Tuesday, August 31, 2010


I'm slowly learning the delicate and graceful art of finding beauty in the small things.

Sunday, in addition to seeing a coyote, I pushed my small cousins on a swing-set. I've always been timid around children, but I'm surprising myself at how quickly I'm learning to love their company. I love talking to them and listening to them talk. I especially loved it when we all broke out singing "Airplanes" by B.o.B. Even 3-year-old Connor was singing.

"Can we pretend that airplanes in the night sky are like shooting stars? I could really use a wish right now, wish right now, wish right now."

Yesterday I stayed too late at FHE, but I made some new friends and got to socialize with some old ones, so I think it was worth it. I did have to stay up far later than desirable doing homework, which I wasn't able to finish before going to sleep. Consequently, I woke up late this morning. Things worked out quite nicely, though. I even managed to finish all of my reading before the appointed classes.

What could have been hectic and disgruntled quickly turned into a wonderful day. Nothing changed to make it so but me.

I also got a lovely surprise when I checked the mail yesterday. A little something I ordered for myself had arrived!


I'm slowly learning that delicate and graceful art.

I feel rather marvelous.

Listening to: "Such Great Heights" by Iron & Wine
Reading: Pride & Prejudice

Sunday, August 29, 2010


I saw a coyote today.

Listening to: Ella Enchanted
Reading: Pride and Prejudice

Saturday, August 28, 2010


I did laundry today, but not as much of it as I would've liked. It started raining in the afternoon and I had to rush everything inside, which greatly decreased my drying space. I believe an appropriate euphemism for this would be that the weather "threw a wrench in the works."

The rain was lovely, though. I think it's just the most gorgeous thing when in rains with the sun out.

K. rode her bike through the rain to hang out with me. We had a marvelous little adventure through Walmart looking for glow-in-the-dark stars. We ended up finding them at Michael's. While we were driving around, we rolled the windows down and marveled at the lightning lighting the clouds up from within.

Back at my house, we chatted and read some poetry. She's asleep on my floor now.

Listening: "Please Don't Go" by Barcelona
Reading: Pride and Prejudice

Friday, August 27, 2010


Today I laid on the grass and looked up at the clouds. I splashed through puddles barefoot, including one magnificent pounce with both feet. I drove home through the city with the windows down and a splendid little breeze blowing by. I caught sprinkled rain drops on my hand. I saw a power chair in the bike lane with a passenger on the back. The lights all turned green right as I pulled up to them. The mail arrived just as I was pulling into the driveway.

If I were any mellower, you could toast me and stick me on a graham cracker.

Listening: "Little Red Corvette"
Reading: Winnie-the-Pooh by A. A. Milne

Thursday, August 26, 2010


This college stuff is time-consuming.

Listening to: "Whenever, Wherever" by Shakira
Reading: Winnie-the-Pooh by A. A. Milne

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Man in maroon.

I finally got something I've been wanting for a long time: a graphics tablet. This is my first real journey into its use. I'm still figuring everything out, and I have a very long way to go before I'll be on the same level as my heroes, but it's a start.

Listening to: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Reading: Jurassic Park

Thursday, August 19, 2010


When I was signing up for this semester's classes, I brilliantly scheduled almost everything back to back. Resultantly, on Tuesdays and Thursdays I don't have a break until I get home around 2:30 or 3. This does not bode well for my tummy and its grumbliness. Count on me to not consider lunch because I'm too excited about my classes.

Monday-Wednesday-Friday is a little better.

To tide me over during my long, grueling days, Dad and I picked up some granola bars.

But hunger isn't going to be my only problem. In one respect, scheduling my Spanish classes next to each other is a good thing. I don't have to pull myself out of a Spanish mindset just to turn around and try to get back into one. I can just keep thinking Spanish continuously. On the other hand, I'm not at a level yet where it isn't mentally exhausting to try to keep up with a fluent Spanish teacher for three hours. My literature teacher isn't so bad. I don't think she's a native speaker. She's from Michigan and of Italian descent. She almost speaks slow enough for me to catch everything. I do catch most of it. However, my conversation and composition teacher will be another matter. She's Cuban. Her Spanish is a little too fast for me right now. But I suppose I'll get used to it.

I'm really excited for tomorrow. Fridays are the days I can reasonably expect mail from my friends. Additionally, I should have a package arriving tomorrow. A package which I am eagerly awaiting.

Listening to: Sherlock Holmes
Reading: Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


I went to a free concert with my cousin.

She's a huge Dierks Bentley fan. I was actually rather indifferent about going, but I thought she would enjoy it. And hey, free concert! She couldn't just go because it was thrown by my school and you needed a student I.D. to get in, plus one guest.

To get there we braved a monsoon that kept coming and going. Her road was completely submerged. The only reason she got out was that her family owns a suburban. Since I haven't actually driven Serafine in the rain before, I stayed off the highway as we forayed through the gale and to the light rail station. I figured we could park there for free and pay a few dollars to use it and we wouldn't have to worry about finding parking at the university.

Outside, there were people giving away promotional stuff, like pretzel M&Ms and Target gift cards and slap bracelets advertising a textbook rental site. Wait, slap bracelets? Yes. Terrible, I know. If you're going to try to bring a fad like that back, don't attempt it at a college. Go stand outside a middle school

There were only two artists on the bill: Dierks Bentley and Chingy. I don't know who thought that one up, but either they were trying to draw in a more diverse crowd or they were abusing some restricted substance.

Chingy opened. Do I have any idea what his songs were about? No. No I don't. I only caught phrases here and there, mostly involving him trying to pump up different sides of the stadium. He did have some amusing introductions to his songs, though. For one he was telling people about what they would need to get into his after party. 1. Be 18. 2. Be 21 to drink. 3. If you're a lady, bring 4, 5, 6 of your friends. Cue song. I'm sure it would make more sense if you were familiar with his work. I am not. Still entertaining, though. He also told a story about how he forgot to bring socks on the trip, so he went to Target, and while he was there, a little girl went up to him. As he looked around for her parents, he asked her what was hanging. She said that her mom said he was the guy that did some song. Then he performed that song. Are these true stories? Your guess is as good as mine. Also, one of the guys who was singing back up for him was wearing a Tootsie Pop shirt. I thought that was cool.

But not as cool as the kid in the audience who was wearing a shirt in the style of those Obama election posters that was a picture of Admiral Akbar that said TRAP underneath. Yeah, I got a picture.

After Chingy was done rapping or whatever, Dierks Bentley came on, which I found a little more bearable, but it still wasn't my favorite thing in the world. He did have a few songs that I recognized, to my pleasant surprise. They were even songs I kind of liked. I'm still not a general fan of modern country. With the exception of Taylor Swift.

One thing I did really like was how Mr. Bentley interacted with the audience. He gave a lot of high fives to the people at the front of the pit. He often held the mic out to the crowd. He borrowed a few people's baseball caps. He told us stories about when he used to live here. Apparently he grew up in this area. His parents were actually at the concert, which I thought was kind of cool. He even pointed them out to everybody at one point. That's just awesome, when you're playing a concert for a huge crowd of college kids and you invite your parents. That's love.

During some of the songs, there were people swing dancing.

I think my favorite part was while he was singing some song about love and breakups, and he was leaning close to a girl in the front row. He stopped and said, "This is kind of awkward. I don't even know your name." He held the microphone out to her and she said, "I'm Erica." "Hi, I'm Dierks. I have to go." Then he got up and moved to a different part of the stage. I found it hilarious.

Then again, I'm easily entertained.

But I think it's awesome to see a performer who knows how to interact with a crowd. When they joke and talk and give the audience a chance to shine, it energizes the audience. The more energetic an audience is, the better the entertainer is going to perform. The better they perform, the more the audience gets out of it. It's a circular dependency.

It's fascinating to see it work.

Listening to: "In the Middle" by Jimmy Eat World
Reading: Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


On Sunday I was mixing up drinks for family dinner. I glanced at the instructions for the drink mix and began laboriously measuring out 16 scoops for my gallon of water. I was advised that I should add a few extra or it would be a little weak. That brought my total up to 18. Then I read the package more carefully.

Amount of water: 1 gallon
Servings: 16
Scoops: 8


At least I didn't fling Parmesan cheese everywhere like Anne did when she shook it and the lid wasn't as closed as she thought.

Listening to: The Guild
Reading: Jurassic Park

Saturday, August 14, 2010


Yesterday, after finally resuming work on my room and scrubbing all of the grossness off of the stove top, I went out with the ladies of my family. We all went to a barbecue place for dinner then caught a 9:30 showing of Eat, Pray, Love. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

I also got a tuition refund check in the mail yesterday, so I went with my dad to open a bank account. I intend to leave most of it sitting there, but I will indulge myself a little. I've always wanted a graphics tablet. Well, here's my chance.

Listening to: "Brandy (You're a Fine Girl)"
Reading: Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

Friday, August 13, 2010

Out on the town.

On Wednesday K. and I went on an adventure. In the morning, we took her dog Haley to the dog park to burn off some of her excess energy. We discovered that she, like many dogs I've known, likes attacking bubbles. In the afternoon, we hopped on the lightrail and rode down to Mill Ave. K. had never been there before. It was even more exciting than usual, watching someone experience it for the first time. Man, I love that place.

Listening to: The Sons of Katie Elder
Reading: Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


While I still check other blogs daily, I keep forgetting to post here. Whoops.

Well, our bishopric changed. Our new bishop is our old high council member, so that's pretty awesome. And he managed to get the stake to let us keep the Randalls with Brother Randall as the new executive secretary. I'm already becoming fond of the new counselors, too.

FHE last night was some pretty creative getting-to-know-you activities. For one we sat in a circle with people we hopefully didn't know and went around the circle adding parts to a made-up dream using everyone's names.

Super soft cookies for refreshments.

Listening to: North and South
Reading: Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

Saturday, August 7, 2010


I hung out with K. again yesterday. I'm quite thrilled that we're friends. I found Waldo while she registered for college courses, then we had a lovely little adventure at Staples.

We spent the evening watching 13 Going on 30. While that was on, I worked on sketching out a future painting on the loose sheets of canvas I got for Christmas. I thought it was a pad of paper, but when I opened it up the other day, it turns out that they're actually sheets of canvas cloth "acrylic primed for use with any medium." Which turns out to be even cooler than it sounds. K.'s dogs were rough-housing with each other and bumped into the coffee table, spilling water all over my drawing. Her mom was freaking out, worrying about it being ruined, but it turns out that acrylic primed canvas for use with any medium is a magical, magical thing. The water poured right off when I picked it up. It didn't even smudge the pencil. Not a run, not a wet spot, not a wrinkle. The force is strong with this one.

I also downloaded a bunch of fun stuff for my phone last night. Now I get alerts whenever an earthquake is recorded anywhere in the world. I have a lightsaber and a program that makes a plethora of Star Wars sounds that I have the option of making ringtones. I have a game wherein I bounce a cow up platforms in an attempt to save my friends from aliens in UFOs. My favorite: my new text alert is Navi from the Legend of Zelda yelling, "Listen!"

Listening to: "Cry For You" by September
Reading: Beauty by Robin McKinley

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Hellos, goodbyes.

On Sunday, it was announced that our bishopric will formally be released next week. It's one of the best bishoprics I've ever seen, and that opinion is widely shared, so naturally it was a sad day for all. The bishopric themselves, and their sweet wives, are feeling it perhaps deeper than the rest of us. Post-church was a festival of hugs and fond goodbyes.

A measure of those six wonderful people's caliber is this: when I hugged them and shook their hands and started to tell them how much I loved them and would miss them, I discovered that instead they were drawing me close and whispering in my ear how wonderful I was and how much they would miss me.

Oh, how I miss them already.

To the Mathesons, to the Randalls, to the Phelps: you're something else. <3

Last night I went to a birthday party for someone I'd never actually met. We have a mutual friend back in the Midwest, and since K. doesn't know anyone here, she was advised to look me up on Facebook. I'm so glad she did. She and her friends are a spectacular mixture of sweet and entertaining. I went to the mall with them today and had oodles of fun. Stops included a used bookstore (loot: The Once and Future King, Jurassic Park; total: $2.18), a pet shop, a kitchen store (one of the girls is a chef), The Cheesecake Factory (their food is mind-blowing), and the $2 movie theater. It turns out it was $1 Tuesday. Lucky us, eh? We proudly sallied forth, the only four people without young 'uns seeing How To Train Your Dragon at 2:35.

Listening to: The Shootist
Reading: Beauty by Robin McKinley