12.19.2008

scheduled re-post: Christmas Spirit

This Christmas, mend a quarrel.
Seek out a forgotten friend.
Dismiss suspicion and replace it with trust.
Write a letter.
Give a soft answer.
Encourage youth.
Manifest your loyalty in word and deed.
Keep a promise.
Forgo a grudge.
Forgive an enemy.
Apologize.
Try to understand.
Examine your demands on others.
Think first of someone else.
Be kind.
Be gentle.
Laugh a little more.
Express your gratitude.
Welcome a stranger.
Gladden the heart of a child.
Take pleasure in the beauty and wonder of the earth.
Speak your love and then speak it again.
Christmas is a celebration,
and there is no celebration that compares
with the realization of its true meaning
--with the sudden stirring of the heart
that has extended itself unselfishly in the things that matter most.
-Howard W. Hunter

12.15.2008

The Dirty Post

The bridal shower held for me last month was very tame, or so i thought, until I finished opening the gifts (all kitchen-related). Apparently, while i was opening my presents, some of Aaron's women-folk had been writing down things I said about each one. Then, they listed them all under the title of, "Things that Might be Said on your Wedding Night." Oh dear!
Here's a sprinkling of some of the phrases:

"I think I know what this is..."
"What a nice, hearty size" (quart-size measuring cup)
"He's really good actually" (aaron, at cooking)
"Yes!"
"Aaron really wanted this."
"Holy cow that's so big!"
"Oh wow!"
"It doesn't slide." (non-stick mixing bowl)
"Hold on, I can't figure it out."
"I've never seen one of these before." (cookie frying pan)

Moral of the story! Next time, just say things such as, "oh thanks, this is very nice" and put it aside, rather than trying to be descriptive and exclamatory.

Good times.

12.12.2008

Salmonella

Aaron [my fiance] [i only get to use that word for another week so i better make the most of it] cooks wonderful things. Lately, salmon. I never thought I would love a fish. He buys it at costco, where it is bounteous and pink- salmon pink.
here are some cell-photos:





1. Cinnamon & clove rice, red curry salmon, edamame
2. Potatoes, asparagus, and i forget what kind of salmon
3. Orange glazed salmon (my plate) & mixed veggie salmon (his plate)

Salmon is a wonder-food. Any possible flavor seems to mesh with it. It goes with any side dish. It is healthy beyond belief. The texture is heavenly- it pulls apart with the nudge of a fork. And the flavor is light and sweet and just barely perceptible as fishy.

Does this sound like a commercial yet?
Buy your salmon today!

12.04.2008

Disease Dialogues: Malaria

Today i will blog about a terrible parasitic disease for my global health class. It's called malaria. Funny thing about malaria- it's not something you or I ever think about. Before i became a public health major, i thought it was only found in tropical jungles in africa. That's actually mostly true, with 80% of the cases today occurring in sub-saharan Africa. Other places of high infection rates include the Indian subcontinent, Southeast Asia, Indian and Pacific Ocean Islands, and the Amazon Basin. Yikes! That means that 40% of the world is at risk for malaria! These countries have on average a 1% lower GDP because of malaria, and in sub-saharan Africa it is the leading cause of missed school and work days.



You can't talk of the dangers of snake poisoning without mentioning snakes. Infection occurs when a person it bitten by an infected anopheles mosquito, and then the parasites enter the bloodstream and reproduce asexually. You heard me right, asexually.



Some quick stats:
*350 to 500 million cases of malaria occur each year
*approximately one death every 30 seconds due to malaria
*90% of malaria deaths are of children less than five years of age
*90% of malaria deaths occur in sub-Saharan Africa

While we may count our many blessings our feet are securely planted in healthy, safe, american soil...because speaking of which, on the glass-half-full side, malaria has been eradicated from the US, Europe, parts of Asia, and the Soviet Republics. But there's no reason it has to stop there...

This disease is dang preventable! These are some things I would do if I lived in sub-saharan africa:
*kill the larvae with insecticides...yes, the babies. They are death breeders in training you see.
*reduce human & mosquito contact by using insecticide-treated bed-nets & indoor residual spraying. Holy effective.
*Make people wear long-sleeved shirts and pants...i know it's africa, but lives are at stake
*advocate staying indoors at night (AC is preferred to keep mosquitoes from nestling)
*Visitors to at-risks countries can take chemoprophylaxis drugs to prevent infection

So there you go. Should you ever visit countries where malaria is present, remember this blog and perhaps you can train other people on ways they can stay mosquito-free. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

11.30.2008

homemade pizza

***2 YEARS LATER UPDATE:*** We actually no longer use the below recipe or method...so much for 'perfected'!   Lately we like this...the dough recipe is very similar to the old one below: 


(Makes 4 10-ounce dough balls)
 
- 5 Cups unbleached bread flour (bread flour! this is important to note)
- 1 Tablespoon honey or sugar
- 2 Teaspoons salt
- 1 Teaspoon instant yeast
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 3/4 Cups plus 1 Tablespoon room-temp water

Mix the ingredients by hand until the flour is incorporated, let the dough rest for a few minutes, then knead the dough 2 or 3 more minutes. Divide the dough into 4 equal-sized balls, & put them in large zip-lock bags with some olive oil. Let sit at room-temperature for 15 minutes, then refrigerate overnight. The next day, let the dough come to room temperature-- about one or two hours beforehand take out the dough, punch down, and let rest on a baking sheet covered with a towel.

Preheat pizza stone to 500 degrees, then dust with corn meal. Stretch & roll out the dough until very thin, about 12 inches across. Add a little bit of sauce, fresh mozzarella cheese, and any other toppings you want. Bake on stone for 10-12 minutes. (Add fresh basil for a delicious finishing touch)


----------------------------------------------------------------------------

i'm gonna share me and aaron's perfected and quality-tested pizza dough recipe. The result may look something like this:


[his & hers]

This is what you need:
  • yeast, 1 tbsp (i like quick-rise)
  • warm water, 1 cup (not hot, but slightly warmer than lukewarm)
  • pinch of sugar
  • bread flour (~2 cups)
  • white flour (~1 cup
  • olive oil (extra virgin, 2 tbsp + a little more)
  • honey (about 1 tbsp)
  • salt (1/2 tsp or so)
  • corn meal
  • toppings
This is the long, tedious process:
  • Put 1 cup of warm H2O in a small bowl, add 1 tbsp yeast & a pinch of sugar, & let this sit for about 5 minutes.
  • Mix together the flours, oil, honey, and salt- then add the yeast/H2O mixture-- stir, mostly just use your hands. Knead for a couple minutes. Should form a lovely, soft, doughy ball.
  • Rub olive oil over the inside of the bowl, and put the ball of dough back in. Cover with a towel.
  • Turn on the oven to about 100 degrees for a minute. Then, turn the heat off and open the door....stick that bowl of dough inside. (dough likes to rise in warm spaces)
  • Let dough rise for about 30 minutes, then punch it down and let it rise some more (another 15-30 minutes)
  • Take it out and divide it in half (makes two pizzas)
  • Oh i almost forgot! Now's the time to pre-heat the oven: 425*F (or hotter, the hotter the better)
  • Pizza stones are the way to go...put it in the oven as it pre-heats to get it really hot
  • Flour the kitchen counter...
  • and form a pizza shape out of one of the halves...flatten it with your hand from the middle outward- use a rolling pin or a drinking glass to get it verrry thin.
  • spread some olive oil around the crust...


    [looks like this by now]
  • sprinkle corn meal on the pre-heated pizza stone (be careful, it's bloody hot by now)
  • Add sauce (preferable homemade but i have yet to do so), and fresh mozzarella
  • now add the rest of the toppings- fresh herbs, veggies, what have you & bake for about 5-10  minutes...you should probably baby-sit that thing to have it cooked to your preference
  • Take it out & make the crust irresistible- butter it up, add garlic powder, parmesan...
  • oh my! heaven in a kitchen!

Aaron's: sauce, fresh mozzarella, onion, green pepper, roma tomato, pepperoni


Mine: sauce, fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, fresh basil, parsley

buon appetito!

11.29.2008

just wanted to say...

that i am sucking at being enrolled in 18 credits
and being engaged at the same time...
i apparently have a one-track mind.
c'est la vie, you know what they say:
C's B's get degrees!

---

Oh and apparently--
dating = 3 credits
in a relationship = 6 credits
engaged = 9 credits
married = 3 credits
single = ??? (depends on how wild you are i guess)

---

One more thing:
the BYU GPA calculator is way too much fun to play with...and so very dangerous. I just calculated that I can get all B-'s [minuses!] and one C and still hover somewhere around a 3.45 GPA overall. Worst-case scenario.
Meanwhile, getting straight B+'s in all my classes would only bring my GPA to a 3.51...
Hmm...kind of makes me feel less stressed about the mountain of assignments and projects and presentations and final exams due in the next two weeks.

11.19.2008

Things I look Forward To

[about being married]
[in one month!]
  • no more midnight drop-offs in the freezing car
  • moving in to the lovely condo
  • no more washing my dishes in the bathroom sink because the kitchen sink is overflowing
  • falling asleep with a warm bod in my bed
  • infinitely more fridge space
  • keeping the thermostat cool at night
  • cooking healthy together
  • taking charge of my fertility!
  • having a man in the house to do...manly things
  • being the lady of the house
  • gaining a whole new additional familia
  • putting a ring on his finger
  • always having a parking spot
  • no more bishop morality chats
  • midnight Smith's runs to bake cookies [well...we already do this]
  • giving 100%
  • hyphenating my name
  • working to meet our goals
  • not having a couple's blog...i am me, he is he
  • loving
  • traveling
  • learning
  • & more
wahoo!

10.26.2008

Who am I really?

A.B.
C.D.

Exhibit A is my inner housewife diva.
Exhibit B is my inner perky.
Exhibit C is my inner soul sista.
Exhibit D is my inner pleasently plump.

[via http://www.yearbookyourself.com]

Seven, or, 2 Truths and a Lie

*The number of times remaining that I will attend a singles' ward. (140 sundays down, 7 to go
*The number of credits i have left to take in college.
*The number of children i will have.

[was that too easy?]

10.08.2008

Late evenin' thinking, etc.

[bullet time]


  • i need a fabulous, no-fail pizza dough recipe...i've tried like dozens
  • recently read this book and i now understand my body unspeakably well...and before i thought i was like the female repro expert but i so wasn't...till now, that is. And you can be too! Seriously...get it used on amazon for like 4$.
  • currently wearing all the time: these shirts. Amazingly comfortable & delightfully cheap (11$ for 5). I found mine at a kmart but they run out quick at most walmarts & targets...i wear them exercising, sleeping, to class, you name it.
  • Here's the best recipe for pumpkin chocolate chip bread. Divine! I use regular size chocolate chips instead of the mini & bake it nearly every week during the fall.
  • december will be a crazy, stressful?, happy month
  • i just did a count and i have lived with 10 girls since i started college, which isn't that many over 4 years since i lived with the same ones for most of the time.
    Stats:
    1 of the 10 is married, 2 are on missions, 1 is miss provo, 2 are graduated, 2 i still bother all the time and i love them & know they read this, and 2 i am just starting to get to know but i think they're cool.
  • done thinking for the evening

p.s. this site tells you how much $$ you spend in gas driving from one place to another, just for kicks.

9.29.2008

What i was thinking but didn't say as my roommates tried to get me to go to the ward activity friday night:

...

...

Dude, I'm engaged.

Wondering

Why do some people make chocolate chip cookies that just don't taste good?





******

Augh! i know this sounds terribly mean. But boy howdy. They were dry as rocks and had no taste. And the person who made them, believe me you, doesn't read this blog. But most people make cookies that taste delicious! In fact, 97% of all cookies are delightsome.

Unless they have raisins.

9.18.2008

Memory Lane, a Little Jaunt

August 2004 Blog entry:


"My brain hurts. I don't know. I think too much...about everything. Egad. I'm really confused about a lot of stuff...I'm worried about starting and finishing my summer school work in time...I'm nervous about going to college- even though it's a year from now- but as of this second, I'm scared to death of going. Not so much
to college in general, but it's the far distance from home that gets me. I'd give anything for the college I'll likely attend to be located 200 miles from here, rather than 2,000. I adore my family and friends too much to only see them every couple of months. Dah. I've always been the 'mature' one, but I'm feeling quite the opposite these days. I'm assuming that in the upcoming months my feelings towards the future will become more optimistic, but nothing's certain. Wow, I sound so delightful, don't I? Please ignore the brooding vibe of all this because if you were to see me, I'd appear happy as anything. There's fun planned for this week, and I have a lot I'm looking forward to. I get a lot of sleep in the summer. That also makes me happy. I am content. But there's too much on my mind that shouldn't be there. But anyway...I like my life a whole heck of a lot. It's given me a lot of lemons and all that. So. Maybe...I just need to forget about the petty stuff mentioned above that's bogging me down. It's ridiculously un-life-altering. Actually, I suppose college is life-altering. But thinking about it isn't. Therefore, I'll try not to. It'll happen no matter what. I know I'm not the only one who feels this way though. Comforting? I guess. This is the worst entry I've ever posted. [Believe me, there's plenty that went un-posted.] It doesn't even make sense. Once again, I don't know.
Anyway. I'm done now, this has gone on long enough for tonight. I don't feel much better, typing all that. Maybe it's because I'm sleepy. My eyelids weigh a thousand pounds this evening. Or morning. Whichever 2 a.m. qualifies as. Within 173 seconds, I should be in bed. Me gusta."


Teenage angst at its finest. Funny isn't it? All that wasted worry. I needed to be told, "work in place of worry, faith in place of fear". Further examination reveals that it was written days after getting my wisdom teeth removed, and the drugs had not yet run out. and the pain OH the pain. I want to give birth just to cancel out the memory.

A few months later i told this story:

"Yesterday me and george occupied ourselves by jumping out of his 2nd-floor
bedroom window onto the trampoline. That was my rush for the day. Our neighbors, who don't speak much English, kept yelling and pointing at us, which was kind of bad since we didn't need our mom coming out and seeing what we were doing quite yet. Later on, we were sitting around the kitchen table, eating brownies, when suddenly through the window we see a body fall from the sky and land with a thud on the trampoline. It was Matt, who we thought was right in the next room, but had snuck upstairs and jumped out the window. It was actually the most hysterical thing ever, but...you had to be there.
It was as if he fell from heaven."


I remember it vividly, thanks to the power the written word has over my brain.
Heaven help my tired brain.

9.09.2008

Can't fight it

Tagging me is a very smart way of getting me to blog again.
(This is for you Aubrey!)

6 Random Things About Me:
1. I have a mild obsession with flossing, as of late. Anytime, anywhere. Not shy about pulling out the floss. It makes my teeth feel like they're floating.

2. From January 25th 2007 through May 11th 2008 I typed in my journal on MicrosoftWord every.single.day. Consecutively. Every day during that time is accounted for. (Must be honest- I did forget once in a while, when I was camping in the desert wilderness for instance, but I would fake an entry the next day instead.) Shamefully, my trip to Europe totally threw me off and I haven't gotten back into the groove.

3. Since I was homeschooled until 4th grade, when I resumed my education in the public system I was an odd duck. Certified nut. I wore gold knee-high cowboy boots over striped stretchy pants to school. I read thick chapter books during recess. I played the flute during recess. I beat all the kids at math games. I got my first B (on a science test) and had nightmares for weeks that I wouldn't get into college. 5th grade & being in a class with old friends led itself into a pattern of normalcy that I maintained through the next 7 years. But I always felt I carried a "homeschooled aura". (Read: Notable Moments at Home-School Prom)

4. Didn't eat chicken until age 10. From ages 1 through 9 I thrived on cold cereal, peanut butter sandwiches with no crust, spaghetti with butter, pizza without sauce, and dunkaroos. To this day, chicken has been my most prized eating achievement.

5. I have actually been blogging since 2002. Since then, I've written in about 4 or 5 blogs, most of which I can't remember how to find them. But the original, in all of its immature, adolescent glory, can be found here.

6. Some people call me Jennifer. Most people call me Jenn. A select few call me Jenny (e.g. those who've known me since I gracefully exited the womb). Unaware of ever being called anything else.

The End!

P.S. I tag Aaron (again, in case he missed the 1st one), Meagan, Marissa, Kristi, and whoever wants to play.

P.P.S. Happy Birthday, Mom

P.P.P.S. Hilarious. 3 Things to Take to a Desert Island.

7.08.2008

And necklaces that match everything

A few things you would like, if you were me:

  • being the only one awake
  • excruciating details
  • sweet potato fries
  • playing the organ full volume with rockin registration
  • rainy mornings
  • celery & pb
  • your last name
  • farmers' markets
  • b&b's
  • raspberries

7.07.2008

the CHALLENGER explosion!

One day, the LaRose family visited Matt at his place of employment, Becker's teaching supply store.

He was tickled pink to see us.

Then, while browsing through the book selection, we stumbled upon this.





As my recently dearly departed* friend Monica would say, WTF?
(*on a mission to Guatemala, not dead)

Child, today we're gonna learn about the Challenger Explosion! A whole bunch of people died! It was really scary! But very exciting! And through it all the astronauts kept positive attitudes. What a lesson for all of us. And it happened in the 80's, a long time ago, so not tactless at all.


Mmm, chocolate pudding.

From the back cover of a motivational book

Immortalized with my camera phone:

28 Secrets to Happiness
Live beneath your means and within your seams
Return everything you borrow
Donate blood
Stop blaming other people
Admit it when you make a mistake
Give all the clothes you haven’t worn in the last three years to DI
Every day do something nice and try not to get caught
Listen more, talk less
Every day take a 30 minute walk in your neighborhood
Skip two meals a week and give the money to the homeless
Strive for excellence, not perfection
Be on time
Don’t make excuses
Don’t argue
Get organized
Be kind to kind people
Be even kinder to unkind people
Let someone cut ahead of you in line
Take time to be alone
Reread a favorite book
Cultivate good manners
Be humble
Understand and accept that life isn’t always fair
Know when to say something
Know when to keep your mouth shut
Don’t criticize anyone for 24 hours
Learn from the past, plan for the future, and live in the present
Don’t sweat the small stuff

I'll get back to you and let you know if it's true.

The Gym

Early morning phone call:
(ring. I see it's L.A. Fitness, and hand it to Matt to answer)
M: He says he wants to talk to you.
Me: oh dear. into phone: Yes?
LA: Jennifer, we see you are a new member here. How has your experience been so far?
(knowing perfectly well he has the computer screen in front of him and can see how many times I have swiped my keycard this summer...a # that requires only one hand to count)
Me: Er. Well. You see...I've been out of town...
LA: Uh-huh. My name is Jeff. I want to help you.
Me: I don't know if I need it, I'm going back to college soon, and-
LA: Fine, fine- tell me, would you like a complimentary training session?
Me: I suppose so.
LA: I'm going to schedule you in for Wednesday. You will be with me.
Me: How wonderful.

My 3rd training session scheduled in the past month. Will disregard the signals my body sends early wednesday morning to call and cancel.
What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger.
Except for AIDS.

6.25.2008

Some differences between Italy and home

  • Graffiti is omnipresent. And it is ELABORATE, let me tell you. Works of art on the streets, metros, sides of centuries-old buildings. Very rarely obscene. Lots of nice messages to girlfriends and such: "ti amo maria!"
  • Bidets. If you don't know what these are, imagine a water fountain that you straddle after going to the bathroom, and there you have a bidet. I was too scared to actually use one however...except to wash my feet. I am clever like that.
  • When eating out, you have to physically search out the waiter to finally ask for your bill. He will leave you alone for hours. It's rather nice actually- restaurants here tend to make you feel rushed and in general we have a tendency to leave before we've hardly swallowed the last bite of food.
  • Stray dogs are rampant. They're cute too, not that dirty or mangy looking. Makes me wonder why PETA is spending so much time in America saving the world from fur. Perhaps they should re-locate to europe and save the stray dogs instead.
  • Children ride motorcycles. and who ever heard of a helmet anyway? Maybe this is just in Naples, a city which defines chaos, really- they are one and the same. But there's something about the whole lack of safety laws that makes everything seem so charming and quaint, rather than gasping at the impropriety of it all.
  • Nutella. There is no peanut butter to be found in italy, and most of europe as well. Nutella reigns supreme- cocoa hazelnutty goodness.
  • Laundry hanging outside. I don't think the italians like clothes driers. And really, the clothing on the line looks lovely floating in the breeze.
  • PDA. Italian is the language of love and yikes, the italians know how to love. Especially walking with their girls down the street. Who said stopping for a passionate make-out every 15 feet ever hurt anyone?
  • Cigarette smoking is still quite fashionable. You can find it inside restaurants, shops, heck- inside everywhere. Even the pizza chef does it while he tosses the dough in the air. Makes the health nut inside me squirm.


  • Red OJ. The orange juice...it is red. Apparently they have something called "blood oranges" over there. Blood is also red, hence the color of the juice. what? Anyway, it freaked me out the first time I saw it. [it would freak you out too]
  • Italian men. They are different from other men. They wear their hearts on their sleeve and their shirts two sizes too small. They love women. During my time in Naples, I was given free sodas. I was whistled at, winked at, and blown-kisses at. Boys took pictures of me with their cell phones, asked me to go to the "disco", and yelled "bellisima!" All in all, it was most flattering. Until I realized- wait a minute- these are italian stallions. Amore is what they live for, and they are scary good at trying to get it.
  • Naked people. Turn on basic TV anytime after 7 p.m. and you're prone to realize there's no such thing as too much gratuitous female nudity. Here a breast, there a breast. Breasts for everyone! There were channels where women would sit there topless and men could call in and just chat with them. Not about anything in particular, just the weather or what have you. Point is, Life's a [Nude] Beach.

6.07.2008

A.M. Delightfulness

Nothing like being awoken by your dad at 7:45 in the a.m. as he strolls into the room singing "it's a beautiful day in the neighborhood" and pulling open the blinds, wearing nothing except tight biking shorts, padded butt and all. Now he's banging out mister roger's classic hit on the piano and who could stay in bed at a time like this?

Time for spin class.

6.03.2008

Distortion

I've seen other videos from the Dove campaign but only recently found this one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYhCn0jf46U
Watch and consider,
how creepy is the beauty industry?
Should be mandatory viewing for every teenage girl in america.

You wanna know something?

We have a whole lot in common with strangers.
People is people, be ye in provo, a-town, or the trashiest 'hood in naples.

5.29.2008

A few small differences between Spain and Home

Some observations over the past few weeks:

  • Late sunset. It's still light outside until about 9:30 p.m. This is a total phenomemon to me, especially since it didn't occur in Italy. Just Spain.
  • In most places, restaurants do not serve dinner until at least 9 p.m. This caused particular issue one day in Avila when we were starving by 7. Luckily, the pastelerias were open until 9.
  • Outside of the city, people somehow sense you are an outsider. They will stare at you. If you smile at them, they will rarely smile back. They keep looking until you're gone.
  • In many of the little pueblos we passed through, we noticed that in the early evenings the older folk take their canes or long umbrellas and walk arm-in-arm for several miles.
  • Upon entering a little shop, the person working will walk towards you and follow you as you browse through the items, not saying a word.
  • In bars, it seems customary to throw trash on the floors below the counter. Everywhere we went the floor was littered with food, napkins, and cigarette butts. Occasionally, I noticed signs begging customers not to throw things on the piso.
  • The flavors of juice that I found in the gas station convenience stores: Wild Fruit Seduction, Apple Temptation, Lemon Obsession. Very tantalizing juice.
  • In restaurants, you pay extra to eat outside.
  • Spaniards are obsessed with ham. They incorporate it into everything. There is a chain of restaurants called 'Museo de jamon' and they are popular.
  • Additionally, they are obsessed with carne in general. It is often impossible to find a menu with anything except meat dishes, and they do not count pollo as meat. I am still uncertain as to how the Spanish meet the food pyramid recs.
  • Sheep and bulls. Everywhere. Bull crossing signs on the highways. The signs show bulls with big, menacing horns. You do not want to mess with a Spanish Bull.
  • Things in Europe are expensive- this goes for electricity as well. All the places we've stayed have had motion-detector lights in the hallways that stay on for about 10 seconds at a time. Some of the rooms have required the key card to be in a special slot for the lights and other electrical things to work.
  • Mullets.

Stay tuned for my notes from Italy.

5.10.2008

This Summer

In random order, I'll be missing:

  • dry air
  • the mountains
  • smith's
  • el novio
  • independence
  • biking everywhere
  • mexicans
  • roommates
  • quality restaurants (el gallo giro, gloria's, bombay, etc)
  • a whole lot more

(I have only positive feelings for provo...who'd ever've thought it'd feel like home?)

Meanwhile, this summer I'll be enjoying:

  • thunderstorms
  • brothers
  • traveling the world
  • taking classes online
  • my mom's debit card
  • driving the corolla, minivan, and audi
  • learning valuable golf skills from my dad
  • matt's graduation & senior prom
  • george's piano recital & 8th grade formal
  • earning $$ in various, self-employed ways
  • 11 a.m. church
  • playing the organ
  • my fave little kids
  • sleeping in my happy yellow room all by myself in the world's best bed
  • roadtripping to visit el novio
  • puerto ricans?
  • rita's italian ice

Oh boy!

5.01.2008

Mint Brownies Anyone?

I have decided that I absolutely adore temporary jobs.
  • They are fantastic for people with short attention spans (moi, for instance) who get bored with a job rather quickly.
  • It's fun to make friends with the other people right away, knowing that if you don't like them after two more days you'll never see them again.
  • Plus, it's a great way to earn some quick cash and I have never been paid so much in my life (excluding the $20/hour piano lessons...miss those days).
In any event, I highly recommend it.

Working at Women's Conference is an interesting time. Every hour or so, the concession stand becomes busy for about 20 minutes as the womenfolk line up to get their BYU brownies in between sessions. Plus, diet cokes (I had to reassure that they were indeed CAFFEINE FREE about 20 times) and chicken salad croissants- those seem to be the popular women foods. During the sessions, however, it's free time. I just chill in the Marriott Center and sample the various vendings- gratis.
Hello $9.50/hour- Bring it on BYU!

4.17.2008

This Month

I want to do something that is:
a.) neat
b.) awesome
c.) spontaneous
d.) artistic
e.) surprising
and/or
f.) just the slightest bit momentous

That doesn't leave me all that much time. Perhaps I will report back on the 1st.

----------------------------------

The 1st:
Since the above post, I have:
  • learned how to play tennis,
  • went to Cracker Barrel for the first time,
  • cooked a dinner that was not mac & cheese,
  • jumped on a trampoline with a 5 year old
  • bought myself flowers
  • begun reading Atlas Shrugged
  • danced around my apartment realizing I was truly alone
  • cut my hair
  • used my photos to decorate the apartment, took a step back, and felt proud
  • sung in the shower
  • argued and resolved, kissed and made-up
  • said good-bye a whole heckalot

2.12.2008

An Edit

A few days ago, I began typing a blog entitled, The Future Freaks Me Out. That is the title of a song I like to rock out to. It is also descriptive of my life currently. I started writing about the turmoil in my mind because of the mixed messages I am told by various sources regarding women and careers. Sources such as the Church, "the world", and people who care about where my life heads. I'm working on sorting it out, as will soon be apparent.

On one hand, you have those YW lessons (which are severely in need of revision anyhow) that teach how Women are Mothers. Full stop. Don't put motherhood above a career. To do otherwise is to kick your divine calling in the face, etcetera. (See President Beck's controversial talk on "Mothers Who Know")

And THEN- you have the world saying that women are equal and have the same right as men do to pursue a PhD, MD, DDS, whichever your heart desires. Stay-at-home-moms are unambitious, bored, unfulfilled. Also etcetera.

Finally- you have the people in my life who encourage me to be ambitious and question how I will earn an income someday, and I feel if I were to say, "I just want to be a mom" it would be a disappointment, and if I were to say, "I've decided to go to med school", it would be followed with, "but when will you have children?"

It's just complicated, is all. Hypothetically, If I were to have children after attending medical school, what would have been the purpose of the time, money, stress, and energy spent in school if I never spend much time working as a doctor? Education sure is important, but I feel as if it's a bad idea to attend school for nearly a decade just for the sake of knowledge. There's other means.

Thing is, 1.) I really think I would like to be a stay-at-home mother (SAHM) who loves what she does and receives enough joy and fulfillment from staying at home to feel satisfied. 2.) However, I don't want to be a woman who goes through her entire life without having worked full time at a real job at least for a few years before kids and after kids. ('real job' meaning one that requires skills, not working 40 hours a week at a restaurant or grocery store store out of need for extra cash. After receving a college degree, I don't think I would feel okay working at a scrapbooking store. Is this being snobbish or prideful? I don't think so.) The question is, where is the line? How much of each situation should I aim for?

Point is, trying to discuss this leads me in circles. I didn't say what I was going to say last week because I didn't want to blog a book. But this is at least a mere sampling of things I get confused about.

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In other news, the semester is halfway over and it has been the 2nd simplest of my entire college career, 2nd only to my first semester as a freshman. Simple, not easy- there's a difference. It's been refreshing not to stress and be all, "I NEED AN A" like I used to. How annoying was that.
I still think A's are a nice little present. But not the be-all, end-all thank heaven

It's time to go stir up some spiderman mac & cheese. Since I was little, I've been convinced cartoon character shapes taste better. Did you know kraft mac & cheese was the first thing I ever learned to cook using the stove? I was so proud too. I mean, learning about toast was cool because it came out looking different than when I put it in- but anyone could push the toaster lever. Precocious George made toast at age 3. The mac & cheese was real cooking, as far as I was concerned. And it still is!

Here's to another exciting, educational, exemplary week of life.