Sunday, November 18, 2012

Climbing a Mountain

I was looking through an old notebook this evening for a quote I remembered writing down probably 10 years ago. It was from the book Fahrenheit 451. While looking for it, I stumbled upon some notes I remember jotting down right after my first backpacking trip up in Idaho. It was the first time I had hiked all the way up a mountain. Having grown up in Missouri which is no where near any mountains, I found it to be a wonderful experience I never imagined I'd have. I wrote down some notes relating the experience to life, and reading them tonight was something I really needed. I figured I'd share them here :)


May 7, 2006
Climbing A Mountain
  • When we can't see around the corner of the trail, we just need to have faith that Heavenly Father knows what's in store for us. We don't need to see that far ahead if we have faith.
  • Sometimes people feel like they have to be strong and brave, and they can't show any weakness. That's why we need to check on them. We need to make sure that our brothers and sisters are okay because they won't always tell us.
  • Sometimes the trail seems so long and we're not sure we can make it to the end. We're not even sure we can go a little farther. But then, with Heavenly Father's help, we do go farther. Then we're so tired, we know that since we have Heavenly Father's help, we can keep going if we need to, but He shows us the end. And we're so grateful that we asked for His help, and that we made it to the end. It hurts so good to be where we are, to be a little more acquainted with God.
  • When we're in parts where there is no trail, where we only can use our faith to find our way. And you fall down so many times. And you want to just give up, you just want to be done. It's taking so long. And you realize it may seem harder and longer for you than for anyone else, but it's so worth it! You've accomplished something! You did something you didn't think you could, and that gives you strength to go out and conquer some more.
So glad I found that :) Now, if only I could find that Fahrenheit 451 quote . . .

Sunday, August 12, 2012

A Few of my Favorite Things . . .

Sometimes I forget about the things I love. I think we all tend to get caught up in different aspects of our lives. But we need to remember to stop and smell the roses. This blog entry is all about two of my "roses" - the things that I enjoy just because they make me happy :)

Reading. 



I LOVE TO READ! Maybe it's my midwest upbringing that makes me love boring books about farmers, the dust bowl, pioneers, etc. just normal everyday people living life on the plains. My favorite authors are:

Willa Cather
Betty Smith
and












I just love words. They're so much better than watching any movie. They paint a much clearer picture in my head.

I also love reading nonfiction, especially hilarious memoirs. Tina Fey, Alan Alda, & Ellen DeGeneres to name a few. And I love collecting and reading beautiful old books.


Maps.


I LOVE TO STUDY MAPS! I think I'm more of a spatial learner. 



I remember sitting in my grandpa's truck or the family van and being enthralled over the contents of the old Rand McNally Road Atlas. Quizzing each other on state capitals or mapping all the possible routes for our trip and calculating the mileage to the next city. I especially love topo maps. I love finding all the backroads and shortcuts.


Now, combine these two loves:


A bookshelf in the shape of the United States! I love this!!!

On a completely unrelated note, my birthday's coming up ;)


Tuesday, October 11, 2011

I Belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

With so much in the media these days about Mormonism, I felt impressed to share my testimony of the Gospel I so dearly love.

I know that God exists and that we are His children. I know that He knows and loves each and every one of us individually and wants us to be happy. I know that He gives us trials and tribulations to refine us so that when this mortal life is over we can return to our heavenly home to live with Him.

I know that Jesus Christ is His son. I know that Christ came to this earth to teach us about our Heavenly Father and His plan of happiness for us. I know that Christ suffered and died for each of us. I know that whether or not we choose to accept this gift, it's there for us. I know and have felt the wonderful blessings in my life as a result of using the Atonement to develop a closer relationship with my Heavenly Father.

I know that Joseph Smith sincerely prayed to God about which was the true church, and that God revealed the Book of Mormon to him. I know that the Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ and that it's true. I know that Christ visited the Americas and built His church. I know that the Book of Mormon and the Bible support each other.

I know that Thomas S. Monson is a true and living prophet on the earth today. I know that God guides and directs us through him.

I know that God works miracles, and I have seen it in my own life numerous times. I know that if we believe in Him and obey His commandments, we will return to live with Him after this mortal life is over. I know that that is the only way to find true joy.

These are the things that I know to be true. I say them in the name of my Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Just Another Day . . .

Six years ago, I moved to the great state of Utah. During that time, I've used public transportation off and on and worked in close proximity to the homeless shelter in downtown SLC. I've met many people from all walks of life, and today I decided it was time to share my experiences with the world . . . er, at least the 5 people that read my blog :)

Now, I've seen a lot in my travels. There was the old homeless man on the bus with his hair so matted around his head that I threw up a little in my mouth every time I saw him. I think a bird could've lived in that nest of hair.


On my way to work the other day, I saw this on the ground:

Shirt, pants, bra, panties, and both socks. That's right, it's an entire outfit! So many possibilities as to how these ended up here . . .


On two separate occasions I saw these guys on my way to work:



Yep, they're moving a piano by bicycle. That's gotta make you smile :)

Speaking of bikes, while I was waiting for the bus one day, I saw this guy:


video

Boxes stacked on the handlebars . . . That's talent!

Now, it's a pretty common occurrence to see people get on the bus with multiple sleeping bags and buckets full of all their belongings.


Just today I saw a shopping cart on the bus:



But my favorite is when they get on with an unusual item like giant garden shears, hoes, and other large metal objects that are unrecognizable. I even remember one guy getting on with an ax. The bus driver made him wrap his jacket around it. That did help it look less threatening.

Sometimes you get the real crazies, like this guy that kept snapping his fingers and yelling to someone in the back (mind you, no one was in the back):


video

Seeing all of these people can be pretty entertaining, but nothing compares to making new friends! Once I met a drunk Native American man on the train. He told me he could tell I was a religious woman and said, "I'll take you to church." Unfortunately, I couldn't find a dress shop close to the train route and had to decline his marriage proposal.

I also had the EXACT same conversation with the same man two days in a row on the train. Both ended with him trying to get my name, address, and phone number so we could meet up at the Chuck-A-Rama for a date. I never heard from him, though . . . He must've forgotten about our chat.

Another day, I had a kid next to me start asking me questions about who I lived with. He wanted to know all about my roommates. His mouth was covered in crusties and he was inviting me to his birthday party. I convinced him that not only had I forgotten my cell phone that day, but I couldn't remember my number either.

These days I'm working at a plasma center near downtown in a low-income neighborhood relatively close to the homeless shelter. Everyday I get to meet interesting people who wanna help save lives and earn a little extra cash while they're at it.

Now, the first time you come in to donate you have to have your veins checked. One day a man (or so I thought) was brought back to me for this purpose. As I checked his arms, he said, "I know where the veins are in this mortal body." He proceeded to tell me all about how he was from another planet and how this body was serving him pretty well. Unfortunately, his veins were too small and I had to turn him away. Before he left, though, he pulled a wad of cash out of his fanny pack and said, "It's ok. I got money!" You also have to have a permanent Utah address to donate, so I'm not sure he would've made the cut anyway.

On occasion, people get upset when we turn them away. We had a bounty hunter threaten to "cut" one of our medical supervisors. Another lady threatened to stand and stare at one of our managers just to annoy him (she left right after everyone, donors included, started laughing at her). One guy threatened to wait outside for one of my co-workers because we took one extra gram of plasma (and just to clarify, it has to be at least 6 grams to be considered an overdraw).

I'm sure there are tons more stories I could add to this post, but these are some of my favorites. I love this stuff because when I'm having a hard day I think, "If these people can make it through, so can you." I hope you got a good chuckle :)


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Family Ties

Remember the show Family Ties? Alex P. Keaton was probably my favorite, but who didn't love Michael J. Fox? Here's a few bloopers:















I was supposed to have a girls night with some of my co-workers last night, but it fell through at the last minute. I got a text from

though, inviting me to dinner. I should've gone home and done homework, but I took them up on their offer. Scott was nice enough to pick me up from work, and when we got to Katie's house dinner was ready. It was a delicious and healthy, mexican-esque dish. Then we decided to go to the dollar theater and see

Scott and I talked about politics all through the opening credits. We all enjoyed the movie, and then went back to Katie's house to play


It was just such a fun, low-key night with the family.

We were also talking about how excited we are to see more of our family next week at Sean and Annie's wedding!



Mom and Brent will be here with Justin,


and Barb and Jeff with all the kids!




And I'm pretty sure Nichole's coming and bringing her kids, who I've never met!


I am just so grateful for my family. We've been through some rough times, but we've come out ahead. They really do mean the world to me! I'm so grateful to have Scott, Katie, Sean, and now Annie so close! Mom and Brent are just a hop, skip, and a jump away in California. I miss when Kali just lived in Provo :(


But I can't wait to go visit her in DC!

Monday, September 13, 2010

So, today in sunday school, we watched a clip from the show Shaq VS. He was challenging Justin Bieber and it was so cute, haha :) So I finally listened to his song "Baby" and it's been stuck in my head all day. Here' s the music video:




Anyway, I also heard this great quote at ward prayer tonight. It's from Elder Wirthlin in 2007:

"Sometimes the greatest love is not found in the dramatic scenes that poets and writers immortalize. Often, the greatest manifestations of love are the simple acts of kindness and caring we extend to those we meet along the path of life. True love lasts forever. It is eternally patient and forgiving. It believes, hopes, and endures all things. That is the love our Heavenly Father bears for us. We all yearn to experience love like this. Even when we make mistakes, we hope others will love us in spite of our shortcomings—even if we don’t deserve it. Oh, it is wonderful to know that our Heavenly Father loves us—even with all our flaws! His love is such that even should we give up on ourselves, He never will. We see ourselves in terms of yesterday and today. Our Heavenly Father sees us in terms of forever. Although we might settle for less, Heavenly Father won’t, for He sees us as the glorious beings we are capable of becoming."

I really liked that. I know there have been times in my life when I haven't shown charity to others like I should have, and there have been times when I really have felt that pure love of Christ towards others. And I've experienced those two opposites reflected towards myself from those around me. It makes me grateful for the people in my life that can express their love for me even when I make mistakes. And when people don't show me that unconditional love, although it makes me sad, I remember the times I was in their shoes and it helps me to understand.

I've recently been reminded how important our attitude is in this life. How much positive thinking really affects us. And I'm trying really hard to count my blessings and think about all the wonderful things I do have, instead of all the nice things I wish I did.

Life is good, people. Just remember that ;)

Saturday, August 21, 2010

School House Rock

Guess who's finally going back to school . . .

MEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

And guess what I'll be studying . . .

POLITICAL SCIENCE!

And here's the best part . . .

I AM SO EXCITED!!!

That's right people! After a 5 year hiatus, I'm FINALLY going back! And I couldn't be more thrilled! Classes start next week, eek! Sometimes I just can't believe it! But it's so good to be motivated about something again :)

Here's a little School House Rock for your viewing pleasure:

Haha! Doesn't that take you back?