Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Tuesday's List

I copied my title from Gabe. I couldn't think of a title that would connect all of my random thoughts, so I used someone else's creativity. Bwa ha ha ha haaaaa.

-Allergies became apparent today. :( [frowny] :'( [crying frowny] :'-'( [crying, sniffly frowny... or maybe a crying man who is crying because half of his mustache got ripped off... kind of like in Kung Fu Panda: have you seen it? I've seen it 3 times. Except it was a cute 'lil fox with the mustache, not a man.] I'm pretty grumpy about it. Spring was my favorite season until I started getting allergies. And then Autumn became my favorite, with the bright crunchy leaves and the gorgeous deep blue skies. I've never had allergies during the Fall months before. Sigh.

-Today I felt this weird excitement that I think is correlated to the idea of becoming an adult. I've always been afraid of all the work and responsibilities and everything that comes along with the "adult" thing. But lately I've gained more of an interest in politics, cooking, sewing, cleaning, and sometimes I just get really excited to be a mom someday. This is really really weird for me. It actually doesn't even sound like me. Is this me?

-The country version of "Home" (originally done by Michael Buble) made it to my bottom 15 today. I can't stand it! It makes me appreciate Michael's... beautiful yet manly voice even more.

-This morning I finished a fabulous movie: Amazing Grace. It's about William Wilberforce, a man who spent his life fighting against the slave trade in England in the early 1800s. I loved it! So well done and truly inspirational. The word that comes to mind to describe it is "wholesome". It was really nice to see a well-done movie that didn't have parts that made me feel awkward or uneasy. And the best part was, it's a true story. I would recommend it. In fact, I think I'm going to buy it, and then you can watch it with me! Hooray!

-Today was such an incredible day. I was so happy. It seemed like the world was extra lovely, with the changing mountains, the colorful leaves, and the beautiful cloud-streamed sky. I love my life!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Good morning... er... afternoon...

This morning when I finally woke up, I looked at the time and a guilty, surprised laugh burst out of me. 10:41am. I almost beat myself up. If I had woken up at 7, I probably would've gone running, showered and gotten ready for the day, eaten breakfast, read my scriptures, and maybe done some homework or cleaned up the kitchen by 10:41. But instead, I couldn't stop smiling, as I realized that this time in my life is probably the only time I'll ever get away with doing this.

When I was young, I would be prevented from sleeping in each Saturday by one of four ways:
1) Saturday Cartoons. My favorite was Bobby's World. It was easy to jump out of bed and run over to the TV and plop down a little too close to it with anticipation. It was almost like Christmas, but it came every Saturday!
2) My dear sister, bless her heart, jumping on me, singing a shrill version of a song that she got from girl's camp or something: "GOOD MORNING TO YOU!" and something about annoying little birds singing "sweetly" in the trees. Yeah. I wanted to kill her.
3) My mom had the strange ability of being able to wake me just by standing at the door and quietly saying my name. She would say it with love, but perhaps a note of disappointment that I was still in bed. Guilt trip!
4) The smell of hot, fresh waffles wafting into my bedroom. This was my favorite and perhaps the most manipulative tactic. Or strategy. I'm not sure that I know the difference between those two. Anyway, who can stay sleeping when they hear the clanging of pots and pans in the kitchen, knowing that homemade waffles and syrup are waiting to be consumed?

So there's a review of my past.
What about my future?

1) I might go on a mission. And if I do, I'm planning to be obedient. That means bed at 10pm and waking up at 6am every single day for a year and a half.
2) I'm hoping I get married some day. And when I do, I imagine feeling self-conscious about sleeping in too much. I won't want my husband thinking I'm lazy. I'll need to get up to make him breakfast or clean the house or do other typical wife-y things.
3) Eventually I'll be a mom... depending on 2). Mom's never get to sleep in. They never even get to sleep for most of their lives because of crying babies and worrying about rebellious teenagers.
4) When I'm an old woman, sleeping won't be as easy. Insomnia is common as the body wears out.

Wow. Both the past and the future look bleak as far as sleeping in goes. And that's why I smiled so much today. I stuck it to the man! "The man" is my sister, my mom, my future husband, my future kids, the media, food, and old people. I feel great.

Now it's about noon and all I've done is showered and blogged. Time for brunch.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Song Dedications

Often a song/band plays on the radio or on itunes, and it reminds me of a certain person in my life. So I compiled a list of my friends and the songs that remind me of them. This isn't complete; as I was doing it, I realized it would probably be impossible to make it completely perfect. If I left you out or something, I'm sorry, and I still really like you. Many of the people on this list don't even read my blog, and may never know that their names are posted somewhere on the internet. Maybe they'll find it when googling themselves. :)

Abraham Engh: Crystal Ball - Keane
Barney Lund: that one funny Thai or Indian song with the really weird video on YouTube... can't recall the name
Becky Oman: Green Eyes - Coldplay
Brice Peterson: It's still Rock and Roll to me - Billy Joel
Brigg Olsen: The Eagles; Journey; Boston; Chicago
Calista Howes: Wasted - Carrie Underwood
Cathy Bearce Webb: 100 Years - Five for Fighting
Cherise Weber: Defying Gravity - Wicked Soundtrack
Chris Engh: No Air - Jordin Sparks
Christian Huff: Here (in your arms) - Hellogoodbye
Clark Early: Viva La Vida - Coldplay
Collin Evans: When you come back down - Nickelcreek; The Longest Time - Billy Joel
Dexton Upshaw: I want to hold your hand - The Beatles
Elizabeth Alor: That's the way it is - Celine Dion; Beautiful Soul - Jesse McCartney
Gabe Proulx: Landed - Ben Folds; Beautiful Mess - Diamond Rio
Hana Doggett: Swing Swing - All American Rejects; I'm a Believer - SmashMouth
Janae Card: Carry On My Wayward Son & Dust in the Wind - Kansas; I lost it - Kenny Chesney
Jared Webb: Queen
Jason Francis: They Might Be Giants; REM; John Coltrane
Jonnie Proulx: Apologize - OneRepublic
Josh Ruchty: The Middle - Jimmy Eat World
Justin Karoly: Sadie Hawkins Dance - Relient K
Justine Alor: Remember when it rained - Josh Groban
Katie Alexander(my ex-roommate, not my sister's mission comp): Broken - Lifehouse
Keith Harten: Coldplay(especially The Scientist); Yesterday - The Beatles
Lydia Worden(and Monica Lindsay): Paper Bag - Fiona Apple
Maggie Worthington(and Ryan Holmes): Blackbird - The Beatles
Marcie Fillmore Francis: Thank you - Dido
Mary Francis Lund: My Maria - Brooks&Dunn; Ave Maria - David Bisbal; For Good - Wicked Soundtrack
Marybeth Mack: Uptown Girl - Billy Joel; Skin - Rascal Flatts
Matt Mitchell: Radiohead
Matthias Boone: Jack Johnson
Matthew Wise: Minimum Wage - TMBG
Mike Struthers: Would you go with me - Josh Turner
Nabby Parkinson: Ghost - Indigo Girls
Nate Evans: Tu de Que Vas - Franco de vita
Nicole Stoddard: Bubbly - Colby Calliat; Cake
Paul Epperson: Bye Bye Bye - N'Sync; And So it Goes - Billy Joel
Paul Mann: Bleeding Love - Leona Lewis
Robyn Brough: These Days - Rascal Flatts; A thousand Miles - Vanessa Carlton
Roo Adamson: Colors
Sarah May: Don't stop me now - Queen; The Way I am - Ingrid Michaelson
Shaylee Wright: Love Song - Sara Bareilles
Sondra Merritt: Absolutely - Nine Days
Steve Francis: Dinner Bell - TMBG; Dancing Queen - ABBA (don't ask)
Steve Porter: Animaniacs theme song
Suzie Davis: Yellow - Coldplay; Love Today - Mika; Short Skirt, Long Jacket - Cake
Taylor Worthington: Banjo Boy - Ryan Shupe and the RubberBand; Square One - Tom Petty

Are you weirded out, and confused about my song choices for you? Just ask and I'll tell you the stories and the "why"s.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Where can I turn for peace?

Breakups are brutal. That's why there are so many songs and poems and blog posts written about them. They hurt with an intensity that you never thought you would ever have to feel. I suppose you don't realize how big your heart had become until it becomes deflated with the sharp realization that for whatever reason, the relationship isn't going to work out.

It's been a tough couple of days. I work at a place for 8 hours a day, with hardly anyone to talk to. I do busy work which needs very little concentration, and provides absolutely no distraction to my tormenting thoughts. To cope, I first created a playlist of bitter, angry songs. But as I listened to them, I realized that they didn't make me feel any better. First of all, I can't relate to any of the songs in this situation. I'm not angry. I don't feel cheated or betrayed. I still think so highly of my best friend. When listening to these songs, all I felt was more anxious, regretful, doubting, and confused.

Today at work, with my 8 hours to myself, I chose a different approach. I went straight to lds.org and listened to hymns and primary songs. I also listened to probably half a dozen conference talks and wrote down quotes that stuck out to me. As I went through this long process of listening to and pondering these beautiful words of truth and testimony, I was impressed with the astonishing amount of peace that came over me. Then this scripture came to my mind:

John 14:27
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

The world teaches us to be angry and bitter and to hold on to these feelings when we're going through hard things. Granted, I do enjoy the bitter songs now and again. I feel like they come from real people who have had real and relevant experiences, so they're legit, and full of emotion. However, the gospel teaches us to trust in the healing power of Christ's Atonement, and everything will be okay. Even if it isn't right now, with faith, everything will be okay eventually. I know, believe, and trust that this is true. If I didn't have the gospel in my life, I don't know where I could possibly find peace. I am so blessed, even through my trials.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Political Ponderings

This is going to be a controversial post, so hopefully I'll get a lot of comments. :)

I always thought I was a conservative Republican, because all I knew about Democrats was their acceptance of abortion and gay marriage, both of which are strongly discouraged in my religion. Besides, I thought that elephants were cuter than donkeys, and so useful with their trunks, which can feed them or cool them or swat the flies away. When asking my parents why they were Republicans, my mom said something about the party being the lesser of two evils. I never really understood or cared. I used to say, "As long as we don't have a king, I'm good." I was apathetic, and thought that to be involved in politics meant to grow up, so I avoided them like the plague. Besides, Poly=many, tics=annoying little bugs, right?

This summer I had a lot of discussions, exploring my mind and opinions with friends who listened and respected them. I've been really excited about my major, Sociology, and a lot of our discussions were focused around it. It's been fascinating to think about societies, especially ours, and analyzing the issues and possible solutions. But politics naturally became part of these kinds of conversations... it was unavoidable. We talked about gay marriage and abortion. We talked about welfare and homelessness. We talked about the environment and gas prices and the war in Iraq. We talked about adulty-type things. And yet it was wonderful! I enjoyed discussing and suggesting and thinking about these things.

People have told me lately, that I'm liberal. This was a surprise; as I said before, I always considered myself conservative. From some, especially people my age, I hear good things about being liberal... like it means I'm open minded and I care about what's best for the society. But from others, often older folks, I hear liberals talked about like devil-worshipers, which makes things awkward when it seems that I'm slowly becoming one of them. People say that most college students are liberal. Is this divide a difference in maturity or wisdom? Or are younger people with less experience really more open minded and willing to see and discuss more than just one side of an issue?

Remember, you don't have to agree. You just have to understand. Discuss, think, ponder, wonder, ask, think again. I don't know all the answers to those controversial issues in our country and in our world. But they're wonderful to think about.

To give my parents credit, later when I discussed these things with them again, they gave me a more thoughtful answer as to why they are conservative. But I don't think they realize what is happening to their little girl...

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Six Strings

I wandered aimlessly down center street, glancing through the windows of small, random shops. A shoe repair, a small community theater, a greasy diner. After a while, I happened upon a little guitar shop, and my hand independently introduced itself to the large brass door handle. The place smelled of fresh wood, which was being shaved and painted into the shapes of beautiful handmade guitars. My feet echoed on the old wooden floor, as I was alone. Each instrument was in a different stage. Some without a neck, some prior to being painted, some nearly done: and all had tags with the names of their future owners. I kept walking and came to the finished, glossy products hung proudly, but lonely on the walls. I hesitantly approached them, my eyes admiring their perfect shape and appearance. My fingers ached to touch them, but the fear of any potential inflicted damage stilled their twitch. I held my breath, to avoid fogging up the glossy finish, and moistening the wood with condensation.

"Can I help you?" A worn-looking man with silver hair pulled back into a long, yet masculine ponytail approached, without a smile. He had piercing eyes that seemed to see right into the very deepest darkest corners of my soul. His wrinkles came from worry and tough times, and any hints of laughter were now extinct. I'm not sure if I was still stunned from the gorgeous instruments, or his unique appearance, but I was only able to stammer something about looking for a guitar, and a cheap one at that.

He brought me over to another wall, which displayed guitars that looked much more ordinary: a sharp contrast from the previously viewed, so beautiful that their sound could almost be heard with only the effort of a glance. "These are the cheapest we've got. They start at $350." "Did you make them?" He gave me an insulted and defensive look. "No, these are imported. The ones I make start at $1200 and you've got to wait at least a year to get your hands on one." He gestured at the guitars I had been drawn to when I first came in.

$350 was about $300 too much for my budget. But even if I could afford to splurge, I wouldn't buy just any old guitar with those fantastic, handmade guitars in existence. I couldn't explain how I knew, but each had a story. Looking at them told me pieces of that silver-haired man's life. Pieces that I almost felt guilty discovering. Like he was allowed to see my soul, but his was too painful, too personal to be shared.

I left the place, empty handed, my pocket just as heavy as before, and somewhat in a daze. The sun seemed much brighter, but perhaps it was just the contrast from my short visit in the dark life of the guitar maker.