Wednesday, November 30, 2011

to my future children: second installment

you will watch classic disney movies. by classic, i mean the ones that came out in the nineties. you need to know about the little mermaid, beauty and the beast, aladdin, pocahontas, tarzan, mulan, the lion king, and others, including the real classics, like cinderella, snow white, sleeping beauty, and 101 dalmations. my kids will know that music so we can have family sing-a-longs in the car and around the piano. there also might be some dancing required.

as much as i hated it when i was a kid, we'll have chores. and you'll probably have to help in the yard: raking, mowing the lawn, weeding, which was the bane of my existence at several times in my life. but you'll also be responsible for cleaning your room and taking out the trash and helping around the house in general. but you'll appreciate me and your dad for it later.

Monday, November 28, 2011

thankful: part final

this is the part that should have come on thursday but didn't because i was too busy enjoying family and food and friends.

so, here we go. i am thankful for stuffing. it is the most delightful of the thanksgiving foods. i am thankful for little girls and the way they dance around the living room and sing at the top of their lungs. i am thankful that i was born at the time i was and to the family i was and in the place that i was. i am thankful for nail polish, especially the lovely lavender i am currently sporting. i am thankful for warm blankets and beds and coats and socks and houses. i am thankful for neuro-opthalmologists and the crazy things they do. i am thankful for my senses, especially my eyes, and that i can read and write and watch things. i am thankful for my education and the things i am learning, both about my subject and, more often, about myself. i am thankful for oreo concretes from nielsen's frozen custard. i am grateful for my sisters and my brother and for long car rides with them and all of our family jokes and puns and long talks on the couch or in my room or around mom and dad's bed as we are supposed to be saying family prayer. i am thankful for mom and her advice and her amazing cooking and how we can call her about anything domestic and she always has the answer.
i am thankful for the savior and for the extra reminders i get at this time of year, but i am especially thankful that i have a knowledge of Him that can be with me throughout the year.

there are so so so many more things. i am so blessed, and i am thankful for the things i have. i hope you had a happy thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

thankful: part three

i am grateful for days of rest. i planned on grading a bunch of issues papers yesterday (i still plan to finish them this weekend--no more of this taking-a-month-to-grade stuff), but instead i raked the leaves with the siblings, went to see the help at the dollar twenty-five theater, ate a roast beef sandwich and frozen custard, read some food essays, took a nap, played with the little girls, went to target, bought some new moccasins and a thermal shirt, watched cars 2, which i thought was pretty cute, made myself a late night egg salad sandwich, and went to sleep with two little girls on my floor. i did hardly anything productive, but it was a much needed break from the weightier matters of life, namely school, boys, and the glove game.

i'm also grateful for a warm, cozy place to live and sleep. i know i am blessed to have those things when so many people don't. i love my bed a lot, well, both of my beds, and i have other warm things that are awesome, too. so, i'm grateful that my family has the means to provide for me.

thankful: day two (part two, i should say)

so, the past few days have been busy/i haven't had as regular access to my computer, so my plans for daily posts were foiled. but, i still want to talk about the several things i have been grateful for this week, so this is going to be a multi-post day.

for tuesday, then: i am thankful for good friends who, even though we are in the midst of a bitter war (more to come on that at the end of the month), make me laugh, accompany me and my roommates to the hottub, and let us hang out until midnight.

also, good friends who have our backs, who will keep a mustache at our urging, who make awesome music, and who have a sense of humor that not many people seem to understand except me. 

in the same vein, i am also grateful for roommates who like to stay up late talking, who are okay being in the thick of the ward hijinx, and who are up for impromptu dance parties in the dark/vigilant searches for that one nineties rock/pop song we have stuck on our heads, which inevitably lead to an hour or more watching the ridiculous videos.

to friends!

Monday, November 21, 2011

thankful: day one

i always want to do a series of thanksgiving posts, and i meant to start yesterday. that didn't end up happening because yesterday was a crazy day.

so, that means today is the beginning of my thankful posts.

today i am thankful for dad. it also happens to be his birthday, which is pretty perfect. 

dad has taught me a lot in my life. from the infamous "freedom vs. liberty" talk in lake powell (which i'm still not sure i get. kidding, dad!) to "you can be offended and not take offense" to other counsel about the gospel and what kind of person i should be.

i get much of my humor from him, including a love of puns and one-liners. he's one of the funniest guys  know (though you should quit telling that one about mom being your first wife, dad. not that funny anymore :))

he has taught me to work hard and not to settle for anything less than your best. he is never afraid of anything, which means he often expects me to do the things that scare me. he always calls food service representatives and other name-tagged officials by their names, and when he meets a new person, he can almost always find a connection. he has a lot of connections. a lot. it's crazy.

he has one of the strongest testimonies i can think of, and i know he loves mom and us kids. happy birthday, dad! i am grateful for you!

Thursday, November 17, 2011


yesterday i ran into a long lost friend--the guy who sits at a desk outside our graduate offices playing some kind of multiplayer online video game and who every so often yells things out of nowhere. i haven't heard that guy all semester! i had to chuckle when i heard him back there behind me, playing his game with his buddies as always, making a comment about seeming nonsense.

hottub wednesday is a good tradition. it is always an experience. last night we had the glenwood jacuzzi all to ourselves for a few minutes, and i think good conversations were had by all. except for a few awkward/one-sided ones that we will try to avoid in the future.

i feel like i'm getting too old for byu. maybe not too old, but many of the things that used to make me really happy about byu, like going to football games or just being on campus with my fellow students, don't really make me happy anymore. i don't know what to do about this.

after six years, i'm still not sure i know how to do "research". and that is still a problem.

no-shave november is one of the best things happening right now. post forthcoming.

that is all for now. all that i feel like sharing, that is.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

little details

it is amazing to me how sometimes everything works together so perfectly and so seamlessly when, by all estimations, they shouldn't have worked out at all because of individual agency or circumstance.

some call this coincidence. some call it serendipity (which is a great word, even if i'm unsure i believe that things can really be simply serendipitous). i call it little everyday evidences that god knows me and knows exactly what i am feeling and what i need.

So it is, amid the vastness of His creations, God’s personal shaping influence is felt in the details of our lives—not only in the details of the galaxies and molecules but, much more importantly, in the details of our own lives. Somehow God is providing these individual tutorials for us while at the same time He is overseeing cosmic funerals and births, for as one earth passes away so another is born . It is marvelous that He would attend to us so personally in the midst of those cosmic duties.
 Neal A. Maxwell, "Becoming a Disciple"

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

a day at the temple

last saturday our ward planned a trip to the manti temple, which is about an hour and a half away from us, by car that is. i don't know how far it is as the crow flies.

but anyway.

we have a temple here in provo, but it is fun to get out every once in awhile and see temples that we don't usually get to see.

here's the thing: whenever i think about going to the temple, i think of a million reasons why i shouldn't. for saturday, i was worried about losing a whole day of prospective homework time. then i was worried that it would be snowing as we drove down there and we would die in a tragic black ice accident on the way to the temple. then i was worried that i would drive down with lame people and i wouldn't have any fun (because that's the point of all ward activities, right?)

however, once again i learned that everything works out when you are doing what you are supposed to be doing. i needed to go to the temple that day, and everything worked out so smoothly so that could happen. i ended up in a carful of great people and we listened to a diverse and inspiring playlist on the way there and back, culminating in a headbanging rendition of bohemian rhapsody that i will remember for a long time. the weather was great, we got there safely, and we were greeted in manti by this sight:

courtesy of
i had only been to the manti temple once before to see the mormon miracle pageant for a youth conference. it was amazing then, but it was even better to go inside. i love the temple, and i get so wrapped up in the craziness of life that i forget that i need the peace that the temple brings me. good choice all around.

when everyone emerged from the temple, we headed over to the local institute building for a sub sandwich lunch. can i just say that i love walmart subs? new favorite thing from walmart. they provide really good condiments, the meats are good, it's just good. we sat around and ate and talked about books and movies and blogs and school and professors (who shall remain nameless) and it was great to chat with old friends as well as new ones.

whenever i don't go to an activity, i always try to tell myself that i probably didn't miss that much. but i don't know if i believe that anymore. i am really glad i went on saturday, and, even though i didn't do any homework during the day, i still got everything done that i needed to. and i still had fun that night, listening to karaoke, worrying about an appendix, and tim-tam-slamming it with carolyn.

moral of the story, for me at least: go to the temple.

songs i've had stuck in my head today

"lullabye"--shawn mullins (aka "rockabye") "need more mullins!"

"poison and wine"--the civil wars

"ho hey"--the lumineers

"it's beginning to look a lot like christmas"

"washer guy"--as yet unnamed, unsigned act out of provo, utah

and, this little ditty, which has been the constant soundtrack to my day:
"monsters crawling through my veins/i'm going insane/don't want to go home.
used to hide and suppress/but nevertheless/i'm wild"
so, thanks to my friends jesse and eric for that. i'm working on the harmonies for that catchy tune.

Friday, November 4, 2011

BLAST! from the past

when we were awesome and used to get annual passes to disneyland and disney's california adventure, my favorite attraction, as they call them down there, was BLAST!, an amazing musical extravaganza that played four or five times daily at the hyperion theater in california adventure.
i loved BLAST! because

a) i love music and people who make beautiful music accessible and fun,
b) i basically love anything disney, and
c) there was this very attractive, very talented trumpeter, zak, who was featured in the show. and i loved him as well.

therefore, i have very fond memories of BLAST!. if we didn't go see it on a trip to the parks, i was bummed. if we did go see it and zak wasn't there, i was really bummed.
anyway, all of this is leading up to the fact that tuesday night we went to see a touring production of BLAST! in salt lake. the show at california adventure was abbreviated, but one other time, that one time i visited my relations in texas, we went to see the full-length show and it was fantastic, even without zak.
anyway, tonight's show brought back all of those memories, from california adventure and texas and watching the vhs over and over and listening to ravel's epic "bolero," the opening number of the show.

i would add more videos, but you can youtube it at your leisure. BLAST! is awesome, and it always will be, zak or no zak. thanks for hearing about the show mom!

(p.s. another side effect of this trip to salt lake, more specifically kingsbury hall on the university of utah campus, was that i...kind of liked the campus. i love byu and will always be a cougar, but we don't really have beautiful old buildings and a true college town feel. so, i don't know how to feel about that. is another degree in my future?)

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

a halloween adventure

i may or may not have already talked about this on my blog before. i cannot remember, but i'm not sure why i would have written this particular thing. in any case, halloween is my favorite day on byu campus. i love seeing what people are daring enough to wear to school. the costumes that especially make me giggle are the ones that i know the person will have to remove in order to sit down comfortably in class. por ejemplo:
--the "loan sharks" that were terrorizing campus last year. i think those costumes were a non-fabric and therefore unsittable material.
--anything with sandwich boards announcing what your punny and clever costume idea was.
--and, the grand-daddy of all costumes with mandatory-removal clauses (and also the best costume i have ever seen on campus and, possibly, in the world), a tetris piece. specifically, this tetris piece.
except upside down, so the person inside the giant l-shaped tetris piece was wearing the bottom of the l on their head. they had made provisions for vision in the form of a small mesh screen where their eyes presumably gazed out from the cardboard fortress, but there were no provisions for sitting, which seems like an important provision to provide for. anyway, aside from that, this was the best costume ever. this person even had the tetris music playing somewhere inside the suit, so that just when i was thinking that this ensemble would be made by a rendition of the classic tetris theme, i heard the faint strains wafting from underneath the heavy cardboard. i was giggling for the rest of the day.

this year, sadly, i didn't really see any awesome costumes, particularly any that would require classroom removal, though i did hear the sexy sax man roaming around campus.

so anyway, i thought halloween was going to be a dud.

but then.

our home teacher came over and said we were going to go to his cabin up the canyon to watch a scary movie. perfect end to a weird halloween! it was a lot of fun, even though i do not normally do scary movies, as i said in a previous post. i was screaming my head off, and i think i had my eyes closed for half the movie. still awesome.

all in all a good halloween.