Tuesday, July 31, 2012

i heart the olympics

remember how today is the last day of july? i'm always amazed at how quickly the time goes.

anyway, since the olympics have more or less taken over my life since saturday, i decided to list the reasons i love them. in a particular order. here we go.

1. bob costas. i'm not sure what it is, but every time bob costas is on the screen, i just squeal with delight. i unequivocally equate him with the olympics.

2. volleyball. the past two mornings i have woken up to u.s. women's and then men's indoor volleyball. it is so awesome. i think i maybe like watching volleyball more than any other sport, and olympic-quality volleyball is especially great.

3. olympic theme and fanfare, courtesy of john williams. even as i was looking up that video, i got chills. so great.

4. swimmers. like this guy.

5. national and international pride. i feel like i'm a patriotic person, but the olympics magnify that times a thousand. i love cheering on team usa. but, i also love that the olympics are a time when the whole world is coming together. rooting for the underdog, the country that has never won a medal, the athlete with the heart-warming story--what's not to love about all of that?

6. obscure events that end up being really intense and/or entertaining. handball? i changed to that channel and didn't recognize what sport was being played. how is that possible? archery (not that obscure but still)? that gold medal match between the u.s. and italy was crazy! who knew that i could be on the edge of my seat for archery?

there are some things about the olympics that bug me (a million commercial breaks=why i don't watch tv anymore), but i won't go into those so as not to take away from the majesty of the games. can't wait for the next two weeks!

Monday, July 30, 2012

a matter of laughing

sometimes i think i laugh too much.

anyone who knows me knows that i really do laugh a ton. in general conference this past april, elder scott gave a talk about receiving personal revelation. one thing he said worried me for a while:
Another principle is to be cautious with humor. Loud, inappropriate laughter will offend the Spirit. A good sense of humor helps revelation; loud laughter does not. A sense of humor is an escape valve for the pressures of life.
 though i wouldn't say my laughter is often inappropriate, it is loud. i worried that this trait, this thing that is such a huge part of me, was actually holding me back. but then a few people reassured me that, just as elder scott says, a good sense of humor is healthy.

this weekend was our ward campout, and there were many standout moments, but by far my favorite thing was our late night, hour long game of big booty, classic campout/party/children's game. you can see an example, which is a slight variation on the game we played, in this video. (note: this is from big brother. i don't watch big brother. but it was the best youtube had to offer in the way of big booty demonstrations. start at about 5:20 and watch until you get the gist.)

i'm pretty sure i'm not going to be able to capture the hilarity of our particular game of big booty, especially since no one else seemed to be laughing nearly as much as i was. but, three boys in particular were very intense about this game, and their intensity was killing me. this all went down four days ago, and i can still crack myself up if i think about dan's nonchalant introductory ritual or tyler's sing-song technique or michael's fake-out strategy. i wish so badly that we had some video evidence of the game, because there were times when i was laughing so hard that i was on the floor, and it was then that i had this realization.

sometimes i get laughing so that i lose control of my body. i find myself on the ground or flung over the side of the couch or whatever and i think, what the heck am i doing here? i'm clapping and hiding my face and rolling on the ground, but i can't stop it because the comic urge has struck, and i just have to ride it out. i think most of the time people think i'm ridiculous, that i'm laughing for show or something. i'm not. i really do think a lot of things are funny, and i can't suppress it when it comes.

one observer commented that, if you ever want to think you're funny, just spend a day around courtney. and that's probably true. i find humor and amusement and delight in many things, and i'll let you know when i think you are funny.

the same observer later told me that he thinks that if he spent just 10 minutes in my shoes, in my mind, he could die happy. and that maybe changed my perspective a little bit. so i'm going to keep laughing.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

what i did today

{among other things. but, in general, the olympics=pretty much i don't get anything else done. and olympics+london=there's no chance i'm doing anything besides watching bob costas and the team covering the stories and events from one of my favorite places in the world. yay for the olympics!}

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

to my future children: third installment

we will go on adventures, whether that means taking a trip to the grand canyon or to the public library. i'll teach you to look at life as a series of adventures that help you to grow and learn. and it will be pretty dang fun.

i'm not going to let you be bad daters, so we're going to start early. not with the actual dating, because that would be weird, but with the theories and principles that make up good dating practices. chivalry, how to be a gentleman/lady, communication (which includes, but is not limited to, asking someone on a date, telling someone you like them, being honest even when it's scary), and dating etiquette (like no marathon first dates). never fear; i'm not going to send you out into the dating world, a terrifying place on its own, unprepared...like some people i know. it might still be hard, since dating isn't easy, typically, but at least you'll have a good foundation.

Monday, July 23, 2012

some thoughts on fear and faith

obviously i need a little pick-me-up these days :)

site association

i've been thinking lately about how i associate certain places with certain people and experiences. i recently went on a long walk that took me and my walking buddy all over south campus, including almost the entire length of the south campus stream and trail, and now that and a couple other spots will forever remind me of him and of the events of that night, which were somewhat bittersweet, if i'm being honest. but there are other places that make me think only of specific people, which i guess is awesome and not so awesome, depending on the circumstance.

the provo costa vida will always conjure memories of tori and our many costa runs during our roommate years.

rock canyon park and the little grove of trees on the street side reminds me of will, matt, and beka and the time we filmed our scene from as you like it, in early modern english, there. (too bad that video never made it to light. i'm sure we would all be stage stars by now if it had.)

trafalga will always be associated in my mind with the taj boys and last winter, when we used it as our hangout and played countless games of mini-golf and laser tag just so we could get out of the house.

and there are many other places that hold special memories with countless other people. i guess i have already kind of addressed this, at least in relation to provo, in a previous post. but lately, in light of recent events, i find myself going back to the places where significant things, significant conversations have happened to me. last sunday i retraced the steps i had taken two weeks before, when things looked promising and i was so happy, to try to get some of those feelings back in the midst of some of the muddiest, most confusing times of my life.

for better or for worse, i have some strong memories associated with places i go and see every day. the wall on the south side of the provo city library will never be the same again.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

a monday gchat

i've been feeling a little out of sorts for the past couple of days, due to circumstances that i won't go into right now. i haven't been acting like myself, really, and i've had the feeling that i need to make some changes/address some things that are happening these days. this is very vague, and for that i am sorry. but sometimes i don't feel the need to put all the gory details out there.

but anyway, yesterday something amazing happened. i wrote an email to my missionary friend, since i've missed writing him the past couple weeks. i sent the email and then proceeded to look around the internet as i am sometimes wont to do. then, fortuitously, i went back to gmail to see if anything had come in. and he had emailed me back to say that he was online and that we should chat. so, for about an hour, we traded emails back and forth and got to catch up a little and joke around. he sent me a picture of him "being stoked to talk to me," and i sent him one of me happy to talk to him, even though i had just finished my just dance workout and i looked...less than put together.

so even though i don't have everything here figured out yet, that little exchange brightened my day, and maybe my week. i remembered how much i miss him and how great he is. i mean, it's been 17 months since i've seen or talked to him in person. and getting to chat gave me the boost i needed. i can do hard things.

Monday, July 16, 2012

watch this: part two

this weekend i finally saw moonrise kingdom.

i was building up to it for months, preparing by watching wes anderson's other films (edited, if that matters). then, all of the friends decided to go see it without me. i'm not bitter. so, i needed to make a trip up to the broadway center theater in salt lake on my own.

BUT THEN. emily told me on thursday that, miracle of miracles, moonrise kingdom has come down to provo. nothing was holding me back. and so it was that on friday night, emily, sloane, kelsey, and i headed down to the provo towne centre (not me being pretentious--that's how they spell it) cinemark to watch what promised to be a delightful movie.

and it kept its promise. i wholeheartedly recommend this movie, though you should be warned that there is a somewhat awkward part. but it was hilarious, especially if you are into wes anderson humor. all of the acting was great, the cinematography was amazing, as it always is. i will definitely be seeing it again/possibly buying it at some point in the future.

Friday, July 13, 2012

why today has been awesome so far

woke up, did a just dance workout. (i...sweat a lot playing just dance. which is a good thing? not so good for when i want to look cute playing, but good from a fitness standpoint, i guess.)
put on my really cute outfit, re-curled my hair, went to redbox to return and rent.
went to firehouse subs to satisfy my craving for a delicious beef and cheddar brisket sub+crisp pickle
came home, danced some more with meredith, unintentionally sweated some more.
put in the artist, ate a homemade chocolate chip shake.

what more could i ask for?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

watch this

after months and months on my list of movies to watch, i finally watched this movie:

everyone should see it, whether you are interested in fashion or not. obviously, an interest in clothes and photography would maybe make the experience a little better, but this film was so beautiful that i think anyone would see its value. 

mainly what i took away was a reminder of how important it is to do something that you truly love with your life. bill takes that to a bit of an extreme, but i can't say at this point that i really spend every day doing something that i absolutely adore. here's hoping that that day comes!

watch bill cunningham new york. it's on netflix watch instantly. it's worth it.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

why i love catch phrase

it is hilarious to observe what people's first thoughts are upon seeing or hearing a phrase.

like when the player said, you might say this about a sequined shirt... and her teammate said, apparently not knowing much about current trends, stylish! (the word was "flashy," and they eventually got there via a different tactic. you can imagine.)

the most fun games of catch phrase are those when you are able to see inside the other person's mind and follow their thought process and know where they are going almost instantly.

some people may tire of catch phrase, that ubiquitous college kid party game, but i am always up for a round. even if it is only between two players.

on the third of july

i may have said this before, but the fourth of july is one of my favorite holidays, but it's not one that i typically think of as being my favorite. but then i'm sitting on the golf course with a bunch of people i love and we're playing cards and people watching and i'm freaking out about all the glittery, sparkly fireworks, and i realize that independence day is awesome.

this year we (of course) planned to go up to the north salt lake festivities on the third, which are always so fun, but then we decided we were going to help build ward unity by visiting the parade route in provo on the fourth, so we divided our independence day time for the first time ever.

on tuesday afternoon, we headed up to north salt lake (which is a real, legit city--don't let anyone tell you otherwise). this year was also the first time we've had friends come along, and that was a treat. anna, tyler, brandon and brett joined in the celebrations, and i hope they all had as much fun as i did. when we all got to the house, we rode in the bed of dad's truck up to our usual spot. we ate our fourth of july feast of wal mart subs (they are awesome, i tell you), chips and dips, deviled eggs, potato salad, and treats. after our appetites were satisfied, we ventured up to the clubhouse to see what was going on.

{what was going on at the clubhouse: a million high schoolers standing in groups texting+carnival rides and games+your typical dad rock band}

i was tempted to join the dance party, as i often am. "ymca" and "shining star" were calling my name, but the two boys i was with weren't acting like they wanted to participate. so, we went back down to our spot and pulled out the playing cards for a rousing game of scum. 

{note: the best times to play cards are those when you don't have any other distractions vying for your time and attention. lake powell at night, waiting in line for stuff, at parks when you get tired of doing active things, and probably other occasions i can't name right now. so this was a prime opportunity for us to get some good card-playing in.}

parachutists fell out of the sky, a cargo jet flew over, many people walked by our spot, and then it was dark--time for fireworks finally!

{something you may not know about me: i'm kind of obsessed with sparkly things. i may or may not have been freaking out about all of the glittery fireworks. colored ones=not my favorite, though still cool}

fireworks...are awesome. these were probably the best i've ever seen, and that's saying something. but i guess i say that every year, because every year it seems like they do even more awesome stuff than the year before. as those who have witnessed fireworks with me can attest, they are another of my simple pleasures. i get an intense amount of joy out of every new firework, especially if there is an abundance of sparkle.

after the finale, we loaded back into the truck and made our way slowly back down the hill. at home, we took an excursion to the basement, where we played fierce games of foosball, bulls-eye ball, and some form of horse. oh, and at one point someone kept attacking me with a giant medicine ball.

here are some pictures from the evening, courtesy of anna.

altogether, it was a great night. i can't wait for next year!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

writing process

some days the words come easily to me. almost too easily. i have to write for pages and pages in excruciating detail to make sure i get everything down, to make sure i remember it all for future reference. it is those days that fill up my journal in three months, that make sure i describe every moment, every feeling, because i am too afraid that it will soon be gone from my memory.

but then there are other days when the thought of putting it all into words, pen to paper, makes me feel nauseous, and i don't know if it's because the events themselves are too painful or too fresh, or if it's because i'll never forget how this feels. the writing, the preserving, the recording, won't help me to recall because i always will. the confusion, the joy, the surety, the eventual peace.

but i still carry my journal with me everywhere, because maybe the words will come soon, and i need to be ready.