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


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


"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


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 
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


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 
-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."

"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."

"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


They say time flew.
As if it were a
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.
Daring to live with hope unrestrained.