Friday, July 13, 2012

letters from me

dear blog,
it's nothing personal. I just don't have time to update you for now.

dear suitcases,
please learn to pack yourselves. it would mean the world to me right about now.

dear pillow,
you look so inviting, laying there on the bed. I'm sorry we can't spend time together at the moment.

dear deseret book,
why must you tempt me with so many wonderful coupons? I already came this week...

dear hair,
I would greatly appreciate it if you could stay in the pony tail I put you in thirty seconds ago.

dear rain,
thank you for coming today. I really really love storms, particularly when accompanied by thunder. it felt great to just stand outside and get soaked for a few minutes.

dear provo,
I have loved the time I spent here the past few months. I promise I'll be back soon.

dear lake zurich,
get ready. I'm coming back!

dear country music,
i love you. this is why.

dear friends,
thanks for being so amazing. I've had some incredible adventures with you all! can't wait for more in the fall!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

song of the day: lee brice

*I am switching song of the day to Tuesday and fun facts to Thursday. Just makes more sense.

I am on this country music kick and I absolutely love discovering new music. Tonight's discoveries have all been on one of my now-favorite artists: Lee Brice.

"Woman Like You"

"Beautiful You"

"Love Like Crazy"

Today was fabulous. Brooke and I both were having kind of a weird day, so we decided to just go do something mindless.
So we went to Deseret Book. I love that store so much.
And we came back to my apartment for grilled cheese and tomato soup for dinner. Delicious. And to look at strange engagement pictures.
Back to her family's house for a bit, then we went to say goodbye to Elder (Kyle) Riches.
Kyle was basically the only person I knew in my freshman ward before actually coming to school. We were in the same EFY group two years ago! It was great to see him before he heads off to Chile! Seriously though, he is going to be one incredible missionary.

since Kyle had already been set apart as an Elder, no hugs for us. hand shakes are welcome though. hence the amazing thumbs up picture.

This is such an amazing time of life. I am loving seeing all of these awesome guys go off on their missions. And they are so excited to serve!! I love the joy this gospel brings to my life and others, and I am excited to share it with others.
PS If you ever need an FHE or Sunday activity, I have plenty of missionaries who would love a note :)

Remember to smile!

monday thoughts

your words of wisdom for the week:

tonight I got to hang out with some of my friends from my freshman ward.
namely Angela, Brooke, Jeff, Nick, and Sam.
it was an absolute blast. Jeff, Angela, Brooke, and I hung out at Brooke's family's house, just swinging on the swing set, picking berries, and eating ice cream.
we kidnapped Nick (and Sam) for one more late-night Beto's adventure before he heads out to Chile. and then we talked for a few hours.
gosh I love these people so much!

Jeff, Nick, Sam, Brooke, Angela, and me (photographer)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

season of farewells

One of the best parts about being in Provo during summer is how many farewells I am able to attend. The guys I met in my freshman ward, in my classes, and just randomly on campus are some of the most incredible people I know. And to see them get ready to go and serve a mission is just amazing. I am so excited for each and every one of them! They are going to change people's lives as much as they have changed mine.

Nick is heading to Chile Santiago North. His parents just returned from being mission presidents, so they gave a homecoming talk, and Nick gave his farewell. It was an awesome meeting! There was a beautiful musical number of "Consider the Lilies" (one of my favorite songs) with piano, cello, and viola. Absolutely gorgeous.
One thing all three of these speakers brought up was "la estándar de excelencia," or standard of excellence. Each companionship was expected to attain certain levels of excellence each week, such as bringing at least five investigators to church each week. Hearing the three speakers bring this up continually made me wonder. Am I living up to my own standard of excellence? What is my standard of excellence?

Mike is going to Chile Viña del Mar. He gave an excellent talk about faith. One of the great things about this church is that no matter how many times you learn about a certain topic, there is always more to discover. One quote shared during the meeting really stuck out to me: "All I have seen teaches me to trust the Creator for all I have not seen." Ralph Waldo Emerson We live in a beautiful world that Heavenly Father created just for us. Seeing the mountains every time I walk out the door is just a simple reminder to me that my Heavenly Father is watching over me.
After the farewell, we went over to Mike's house to talk and enjoy some food. I love the friends I made during freshman year. I always have such a great time just talking with them, and I am so blessed to know them all.
Angela, Mike, Jeff, Mike (who gave the farewell), Brooke, Alec, Skyler, and me
I know this Church is true. I know my Savior loves me. I know the Book of Mormon is true and brings power into your life when you read it diligently. I know our Heavenly Father wants to bless us and does when we do what He asks of us. I once heard the phrase "If the Church wasn't true, a bunch of 19-year-old boys would have ruined it a long time ago." I know that the missionary program our Church has is inspired, and I know these amazing guys are going to become even better because of their experiences. I am so excited for each and every one of them, and I hope that I am able to share my love for this gospel with others.

Going into this week, think of one thing you can do better and DO IT. Set your own standard of excellence and hold yourself to it. I will be doing the same.

I love this song. "Come See the Light" sung by Freddie Ashby. The video and music put together is so powerful. I absolutely love it, and I'm sure you will as well.

Have a fantastic week everyone!

pizza rolls and a temple adventure

so I did NOT make anything fancy this week. But I DID make something I found on pinterest months ago that has since become an apartment staple for me and Angela.

Pizza Rolls
1 package Pillsbury crescent rolls
1 package of pepperoni
4 string cheese
pizza sauce (optional)

preheat oven to 375
lay crescent rolls on baking sheet
if using pizza sauce, spoon about a teaspoon on each roll
place 3-4 pieces of pepperoni on each roll
cut string cheese in half and place one half on each roll
roll up the crescent rolls (take extra care if using pizza sauce... it gets messy)
bake for 9-10 minutes
(optional: dip in pizza sauce)

serve with: salad, carrot sticks, milk, ranch dressing

today was amazing. I went with my cousin and some friends to the Mount Timpanogos temple, as the Provo temple is currently closed for cleaning. It is absolutely GORGEOUS!! I love being in the temple, and to be there with great friends and family was amazing. My cousin, Steven, got to baptize and confirm me which was so cool! Afterwards, we talked and took pictures and talked some more. It was a great day and reminded me how blessed I am to have the Church in my life.
sorry if the pictures are a little dark... my exposure was really low.

STEVEN IS HOME!! did I mention that??

shadow pictures... 
Nick off to Chile and Sam off to Russia!! These two are going to be awesome missionaries!!
but seriously. I love hanging out with my cousins. 
the group
Nick, me, and Sam
we saw a bride there!! it's wedding season. 

hehe "Sarah's face"
"prom 2012" by Brooke
absolutely beautiful.
haha we kind of had too much fun taking pictures...
photo cred: Brooke

dinner. YUM.
Two farewells tomorrow.
What an awesome weekend.

Friday, July 6, 2012

rules of summer: 2012 edition

I have been talking about this post ever since Brooke mentioned having one last year and made another for this year.

so here are my first ever "Rules of Summer"

  • scrapbook and print pictures from freshman year (printed some, but haven't finished scrapbooking yet)
  • decorate my room/apartment 
  • go camping (it was in the backyard, but still involved sleeping bags and tents. so we'll call it good.)
  • take a drive up the canyon
  • spend a day at the beach
  • watch fireworks
  • visit at least 4 of the temples in Salt Lake and Utah valleys (I made it to 3, plus the Portland Temple... so it counts)
  • go to the Hogle (Portland) Zoo
  • make a craft from pinterest
  • have a no technology day
  • get a tan line of some sort (glasses line right on the sides of my face. woo hoo!)
  • go on a hike
  • read a classic novel (Jane Eyre)
  • buy and discover new music (new Carrie Underwood, Hunter Hayes, Gloriana, and the Civil Wars discovered. none bought)
  • read Chronicles of Narnia book series
  • go for a swim
Happy summer everyone!!

that's one awesome summer. can't wait for next year!

smile moments

ten great things about this week:

fairy tales
hanging out with cousins
celebrating America

skyping family and friends
clean room

my friend getting his mission call (AHHHHH!!!)
movie nights

today was a long day. I applied for some more jobs and cleaned my room. I've gone on a letter-writing spree. I purchased more milk. I played epic mancala. which is code for I refilled my medications for the week. it makes the chore seem slightly more exciting.
I cannot wait for an adventure tomorrow.

some thoughts:
my major. I have 2 minors picked out and a graduate program. the only thing left is the major.
books. I absolutely love having time to read books again. I can't wait to give a report on the one I have almost finished.
missionaries. They have a hard job. And they're awesome.
temples. I love the temple and the peace that I can have from going there.
family. While I miss my immediate family every now and again, I have a blast getting to spend time with my cousins and aunts and uncles out here in Utah. So much fun!

saw this yesterday and had to take a picture. way too cool!!

Welcome to the weekend!!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

song of the day: josh turner

I heard this on the radio the other day and immediately fell in love with it. and so, your song for the day:

Josh Turner 
"Time is Love"

also this a song Brooke introduced me to that I heard today and I can't get enough of it. song of the day number two:

Thompson Square

today was a mixture of errands, exploring the Wilk, applying for other jobs, writing some letters, talking to friends, making grilled cheese and tomato soup for dinner, and reading my book.

but the best part about today:
one of the things I miss most about home is the huge thunder and lightning storms. and today it was a huge, rainy downpour. and I love it. I'll take what I can get.

fourth of july

So instead of a first "letters from me" post, here's my report on the Fourth of July!

I absolutely love the fourth of July. It is the epitome of summer: barbecue, parades, swimming, fairs, having fun, country music, and fireworks! Everyone comes together to show support for this incredible country. I am so incredibly blessed to live in the U. S. of A.

Woke up early to go to the hot air balloon fest! I was running late and got lost and didn't see the people I wanted to, but it was still really neat.

I then drove around for about an hour searching for a parking spot near my apartment. The 5k that morning cut off all roads leading to my complex. But I discovered a great place with a beautiful view of the flying hot air balloons.

Finally walked back from the parking spot and crashed for a few hours.
I called my aunt and spent the rest of the day with my cousins: at the festival (the fair), in the canyon, making and eating dinner, and watching fireworks.

the view of the valley with the hot air balloons flying over!!

in the MOUNTAINS!!
brothers :)


fun facts: andy griffith

Andy Griffith passed away today. Upon finding this out, I decided to do a little research into the television icon's history. Here's what I have learned today.
  • The Andy Griffith Show debuted October 3, 1960.
  • The show ran for 8 seasons with a total of 249 episodes.
  • Andy was from North Carolina.
  • He was raised Baptist, was a shy kid in school, participated in drama, and loved swing music.
  • He originally was going to be a preacher, but later changed his major to study music. there is hope for me.
  • Andy was a singer. He has an album of country songs that I must track down.
  • In April 1983, Andy was diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome. which my three-year-old cousin also has.
  • He passed away on July 3, 2012 at the age of 86.
  • The Andy Griffith Show is by far one of my favorite old television shows. I love the simplicity of the times, I love the humor, and I love the small town of Mayberry. Thank you Andy Griffith.

information courtesy of Wikipedia. photo courtesy of imdb.

my Tuesday involved work and some phone calls.
I went visiting teaching that morning which was great.
and another movie with the roommates: Listen To Your Heart. great music, great plot. cute chick flick.

resolutions report:
blog post. check. though published two days late...oops.
wrote a letter. other half check.
made bed. check. I'm getting good at this.
two hours intellectual stimulation: continued reading my book (report later) and learned about Andy Griffith.
took a picture. check.
the story: our friend Andy came to visit the apartment. and he hid notes all over. we discovered the first one today.

not a bad day, if I do say so myself.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

words of wisdom

day 1 of following the schedule. I can do this!

words of wisdom for the week:

I got my first parking ticket the other day. Apparently I couldn't park in a student lot during certain hours. But it wasn't for much.
First ticket: check.

exciting things I did today:
purchased milk and Kleenex.
slept in.
saw a few fireworks.
watched the movie "Sarah's Key" with my roomies. which was absolutely amazing.
proceeded to have an hour long conversation about old books, history, and what things could be hidden in the apartment.

resolutions report:
blog post. check.
up at 8:30. not check.
daily schedule. not check.
wrote a letter. half check.
made bed. check.
took a picture. getting ready for the apartment tour post that's coming soon.
2 hours intellectual stimulation. read a book and started another.
other side of the room. organized so only a few pieces of desk have been occupied.
in bed by midnight. so close... but no check.

five and a half out of nine. not horrible for the first day.
hope your first monday in July was as good as mine :)

Sunday, July 1, 2012

google and goodbyes

I finally broke down and got on to the Google bandwagon. And I love it. Google Plus, Calendar, Gmail, Docs, everything. Google is brilliant.

Brooke (who is here for summer!!) convinced me to sign up when I saw her awesome pictures on her latest blog post which she edited with Google Plus.
So I imported some pictures I needed to blog about and played around with the editing tools on Google.
Lots of fun, and I think they look pretty cool :)

Being in Provo for the summer means I get to see a lot of the guys before the go into the MTC, and I get to attend a lot of farewells. And I get to talk to/hang out with friends I didn't always get to spend time with back in freshman year... but more on that later.

Last Sunday, Brooke, Kaley, and I drove up to Sandy for our friend, Jordan's, farewell. He is off to Edmonton Canada in a week or so. He did a fabulous job on his talk, and it was so good to see him!

Some fun notes about Jordan's farewell:
  • his bishop is John Bytheway. that was pretty cool.
  • his dad was my Personal Finance professor. and Jordan has some of his mannerisms which is quite entertaining. I was also sitting right in front of Bro. Marsh during the farewell...
  • our other friend, Mike, came down from SLC! Another great guy who's farewell is next week.
  • the best surprise was Lindee and Amy!! They drove all the way down from Idaho Falls for the farewell to surprise Jordan. It was so much fun to see them and got me so excited for fall when I can see all of the girls from freshman year again! 
My great friend from Oregon, Ethan stopped by to talk and eat some Tillamook ice cream with me and our friend, Nick, (and his brother Thomas who happened to be mission companions with my cousin) before he headed off for the MTC. It was so good to see him, even if I only got a handshake. The people of Nicaragua are lucky to have him!
Temple trips last semester and intense game nights during spring term with Derrick. It was great to see him before he headed back home. Plus I got a free meal at the Cannon which I am beginning to miss quite a bit. I am so excited for him to get his mission call soon!!

From FHE activities in fall, to eating at the Cannon, and basically being the best home teacher ever, Andy Pyper everyone. He came to town, so Brooke and I went to lunch with him and just talked for a few hours. And he's going to my mom's mission - Montevideo Uruguay! It was so much fun to just catch up and reminisce on freshman year.

All of these guys are going to be such incredible missionaries. I am so glad I was able to get to know them the past few months. I can't wait to hear about the great things they do over the next two years!! 

Good luck Elders!

And while the boys are gone, I get to hang out with these lovely ladies (and all the other Stover Sisters) in just two months!!! I cannot wait for fall semester when we can all reunite :)

fourth of july resolutions

I am one of the most inconsistent bloggers around, as you probably already know. Sorry about that.

I never really did a post about my New Year's resolutions, and those sort of fell through. So I decided to write up some "Fourth of July Resolutions."

Among those resolutions...

  • blog every single day
  • get up by 8:30 am
  • ...which means go to bed before midnight
  • write a letter every day
  • spend at least 2 hours doing something intellectually stimulating
  • establish a daily schedule to follow
  • take a picture every day
  • don't take over the other side of the room

Kind of random, but it's what I need right now.
I'm in the process of making a chart to track my progress. I really like charts. And stickers.

Let's get started.

to come: Rules of Summer, apartment tour, spring term, and more pictures!

side note: I'm almost done adding all the labels to my old posts so you can find certain old posts. mostly for my own benefit. just htought I'd share.