Dec 31, 2012

Friends Forever :)


once upon a time...

twas just before the valentine's dance;
Haley's mind swirled round.
it was a girls' choice dance, a date needed to be found!

ok...maybe I wont finish this post in rhyme ;)

wanna know who I took to that valentine's dance about four years ago?
my pal colton kilmer! ha!



I remember being conflicted about asking him cuz we were just good friends; valentine's day is about love--should I let someone ask him who had more romantic intentions?

but, I knew we would have a blast, so I asked him anyway. we never dated, but we did indeed have a blast :)

funny to look back on that time in high school--I had no idea he would become my lifelong valentine :)

Colton Kilmer and I are engaged! forgive me if I sound a little giddy ;) :) :)

wowsa. life sure takes you down unexpected paths! sometimes those paths are incomprehensibly wonderful :)

when he got back from a mission to canada, he wasn't going to date for six months. I was getting ready to put in my papers for a mission. buuuuut we fell in love instead :) what can ya do? ;)



dating him rocks, but that can be a story for another time. since we are recently engaged I figured this would be a convenient place to tell that tale for anybody interested :)

I had one request regarding the proposal: I wanted to be surprised!

Mission accomplished :)
I had been wanting to go skating at the gallivan center for quite awhile. so we did :) ice skating is one of my favorite things ever. ice skating outdoors? even better. ice skating with my favorite person? cant beat :)
(Man skating was fun. It felt like we were dancing the whole time!)

(He helped me lace up my skates...cuz it is harder than it looks ha. Yep, love him.)


after that little piece of heaven, we headed to meet my family for dinner. so I was told. really, my family had no intention of ever joining us! since our dinner plans were now open, Colton decided to make a "last-minute" reservation at olive garden. a very specific olive garden, actually.

(you see, when Colton got home we went out to grab some food so he could tell me about his mission. no romantic intentions on either side, just catching up with a friend. that was the non-date that started it all :) )

(different day...but I felt like another picture was called for ha)

I was very excited--in a few days I was going to leave for a cruise with my family. what better way to soak up some last minutes with Colton than heading back there?

towards the end of the meal, our waiter brought out fortune cookies. that was the first time I got a little suspicious--fortune cookies have come to have a fun and significant meaning between us :)

but the waiter covered it great! he told us something about olive garden being a franchise, owning red lobster and several other restaurants (to which colton nodded and responded in the affirmative. I figured I had just never heard that before). the waiter offered us the fortune cookies as a promotion of the company's new concept, which was gonna be a chinese place. yep. tooooootally fell for it; suspicions lowered.

a sweet message from colton was inside :) then my man took a knee and popped the question :)



:) :) :)
I am getting married! I get to marry my Colton :)

after that, we hit up toys r us and temple square (re-creating that first non-date). it was blissful :) since I am always happy when I am with Colton I dont think I realized how happy I was til I saw someone in toys r us and it caught me off guard that they weren't beaming too :)



:)

P.S. I love the song Lost In This Moment by Big and Rich :)
one of the lines in that song says,
"lost in this moment with.you, I am completely consumed; I'm feeling so absolute, there's no doubt."
that is how I feel with him--complete, happy, no doubt :) just...good!

Wanna see something pretty? :)


:)





Dec 13, 2012

What's Your Secret?

I work in a hospital, so I see lotsa people :)

Many of those people are old; frequently they will talk about their spouse.

When they mention how long they've been married (often for decades upon decades), my response is always a lighthearted, 

"What's your secret?"

I get lots of responses :)

Some of them are humorous:

"Learn early to say 'yes ma'am,'" or "Realize quick who is boss."
:)

Some of them are packed with history:

"You never give up."


Wanna know my favorite response so far?

"Just love each other."

:)

Dec 12, 2012

Motivation


Saw this in one of my classes earlier this semester. Quite interesting!

Rewards as manipulations.

Pretty much the biggest thing I learned in this class is you can't change other people.
(But I'm studying therapy!)

Ahem. Pretty much you can only help facilitate environments in which others would be most willing to change of their own volition. Fine line. Cool stuff.

Worry about fixing yourself. Try to help others.

Trying to change others just gets them and you frustrated.

Wanna know what my excellent (and not-boring) textbooks were for this class?? :)

Why We Do What We Do (Edward Deci), Leadership and Self-Deception (Arbinger Institute), Anatomy of Peace (Arbinger Institue), The How of Happiness (Sonja Lyubormirsky), Learned Optimism (Martin Seligman).

Yep, I pretty much have the coolest major ever--love it :)

This video brings up autonomy (self-direction), mastery (getting better at something), and purpose (what gets you up in the morning).

Trusting people to rise up to an amazing potential gets yourself out of their way, and leads to crazy awesome results!

See people as people.

Life is good :)

PS
Random....but wanna hear about another study I learned about? I'll cite it if I find it...
Basically, some people think the more attractive you are, the happier you'll be.
Nope!
They had a bunch of people rate how attractive they thought they personally were, then they had a bunch of other people rate how attractive they thought each person was. (Don't worry, I don't think anyone got told their scores ha.)
The people that were considered attractive weren't happier than unattractive--the interesting finding:

People who thought they were attractive were happier. Even people that were unattractive or only decently attractive, but considered themselves attractive were happier than the good-looking people who didn't think they looked good.

Blind arrogance? I like to see it as self-assurance--people who are satisfied with what they've got are happier :)

We could all be skinnier/buffer/shorter/taller/whatever. We're all good in our ways. We just gotta believe it :)

Dec 5, 2012

Circle of Life

(Apologies...it's a double-post day...I couldn't resist)

I feel so full of thoughts right now.

Some words highlighting (and contrasting) my thoughts right now:

"Turning, turning, turning through the years,
Minutes into hours and the hours into years.
Nothing changes, nothing ever can.
Round and round the roundabout and back where you began!"
                                   ~Turning--Les Miserables

I feel like this occasionally. Some things change, but I'm still ME. Just like I was last year, and ten years ago. Still struggling with the same faults. Still dreaming the same dreams. Realizing more and more how my problems and triumphs are the same ones that have been experienced for millennia by mankind.

But!

I have improved personally; some faults sneak back less frequently.
I have achieved some dreams, I'm working on others, and I'm dreaming up new plans.

This is the concept of entropy. If you leave things be, they will deteriorate back to their simplest/original form. Things will be the same as they were.
If you intentionally change something, it is more/different than it was (unless you stop changing it--then entropy kicks in again).

If you have a good habit that you enjoy/is helping you be a better person, that is awesome! But it won't last forever. You'll stop it. Unless you don't.

Depressing? Heck no!!!!

The very idea that our habits may die away also demonstrates the very hopeful and amazing idea that we get to choose and control what we do!

Agency, people, it rocks.

Of course, there is much we can't control.
Life throws us some very powerful lessons to teach us that..

But control what you should. 

“If you haven’t the strength to impose your own terms upon life, you must accept the terms it offers you.” 
~T. S. Eliot

:)


Lots to Learn

I have another book to add to my list of things-to-read: The Once and Future King by T. H. White :)

In an email from a friend I came across this quote, which I quite like:

"'The best thing for being sad," replied Merlin, beginning to puff and blow, 'is to learn something. That's the only thing that never fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatic, or know your honor trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then--to learn. Learn why the world wags and what wags it. That is the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting. Learning is the only thing for you. Look what a lot of things there are to learn.'" 

I love this!

I think there are other things that don't fail as well. 

But learning truly is amazing for plucking yourself up out of your present situation if you feel stuck; you realize there is more to see and know and do than what you are seeing or knowing or doing. When I learn something new, I feel refreshed, invigorated. 

No longer do the fences built by your current circumstances seem to stand indefinitely. Learning gives you a sense of something greater than where you are. And that isn't disheartening--it is relieving and inspiring! 

This reminds me of the second point of this post: Busy.
This also reminds me of my PS at the end of this post: Right & Nice.

:)





Nov 25, 2012

Normal

Sometimes the best parts of life are the normal things:

holiday traditions, 
cleaning a kitchen after a huge meal,
chilling with family, 
or driving with a friend.

It was kinda funny to step into a different life this past week. No school to rush around to. I filled my day with whatever I chose. Lots of food, lots of games, lots of family :)

Made me remember that less-structured days require me to be more intentional about accomplishing my goals. Otherwise they just get swept out the door by everything else that happens.

The power of priorities.

Whoa. Talk about a tangent. When I got on to write, what I was really thinking is how incredible life's daily adventures are.

...which is a very ordinary thought.
But for some reason it doesn't feel like it is ha. 

I'm just struck by extraordinary joy from ordinary moments. 

:)

Like this:

(Well...I guess constructing a false ancient temple 
[complete with a roasting frog for sacrifice]
 out of graham crackers isn't exactly normal....)
---
We just had Thanksgiving. I guess I'm most grateful for the people in my life 
(like this guy) 
who make every normal moment incredible. 

:)



Nov 19, 2012

Totally Rad

What a fabulous weekend :)

Paint dance, 
Sammys, 

wheelchair basketball and rugby (I still say murder ball--wheelchair rugby--is the best sport ever invented), 

and Provo High's production of Les Miserables :) 
Ooh and chimichanga Sunday, w/guac
We may or may not have had a small kitchen fire....very exciting ;)

(Pre-Paint Guns... "Totally Rad," as the background graffiti shows)


This weekend was especially good because it followed one of the craziest weeks ever! I was slammed by school--I honestly didn't know if I'd be able to get everything done--and I was sick. I even called in sick to work (I have never done that before!).

And I thought a lot this week.

  • One thing I thought about was how dang blessed I am with amazing friends and family. Super cliche, I know, but there were several times throughout the week when I was just dumbstruck when I thought of how lucky I am. 

  • This week, the organization I helped work on launched. Meaning it is running and you should
    go to http://one-thought.org/ and check it out :) Let me know if you have any questions!
At the launch, there was a speaker who was, simply put, inspiring. I was reminded that:

--"You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him." (I've see this type of quote attributed to many people...so I'm gonna put Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, but don't bank on that ha.)

This isn't just talking about professions, where you are nice to someone to get a raise/good reviews/more money. 
Real life, people! Are you kind to people even when they don't have the qualities you think might make a good friend for you?

Hopefully it is a given in your life that your family members are your friends; isn't it funny that sometimes it is hardest to treat them even as well as you treat your other friends? 
Part of that is probably that when you are around people so frequently you know all sides of them much better (more likely to have things come up where you are bugged). 

But also, you don't have to impress them; you don't pick your family. 

So treat them nice anyway :) (For some reason, it seems this is much easier as you grow up more and more.)

--There is so much good you can do in your sphere of influence right now. It is good to have big dreams. But give all you've got to what you have in front of you too.

Maybe there is a reason you are where you are when you are. (say that ten times fast)

--People first. At the end of life, your regrets won't be that you didn't travel as much as you wanted, or didn't make as much money, etc. Take advantage of opportunities but don't lose your focus on people. 

Anyhoo.. :)
  • Being cold is always worst at the very beginning of winter. It doesn't feel as miserable now (knock on wood)

  • I believe "Baby It's Cold Outside" is one of the creepiest songs I've ever heard. Santa Baby is a very close second. Shudder.

  • I sooo need this Thanksgiving break. I am quite grateful for it ;)
Have a good one! 

:)

Nov 11, 2012

Snowy Sunday

I don't like this:

"One can promise actions, but not feelings, for the latter are involuntary. He who promises to love or hate forever or be forever faithful to someone is promising something that is not in his power." 

This is in the book "Human, All Too Human" by Friedrich Nietzsche.
(I haven't read it. I just saw this quote. I hope it is out of context, because it is so downright gloomy!)

Now...to some extent I kind of agree with the quote.
Who knows what could happen to change your feelings/attitudes about something/someone?

Hopefully that is for the better.

But. I think our actions, the places in life where we put our effort and energies, play a large role in how we feel about things and people!

And, according to Nietzsche, we can be more certain in promising actions than feelings. I think they feed each other.

Maybe you can't swear undying, unchanging love for someone. Maybe you can't say you'll always feel peace in a certain setting....

But maybe you can decide to take the proper actions that precipitate such feelings.

In serving someone and doing your best to act selflessly, your regard toward them becomes more positive and loving. (Usually ;))

You can influence things/situations to better promote whatever feeling you most desire to get from them.

Just some thoughts.

:)


Nov 9, 2012

Never

"The day may dawn when fair play, love for one's fellow men, respect for justice and freedom, will enable tormented generations to march forth triumphant from the hideous epoch in which we have to dwell.
Meanwhile, never flinch, never weary, never despair."
-Winston Churchill

:)

Oct 31, 2012

Trick or Treat!

For some reason I didn't post this post: Justified. Whoops. 

Happy Halloween! :)

Today, inspired by a classmate's story, I'm adding Reverse Trick-or-Treating to my bucket list. (I work tonight, so it'll have to be a future Halloween.)

Pretty much you go trick-or-treating whilst holding a door. Then you knock. When they open their door, they see a door. When they knock, you "open" your door, congratulate them on their neat costumes, and give them candy! Ha! Oh, life.

:)

(PS I don't know if I should dress up for work....it doesn't seem very professional to dress up since it is a hospital......but if you had to spend Halloween in the hospital, wouldn't some costumes liven it up??)

Oct 30, 2012

Great Expectations

Very slowly (like, whenever I get spare time at work that I don't fill with homework) I am reading Charles Dickens' book Great Expectations.

It is different than I expected
        ...even though I don't know what I was expecting ha.

Here are two of my favorite parts so far:

          "That was a memorable day to me, for it made great changes in me. But, it is the same with any life. Imagine one selected day struck out of it, and think how different its course would have been. Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation of the first link on one memorable day."

          "Well, Pip, be it so or be is son't, you must be a common scholar afore you can be a oncommon one, I should hope! The king upon his throne, with his crown upon his 'ed, can't sit and write his acts of Parliament in print, without having begun, when he were an unpromoted Prince, with the alphabet-Ah! And begun at A too, and worked his way to Z."

:)

Oct 29, 2012

Excited!

Today I am so excited about life!!!!

I am excited about my current classes. I'm pumped for my classes next semester. (Particularly a skiing class and a mountain biking class--hey, I need to party a little bit my last semester, a midst classes about finance and administration stuff ha!)

I'm excited about the people in my life, and goals I have.

Also something I've been thinking about: traditions are so important--they form some of our favorite memories :)

As I'm learning in my classes, it is important to live life intentionally. Think about what you are doing, and what you want to be doing. Then it is important to stop before you over-think and just live it :)

In a book I'm reading for a class (Intentional Families by William J Doherty) it says, "You can't be a sure a ritual has taken root, until it has survived episodes of neglect."

We don't always stay in habit we enjoy/think are good. But that's ok. Cuz we can start again if we want :)

On a completely different note, I heard a reference to the poem this week. Apparently it is a ubiquitous poem, but I'd never heard it before.
(I just learned the word ubiquitous! It means existing/being everywhere, common, frequently heard/seen/known, or omnipresent. I admit...I threw it in here just because I love it. Probably because every time I try to say it I fail. yew-bik-wih-tuhs. Anyhooo....)

So since I had never heard it, here 'tis! :)

The Cold Within--James Patrick Kinney
"Six humans trapped by happenstance
In dark and bitter cold
Each possessed a stick of wood--
Or so the story's told.

Their dying fire in need of logs,
But the first one held hers back,
For, of the faces around the fire,
She noticed one was black.

The next one looked cross the way
Saw one not of his church,
And could not bring himself to give
The fire his stick of birch.

The third one sat in tattered clothes
He gave his coat a hitch,
Why should his log be put to use
To warm the idle rich?

The rich man just sat back and thought
Of wealth he had in store,
And keeping all that he had earned
From the lazy, shiftless poor.

The black man's face bespoke revenge
As the fire passed from his sight,
For he saw in his stick of wood
A chance to spite the white.

And the last man of this forlorn group
Did nought except for gain,
Giving just to those who gave
Was how he played the game,

Their sticks held tight in death's stilled hands
Was proof enough of sin;
They did not die from cold without--
They died from cold within."

Ok...I admit that poem seems a little bit dreary compared to my mood............so........here are some really cheesy one-liner thoughts to lighten the mood ha!

--Do fish get thirsty?

--Does killing time damage eternity?

--How many weeks are there in a light year?

--How come wrong numbers are  never busy?

--If all the nations in the world are in debt, where did all the money go?

--If love is blind, why is lingerie so popular?

--Why isn't phonetic spelled the way it sounds?

--What was the best thing before sliced bread?

--What's another word for thesaurus?

--Why do we tend to raise our shoulders when we're out in the rain?

:)

Oct 24, 2012

Semi-sweet

"The true meaning of being alive is not just to feel happy, but to experience the full range of human emotions...

Being integrated and autonomous means allowing oneself to [fully experience] emotions--all the motions--and then deciding what to do with them."

~Why We Do What We Do by Edward L. Deci



Growing up, I just didn't understand semi-sweet chocolate chips. If you're gonna make cookies, why would you do something to give them any hint of bitterness? (You can tell I'm not a dark chocolate kinda gal.)

Sometimes I think about life like I think about cookies (whoa, you weren't quit prepared for such a deep statement ;) eh?)

Throw out the dang bitterness, sadness, or hurt. Just a milk chocolate life.

Then again, sadness can be cathartic. Call me crazy, but I usually like sad songs and sad movies. I guess it awakens the sense of humanity in me. Gets me thinking.

It isn't hypocritical to feel happy and sad about something.
It's just life. Oh, this good ol' life ha.

Today is a semi-sweet kinda day.

Little bit sad, lots bit sweet.

Most days I'll opt for milk chocolate, but I'll take life any way I can get it!

:)



Oct 22, 2012

Justified


Wanna hear something ironic? :)

Soooo for two of my classes I had to read these really life-changing books.

If I had to sum them up in one statement it would be that we need to realize that we can only control ourselves and we all seem to share a basic problem: we don't realize that we are the problem.

These books have shifted how I approach different situations and recognize how I'm seeing people. But guess what! As I was reading this book, I had a couple people come to mind. "They could really use this book," I thought.

Do you get the irony?? Yes, I realized changes that I need to make. But as I learned about ways we justify our own actions by how we see other people, I was judging other people!

Psh. Us humans are crazy, eh? :)

These are the books, same authors:
Leadership and Self-Deception 
          and 
The Anatomy of Peace


(You can tell I think reading these books would be awesome for everybody.)

Reading the whole books would explain these concepts a lot better, but basically,

When you have a "heart at peace" by seeing people as people (instead of obstacles to personal whims or ambitions) your whole world can change.

You stop needing to justify your own actions/ideas by mentally villianizing or degrading other people.

Ok yeah. I'm just gonna stop there. I'm not explaining it very well. You should just read the books, k? :)



Now indulge me in sharing a simple but thought-provoking experience of mine. Today I saw a professor on campus, bustling through the crowd of students, probably on his way to teach his next lecture.

I stopped him. You see, his wife had been one of my patients this last weekend. I asked how she was doing. He recognized me and said she'd had a rough weekend and really just wanted to be home.

Then we both wished each other the best, and headed off into our lives.

Reflecting on these two books I'd just read, I wondered if seeing each other in this context had changed our opinions of the other.

That day (well...night I guess...working graveyards messes me up a little ha) had been a busy one. I can understand his frustration with some of the delayed service they got, as I hurried around the floor.

Did seeing each other in this different world humanize the other?

He wasn't just an impatient family member, who didn't seem to have much tolerance for how busy I was triage-ing my time between patients.

I wasn't just another worker.

He was a professor, a concerned husband.

I was a busy, but concerned aid to his wife, and a college student.

A good gauge for if we are seeing people as people or objects is how interested we are in seeing who they are. What do they like? What do they do? What is their name??

Anyhoo, have a good one!

:)

Oct 15, 2012

Oct 14, 2012

Happy

For one of my classes we had to read The How of Happiness by Sonja Lyumbomirsky. I have always been a little leery of self-help books because they come across as hoaky to me!, but this was really good.


Basically, it gives strategies to intentionally improve your happiness, backed by evidence from scientific experiments. Pretty cool. 

(Especially cool cuz it scientifically backs principles I've been taught since I was a wee tot.)

Something I really liked was the individualistic-approach of the book. You pick the strategies you think will work the best for you, and adapt them so they are most effective. 

I feel like a pretty happy person. So it got me thinking what I have integrated into my life to make me happy. Some thoughts...

1) Discovering new ideas! Especially ideas about people, why they do what they do, how they think what they think. 
Books, classes, observations, movies, conversations, etc. 
Whatever gets my brain whirling :)
New ideas energize me, I love learning.

Books are probably one of my favorite ways to learn. In fact, in conversations my mind often reflects back on passages from books, weighing what I think and what I am hearing against what I read. 



My favorite books are ones that have a great story aaand get me thinking. (Les Mis is on top of my list. I'm also reading a really good one right now, also for a class, called The Anatomy of Peace.) 

Along with discovering new ideas, I guess, comes a happiness from sharing them. 
I love pouring thoughts into a journal, engaging in stimulating talks, and...I guess this blog is another way of doing that :)

2) Being with people I love. 
Having adventures, chilling, talking, just being with them. 

In The How of Happiness, they studied two groups of people who seemed to live longer than anybody else. Two things they had in common were the beliefs that

-family comes first 
and 
-social engagement is important.

I give that study an "amen."



3) Just savoring. Relishing experiences. Fall is a perfect time for this. (Then again, I seem to think that with every season.)

Autumn (my friend we're talking about now, not the season) would always laugh at how astounded I would get at pretty trees or landscapes. Only like 9 months til she gets home! (Only?)

I admit, I'm a busy person. I don't savor enough. But every time I do, it is like a breath of fresh air to my soul.



4) Creating things. Not that I'm great at any of these, but I feel happy when I try a new recipe, write a poem, finish a paper I'm proud of, put together a gift, etc. 

With this one, I think I'm really saying that I love the feeling of when I'm completely engaged in something. Now and then I'm a lazy bum ha, but usually I LOVE the feeling of working hard and knowing I handled something I wasn't sure I could. Owning what I do.

Because of this, a crazy day at work or a good workout makes me happy.



5) This is super cliche, but serving people makes me so happy! Whenever I'm having a down day, that is what I usually need to do to kick myself out of it. 

(I took a test yesterday, and somebody at the testing center gave me a  needed pencil. So simple, but really....I was completely impressed by that little act.)

Funny how often this one (serving people) just blends itself right into number 2. Like when I visit my old people where I used to work. I just love being with them :) In fact, I think I'll go see them today!

Which reminds me of a project I'm working on with some others at school.... One Thought. Stay tuned.



6) Laughing. Oh life is funny :) People are clever ha. 

One of the experiments this book talked about was so interesting! They had people read comics (or something funny like that) while they held a marker in their mouth. One group held the marker between their teeth (similar facial expression to smiling) and the other held the marker between their lips (a similar expression to frowning). 

The group that was halfway smiling when they saw something funny actually found the material funnier than the other group! 

So smile :) Life is more fun that way :)



7) Lots of other things. Life is a hard thing, but life is a happy thing if you want it to be!

:)

Oct 13, 2012

Better Days

Today is a Goo Goo Dolls day.
(They have some dang clever lyrics, ya know??)
The last one is my favorite :)


Let Love In...
"The end of fear is where we begin,
The moment we decided to let love in."

Become...
"You've been hiding in the shadows
Have you forgotten how we used to dream?
Let me remind you
The light doesn't blind you at all
It just helps you see, 
Can you see?
Yeah you have become...beautiful."


"Feeling like the truth has found you here
You're here with me
Let love become the mirror
With no fear where you're from
You have become beautiful."

Feel the Silence...
"Everything means more now than
Words could explain."

"I don't know where I'm going
Only know where I been
And you move through my soul like a hurricane wind"

"We've been so lost for so long
I don't know how to get back again
And we're drowning in the water
That flows under this bridge
When you're fighting the current
You forget how to live."
Give a Little Bit...
"Give a little bit of your time to me
Now's the time that we need to share
So send a smile, we're on our way back home."


Iris...
"When everything feels like the movies,
Yeah, you'd bleed just to know you're alive."

"And I don't want the world to see me
Cuz I don't think that they'd understand
When everything's made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am."

Without You Here...
"And I'm trying to believe
In things that I don't know
The turning of the world
The color of your soul
That love could kill the pain
Truth is never vain.
It turns strangers into lovers
And enemies to brothers.
Just say you understand."

"My head lies to my heart
And my heart it still believes
Oh it seems the ones who love us are the ones
That we deceive
But you're changing everything,
You're changing everything in me."


All That You Are...
"I feel wrong
I'm so human and flawed
I'll break down even though I'm still strong
And time will make fools of us all
Build us up and then laughs when we fall.
You pull me through 
When I'm alone in the dark and the fear is my truth."
"All the things that you are
Beautifully broken
Alive in my heart
And know
That you are everything
Let your heart sing and tonight...
We'll light up the stars."

"Filled with hope cause you're here in my life."


Can't Let It Go...
"I feel the light has dimmed and gone
Half the world is begging
While the other half steals.
Where did everything go wrong?
Some days I can't believe
Others, I'm on my knees
Trying to be heard."

"I was your anger
And you were my fear
Now that it's over
Of course it's so clear
But you were no  angel
And I was no sin
Somehow I can't let it go
I can't let it go."

"Half the world is sleeping
While the other half dreams."

"Maybe my intentions
Have been misunderstood
I know you feel so beautifully wronged.
Some days I can't believe
Others, I'm on my knees
Hoping I belong."

"And laughter is my soul's release
But we're not smiling anymore
And can't we try to win this peace?

Cause we're never gonna win
Never gonna win this war."


Better Days ...
(ok...I'm just gonna put this whole song..it is one of my very favorites)

"And you ask me what I want this year
And I try to make this kind and clear
Just a chance that maybe we'll find better days.
Cause I don't need boxes wrapped in strings
And designer love and empty things.
Just a chance that maybe we'll find better days.

So take these words
And sing out loud
Cause everyone is forgiven now
Cause tonight's the night the world begins again.

I need someplace simple where we could live
And something only you can give
And that's faith and trust and peace while we're alive.
And the one poor child who saved this world
And there's ten million more who probably could
If we all just stopped and said a prayer for them...

I wish everyone was loved tonight
And somehow stop this endless fight
Just a chance that maybe we'll find better days

So take these words
And sing out loud
Cause everyone is forgiven now
Cause tonight's the night the world begins again
Cause tonight's the night the world begins again."

:)

Oct 10, 2012

One of Those

Today was "one of those days."
Nothing bad happened. I just felt like it did.

Funny, considering I was so pumped about an optimism class I had the day before.

I had also filled my journal and it was time to start my new one.



I wanted to vent about my day and my thoughts....but it was a new journal (covered in peace signs no less)!

Venting didn't seem like a very pleasant way to start out.

But I couldn't lie, and I wanted to write, so I let it all out. Then I had a thought!

Just like it seemed strange to start my journal off right there, I was reminded that no matter how well we know people, we are really coming in partway in to their story.

We don't know what experiences have played into their expectations or hopes or fears or anger.

Which leads me to two more thoughts:

1) Cutting people slack is a really good thing. Oh how clueless we are ha.

2) Thank God that He is our constant friend because He does understand.

(P.S. world--I feel fantastic again. Just so ya know ;))

:)

Oct 9, 2012

Blown Away

I really love Carrie Underwood ha.


You know what else blows me away?

Lots of things...

But at this moment in particular, how it is possible
to know something but not believe it,
and also 
to believe something but not know it. 

The former especially seems to happen when things seem logical, but your heart isn't quite convinced. Everything makes sense, so why aren't you sold?

The latter comes in to play in those situations where hope happens to be your uncalled-for best friend. You don't know how things will work out. But you believe they will.

And when the two, knowing and believing, come together?

I guess that is when you can act with true confidence.

Just some ramblings.

:)

Oct 3, 2012

Bluebird

They say time flew.
As if it were a
Bluebird,
Flitting from branch to skies of blue.

Quite out of reach,
Speed and height controlled by
No man;
Too free for a saddle or leash.

But hear the song
Of the bluebird's sweet
Flight. And
Find that you too can fly along.

Time won't be tamed
But moments are yours.
Freedom.
Daring to live with hope unrestrained.

:)

Sep 30, 2012

December

(I feel like it is a trend in life right now to emphasize excitement by de-emphasizing it. In other words saying exciting/cool things with little emotion. Like saying "I am so pumped" without an exclamation mark. Dry humor? People trying to not look too enthusiastic? Or maybe I'm just crazy ha.)

Anyhoo.

I am so pumped...


:)

Sep 26, 2012

Moments Like This

I stand in awe of human potential.

I feel encompassed and surrounded and strengthened by the power of love and hope.

I am humbled by the tumbles of life...so much pain everywhere...
                         ...yet so much goodness.

So much more yet to come.

We're all finding our way. I don't think we'll ever stop feeling like that.

But there is joy in this journey. Rainbows waiting to peek through the clouds.

I feel aware of an ever-present ..
                     (oh, what's the word?)

Does love cover it?

It is so easy to feel alone and sub-par. But don't give up.

We have time, if we use it. Just keep swimming :)

There was a time when I felt this awe--everything I just said--whenever I thought about the potential of others, then turn around silently despaired when my thoughts turned to myself. Hope for the world, for others, but none for myself. I just wasn't good enough. Everyone was worth loving, but how could I be?

So.....I realize being happy isn't a matter of just making the simple decision to see life through rose-colored glasses.

But I wish I could show the world the difference you feel when you can feel that love and hope for others AND for yourself.

I wish I could give that to people as easy as giving them a smile. 


A dear friend recently shared a thought with me by Longfellow:
"If we could read the secret histories of others we would find pain and sorrow enough to disarm all hostility."


Pain, by contrast, can highlight love and hope.

Man.

Life is crazy. People are worth it.

:)


Sep 25, 2012

Gracefully

Not really sure who to attribute this poem to.
I found it at http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/to-forgive-2/
So there :)

I love it!

To Forgive

"To forgive
Is not to forget.

To forgive
Is really to remember
That nobody is perfect
That each of us stumbles
When we want so much to stay upright
That each of us says things
We wish we had never said
That we can all forget that love
Is more important that being right.

To forgive is really to remember
That we are so much more
Than our mistakes
That we are often more kind and caring.
That accepting another's flaws
Can help us accept our own.

To forgive
Is to remember
That the odds are pretty good that
We might soon need to be forgiven ourselves.
That life sometimes gives us more
Than we can handle gracefully.

To forgive
Is to remember
That we have room in our hearts to

Begin again...And again."

:)

Sep 24, 2012

P.S.

I don't know why this makes me laugh so much..

"I don't like spinach, and I'm glad I don't, because if I liked it I'd eat it, and I just hate it."
~Clarence Darrow

:) :)

Traveled Man

I think today I have officially crossed the line from "tired" to "exhausted." (And yet...I love everything I'm doing. I could definitely find better balance in some ways. But I'm working on it ha!)

A lot of thoughts on my mind lately.

One thought starts with this poem! :)

The Traveled Man--Ella Wheeler Wilcox

"Sometimes I wish the railroads all were torn out,
The ships all sunk among the coral strands.
I am so very weary, yea, so worn out,
With tales of those who visit foreign lands.

When asked to dine, to meet these traveled people,
My soup seems brewed from cemetery bones.
The fish grows cold on some cathedral steeple,
I miss two courses while I stare at thrones.

I'm forced to leave my salad quite untasted,
Some musty, moldy temple to explore.
The ices, fruit, and coffee all are wasted
While into realms of ancient art I soar.

I'd rather take my chance of life and reason,
If in a den or roaring lions hurled
Than for a single year, ay, for one season,
To dwell with folks who'd traveled round the world.

So patronizing are they, so oppressive,
With pity for the ones who stay at home,
So mighty is their knowledge, so aggressive,
I ofttimes wish they had not cesaed to roam.

They loathe the new, they quite detest the present;
They revel in a pre-Columbian morn;
Just dare to say America is pleasant,
And die beneath the glances of their scorn.

They are increasing at a rate alarming,
Go where I will, the traveled man is there.
And now I think that rustic wholly charming
Who has not strayed beyond his meadows fair."

Now I'll be honest...most of the "traveled" people I have met aren't this cocky and patronizing. The "rustic wholly charming" doesn't need to feel inferior.

I think the "travelling man" definitely gets cool new perspectives on others and themselves. Heck, I'm definitely prone to get bit by the travel-hungry bug. But you can learn a lot right out your front door--many valuable people and experiences exactly in the phase of life/place in life you are at.

Both are good. It is good to take advantage of opportunities to expand. Meanwhile, love where you are!

That is good for me to remember. I would love to be able to spend more time with people in other places. (Mo-town? ahem...Logan?!)

But life is good y'all

:)

(PS the title of this poem reminds me of the OOOOOOOOOOOOLD song by Ricky Nelson called Traveling Man. A very old patient sang it to me :))

Sep 9, 2012

Bold

"Fanaticism consists in redoubling your effort when you have forgotten your aim." George Santayana

Hearing things like this, and seeing people who act like this, has made me cautious about asserting my opinions.
(Funny to say that on a blog where all I do is spout my opinions ha)

And yet, I've also been told that I am one stubborn individual! :)

So...on my mind tonight is the difference between being
                      stubborn/extreme/obstinate 
and being 
bold/courageous or sticking-to-your-guns when it matters. 

Grounded AND open-minded.

I think that people want to be good. I think that a lot of the mistakes we make come from people trying to do something good, and taking that too far or mistakenly running with a twisted version of a good idea.

Listening to Jeffrey R. Holland speak tonight cleared some of this up for me.

http://www.lds.org/broadcasts/watch/ces-devotionals/2012/09?lang=eng

I feel emboldened, but not in a rampage (slash get-in-other-people's-grill) kinda way.

I feel reminded that to be bold means standing firm on what you know is true and loving those who view things differently. It means being open to learning and integrating truth.

It means when you are making a point or supporting a cause, it is not to prove yourself right or appear superior. It is to help others. To love others!

:)

Aug 30, 2012

The Chair

School started again! And I just got an email about applying for graduation. When did I get so old, sonny? But I still feel like a young whippersnapper :)

First day of school=stress, stress, stress!

Everything I needed to do and will need to do in the upcoming future really hit me.
BUT.

Then I went to back to class. And I was reminded that life is good :) Following a few classes that were quite inspirational (and helped me refocus my perspective about school and jobs and people and life), I went to a class where the teacher showed us a few little videos of things they did in New Zealand.

This did two things for me:

1. Made me remember that life is an adventure! You gotta put in the work, but you can't forget to play and be happy :)

2. Made me REALLLLY want to go to New Zealand and try some of these things ha! Still waiting on that billionaire to randomly pick me as an heir.

Blackwater Rafting in Glowworm Cave
("Do not pee in the wetsuits!" haha :)
Plus the old guy in the video kinda cracks me up)


Zorbing

Rotorua Whitewater Sledging
(Like a kickboard on steroids)

Canyon Swing Queenstown--"The Chair"


Whether or not these things are in my near future, it was a breath of fresh air to remember how fun life is!
:)

Aug 21, 2012

Busy

Haven't blogged in awhile. Life is just so busy.

I was thinking about that today, the busy-ness of life. I think I'm always busy; if I drop something I just pick up something else.
But I like it like that :) I love everything I'm busy with!


Anyhoo...
I came across this whilst working on my online history class (soooo close to being done!!!):

(Referring to the Renaissance-ish time when people started reading the works of classical literature and the writings of philosophers and scientists)

"What is quite interesting, however, is that on nearly every point the great thinkers of the ancient past were dead wrong. On the subjects of world geography, the nature of the universe, human anatomy, and medical practice, the ancients often erred terribly. So exposure to the wisdom of the ancients did not give the Europeans the right answers, and hence, no advantages.
What it did give them, however, were the 'right' questions, questions nobody had thought to ask in Europe for centuries. Francis Bacon,  the forefather of modern science, stated perceptively that truth springs more readily from error than from confusion. Europe was leaving a dark age of confusion, and with the errors of the ancients recently made available to them, began again the search for truth that had left off with the fall of Rome.
This is a good example of the central purpose of an education: knowing the questions is more important than knowing the answers. Much of what you learn in college will become obsolete. What makes you educated is exposure to the questions, questions that have been and will forever remain important to educated humans.
If you rarely read history, or science, or even the newspaper once you graduate, you are not educated despite your diploma.
Education is not about what you know; it's about how much you are willing to learn."

This came from the class content, instructor Shawn W. Miller. I like what he had to say. It provokes a few thoughts:

First, I realized in typing this that I inevitably type "teh" instead of "the"...pretty much every time.

Second, I am reminded of a part of The Great Divorce by C. S. Lewis. There is a man who rides a bus from hell to heaven; when he arrives at the bus stop he is met by a friend who will help him walk the journey to heaven. They begin talking, and it is clear that the man residing in hell lives an intellectual lifestyle.

His friend tells him he will take him to the land "not of questions but of answers."

The other does not like this, asserting that the "free wind of inquiry must always continue to blow through the mind" because "to travel hopefully is better than to arrive." The finality of finding truth seemed stifling to him.

His friend reminds him that,
"Thirst was made for water; inquiry for truth."

I think...it is dangerous to assume that we have all the right answers, and that we perfectly understand all of those answers. Leads to a lot of misconstrued ideas and living. But it is also dangerous to grow too fond of floating.

Sometimes it seems attractive to let respecting other ideas work its way into becoming a lifestyle of not accepting any ideas as truth. Safety in the inconclusiveness. It is easy to be tolerant of other ideas this way. It is less scary than taking the chance that you might be wrong.

But that is floating.
I found myself living like that for awhile for a few months once. But actually.. I guess I didn't just feel like I was floating/drifting between new ideas. I felt like I was drowning in the unknown.

Was there any true reality? Everything seemed to be influenced by a million different factors or motivations; truth was actually just a statement of one's perspective on that particular thing. So not truth at all, really; just opinions. Did absolute truth exist?

Then I let myself believe in the reality of truth. And the world seemed happy again :)

I definitely don't have all of the answers. Or even very many answers, perhaps.

But I held my breath, braced myself, took a leap, and decided to rely on a source, from whom I'd felt truth before: Christ.

I don't know if any of us really grasp completely absolute truth. But that doesn't mean we can't hold onto the truths we do find.

I'm constantly needing to tweak my understanding of what I know to be true. The pictures become clearer, I find pieces to the puzzle. But with all that, I found a foundation of core truths that I cling to when the world seems confusing and full of questions.

My point: yes, asking the right questions leads you to truth. You won't always find it immediately, but when you do find it, allow yourself to believe it and be glad about it!

Third, I do agree with the point that education is often about what you are willing to learn. Kinda goes along with the saying that the more you know, the more you realize how little you know.

Funny how pondering/answering the important questions of life helps you find where you will truly feel grounded.

:)

Aug 1, 2012

Humor

"Nothing is better than the unintended humor of reality."

I don't know who this Steve Allen guy is who said that, but I couldn't agree more. 

Life is a funny thing :)



The funny daily little interactions with strangers or friends just add a little sunshine to days. 

Sometimes they are called had-to-be-there moments. 

They don't even have to be that funny.

Just little moments that make you smile or even chuckle. 

Sometimes my source of humor is as random as my sources of inspiration; I like cheesy jokes, clever puns, satirical comics, funny movies, lighthearted sarcasm. 

But even beyond those, sometimes the unintended humor of reality makes me shake my head and laugh.


("Ha ha ha! I like laughing! It's such a nice experience!"
I'm pretty sure my friends and I have made this face posing for pictures.)

:)

Jul 29, 2012

Daring


"Security is mostly a superstition...Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing."
Helen Keller

 Pretty typical "carpe diem" type of quote. But, really. Sometimes it is a good reminder. What is really holding you back? 

Usually what holds me back is wondering if my perspectives are skewed or lacking information or just plain wrong. 

So I guess once I figure that out, I gotta decide to bring on the adventure

:)

Jul 24, 2012

Radio

(This rambling is not referring to songs that are overplayed.)

Funny how I can listen to songs on my ipod/computer any time I want, but for some reason it is especially exciting to me when I hear them come over the radio. Unexpected delight.

(Somebody That I Used to Know, Edge of Glory, Domino, We Found Love, etc.)

:)

Jul 22, 2012

Ghazal

First off, I've had this song stuck in my head for the past week or so ha! (I shared this song with my old people and some of them recognized it and swayed along with me as I washed dishes! :) Twas great)



Also, I found this extremely random, yet a couple of the lines really intrigued me...

The Ghazal of What Hurt by Peter Cole
(PS a ghazal is an "oriental lyric...poetry written in recurring lines."
shrug ha. sounds like a type of bird to me!)

"Pain froze you, for years--and fear--leaving scars.
But now, as though miraculously, it seems, here you are

walking easily across the ground, and into town
as though you were floating on air, which in part you are,

or riding a wave of what feels like the world's good will--
though helped along by something foreign and older than you are,

not all that far beneath the skin, and even in
some bones. Making you wonder: Are you what you are--


with all that isn't actually you having flowed
through and settled in you, & made you what you are?

The pain was never replaced, nor was it quite erased.
It's a memory now--so you know just how lucky you are.


You didn't always. Were you then? And where's the fear?
Inside your words, like an engine? The car you are?!

Face it, friend, you most exist when you're driven
away, or on--by forms and forces greater than you are."

Makes me wonder ha.

:)

Jul 18, 2012

Hospital

Some thoughts stemming from working at the hospital:



In my orientation packet from Intermountain Healthcare, there was a little book which started with this story:

"It was the dawn of space flight, and the story is told of an early visit by John F. Kennedy to Cape Canaveral and the space center that would later be named for him. Among the people he met in the hallway that day was a custodian. President Kennedy asked him, 'What is your name, and what do you do?'

The man gave him his name, and then said: 'I'm helping to put a man on the moon.'

...Each of us as a role to play in healing. Whether we provide care directly or support those who do, we have the opportunity every day to create an experience that can help others heal. It isn't only about the jobs we do, it's about the way we do them.'"

Cool, eh? Yes, it might be a cheesy pump-up story..but I quite liked it. It applies well to life. 



I was also thinking, 

isn't it funny that sometimes we feel comfortable confiding things to strangers that we don't even tell people we are close to?

Like in a hospital, I get to know patients and they tell me some pretty intimate details about their lives sometimes. Or sometimes some not-so-intimate things, but things you might not throw out there for all of your neighbors to hear. 

Safety in secrecy? In the fact that you are probably never going to see them again. And they are never going to see anybody involved in any of the stories you tell, so you don't have to worry about the word getting out.

Obviously we share these kinds of details with people we are close to as well. So perhaps conversations like these are for intimate friends and for strangers? 

Again, no deep insight into human nature with this last thought. Just a thought.

:)



Jul 6, 2012

Psalm of Life

At work today, a dear friend of mine told me his favorite poem is Psalm of Life by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. He recited some of it to me. His hearing aids were broken, so I wrote him how much I liked the poem ha :) Gosh dang, have I mentioned how much I love old people?

"Tell me not in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.

Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
Dust thou are, to dust thou returnest,
Was not spoken of the soul.

Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way;
But to act, that each tomorrow
Find us farther than today.

Art is long and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.

In the world's broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife!

Trust no Future, howe'er pleasant!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act, act in the living Present!
Heart within, and God o'erhead!

Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sand of time;

Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o'er life's solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.

Let us then be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait."

:)

Jul 2, 2012

Por que

I know I juuust published a post..but that isn't really what is on my mind right now.

Today I'm musing about why people do what they do.

Gut instinct, logic, inspiration, emotion, 

selfishness, selflessness, fear, misunderstandings,


understanding, habit, ignorance, knowledge,

desire to fit in, desire to be different,

spontaneity, boredom, love, etc.

Then once we do something, what keeps us with that?

A continuation of one of the reasons above, or a remembrance of that initial motivation?

Hmmm.

:)

Searching

Help Yourself To Happiness
--Helen Steiner Rice--

Everybody, everywhere
seeks happiness, it's true,
But finding it and keeping it
seem difficult to do.
Difficult because we think
that happiness is found 
Only in the places where
wealth and fame abound.
And so we go on searching.
in palaces of pleasure
Seeking recognition
and monetary treasure,
Unaware that happiness 
is just a state of mind
Within the reach of everyone
who takes time to be kind.
For in making others happy
we will be happy too.
For the happiness you give away
returns to shine on you.

You've never heard something like this, have you? All of these words are quite novel ideas ;)

Funny how we can forget though. 

There is a way to do some small good for someone else, doesn't matter where you're at.

:)

Jun 28, 2012

Dancing Awake

The contrasting ideas behind these two songs intrigue me:

Garth Brook's The Dance says,

"I could have missed the pain, but I'd of had to miss the dance...
Now I'm glad I didn't know the way it all would end, the way it all would go. Our lives are better left to chance.
I could have missed the pain. 
But I'd of had to miss the dance."

aaand

Katy Perry's Wide Awake says,

"I wish I knew then what I know now. 
Wouldn't dive in, wouldn't bow down.
 Gravity hurts, you made it so sweet, til I woke up on the concrete. Falling from cloud nine....God knows that I tried seeing the bright side. But I'm not blind anymore...I'm wide awake."

Hmmm.

We can't stop dancing cuz we are scared of the pain. But it can be scary when you see many people who are wide awake!

Which reminds me of another thought going through my mind lately...where is the line between self-advocacy and selfishness?

More ponderings than answers today. But life is good y'all.

:)