fresh basil and leaving the tomatoes in the pasta. Covered with Parmesan cheese that is lightly melted, the dish is served straight from the chef's hands to mine. I knew Keri just had to experience a party for her pallet, so we went there. Second, the ambiance is refined and romantic. Third, they play live jazz and when they don't, they have it playing over the sound system adding to the ambiance. It was awesome to take a girls night and explore refined cuisine!

  • Ah...the symphony. One of my favorite past times. I didn't tell Keri what we were doing post-amazing-eating. She quickly figured it out as we walked from the restaurant to the symphony doors. It was Keri's first time at the symphony...which made it even that much more fun for me! It always fun being with people who are experiencing first's. We had the opportunity to listen to Ruth Crawford Seeger, who experimented with string music that collided and broke apart...very modern. We then heard amazing pianist Jean-Phillipe Collard play Mozart's Concerto No. 23 with the symphony. His eloquence and presence on stage was appealing, and his fingers were so light and tempered, which enhanced the brilliance of the piece. We then heard one of the most amazing pieces I have ever heard. Antonin Dvorak's Symphony No. 9 was like a story for my ears. I was enthralled by the intensity of each separate movement. I kept turning to see how Keri liked it. We were both so moved by it all!! It was a brilliant night out on the town.

  • The next day was perfect. After going to a single's breakfast that the boys in our church cooked for the girls in our church, and to offset our hectic day before, we decided to see as many girl movies as possible. We went to Jordan Commons to see When in Rome. After an excursion shopping for jewelry hangers at Hobby Lobby and visiting a long-time friend of Keri's, we went back to the Commons to see Valentine's Day with my other girlfriends. Both movies were adequate and I give them both 3 stars. It was fun just to relax and not have anything to do but catch up on chick flicks.

  • Sunday was all about the food. Keri surprised me with Valentine's Day jammies!! I LOVE THEM! Oh, and I can't forget to mention the loofa shaped like a heart...and a little sinful chocolate. After visiting my single's ward, where we got to tell everyone about our weekend adventures and where Keri was asked to give the opening prayer and was asked if she was on Facebook...where she promptly responded that her married name was Payne ;) we baked and experimented. The day before we made cornbread hearts. I was afraid that the heart-shaped tins I got to cook muffins in would make them look like little butts. To my utter happiness, they look just like hearts!! We then made tri-layered chocolate sin, which we ate straight out of the bowl...even though it could feed an entire evening party.

  • Then, Keri helped me decorate my wall. This ended up being our doubled-over-in-laughter-pain moment. To read our joint-post, visit Keri's blog. Some of my favorite moments include listening to my favorite songs and when the Top Gun theme song came on Keri said "I love this song. It is so sad that Patrick Swayze died." I said, "Oh, I agree. What about the music from Top Gun with Tom Cruise made you think of that?" We burst out laughing and couldn't settle down. It was one of those nights!
I was so lucky to have Keri as my Valentine and thank her hub and chillins for sharing her with me! I was talking with one of my other friends about my feelings of Valentine's Day and how they have completely changed over the past couple years, and she had a very profound statement saying that if we could just recognize it as LOVE makes it SO much more fun and a little less overwhelming.

This is what LOVE month is all about people! Let's keep it going....

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Steak or Cereal

I have been swimming almost every morning since the beginning of the semester. I just love swimming so much that I enrolled in two swim classes, one that meets on Monday's and Wednesday's and one that meets on Tuesday's and Thursday's. I am certainly a fan of getting better and improving something that I am passionate about, which I why I am especially glad to have such wonderful instructors who really take the time to introduce me to new techniques in areas that I have not previously focused on.

One thing I have realized about swimming early in the morning is that eating right before (for me) is a big no-no. So after my class gets out at 10:30 a.m., I am generally famished. By the time I get home I often wonder if I need to feed my body breakfast or lunch. The question always becomes "Do I want steak or cereal?"


Steak: 1
Cereal: 0

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


My mood lately seems to have matched the wintry landscape of gray that inhibits Salt Lake City right now. A very dull color, this gray allows nothing for the imagination. I wake up and though the sun is shining, a gray musk fills the air. I don't blame inversion...that seems to have somewhat gone away...but this cool, dry earth is damp with despair. It's as if it is crying out, begging for blossoms. I know I sure have been.

However, today I feel lucky. Traveling down the gray road, passing and stopping behind gray cars, traveling past gray restaurants and shops, and seeing gray sad-looking faces, I noticed an inflated pink balloon in the middle of the road. It skipped along calmly and coolly as traffic whizzed by it. A very Joe v.s. the Volcano moment...everyone was rushing to their next appointments...did anyone notice the balloon? I watched as it danced from lane to lane. As if it wasn't worrying whether or not it was hit...because it was invincible. It was almost as if I could hear it saying, "Weeee!" I found myself smiling. Even amongst the busy grayness of the world, all it takes is one moment to raise my gray to a salmon shade of pink.

Friday, January 29, 2010

High School Locker Drama

I had another dream where I was in high school...again, and I couldn't get my locker open, thus making me late to class. This dream, however, was very different than my other I-can't-get-my-locker-open dreams. This time, the principal found me and when I thought I was going to get in trouble she reassured me that she knew who I was and knew I wasn't trying to slack off and would forgive my tardiness. Instead of feeling dread for missing the first couple minutes of class and potential repercussions of being tardy, I felt like I was important and known. I felt like despite the fact that I was going to be late to class that I would be OK because my principal knew my intentions and knew that I was prepared, just delayed. However, during the dream, I recall thinking that this circumstance didn't give me an excuse to be late all the time...but that I should always strive to be the best student I could by arriving to class on time.

I love remembering dreams.

I have my own interpretation for the dream...anyone else?

Monday, January 25, 2010

Relationships and the Economy

It's funny how everything seems healing when you are searching for things that can heal, especially after experiencing disappointed hopes. I was reading Naked Economics by Charles Wheelan, as part of my assignment for my Governance and Economics class. I not only LOVE this book for its insight into the science of governance and the economy, but also for the little bits of healing I have found and somehow managed to thwart into my own little category of 'failed relationship science and application.' Here is what I learned:

Lesson 1: When discussing financial markets, Wheelan gives an example of being at the grocery store and determining which line is shorter and therefore would be quicker to get through. He determines that, "It's the things you can't predict that matter" (Wheelan, 2002, p. 130). This spurred in me an ah-hah moment especially in relationships and life in general. How BORING would it be if life was predictable...if every relationship went the way I wanted? Predictability lacks excitement.

Lesson 2: Again, referring to the grocery store analogy, Wheelan suggests to "pick a line and stand in it" (Wheelan, 2002, p. 130). I kinda laughed because at this point, I am just waiting for someone to pick my line....and if my assets are "priced efficiently" everyone is better off in the long-run.

Lesson 3: I LOVED this, especially when I thwarted it with my theory. "Human beings make flawed decisions. We are prone to herdlike behavior, we have too much confidence in our own abilities, we place too much weight on past trends when predicting the future, and so on" (Wheelan, 2002, p. 131). How many times have I heard that one or two or even three relationships haven't worked out because so much of it was based on fear? There are a lot of us single people out there who have experienced some tragic (and I am actually being serious, not facetious) relationships. We are on guard, we take time to trust other people, and sometimes what has happened in the past effects current and even potential relationships we can have with other people. Oh, if only we could have confidence that things were going to work out. I think a lot of people lack the faith that it will work out and allow the fear to take over.

Lesson 4: In any economic circumstance, besides saving, investing, diversifying, etc, it is important to take a risk every once in a while. Wheelan stated, "Risk is rewarded-if you have tolerance for it" (Wheelan, 2002, p. 134). Hmm, makes me think that maybe taking risks for a long-term relationship will be a good thing.

Lesson 5: "The odds are stacked in your favor if you are patient and willing to endure the occasional setback" (Wheelan, 2002, p. 135). No explanation needed.

Lesson 6: "Indeed, if we all believe that the economy is likely to get worse, then it will get worse. And if we all believe it will get better, then it will get better" (Wheelan, 2002, p. 157). Just like relationships, if we think they will get worse, then they will. But if we have hope in them and think they will get better, they will.

Lesson 7: "Recession may actually be good for long-term growth because they purge the economy of less productive ventures" (Wheelan, 2002, p. 158). This made me think that failed relationships may actually be good for long-term growth because they purge me of those relationships that could be potentially hazardous for my soul....I am being a little sarcastic, but you catch my drift.

So, all in all, I would have to say that relationships are much like the economy... unpredictable, didactic, exciting, lesson-learning and something to look forward to in the future. And that, ladies and gentleman, is a GREAT study day!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Rockin A Capella

In Gilmore Girls (Season 6 I believe) there is a scene where Lorelai and Christopher go visit Rory at Yale. During the parent day visit, Rory says to avoid tunnels, arches, or anywhere that has good acoustics because it means that A Capella groups are hanging out there. During the rest of the show, Lorelai and Christopher make sure to avoid these places due to the fact that everyone at Yale seemed to belong to these crazy no-instrument singing groups.

I find that I generally do not like A Capella groups either and found myself laughing at the way the groups were portrayed in the TV series. That was until tonight. I don't know what it was, but the group I saw perform this evening was brilliant. Each voice seemed seamless. The choreography was hilarious. Though the group was professional and poised, I couldn't help but notice individual personality and flare during their performance. Tonight I saw the Harvard Krokodiloes perform music from titles like Danny Boy, to some more upbeat tunes like My Girl and even Rockin Robin (where part of the choreography included three men acting like birds). I was completely impressed.

By the end, I wondered why I hadn't liked this kind of vocal organization before. Maybe it is because I am jaded by the three to four-men A Capella groups that seem mostly to come out of Utah. I am not saying it is terrible, but there is something to be said about a larger A Capella group. I also liked that their sound was true to the song, beat-boxing. Maybe that is why I haven't been so fond of A Capella groups before. Regardless, I thoroughly enjoyed the performance tonight and hope to go visit Harvard, Yale, Columbia and other top-notch schools that choose to stick with the roots of the true A Capella sounds.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


You have generally read my reflections as 'life's lessons' or 'little lessons learned.' I recognize that I, indeed, have learned a lot in the past two weeks about myself and about God. Therefore, I will share my reflections.

I have learned that:
  • Despite the fact I give myself a time limit to feeling a certain way, it doesn't mean that the time limit will work. I realized that even as it may become easier to cast disappointment aside, that it will still hurt from time to time. That is all part of growth.
  • Surrounding myself by loved ones who love me unconditionally is a GREAT blessing when I am struggling.
  • The Lord keeps His promises, which was not something that I really believed before. But now I can say that I know it. I still struggle with this concept sometimes, but the foundation of this truth has been laid, I just need to start building on what I know.
  • There is someone who will care about me enough to want to be with me. That despite the fact I have quirks and weaknesses, that it will work out. I, in turn, will always try to be the best person I can be in order to work on those funny things about myself that will contribute to a life of learning about Jesus Christ and His plan of happiness through growing experiences and self-mastery.
  • Even if someone I care about doesn't care about me in the same way, that I need to accept their reasoning as something that is valid and unarguable. In other words, I need to respect that they know what is best for them and what will help them grow and succeed in the long run. I am still struggling to accept this as it has been very easy for me to place blame and play the victim card when things in my life haven't gone the direction I would have hoped.
  • The Lord is really with me all the time through disappointed hopes by sending me friends and family who care about me no matter what and who see my value as a women and child of God when I don't have the ability to look beyond my despair.
  • Under the circumstances, I have actually grown up a little bit and have more of an opportunity to grow close to my Father in Heaven and trust that He knows what is best for me, even when I think that what is best for me is behind me and I have no control over it.
  • There is a lot to look forward too, something that in the past, I have not been able to recognize.
  • I need to look at past romantic relationships as 'opportunities passed' instead of 'disappointed expectations.'
  • I know that I can get through these situations when I rely on my Savior to help me do better than I did last time. The reality is that there are still some days where my anxieties take over and I forget about everything I have learned about myself and my Father in Heaven and His plan. It almost seems like I can never relax in understanding His plan for me, and that satan grabs a hold of everything I know is true and slams it against the wall. It is exhausting sometimes trying to keep the adversary away from my thoughts. But I know light prevails against darkness. It has always been and will continue to be.
I sound so grown-up, don't I? ;)

Friday, January 15, 2010

Inspired Graffiti

Normally, I don't condone graffiti unless it has been sanctioned by some organization or something, but today I may have had a change of heart. In the bathroom at the University of Utah library and a place where all my best pondering takes place, someone had written 'Practice Tolerance' on the back of the toilet paper holder. The word 'Tolerance' had been crossed out and was replaced with the word 'Acceptance.' I found this little piece of graffiti, especially the way it was constructed (someone's original thought, replaced by words of wisdom by someone else) to be rather refreshing.

It seems that tolerance is something that is in place as a precursor to acceptance. There are so many things that were once tolerated that over time have become accepted. I find that acceptance is actually a more peaceful resolution to barriers that may exist in any circumstance. So, while it may be prudent to practice tolerance, it is almost more effective to practice the end outcome, in this case - acceptance. So, thank you dear graffiti artist for giving me something to think about in the quiet thrones of the University of Utah library bathroom.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

I'm Not Crazy

I have had to look at my school schedule at least 20 times this past week. After chatting with friends post-holidays, I started having a freak out that school was starting already. No, I haven't had those dreams where I forget my locker combo, or forget to dress before school starts, but I have had to re-check online several times just to make sure that school really does start on January 11. Most friends ask "When do you start school?" just to inquire about it...I then freak thinking that maybe I was supposed to have already started school. So, the University system can include me on making them popular on their CPC campaigns since I have clicked on them enough times to make them noticed on google.

No, Lindsey, the school date did not change over the holidays...and no Lindsey, you are not crazy.