Friday, January 30, 2009

Haden and I got to hang out yesterday morning. He's 8 months old now and he's getting so big and is so much fun. He makes a terrible mess when he's fed baby food and I'm not very good at actually getting the food in his mouth.

Well, yesterday, after a whole jar, I thought I'd mastered it. Almost all the food got where it was supposed to and we were both relatively clean. I was pretty proud of myself. Then came lunch.

He was eating mixed vegetables, which smell awful! We were having such a good time and were about halfway through the jar. I put the spoon full of tasty veggies in his mouth and he sneezed!

Baby food went everywhere. It was all over my face. I think I gasped. This, plus the mere sight of my orange mush covered face, caused Haden to laugh.

Kids are so great. They remind me of what's really important and tend to make me forget about those little things that I stress so much about. While I wish I had my own, the next best thing is being an aunt. I can't imagine loving these 6 nephews (almost) and 3 nieces more than I do. They bring me absolute happiness!

Monday, January 26, 2009

When Jaime and the kids were staying at my house, they brought their Wii. For the first time, I tried yoga. I did it for about three minutes and couldn't believe how sore I was the next morning. I decided yoga would be a good part of my physical activities for the week.

After deciding I could never justify buying a Wii for myself, although I still really want one, I found a cheep yoga mat with a beginning workout DVD. I tried it out tonight.

I'll admit that some giggling was involved and I kept checking to make sure the blinds were really closed. I don't believe it was really beginning yoga. What beginner can move their legs in those positions? Seriously!

It was a lot of fun and I felt taller after I did it. I think if I keep it up I could actually be 5 foot 4 by the end of February!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

An Incredible Strength

I've been thinking a lot about my family lately. Maybe it's because my sister and her kids have been here and I've been so aware of those members of our family who have not. It's been so long since we've all been together and I can't imagine that it will happen any time soon. We manage to come close, but somehow, we're always missing at least one of us.

Being single and not having a family of my own is without a doubt the hardest thing about my life. Sometimes coming home one more night to an empty house seems almost too much. But I know I'm not ever alone. I have an amazing family, whose strength I always feel. There are even times lately when I feel the strength of those members of my family who have passed on.

It's somewhat amazing to me how it actually works - how that power that binds us together allows us to feel strengthened and uplifted when miles or even a veil separates us. But it works. And I'm glad it does.

Friday, January 23, 2009

The Furnace of Affliction

I was studying the other morning and read something that I haven't been able to get out of my mind. It was in 1 Nephi, chapter 20, verse 10. "...I have refined thee, I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction."

A commentary on this verse explains this: "It is in the flames of difficulty that the temporal steel of faith is forged. Ease does not call forth greatness."

The "flames of difficulty" are different for each of us. Some struggle with poor health, wayward children, circumstances beyond our control, or a variety of other things. Some of these struggles are very apparent to those who see us, others are buried deep inside and few know just how difficult they really are.

Those flames, while painful, are a necessary part of our journey. Without them, it would be impossible for us to be forged into what our Father in Heaven needs us to be. Those flames force us into an understanding that we can't do it alone. We rely more heavily on the one who knows the end from the beginning. We learn to plead for His help and recognize His arms around us.

And eventually, we become great, like He is.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

My sister, Jaime, thought it would be fun to take Audrey and Spencer to a BYU men's volleyball game. The game was this evening and based on the attitudes of some on the way to the game, I was worried that we wouldn't have a good time. Boy, was I wrong.

We got there entirely too early, but we wanted to make sure we had good seats, and we did. A weird thing - the concession stand didn't open when the doors did. We went back three times to get food, because they kept telling us 5 more minutes. Then they didn't really have what we ordered. They refunded our money and I went across the street to get a sandwich for my sister and me. However, we couldn't take food from outside in. That was a little frustrating since it was their fault we had to go get food elsewhere. Once the food dilemma was solved, the rest of the evening was a blast.

Every second of the game was exciting. The kids cheered and clapped. Audrey danced and entertained just about everyone in the arena whenever there was a time out. I found myself sitting on the edge of my seat the whole game. We all did a lot of yelling as we cheered on our team. I'm sure that's why they won.

Maybe we'll go to another one next week...

The Princess Party

Jaime and her kids are here visiting from Arizona. We've had some fun adventures. I've been introduced to Wii Fit (still sore from boxing and yoga), I'm beginning to understand Isaac's language, have been to Walmart more times than I care to count, caught a cold from Audrey, and Jaime and I had one heck of a time the other evening clean up after two children tossed their cookies all over the bathroom.

One fun activity occurred spontaneously when Brigham (Spencer) got to go play with the cousins and Audrey did not. Aunt Dre had a great idea. We would have a Princess Party.

We went through mom and dad's closets looking for "princess" dresses for all of us. There were some interesting challenges, the least of which was that Jaime is 7 months pregnant. However, as you can see from the pictures, we all managed to find something. All the princesses danced and we even found a fur coat for Prince Isaac to wear so that he could come and dance with the girls.

Our party was short lived as Dre convinced Audrey that it was just a practice party and the real one would come later. We changed out of our beautiful gowns because real princesses wouldn't eat pizza and play with the Wii dressed like we were. Right?

Saturday, January 10, 2009

The Symphony

For Christmas this year a friend bought me tickets to the symphony. I haven't been in 15 years, a fact that surprises even myself since I love it so much. Tonight was the concert.

I wish I could remember how old I was the first time I was in that grand hall. I couldn't have been too old. I remember being giddy with excitement as the members of the orchestra were warming up because I couldn't wait for them to begin.

The last time I was there, I was a music major at the "U". I was sitting in the very back, analyzing the piece that was being performed. Nothing kills a good symphony like having to dissect it for a class and I can honestly say that I did not enjoy myself.

However, tonight was amazing. I felt like I had come home. I couldn't wait for the performance to begin and I'll admit to being disappointed when it ended. The final number was emotional, exciting, and energizing. I loved every minute of it!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Things Are Lookin' Up...

Things have been crazy the last couple of weeks. Christmas feels like it was a year ago. Hard to believe that two weeks ago we were celebrating the fact that we only had one more shopping day in our holiday craziness.

For what ever reason, Christmas was hard for me this year. I missed, terribly, the members of my family who were far away and felt an overwhelming sense of loneliness that I just couldn't shake.

I'm not sure how people handle hard times without amazing parents and siblings, a knowledge of who they are, and an absolute certainty of to whom they turn when help is needed that is beyond mortal capacity. For me, having all of those things has resulted in three pretty great days.

I can say honestly that I feel an incredible amount of joy. I woke up this morning with a smile on my face. I've learned so many great things as I've studied this week. Work has been great. The people there have been so much fun. They probably always have been. It was I who needed to change.

I know that there will be hard days ahead. Probably a lot of them. However, I hope this feeling, which is just as overwhelming as my loneliness was last week, stays for a long time. I like it!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

My best friend is a guy. We've been friends for a couple of years, but really good friends for just over a year. He's the first person I talk to in the morning and last one before I go to bed. He knows me better than anyone else does, possibly better than anyone ever has. He came into my life when I desperately needed a friend. I am better, so much better, because of our association.

He recently told me about this great girl he met. You can tell by the way he talks about her that he's smitten and I'm happy for him. It was bound to happen eventually. I secretly hoped I would be the first to meet someone. I figured he would survive better without me than I would without him.

I've found myself the last few days not knowing exactly what to do. Even though we've lived in different states, a large chunk of my days have been spent with him in one form or another. Today I was thinking about all the things I'll miss. Here are just a few:
  • Late night and early morning phone calls. Can I wake up to anything but his ring tone?
  • Baseball games. I was just starting to figure them out (sort of). What will I do this season?
  • Youtube videos
  • Songs on playlist
  • Sunday mornings when he would call to make sure I was ready for my lesson. When I'd tell him that I wasn't, we'd always talk it through and he'd assure me that all would be well.
  • Bad days at work. No, I won't actually miss the bad days. Just the fact that I could always call and he understood.
  • Lots of laughing.
  • Nicknames.
  • Deep discussions.
  • Any type of sporting event - especially BYU football.
  • Making me feel like I could do anything.
I want nothing but happiness for him. It's about his turn.

Just don't forget me, okay?

Saturday, January 3, 2009

BYU Basketball

I went to the BYU basketball game tonight, something I've never done before. It was so exciting. While our seats were practically up at the top where it was at least 142 degrees, there was so much energy (sometimes a little too much) and I loved it.

They didn't win - a little disappointing - but it was fun to watch and I had a good time.

I needed it this week.

Friday, January 2, 2009


It's no secret that I don't like change. It's hard for me. I have a hard time when it happens to those around me, even when it something good. I feel left behind and left out.

That being said, I'm ready for some. I'm ready for it to be my turn for something exciting. I'm ready for a new adventure. I'm ready for good things to happen. I'm ready to not be the one left behind. I'm ready to be the one with the good news.

I'm ready.