Saturday, April 30, 2011

What Can I Slice For You Today?

I survived my first week at work!

When I got home from school a week ago I jumped into job applications and interviews. Working a summer job was one of my biggest must-do's while I'm out of school. Last Saturday I had an interview with a restaurant called Port of Subs located in Draper right off the freeway. Two days later they offered me a position and I started working there last Monday!

Port of Subs is a Sub Sandwich Shop... kind of like Subway or Jimmy Johns. Except I think it's better. At Port of Subs they slice your meat and cheese fresh right in front of you (and having fresh meat and cheese vs. packaged meat and cheese makes the world of a difference!)

Anyway, I worked there every day this week and learned lots of new skills! I have never had to make sandwiches so quickly. There were a lot of things I had to learn, but every day I get a little bit better.  Hopefully soon I'll have it down-pat. The two owners/managers are awesome to work with... as well as the rest of the crew! It will be a fun, busy way to fill up my summer.

So here's to making it through my first week of my first real job! Huzzah!
Come by and visit me at Port of Subs. 
I would love to see a friendly face :)
And you won't regret eating there... it's scrumptious!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Sunday.


The things about today that I love:

- Waking up early. Usually, like many college students, I take advantage of the mornings when I get to sleep in. But it's always wonderful to wake up and enjoy the morning... taking my time to get ready. Plus, when I wake up earlier it makes my day feel longer, which is nice. I curled my hair, chatted with family, and Dad made a delicious Easter breakfast.

- Getting candy from the Easter Bunny. My basket was hidden pretty well this year... sitting atop the highest shelf in the storage room. I got all of my favorite Easter treats. Robin Eggs, Peeps, Reeses Eggs and lots of other candy too! It's all delicious... however it does not help my attempts at eating healthier. ;)

- My new Easter dress. Buying a new outfit for Easter is one of my favorite traditions. I love getting dressed up in springtime colors for such a special day.

- Church. I went to my home ward with my family at nine, and then I went to the singles ward at eleven. I loved having the spirit with  me today as I reflected on the meaning of the Easter Holiday. I am also excited to be at my singles ward in Riverton. The people there seem really nice, and I'm hoping to make some new friends this Summer. (Maybe I'll get lucky and meet some cute guys!)

-Coloring eggs... sometimes I don't have the patience to sit there and hold my egg in the dye, but the eggs always look so pretty when we are finished! I love the bright, vibrant colored eggs. I dyed the eggs in the picture at the top. Luckily Mom likes egg salad sandwiches... because we wouldn't want all of them to go to waste ;)

-Tangled. My mom got it for her late birthday/Easter or something. We watched it after we dyed eggs today. Unfortunately I fell asleep (I hardly got any rest the past weekend) but now we own it so I can watch it over and over and over!

-Skype. I created an account a couple of months ago and I used skype for the first time today. Elise just moved back to Colorado... but luckily we can keep in touch through facebook, email, skype, or what-have-you. I am so glad for these things we have to keep in touch... because I miss that girl already! She and her family are wonderful people, and I am so glad to call her my best friend.

-Hallmark movies. We watched the new one that was on television today. Hallmark movies are just so heartwarming and inspiring. They always make me want to be a better person. My family and I watched the movie this evening while I enjoyed even more of my easter candy.

- Home. It's good to be back in Riverton for a couple of months. I don't mind living on my own, but I love my family. Hopefully it will be a productive summer... a job, exercise, and just more learning and growing and loving life! It was just one of those days today where everything is simple, quaint, and lovely. What a wonderful Easter Sunday :) Here are some pictures we've taken today. Hope everyone else enjoyed the holiday!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Rainy days are for thoughts.

Cloudy, rainy days like today are perfect for certain things. Things which, on any other sunshiney day wouldn't be nearly as pleasing or lovely. Things like reading a book by the window and listening to the drops on the windowpane. Or maybe things like driving in the car with the radio turned off and listening to the thunderstorm. Or even perhaps making a cup of hot chocolate or a bowl of soup and listening to the heater whirring through the house. I also love listening to acoustic or classical music on rainy days. Or pulling on a giant hoodie and fuzzy socks and having an afternoon nap on the couch.

Rainy days are for thoughts. Overcast afternoons are ideal for reflection and meditation. It is the perfect weather for contemplative thoughts, isn't it? Thoughts which, on any other sunshiney day wouldn't be nearly as insightful or profound.

I have a lot of thoughts running around inside my head. Thoughts about the past year, thoughts about change, thoughts about the summer, and thoughts about autumn and the new year that follows it.

Where has the past year gone? I have a year of college behind me and that seems nearly inconcievable. In a couple of days I'm going back home. I don't feel as though I've lived here in Ogden for eight months. At first glance, it only feels like an extended vacation or a super-long sleepover. But then I look closer at the fine details and I remember the handfuls of tiny instances in which memories were created. Those hundreds of tiny instances make up the past eight months. And then I realize how much has changed and how many lessons I have learned.

I certainly have learned many invaluable lessons throughout my first year in college. I've grown, changed, stepped back, refocused, and then grown some more. I've taken risks, I've made new friends, I've performed, I've laughed, I've loved, I've struggled, and I've succeeded.

And now it's time for change. Summer is on the brink. Hopefully a job, time with family, and a couple of adventures along the way. New goals will be reached, new changes will come.

Some changes I am ready to embrace. I'm ready for the challenge. Other changes I wish would not come. But they always come. They're as sure to come as a rainstorm on an overcast April afternoon.

Because of all this change I am forced to make big decisions. Sometimes I just want to pretend that I'm not a big girl and I don't have to make big decisions. But that is just as inevitable as the change that I dislike so much. They go hand in hand, Decision and Change.

And then- next fall. Another year of school. Another year of growing, changing, stepping back, refocusing, and then growing even more. New risks, new friends, new shows, new jokes, new love, new struggles, and new successes. All newer and more wonderful than what came previously.

And that's what I have to remember. Even if I don't like change. Even if I've come to a rut and I don't quite know what to do next... whatever happens life will just continue to get more wonderful. And, even though life changes, I can remain friends with the people I have come to love this year. I can reminisce in the sweet memories I have made, and I can be reminded of the struggles I have overcome so that I do not struggle with them again. Next fall will be wonderful. I'm already excited to begin.

But first- summer. I need that. :)

The week has only started, but finals are almost over. I have a political science essay due today and a math comprehensive final scheduled tomorrow morning. Then I'm practically finished, besides a couple of theatre things happening. Only one more week to spend time with my friends. The first chapter of college is almost finished. Insanely weird. Insanely wonderful, too.

Maybe I should focus all of these thoughts into studying for finals. Or applying for jobs. Or finalizing all of my living situations, classes, etc for next year. Or packing. Or one of the other thousands of things I need to get done.

Yeah... that probably needs to happen. Until next time. Much love.

The Grocery Store


FMM: The Grocery Store

1. Do you make a list when you go grocery shopping? Do you stick to it? Iusually make a small list. It's never very long, shopping for one person doesn't require much. Sometimes I'll throw in a few extra things, but I mainly stick to my list.

2. Do you buy more groceries when you're hungry? I'll buy a efw more extra snack-type items.3. Coupons. Use 'em? Not really. However I do have Smith's value customer card. :)


4. Have you ever complained to the manager of your grocery store? Nope


5. Do you like to buy groceries at huge chain stores like Wal-Mart and Target? Or do you shop exclusively at food stores? I usually shop at Smiths just because it's closest. However, if I had a walmart closer to me than I would probably shop there. More for less :) oh wait... that's Payless huh? ;) well whatever...


6. How much time do you spend reading labels in the grocery store? Hardly any time... but now and again, sure.

7. Do you push your own grocery cart to the car and return it? I always push my own cart to the car and I always return it. I would hate it if someone else left their cart and it rolled into my car, so I always take those few extra seconds to return my cart to the rack thingy. I'm lazy sometimes, but never that lazy.


8. What is the one food item you always buy at the grocery store that you must have in the kitchen? Milk. I always hate when Sunday rolls around and I realize I don't have milk. Then I have to go without it until Monday, which stinks.

9. Do you enjoy grocery shopping? I'm not bothered. It's a great way to put off homework for a little while. And going grocery shopping means more yummy food in the cupboards! I wouldn't say it's my favorite pastime, but I don't mind it at all.


10. How often do you shop for groceries? I grocery shop every two weeks. Sometimes a little less than that, depending on how quickly I go through food. :)

Friday, April 15, 2011

E.D.G.E.

One of my goals for the summer is to eat healthier and to form consistent exercise habits. In church a while back I heard a girl talking about how she remembers to stay healthy. She calls it The EDGE.

E.D.G.E.

E at healthy foods
D rink lots of water
G et plenty of sleep
E xercise daily

These all seem like pretty basic things, and they are. But I really like the way she formed them into an acronym. Because I'm kind of a nerd like that. ;) Anyway, these basic steps to becoming healthy and staying healthy have been hammered into our minds all of our lives. From our baby days with Barney through elementary school and then in high school and even afterward we are reminded to eat fruits and vegetables, to stay hydrated, to get our beauty rest, and to exercise.

I'm sorry to say that I am not very good at any of these things.

Firstly, my eating habits are horrible. I'm a poor college student and healthy foods like fresh fruits and veggies are more expensive to purchase than processed foods. Yes, I'm making excuses for myself. Just because I can't buy tons of fresh produce doesn't mean I can't eat healthier. And I'm not a very good cook. You could compare my cooking skills to those of the two main characters on my favorite TV show, Gilmore Girls. I eat and cook like a kid... grilled cheese sandwhiches, Campbell's chicken noodle soup... what-have-you. 
See when I was growing up I spent the majority of my afternoons/evenings at the ballet studio. This means I was never around when my mom was cooking dinner for the family... and therefore I was never around for her to teach me to cook dinner. I always came home late at night after rehearsals and heated up that night's dinner in the microwave. Bonapetite! (The perks of being a very busy teenager.) So now that I'm in college I don't have very many cooking skills up my sleeve. But I'm learning. My roommate Brittany has begun teaching me some things while I am away from home, and learning to cook better is one of my goals this summer. I want to be a Mom, I need to learn how to cook.
Another thing that doesn't help with my eating habits is that I've always been a bit of a picky eater. Okay 'a bit of a picky eater' is an understatement. I've gotten better as I've gotten older... I used to never touch Spaghetti, Lasagna, sloppy joes, hamburgers, enchiladas, anything with onions, seafood, Chinese food, anything with ketchup... and this is just the beginning of the list. Fortunately growing up I've gotten a lot better. Between choking down something I dislike on a date or when I'm a guest at someone's home... I've become more tolerable of a lot of foods. But I need to branch out more so I can eat healthier.

Drinking water... I've always been terrible at this! You know how they tell you to drink at least half of your body weight in ounces or eight glasses a day or whatever? Yeah. I probably am lucky if I get one full glass of water in a day. That's really bad for you. In the summers sometimes I get dehydrated really easily and get headaches. I need to drink more water! Less milk and punch, more water. :)

Wow. Blogging about all of this makes me realize how poorly I treat my body. Getting plenty of sleep... well like a lot of college students, I like to stay up extremely late. Unfortunately I still have to get up early in the morning for classes, work, rehearsals, and church just like the rest of the world. haha. In the summer this will be the hardest habit to break because I LOVE staying up on summer nights when it's still warm outside after the sun goes down. I'm going to have to find a way to get an adequate amount of rest though. And NOT by napping. I get so tired that I take a nap... but then I feel like I've wasted my day.

Exercise. I used to be really good at this... dancing four days a week. And that is why, despite my unhealthy eating habits I didn't gain weight. I was dancing my butt off all the time. But NOW I'm not dancing anymore. I dance here and there in a class or in a musical... but not nearly enough to count as my daily (or even weekly) exercise. I'm not a lazy person. I like to hike, go on bike rides, walk, go swimming, play night games, etc. But if I keep eating the way I do and I don't form a consistent exercising pattern than I'm going to regret it down the road. :)

I don't want to go on a killer diet or start running marathons... I'm not overweight and I don't want to go overboard. I don't think I need to do anything really strict to be in better shape. Luckily I'm not that unhealthy. I just need to be more aware of the way I'm treating myself. So the solution for me...? The EDGE.

E.
This summer I'm going to eat healthier foods. More fruits, vegetables, and less snacking. When I'm bored I make myself a snack. So I'm going to stop eating so many unhealthy snacks. Now if I'm hungry I'll eat a banana instead of oreos. I'll cook myself chicken and steamed vegetables instead of a grilled cheese and chips. And I'm going to learn how to cook at least 5 awesome, healthy meals. (Mom, you'll have to teach me this Summer!) Hooray! By the end of the summer I'm going to be like Martha Stewart. Betty Crocker. Elise Vander Does ;) Or someone else cool who is a great cook. :)

D.
I want to drink more water. I don't want to be vague with these goals though... then it will be less likely that I accomplish my goal. So to start with I am going to drink two big bottles full of water each day. That's not the 'eight glasses' rule but it's a start. More water than I usally drink daily, that's for sure! Also this summer I'm not going to drink any pop except on my birthday. I'm not a crazy soda-drinker (I've never been one of those people that has a soda every day) but hey... I think it's always a good thing to drink less soda!

G.
This one is hard. Because again I LOVE Summer nights. Love. Them. I love staying out late under the stars and partying, laying on the grass and talking, swimming and singing music around campfires. So for this part of The EDGE I just want to make sure that If I'm home doing nothing at night... then I should go to bed. No more staying up until 2 am watching a movie by myself or playing on the computer or reading a book. Unless I have a good reason to stay out with friends, I should get some sleep :)

E.
Exercise!! I'm hoping *fingers crossed* to take Zumba classes this summer. I'll figure that out when I go home in a week. If I do take Zumba then that will be my exercise. If not, then I want to go walking (speed-walking, exercise walking... no floundering around walking) three times a week. So either way, I've got a plan to get some exercise in this summer! Plus I can't wait to go camping, swimming, hiking, and do everything else fun and active that comes along with summertime.

So there we have it! The EDGE. :) My goal to be healthy over the summer (and long afterwards) I am sure it will feel great to start working on these goals! I love feeling fit and healthy! This goes into effect the day after Easter Sunday. (I say Sunday because this weekend there is a lot of partying going on before end of semester! This means staying up late and unhealthy foods, and lots of Easter candy) It'll be great! Until next time! :)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

odds and ends.

Sometimes I want to blog about seemingly random and unimportant mini-events from my day to day life. Usually I don't, just to spare my readers from sheer boredom. It's my third blog post in a day so bear with me... But today I give to you some of the odds and ends of what's been going on lately. With a few pictures :)

I curled my hair for the first time by myself today. I know, I know... I'm eighteen years old. I should already know how to curl my own hair. But let me tell you... I have A LOT of hair. And I will admit; before I left home my mom helped me curl it. Now I realize how much talent it takes to curl my hair. It's seriously a skill! Today I curled it all by myself! And I'm proud. I got it done in less than an hour, and it doesn't look half-bad. I have to curl it for the show that I'm in... so let's hope that I can re-create the cute curls that I worked so hard on today.


So, last weekend Elise, Brittany and I went to the institute dance. I didn't really touch on it earlier. The dance was a letdown... but afterwards we followed one of Elise's cute guy friends to Dennys. (Stalkers? No...) and we had a girls date night! We split an oreo milkshake and had a lot of laughs. I just like the pictures, so I thought I'd share... I'm so glad I have such great girlfriends! I don't know what I'd do without them... guess I'll find out since one is transferring schools and the other is going on a mission! But let's not think about that right now-- here are some pics from our fun night!

Yeah... it's a miracle I have any friends...

This is us giving "the smolder" from Tangled.
We are not obsessed with that movie at all ;)

Last week we had a crazy April snowstorm! It snowed for a couple of days without stopping. I wasn't very happy with mother nature, but Thursday night we shrugged off our irritation at the random winter weather and we went out to play in the snow in the middle of the night! Elise, Brittany and I made a snowman and had a blast playing in the snow after Elise's rehearsal. We were out until midnight. Tiring, but fun!


After playing in the snow... time for hot cocoa!

Today Elise and I drove to Salt Lake City so we could go and do baptisms for the dead at the Salt Lake Temple. Elise had never been before and wanted to go see this temple before she went back to Colorado (and then on to her mission) We had such a great time!
The guy who baptized me was REALLY cute. And he introduced himself... since when does the guy baptizing people introduce themselves? I don't remember that ever happening. Oh and he didn't have a ring on his left finger. Yes. I actually checked. Anyway the cute guy was obviously not the focus of my mind while I was inside the temple... but it was an added bonus.
Then when we did conformations the three sweetest elderly men confirmed us. They were so nice! I love old people and their wisdom and humor. One of them said to me "Do you come here often? You need to come to this temple more often for one reason and one reason alone. You have the prettiest blue eyes!" awwwwh how sweet. (If only I heard someone my age saying that to me! Then life would be grand.)
Anyway it was a wonderful experience and the spirit was so amazing. I love going to the temple! It is so beautiful. Elise and I decided we are going to go again next week. So I guess this is the start of my goal to make it to the temple once a week!


Also... yesterday I met my mom in Centerville for some lunch. She drove up because I needed the curling iron. I am so glad my mom is so willing and happy to help me out! I don't know what I would do without her or the rest of my lovely family. It was wonderful to have lunch with her and chat, even if only for a short time. We ate at In N' Out. It was her first time there. :) we enjoyed the lunch and each other's company.


Another thing- today I performed my final scene in my Acting 1 class with my scene partner and good friend Blake Merriam. I was so privileged to be able to work with Blake, and we had a great time rehearsing, researching, and exploring this scene together. We performed a scene from The Rabbit Hole by David Lindsay-Abaire. We previewed the scene for our professor Tracy Callahan and the class a couple weeks ago... and our final scene was today. We were both pretty nervous but we felt prepared. The scene turned out to be more than what we hoped for. We had some wonderful feedback. Tracy and the class seemed to thoroughly enjoy our scene. We received some nice compliments and I felt so honored. It's moments like in my scene today when I am reminded of why I love acting so much. Performing like I did today felt so liberating. I hope I can start to apply the level of my acting today in class to everything else I perform.


So anyway...  Amidst all of the many stressful things happening during the last few days of school... there are still moments when I can enjoy my awesome life. But now it's time to get some rest so I can focus on school, one-acts, my voice recital, finals, and everything else! :) Thanks for reading my random blurp. (Third blog post in a day... a little pathetic. I just had a lot of great things on my mind!)
Goodnight world. Much love! :)

Jolly

Time for another show! :)
Student-Directed One Acts
Open this week at Weber State University.
The one-acts run Tuesday-Saturday at 7:30 pm.
The show I am in, Jolly by David Mamet
Performs Wednesday and Saturday night.
There is some great acting being showcased at this event!
Good luck to everyone involved!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

list in the making.

 So I've discovered I'm kind of a list-making person. I make to-do lists on the dry erase board in my bedroom weekly, and as the week progresses I erase the things on the list I have finished. I have lists in my planner, lists on my blog, lists in my journal, and I even make mini-lists inside my head. When I wake up I think of the tasks which need to be done for the day and compartmentalize them in my brain ;) I guess it's just part of my overt neatness... my OCD... call it what you will.

Last spring I made a sort of 'bucket list' or a list of goals. I compiled my list in the spring and set a deadline... to accomplish everything on my list before I went to college. I got so much accomplished that summer! I think making lists helps me to get things done. I think another list of goals is long overdue.

I mean... I want to always be progressing and becoming a better person. I feel like I've learned a lot this year, but I still feel like I can do even more. My first year of college is almost over (wait, what? Yeah Bailee, it happened.) and it was definitely a trial by error sort of experience. I learned what works for me, what doesn't... and what I want to do differently next time. I feel like I've finally gotten the hang of the college thing. I thought I had it down at the end of fall semester... but I still had plenty to learn. And I still DO have plenty of things to learn. But I think (I hope) I'm headed in the right direction with things concerning college.

Anyway, I digress. The reason I rambled about the progression and the college and the betterment of my life- if you will- is because I think if I created more lists I would achieve more throughout my time here at Weber State. Let me rephrase that... I think I would achieve more throughout my time here on this precious earth. (Might as well look at the big picture... for there is a lot to life outside of school, even if school is my main focus at the time being.)

It seems when I make lists, I give myself more of an obligation to finish things. Especially when I put that list here on my blog. When I put a list on my blog and don't finish it out I feel a sort of embarrassment, whereas if I just tell myself "I should start eating healthier" or "I should quit having naps over a half hour long" then I'm not as likely to overcome those things. Granted, there have been goals and lists on here that I haven't necessarily "checked off"... but chances are when I post a list here I am far more likely to follow through than if I just create a list inside my head.

So I have a new list in the making. I say 'in the making' because sometimes I go through these SUPER ambitious phases in my life... and so don't be surprised if I add more to the list later. I'm going to keep it realistic so I can actually check off what's on my list... but I also want to create some challenges for myself.

This is a list of things to finish before my sophomore year of college. I did this last year... a list of things to do before my freshman year of college. But this time when I finish my summer list, I'm going to create a fall semester list, and then a spring semester list. 

I know, I know... lists. Sounds boring. But it's my blog and if you don't like what I have to say here you can just click off ;) haha... no I actually love having readers. It surprises me that anyone could find my life and random ramblings to be of ANY interest. But there you have it.

Anyway... the list. Here we go. (In no particular order of importance)

* Attend the temple once every week.
* Eat healthier
* Form a consistent exercise routine
* Find some way to perform/be in a show this summer.
* Write my missionary friends AT LEAST once a month.
* Make a trip to Colorado to visit Elise.
* Get a summer job.
* Cut my facebook time in HALF!
* Break my habit of excessive daytime naps.
* Learn how to cook 5 new meals.
* Go on 5 dates with different people.
* Write in my journal every Sunday.
* Pray and read my scriptures daily.

So there's where the list stands as of now. I'm going to post it in the sidebar of my blog so I can keep track of what I've done and what I still need to do. When I'm finished with a specific goal... it will turn to a green font.

I'm excited!! And I'm sure there will be more things added onto the list later. Less than two weeks of school left... a lot is going to be happening! And then I move back home. Ahhh... home sweet home. I can't wait. Until next time! Much love :)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Friend Making Monday- Every Day Things

So my Mom has a blog and every Monday she writes a post for something called "Friend Making Monday." My mom follows a blog called "All The Weigh" and that's where "Friend Making Monday" originated. I decided I would give it a try... here's what it is: 

Every Monday a survey is posted on All The Weigh and anyone can fill it out for themselves and post it to their blog. Then, they take the their link to their post and paste the link onto All The Weigh's post so that other bloggers can read your survey! Hence the 'Friend Making' part... you get to read other people's blogs. It's mostly about getting to know the author of the blog... just a random fun survey once a week. I don't know how long I'll stick to Friend Making Monday, but here's one for today. Enjoy! :)

FMM: Everyday Things

 
1) What is your favorite part of an average day? Probably the late evening/night... when all of my classes and homework are done and I've already had my nap (excessive napping being a habit I'm trying to break) I'm the most awake, the most relaxed, and that's when I get the most accomplished!


2) Is there one food that you eat every single day? If so, what is it? Not particularly, although I do love milk. I probably have a glass of milk once a day. (Not by itself though- always with food. I hate drinking milk by itself. Milk is for washing down food, not necessarily a thirst quencher)


3) Are you an early bird, or do you prefer to sleep in late? I am a night owl, hands down! I'm not a cranky-pants in the morning, however I do prefer to sleep in. I don't like waking up when it's still dark outside, at least.

4) Share one thing that you're looking forward to doing this week. I'm looking forward to Saturday night! All of my classes for the semester will be finished, I'll be done with the one-act play that I am currently in, and I'll only have one week of school left (finals week!) before I get to go home for the summer! Huzzah!


5) What's for dinner this evening? Something simple- either a slice of toast with peanut butter on it, or chicken noodle soup. I have rehearsal... so not much time to whip up something special :)

*You can check out "Friend Making Monday" on http://www.alltheweigh.com/

Friday, April 8, 2011

The Aha! Moment


The inside of my head is a dark empty room, and my mind is wandering about inside the dark vast space trying to find the cord hanging from the ceiling that, when pulled, will turn on a lightbulb.
The Aha! Moment.
You know the kind. When your brain is struggling to grasp a specific concept and for seconds, minutes, hours, days, months, or maybe even years you cannot find the lightswitch. After some period of time, learning, and searching you finally find the switch or you pull the cord and the room is flooded with light. You can see everything.

Well sometimes I get frustrated with myself because I just can't find the dumb lightswitch.

I have been training my voice for almost five years now. When I was fourteen I was in my first musical, Jane Eyre the Musical, cast as Young Jane. (Read the book by Charlotte Bronte, it's a classic.) Being a young lead in a community musical was something very new for me. I didn't have an ounce of vocal training... and what better time to start.

I was very excited to start private vocal training... but it was extremely nerve-wracking! When I first began I would NEVER allow my family and friends to listen to me sing unless I was in a show. I dreaded voice recitals. I cast glares at my loving mother who asked if I would sing a song for Grandma and the family at Thanksgiving.

Since then I can admit that I have come a long way. I've sang in front of people countless times since then and each time I try to tell myself that I'm getting a little bit better. Despite the nervousness I feel, despite the embarrassment, despite the almost-torture of it all... I try to tell myself that each time I put myself in front of an audience and sing, I become a little better.

But sometimes it's hard to believe in my progession and abilites when I'm in voice lessons pounding away at some of the exact same concepts I was introduced to five years ago. It goes round and round and round... it becomes redundant. Sometimes it feels like i'm just not getting it. No matter what I do... I can't produce that sound or feeling that I want.

I'm waiting for an Aha! Moment.

"Oh! I get it, I understand. THIS is what it's supposed to feel like when I sing this."

I've been dancing my whole life. And it came so much easier to me. When you're not doing something correctly in dance the teacher can come over to you and readjust your arm, leg, or neck into the correct position. You can watch a dancer's muscles working in the mirror and copy that same motion.
It's not that easy with singing. You can't always see what needs to happen. You can't always feel it, you can't just copy someone else. I wish I could get inside someone's head and feel what they feel when they sing... or hear what they hear when I sing. Since I hear myself so differently from the rest of the world. And then there are times when I feel like I'm doing it right and then I second guess myself.

I'm being a downer. I know I've improved considerably since my start in the vocal-performance world, and I know that even this year alone I have learned and explored new things with my voice. But when every day I'm surrounded by people who are amazing singers... it's difficult not to compare.

Then again if I want to be in this business, I NEED to learn not to compare.
Easier said than done ;)

When I hear other singers... it seems like singing is such a liberating experience for them. They just let it soar... and it's absolutely beautiful. I want to feel that freedom when I sing. I want to open the shutters and lean out the bay window and sing my heart out... feeling that at any moment I could take off and fly.

Maybe I won't have an Aha! Moment. Maybe I'll just work and work and work at it... and then one day I'll look back on all of this in hindsight and realize that somewhere in the middle of all that working I learned how to sing beautifully.

Either way... I just want to get there.

I love singing. Maybe not as much as I love dancing and acting YET... but each day I grow to love singing more and more. Well... most days. And even with the setbacks, I most absolutely have a love and passion for music. I just need more confidence in my OWN singing is all.
I need to know "Oh! So THAT'S how it's supposed to work! I get it!"

I just need an Aha! Moment :)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

"Just hang on and do your best"

240 hours, 14,400 minutes, or 864,000 seconds until it's over.
And counting.

Also...
I'm ready to go back home for a while.
To my Riverton home :)

Monday, April 4, 2011

Tangled-up thoughts. (no pun intended)

Six months today I have been a single lady. To wallow in celebrate this remarkable occasion, Britt and I had a girls night!

Actually it wasn't just because of my single status. We also had a girls night because I didn't have rehearsals for once, and she and I were both home for the evening at the same time. Plus, we've been trying to plan a pizza/movie night for quite sometime now. Oh and Tangled came out last week.

... so we took all of the above reasons as reason enough to have a girls night!! (In reality, it doesn't take much to decide we need a girls night. Because girls can always use a good girls night)

After getting homework done we drove to the nearest Redbox in my Holly Baby and rented Tangled. Then we drove to Smiths to buy some chocolate peanut butter cup ice cream. At about six we went to Little Caesars and picked up some Hot N' Ready pizza, crazy bread, and strawberry lemonade.

Tangent: So... weirdest trip to a pizza place in my entire life. One of the guys in the back starts singing in his high-soprano voice. He comes around the corner and he's wearing the typical Pizza apron and Little Caesar's work uniform... but he has on these Lamanite Armbands... um, let me give you readers a visual. They were something like these-

See the little lamanite armband-thingy he has on?
Okay so this action figure is actually Nephi, not a Lamanite
... But you get the picture.
Now just imagine this little guy with the armbands
And then modern day clothes and a work apron on.
They were old leather lace-up and authentic
I mean this guy was the real deal.

Brittany didn't notice them at first but when the guy turned around I elbowed her and whispered "Is that guy wearing like... lamanite armbands or something?" We could hardly contain our laughter. Not in a mean way! He seemed very nice. It's just one of those occasions where you had to be there, I'm sure. Leave it to Ogden to make a trip to Little Caesar's an interesting experience... and only in Utah, right? ;)

Anyway: After our errands we settled in our living room and enjoyed our indulgences while watching one of the cutest movies I think I've ever seen. I know I've posted about Tangled before... but I simply LOVE that movie. Here are a few reasons why.


1. I love Pascal. I think life would be so fun if I had a pet chameleon who I could talk to, play hide-and-seek with, and who was practically like the little conscience on my shoulder! tee hee.

2. I love the music. I have some of it here on the blog, and I just got the entire album from my dear friend Elise. Not only is it cute and catchy, but the messages in it are so happy! Lately I've been feeling like my life is sort of mundane. I keep waiting around for something more exciting, more fun, more important, or more what-have-you to happen. Then I was listening to the soundtrack while I was doing my homework and I realized... unlike Rapunzel I'm not trapped in a tower. (okay, obvious) and why am I waiting around for My Life To Begin...it's HERE! I'm in it... it's happening. And sometimes I forget that I should be soaking every single moment in. I mean, I almost have a year of college behind me and while I've made SO many memories already and learned SO many new things, I just keep forgetting that I'm waiting around for life to happen and it's already happening! I don't need a huge life-changing event or anything to make my life the wonderful thing that it already is. Like that quote "When we're busy making plans, life happens".
Oh and the song "I See The Light"? Just listen to the lyrics. Most precious thing ever. Who knew Tangled could be so inspirational? You've just got to love Disney.

3. I love the theme. The whole "Go, Live Your Dream"
Enough said. It's adorable. And so true.

4. I love the humor. It's witty, clean, and I laugh every time! I seriously do not think this movie can get old. It'll definitely be one of those flicks I pop in the DVD player when I'm having a Debbie-Downer Day. Or just when I need a good laugh!

5. I love the romance. Eugene and Rapunzel are so stinkin' cute. And I also love the relationship between the King and Queen. I want to be somebody's 'new dream'. For six months to the day I've been single and I've had a ton of fun dating. But I miss having someone special. I am not sad anymore about the last relationship I had. It ran it's course and I learned so many great things from that relationship. And to justify myself I'm not one of those girls that has been counting the days I've been single... I'm not that pathetic. haha. The only reason I remember that it's been six months is because my last relationship ended the Monday after Fall General Conference, so it was easy to remember. Anyway I'm happy... I really am. But I will always be a hopeless-romantic. I love love. And I can't wait to find my 'new dream' one day.

Overall it's just such a fun movie. I can't wait to own it. I saw it in theaters, and then I watched it the day it came out with Elise. We ate pink cake and everything. (She has her own Pascal stuffty animal... it is so cute!) And then I got to see it again today! It's definitely one of my new favorites, and the movie was an awesome way to start off the busy week!

Also... there are only three weeks of school left!! Holy cow, I swear it only feels like yesterday I was moving all of my things into my little apartment. This was probably one of my last girls nights having Brittany as my roomate... I'm going to be sad when she transfers to University of Utah next fall. I'm sure we'll still hang out (at least we better!) but it'll be so different being at college without her. Thanks for being a great roomate, I love ya! And thanks for the great girls night!

Anyway- so that was a spontaneous post with a variety of very random thoughts... but that's blogging for ya! And besides... it's the fun little moments like this that are fun to look back on and remember. Thanks for reading. Much love :) and I hope everyone has a great week this week! And now off to rehearse some Shakespeare! Nighty night.

You cannot go amiss...

I love general conference weekend.

To be honest, last week was kinda rough. I had a good job interview and I got to see my family, and I had some fun times with Elise; but with being sick and a few other things, I was more than happy to see the weekend at it's close. And then general conference made my week so much better!

On Saturday I watched both sessions at home while I completed some homework and memorized lines. Then I went to rehearsals after conference. After rehearsal I went to the costume shop because I was on the Costume Work Crew for the dance show 'Orchesis'.
Can I just say, I have some of the greatest friends? I had a really wonderful night spending time with Lindsea Garside, Elise Vander Does, and Connor Padilla. They were on crew with me. It's amazing to me to think that less than a year ago I didn't know these wonderful people. It feels like we've been friends longer than that, and I am so blessed to have people like them in my life. I don't know what I would do without them! We stayed up until two in the morning doing laundry for the closing of the show, but it wasn't too bad because I was in such good company. :)

After a very late night (or should I say early morning) I woke up at 6 a.m. on Sunday. Elise, Rachel Schull and I decided to go see the morning session of conference live! I've lived in Utah my whole life and I've never seen General Conference at the Conference Center. What a shame. So Elise, Rachel and I met at Elise's house to make some little sack lunches and then we were off to Salt Lake!

It was such a wonderful experience to attend conference live. The spirit there was so beautiful and wonderful... and I am so glad that I got to go with two of the most awesome girls I know. We parked by a hotel in public parking (free on conference weekend!) and walked to the loooong standby line. We tried to get tickets a few weeks earlier, but to no avail. It was fun standing in line with our standby tickets and watching all of the people around us.

Well... we got lucky and they let the first six hundred people from standby into the conference center! Being ticket #486 we got inside!


I loved all of the talks that were given. Elder Bednar gave a talk very similar to the talk he gave at the institute six months ago and I really appreciated hearing it again. It was amazing because for a couple months I've been wishing I had a copy of his institute talk so I could read it again... and instead I got to hear it live. I really needed to hear some of the things he said a second time. During his talk he said something about how if we are living righteously and doing the best we can... he will lead us the way. We cannot go amiss as long as we strive to choose the right.

I also loved President Monson's talk about temples. It is my new goal to attend the temple once a week while I'm home in Riverton for the Summer. Another talk I enjoyed was President Uchtdorf's talk. Oh goodness... let's face it, I loved all of the talks that were given! It's amazing how each one of them had something in it specifically for me. Wow. I love this gospel.

After the morning session we walked back to our car and enjoyed our sack lunches... and can I just say, I have to attend conference downtown more often. Not only was the spirit AWESOME but there were a ton of CUTE guys wandering around downtown! Elise and I sure got a kick out of that... we're a pair of hopeless romantics, that's for sure.

When we were finished with our lunches the three of us decided to drive to my home in Riverton to watch the last session of conference. I had not been planning on being in Riverton that weekend, and what a better way to spend my Sunday than with my sweet family? I couldn't have been happier. (and Mom made pasta salad, frog-eye salad, meatballs, and homemade rolls! Strawberry shortcake for dessert... always a bonus!) The girls and my mom were dozing in and out of the last session (not out of boredom... but MAJOR lack of sleep!), and I painted my nails while watching to avoid falling asleep myself! Guess that's what happens when you get less than four hours of sleep... haha! I loved the last session just as much as the morning session. Elder Richard G. Scott's talk was so heartwarming. I loved hearing about the unconditional love he had for his wife and family. I also was extremely touched by Elder Hollands talk at the end. All of those men are so adorable and sweet-spirited... I trust them and admire their testimonies so much!!

After conference we all visited for a while and then made the drive back to Ogden! After going home and finishing some homework, I went to the school to finish up a dance project with my friend Josh Valdez. Then it was back to Elise's house to watch Letters To Juliet and do some homework with her! I am so happy to know this beautiful lady! She has taught me so much and I am happy to call her one of my best friends here at Weber State!

Unfortunately the weekend came to a close much much MUCH too quickly... and life carries on. We only have three weeks of the semester left and life gets more and more stressful every day, but I wanted to blog about my lovely weekend and General Conference!