April 29, 2014

happy list 04.

+spring thunderstorms.
+ tulips.
+ trader joe's.
+ graduation parties.
+catch phrase.
+ snapchat video conversations.
+ buzzfeed quizzes.
+ how adorable and groggy jordan is early in the morning.


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April 24, 2014

taking stock 03.

making: a summer bucketlist! sunset picnics, water parks, outdoor concerts.. it’s gonna be a good one.

cooking: nothing. literally, not even microwaving a thing. i had 2 gatorades for dinner last week.

drinking: apples n greens from jamba juice. mmmm.  

reading: ‘the fault in our stars’—the 50 pages i have read so far have me hooked. i also just finished a book called ‘elegance’ because i can’t get enough of fluffy british  novels. it’s a weird little fetish i’ve had since high school.

listening to: radio lab podcasts. i have seriously binge-listened to every podcast they’ve produced in the last few years, there are so many random things i love learning about! i listened to one on why left-handed people have been discriminated against anciently, one all about blood, native american law, the origin of hip hop, etc. i love being constantly full of random, useless facts. really though.

wanting: the perfect swimsuit for summer. this is a tough order.

looking: for more peace within myself. the cavities of my mind, that’s where my greatest battles are.

playing: my long-lost 80’s playlist while i workout.

wishing: for the summer, in all of its business and adventurousness, to just feel the tiniest bit like we slowed down. i just want a little time to be spontaneous and breathe life in.

missing: school. already, i know?? i love being in the classroom, i love (most of) my professors. i love summer, but when fall semester rolls around, this girl will be ready.  

enjoying: my old 80’s playlist while i workout.  

 worried: about my poor baby sister! after a week with a burst appendix, she finally complained enough to get my mother to take her to the ER.  we’re hoping she can come home tomorrow.

looking forward to: mexico and jamaica in just a few more weeks!

liking: having a husband willing to rub my back nightly. i’ve been milking a shoulder injury for quite some time now. ;)

excited about: starting a social media internship at ksl for the summer!!

needing: more sleep tonight! i love taking those phone calls that result in late-night life chats. they are so rejuvenating, but my body haaaates me today.

smelling: the aforementioned blossoms outside my front door. they are dreamy.

wearing: another shirt with an elephant on it. this obsession is getting a little out of hand.

noticing: that i always, without fail, use the handicapped stall. anyone else experiencing this??

thinking: a lot about my relationship with my heavenly father—how far it’s come, and how much stronger it could be.

feeling:  a lot of things, but most of all contentedness. lots of that.

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April 22, 2014

april 22.

1.  a sweet reminder from jordan that he does love me, even though we havent' spent more than 2 consecutive hours together in a few weeks. (that's an exaggeration, but not by much.) for someone who is 100% anal about staying on top of homework, having one thousand finals all at once kills my soul. i break down in stressful situations, can't even handle it. #prayforme

2.  my baby girls. we wanted to take a grungy girl band picture, & this is what resulted.

3.  those spring blossoms! as a fall lover, i annually forget how magical spring is! everytime i walk outside, i still brace myself for that inhale of cold air, and that mini freeze headache, you know, from changing tempuratures so quickly? and everytime i am pleasantly surprised--same tempurature inside as outside? i'll take it! last night on my way out of the gym i just stood there for a second and let the warm relax my muscles.

4.  friday lunch crew. we always seem to find ourselves at sweet tooth fairy after we're done eating, it's a strange phenomenon.

5 & 6.  easter sunday! although we were both swamped with projects and studying that day, we were able to get away for a quick easter dinner after church with some family and enjoy that extra reminder of how amazing our savior is. i loved all of the #BecauseofHim posts. (yes, we're total provo rebels and do homework on sunday. sometimes we even watch an r rated movie or cheer for teams other than byu. jordan also keeps a beard. gasp! so edgy, right?)

>>> that pink, fluffy tree is right outside of our apartment. we live on the basement floor so everytime i swing that front door open it is right in my line on vision. and it smells so bleepin good, holy crap. it makes me want to dance and i wish i could bottle it up & send it to people.

>>> i just wrote a paper about creativity, and how we as a society, need to redefine creativity and afford it more importance. anything can be creative, it doesn't just have to be art. you can be creative in the way that you talk, or the way that you approach a problem, or the way you work out, or the way you arrange knick-knacks on your coffee table. i really believe the desire to create is innate is everyone, it just manifests itself differently. this brings me peace because as much as i want to write and paint, i will never be a coffee-shop, beanie wearin, artist that walks into a room and comments on how great the lighting is. but i can do my best to create things that are beautiful, in the ways i know how.

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April 17, 2014

about pockets.

madi waters

>>> natalie posted a while back about pockets--how little pieces of a specific place belong to you, and how it doesn't matter how long you've been gone or how much you've changed, you put that pocket IN your literal pocket and take it with you wherever you go. i feel like i have little pockets of myself in a lot of different places, and as i go back i am confronted with who i was and who i am now. it's startling how similar the two versions of yourself really are, deep down on the inside. it's empowering to recognize how fundamentally different i am, too. i have transformed my intellect, my personality, my interests, the core of what i care about over the course of these short years. these pockets feel warm and fuzzy. they also make me feel strong.

>>> there are a few pockets of me left around fort collins, colorado where i experienced my childhood. the biggest flashback moment for me is visiting foothills mall, where i bought my first shirt from limited too (an important right of passage into womanhood) and felt, for the first time, a sense of independence. my mom let me and danielle shop all by ourselves at the volatile age of 12, something totally out of character for her mothering. it sounds silly, but i distinctly remember how important that first trip was. the mall is not necessarily significant itself--but rather the idea that i didn't need my parents. i am so very different from my family, and i think that was one of the first times i realized it. it was kind of a 'coming of age' activity for me--manuevering the shops & pretending to be adult without someone telling me not to. this memory, it's a bit of a favorite for me.

>>> coors field, where i spent a lot of colorado summers watching the rockie's play with my family and begging for a bowl of dippin dots--that's another pocket, too.

>>> there's a protestant church at the entrance of utah state campus where the doors are never locked and the candlelight never runs out. my time in logan was full to the brim of change, and my life was just always so LOUD. it was fun and chaotic and hilarious and full of progression and never ending responsibilities and activities and friends. i reached the peak of my single life in logan, and it was incredible. but, i suppose there are parts of my soul that remain timid and need peace. about once a week i would walk up the hill to this church at night (feeling only a little like kevin in home alone) and just think. i would enjoy the quiet and the soft light and just...exist for a few minutes. i didn't have to entertain or impress anyone here, i could just pray and think and weigh things out. those were very spiritual moments as a 19 year old in the middle of finding her groove. that church was my solitude, and it didn't have to represent anything.

>>> i spent some time in tijuana doing service work and caring for orphans. there, i learned to be grateful and to love without reservation. i learned that the bond you make with people in the spirit of service is the strongest bond you can have with another human being. i can't even explain it--i can only say that those people have a big fat chunk of my heart with them.

>>> then there's a few in boise--where jordan proposed to me. it literally catches my breath to think of that parking lot. it's so austere and simple and the sacredness of the moments that changed my life there are overwhelming--it's a place that commands a lot of emotion from me. the rooftop we sat on so many times--that was also a part of that special night--it deserved a mention, too.

>>> down boise/farmer's market--i spent several saturdays there alone, wandering and soaking up sunshine before i convinced others to join me. it was here that i first wanted to claim boise as my own--here i first had the thought, i really love this place. boise has this unexplainable magic about it. it's kinda like this: it can feel like the most home-y, cozy hometown while feeling like a beautiful, exotic country all at the same time--and it's all tied together by the people's passion for the city. everyone that lives in boise loves it, & it's kinda hard not to catch on. when i wander through that market now i think of the countless trips i've made--all made through a stage of really finding myself, of cutting the crap and coming to terms with who i was and what i wanted. it was a very experimental period. i tried a little of everything.  and then i met jordan and what i wanted was completely blown to bits--but i still had the 'who i was' part down. i partly have all the deep conversations had with myself while eyeing pottery, listening to trumpet street performers, and purchasing handmade ugandian jewelry to thank for that.

>> our honeymoon in san fran is still such a tangible memory, it almost doesn't even feel like one. i see it like it just happened 5 minutes ago. but man, the world mark hotel just north of union square. that place belongs to us. it's ours. i could kiss the sidewalk in front of it, that place is so freakin adorable. so snug, so intimate, so safe. (although the memory has just the slightest lacing of terror, for me. sex was very scary at first.) that time in SF was the very beginning of our long, never-ending journey together & it was terribly perfect, like a dream world. we fell like alice in wonderland into this impenetrable world of city streets and cable cars and late nights and eating until we were sick and just experiencing. we felt everything together and at night we would cuddle up in our hotel and fall into dreams that, i doubt, were as good as reality. it was magic and those memories started us off on a great foot. when we passed world mark two weekends ago, i wished i could have told my 22 year old self how wonderful the rest of marriage is. i would also tell her to relax as hard as humanly possible on that trip, because life will continuously get more hectic. :)

>>> and now we are finding those pockets in provo--our temporary home that seems to drag on forever, like an old DVD from hollywood video that you want to return but you can't seem to find it. i feel like i'm ready to be done here, but the second i feel that i mentally rap my knuckles & tell myself to appreciate, and not waste time wanting to be somewhere else. we have found a lot of happiness here, though a few specific places stick out.

>>> i love gossip girl, and feeding the ducks at the byu duck pond makes me feel like blair. i love blair so much that we have decided to add it to our baby names list. (should i be embarrassed about this?) the pond is just a few blocks from our apartment, and so whenever we need fresh air, or to discuss something important, or even just to get away for a few minutes, we grab a few slices of bread & head down there. it's just one of those safe places, ya know?

>>> the in n out parking lot. no matter how many times we make plans to try new places, or to make it to a nice sit-down place, we seems to always find ourselves at in n out! we sit in the parking lot, feast, and usually gush about how glad we are that it's the weekend and how we hate having to be apart so often. i imagine that in 10 years, i will drive by that in n out and just be totally slapped with dejavu. it's like the omen of our precious weekends right now.

>>> joe's cafe on state street was shut down for a few months because apparently joe was sleeping with an underage employee (??) but it's baaaack! it is greasy soul food at it's finest, and  my favorite hole in the wall find that i lay claim to. joe is from houston, where my husband served his lds mission, so they have a special bond--& that guy has enough personality to fill up 10 cafes! it's our favorite place to share with out-of-towners, like a secret we only let-on to people we like. ;) many saturday mornings have been well spent having a chat with joe over some deep fried belgian waffles. yeah, swoon. they're that good.

>>> writing this made me so antsy to find new pockets in new cities to claim as ours. i love the feeling of familiarity among new experiences, and i'm sure that wherever jordan and i end up--that those pockets, past and future, will hold the indescribable magic that only one who really loves life will understand.

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April 15, 2014

on having a grateful heart.

i read a quote a few weeks ago that’s been swirling in my head ever since, taking up space and occasionally swimming up the forefront of my thoughts. i can’t remember the exact words, but the idea was to wake up each morning grateful to be alive.

that simple. grateful to be alive. i certainly don’t wish i was dead—but am i thankful to have woken up this morning, breathing and vital?

have i ever said that in a prayer before? ‘thank you for letting me be here, on earth today.’ i don’t think that i have. what an incredible idea—to have a foundation of gratitude that starts at the very base of our existence. if i’m grateful for the chance to even be here and have this experience, if i’m simply grateful that i have been spared from accidents and illnesses—then everything else i have been given on top of that (which is a lot) is just more to be grateful for.

it’s such a simple idea that i have to back up from it to even see the whole thing. i almost can’t even wrap my brain around it. life is so intricate and delicate and i am so lost in my own world that it’s hard to even recognize that this life, on it’s own, is a gift.

then, the silver fox talked about gratitude, and just like a cheeseburger from in n out on a friday night, MAN that talk hit the spot. he said so many things that just hit home.

“could I suggest that we see gratitude as a disposition, a way of life that stands independent of our current situation? in other words, i’m suggesting that instead of being thankful for things, we focus on being thankful in our circumstances—whatever they may be.”

we chose this life. and no matter our individual circumstances, the whole experience is something beautiful, and there is much to be happy about. our situation is unique and perfect for us. it’s testing us & blessing us in ways that are supposed to shape us into the person we’re meant to become.

i’m not suggesting that we don’t get our time to unload our burdens—there are things to be sad about, to get frustrated over, to be vented. but they can be so easy to bounce back from if we’re simply happy to be here. happy to get a chance to live on this beautiful earth during this time of advancement and convenience and opportunity and learning. happy to get to be a tiny part of this beautiful masterpiece that is the universe, our world, and human life.

“promise me you will not spend so much time treading water and trying to keep your head above the waves that you forget, truly forget, how much you have always loved to swim.”

today, i’m happy to be alive.

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April 10, 2014

san francisco 2.

^^^ let's talk about these two humans for a second. i love that jordan genuinely loves my friends, and they genuinely love him back. it really is such a huge blessing in my life. my girlfriends are important to me; i wasn't about to let them fall by the wayside when i tied the knot. my friends basically just welcomed jordan into the fold, and said, you are one of us now. it's been lovely.
hanging out all weekend, it felt like the three of us have been vacationing together our whole lives. cassidy was the perfect host & girlfriend knows her way around san fran! having a local with you is like a fast pass to all the good restaurants and food trucks. (although i strangely lost my appetite most of the weekend. talk about a bummer--i go on vacation for the food!)
we watched a friend finish a half marathon right by the civic center one morning, and hung around for a little after he was done. there were bands playing, free food, and this amazing energy. seriously, i made a mental note: if i ever want to feel inspired and generally motivated about life, hang out at the finish line of a race. it's this overall attitude of, 'i just accomplsihed a huge goal & i feel great!' everyone cheers everyone else on, it's a beautiful thing.
other highlights included: 1. the palace of fine arts at night. um, wow. 2. walking and driving lombard street. 3. the view of the bridge from a little high point in sausalito, right before you drive back into the city. it was like bam! there's the bridge, so close and in your face. we were there right at sunset, and it was perfect. 4. exploring sausalito, basking in the sunshine. 5. taking a boat tour of the bay--sea lions for days. also there are 3 types of man-eating sharks that live in the bay, just in case you wanted to swim there. 6. the brioche french toast with carmelized pears at big joe's. i'm drooling. 7. spending all that time with my sweetheart. sometimes we get so caught up in our busy lives that we forget, we have a dang good time together. :)
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April 8, 2014

happy list--san francisco.

+ forgetting about school/work/everything for a few days.
+ riding the trolley, having the conductor think we're locals.
+ sketchy motels in reno with hilariously cheesy bedspreads.
+ the view of SF from twin peaks.
+ hamburger stands in sausalito.
+ handstands in front of the painted ladies.
+ the perfect view of the bridge.
+ the mac n cheese from lola's in palo alto.
+ when your best friend is also best friends with your husband.
+ reminiscing about our honeymoon.
+ 75 and sunny.
+ boat tour of the bay--sea lions everywhere.
+ stanford campus.
+ musee mecanique. (the princess diaries arcade!)
+ 10 hours in the car to read, chat, listen to podcasts with jordan.
+ falling in love with cassidy's roomates.
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April 3, 2014


#tbt utah state style

from left ro right:

1. reporting for KUTA in logan.
2. the first picture jordan & i ever took together. (aww)
3. mccall, idaho trip to cross country ski & see ice sculptures.
4. times square--new york for spring break with my cute mom.
5. playing with my favorite little boy, eduardo in an orphanage in mexico.
6. washington dc trip.
7. usu's halloween dance.
8. ashlyn graduating from high school.
9. spontaneous vegas road trip that lasted a total of 24 hours.
10. working the sidelines for espn.
11. cruisin to mexico with girlfriends.
12. when madi got a 7d.
13. a dance party centered around the song, 'do the creep.'
14. my first time to lake powell.
15. motorbike rides on my last day living in logan.
16. 'living in a van down by the river'--family christmas card. ps, we don't live in that van, or own it. we just thought it was funny.

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April 1, 2014

april 01.

+ i know everyone & their dog has been talking about the lds general women's meeting, but really. it's worth the conversation. it was a perfect reminder that we are all in this together, & we have no right to be tearing eachother down. we share a sisterhood that's pretty unique and so powerful. "because He loves you, He will provide the help that you need to move yourself, and others, upward." !!!
+ i've been coming across little sidewalk messages walking around provo. they put a smile on my face.
+ comedy sportz improv show = almost pee my pants laughing about 16 times. why don't i go there every weekend?
+ personal confession: i let myself get walked all over a lot more that i should. my personality is such that i would rather be the nice guy & avoid confrontation, even when it causes me strife in the privacy of my own thoughts. i have been trying to stand up for myself when i feel like i'm being mistreated, & it feels pretty dang good. it is much more liberating than i had imagined. standing up for what i think is right is giving me a strength in character, as well as a strength in the way i feel about myself. i hope i'm not the only one out there who deals with this, because it's a huge internal struggle. somtimes i just get so fed up with people assuming that it's ok to treat me however they please, because i won't call them out. & i'm starting to. (although i always try & be as kind as possible about it!)
+ i attended a presentation yesterday on the power of positive thinking, and some of the statistics were incredible. people who are optomistic live ten years longer than pessimists? releasing endorphins through exercize cured 9/10 depression patients long term? thinking positive thoughts before a test is proven to give you better results? it's empowering and overwhelming all at the same time--we are totally in charge of how happy our lives are. our minds can be very resilent and powerful, and our brains are literally hard-wired to perform at their best when positive. optomist thinking helps your brain function at the very basic levels.  i'm still chewing on that fact.
+ jordan & i have had a few opportunities open up to us recently, which have basically been a neon sign: god is in the details. He cares about what we care about, which is nice to know.

+ also, check out my first post on the 'be wise' blog here.
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