Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Choralaires Sunday.


-I have some of the greatest friends on the face of this planet. Ben Eschler was a lifesaver when he brought me a box of safety pins for my choir dress fiasco. And Kaylee was a doll for helping me pin my dress.

-Testimony meetings are the perfect cure for morning grouchiness. I almost completely forgot about my sleep-deprivation because the spirit was so strong, even though it was 7:15 in the morning.

-Never give boys anything that could be used as ammo against you.

-Nutella is a favorite.

-When you run a Chinese Fire Drill, make sure everybody runs around the car going in the same direction

-I loved making new friends, especially ones who are as passionate about music as I am.

-Sunday school is a favorite.

-One of the best parts about Sunday School with The Choralaires: listening while we sing the opening hymn. The spirit really does speak powerfully through music.

-Waffles for lunch. Delicious.

-I love The Institute.

-Ben Eden and Dalen sure do know how to make me laugh.

-Whipped cream can get really messy, so don't try to plan revenge using whipped cream when everyone is in performance attire.

-Boys aren't very good at tying bows, but we love them anyway.

-The ladies' room will always be the perfect place for some positive, yet juicy girl talk ;)

-I love pearls.

-I'm really embracing the alto thing these days. I love singing those low harmonies.

-When all of the returned missionaries stood up in the congregation during I Am a Child of God, I completely forgot to sing. It was such a powerful, beautiful, and spiritually edifying moment.

-I love missionary work.

-Even though there was a lot of driving throughout the day, I loved having some quality Ben Eschler/Bailee time.

-The purple dresses are really growing on me ;)

-I love the boys in Choralaires. There are some dashing, fine looking men in that choir. And their voices make me melt like Nutella on a hot waffle ;)

-Singing all day in a choir is taxing business. But totally worth it.

-I love Choralaires Sundays.

Monday, October 29, 2012

A Monday Video Post.

Mr. Eden introduced me to this song last weekend.
Everything about it just makes my heart happy.
This was one of the only videos of the song that I could find.
Tell me you didn't smile, I dare you :)

Sunday, October 28, 2012

A Sunday Video Post.

I'm off with the Choralaires for the day, singing at a couple of wards in the area.
Hope everyone is having the best of weekends. Much love :)

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Happy Little Nothings

-Pumpkin muffins from Starbucks
-Hazelnut hot chocolate
-Falling asleep outside BC 230
-Wednesday devotionals at the institute
-Wearing Mom's old eighties knit-sweater
-Watching YouTube videos before History and Lit
-Listening to the sound of the heater
-Internet connection
-White mountains
-Yellow peacoat
-Pretzels at the AAT Meeting
-Getting asked on a date
-Vanilla Cherry Dr. Pepper
-Clean bedroom
-No more stage scenery
-The first snow
-Wednesday dance practices
-Auditions Techniques class
-Compliments book
-My new "Super Estudiante" pencil from Spanish class
-Mid-afternoon naps
-Hot chocolate at Apt. Number 10
-Cookie dough

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Finding Joy.

I worry about grad school.

I worry about my future occupation after I graduate from school.

I worry about making the decision to go on a full-time mission.

I worry about making the decision to serve a performance mission in Nauvoo.

I worry about making the decision to audition for The Playmill again.

I worry about what I'm going to do this summer.

I worry about marriage.

I worry about my grades in History and Lit of Theatre.

I worry about what my roommates think of me.

I worry about being able to do Choralaires and Folk Dance next semester.

I worry about auditioning for the spring musical.

I worry about my spring semester schedule

I worry about friendships

I worry about getting all of my credits finished to graduate in two years.

I worry about what I look like.

I worry about Caesar, our family's puppy.

I worry about my singing capabilities

I worry about money.

I worry about hurting other people's feelings.

(Image via.)

It's time to stop worrying. Most of my problems I have no control over, and these will most likely work themselves out with time. I need to stop worrying about tomorrow, and start focusing on today. Live in the moment. Vivre dans l'instant. 

Monday, October 15, 2012

Ben, Ben and Ben!

Time for another Shout-out! (You can read all of my Shout-Out posts here.)

Benjamin Paxman

This kid is seriously one of my heroes. I have never seen anyone face trials with such a strong spirit and positive outlook. Ben has experienced many physical trials in his life. He had four major surgeries, and he spent many months during his teenage years in Primary Children's Hospital because of some intestinal problems. It was a very scary time for our family, and Ben had indescribable courage and patience throughout this trying time of his life. I will always look up to him for everything he went through.

Aside from his incomparable positivity in difficult times, I admire my brother for many reasons. Ben is a peacekeeper. He is very level-headed and calm. Ben is also very mature for his age. He knows how to communicate and socialize with people of all ages, and he is respected and admired by many adults for his maturity. 

Ben has such a sweet spirit about him. He is very tender-hearted... I haven't met many people who have a sweeter spirit than Benjamin. All I can say is, he's going to be an incredible husband for somebody one day, and she will be one lucky girl... if we can find someone who deserves him ;)

I love my brother SO much. He teaches me by example every day. We have such a great time whenever we're together, and our inside jokes are timeless. I love when we act like goofballs and joke around. Because we are only eighteen months apart,  we grew up together and I have always considered him one of my best friends. I can't believe he's already in college and getting ready to serve a mission! I am extremely proud.

I can't say enough good about him. I love you, Bud.

Ben Eden

I just met Ben Eden this year, and I already admire him and appreciate his friendship and example! Ben and I both auditioned for Folk Dance AND Choralaires this year, and I've really enjoyed being a part of these performing groups with Ben. We have a lot of fun dancing together! Ben and I are partners in the clog number this semester, and I don't think I've ever had so much fun dancing with a partner.

One of the personality traits I admire most about Ben is his ability to make people laugh. I'm always guaranteed a good laugh whenever I'm around Ben, and I always appreciate that his humor is so clean and positive. He always has a positive energy about him, and his countenance is something that I look up to.

Ben is great about including everyone, both when we're at Folk Dance and Choralaires. He was the one who gave me the confidence to audition for Choralaires in the first place. I admire how outgoing he is. Ben knows how to be a genuine friend to anyone he crosses paths with. He is very patient and he knows how to encourage his friends. I appreciate his patience, encouragement, and willingness to help me learn how to play the piano.

I also appreciate Ben's willingness to communicate. I admire people who can have intellectual and profound conversations with others, and I appreciate that Ben is comfortable sharing his thoughts and opinions with me. Effective communication is something that I greatly value in all of my friendships, and Ben knows how to communicate well.

I always have an enjoyable time when I'm with Ben. We have had a lot of fun times at his apartment, playing games and catching him up on Once Upon A Time. I look forward to getting to know him better, and I look forward to the opportunities I will have to perform with him. He is very talented, and an amazing example to me! Thanks for everything you do Ben. :)

Ben Eschler

Where do I even start with Big Ben? I met Ben a year ago (has it only been a year?) When we auditioned for the Folk Dance Team together. He and I went on a no-sugar diet together last fall, and we've been friends ever since. (I'm just glad our friendship lasted longer than the no-sugar pact!)

Ben always has my back. I appreciate his willingness to listen to my venting and ranting, even when I'm negative. He also knows how to keep me in check. I appreciate a friend who can offer fresh perspective and keep me in line when I'm acting unreasonable. He knows how to listen well, but he will offer his opinion and advice when it is needed.

Big Ben is so loving and genuine! He gives the biggest hugs, and I love how happy he gets when he is around his friends. His genuine joy and giddiness is one of my favorite things about him! His happiness is infectious. 

Ben will do anything for his friends. He's always there to pick up the phone when I give him a call, and if he doesn't answer... he always calls me right back. He also made the effort to drive all the way out to West Yellowstone to support me this summer... and that means THE WORLD to me! He will probably never know the impact he had on me when he and the other folk dancers came to visit me last summer. Whenever I need a friend the most, he's there to be whatever I need at the time. 

Ben is stellar, and I am so glad to call him my friend. Not just a Folk Dance Friend, but a Lifelong Friend. I can't wait to see the many amazing things he will accomplish as we grow up! You're fantastic Ben, thanks for all you do!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Okay, scratch that.

You know all of that crazy talk earlier today about "big potential plans for my Friday night?" 

Well, the chilly autumn air and the rain sucked me right in, so I decided to ditch all of my social plans and claim myself a home-body for the night.

I enjoyed a long, long shower and then made a quick trip to the grocery market for some evidently necessary supplies for the evening.

During my trip to the store I may or may not have purchased some hot cocoa. And I'm talking a lot of hot cocoa. I bought Stephen's pumpkin spice, caramel mocha, and hazelnut to add to my mint truffle and dark chocolate. So now I own five cans of hot cocoa. All to myself.

...There was a big sale going on, okay? Hot chocolate is a major part of my winter ritual, so with the chilly weather and all, I had to stock up for the season. And It was a really good deal.

So anyway, after the store it was time to light my new Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Candle and bake some banana bread. 

Tangent. Again.
First off, I have to say that the Playmill girls really reminded me of how lovely real candles are. There's something about that little flame and the warmth of a real candle that those new electric things just don't provide.

Secondly, yes I'm baking. From scratch. Actually baking. 

Miracles do happen. And so far? I think my banana bread is coming along quite nicely. Sure, I couldn't find a hand mixer and it took me fifty hours to mix the ingredients, and I burnt my hand on the oven... but the smell from the oven and the taste off of my is-it-finished-yet-or-is-it-still-gooey? toothpick are really promising. I'll keep you all posted on the results.

So anyway, now the house is filled with delicious aromas of banana bread, cinammon pecan swirl, and hazelnut hot cocoa. I'm curled up on the couch in my comfy nineties sweater with my slippers on and my blanket tucked in around me. And now I'm settling in for a little Pride and Prejudice while my bread finishes baking.

And this, my readers, is the Happiest of my Little Nothings for the day. I'm a girl who loves loves LOVES getting dressed up and being social, but every now and again things like this just need to happen.  

So for now, au revoir. I'm heading off to Darcy Dreamland with maybe another cup of hot cocoa (or two or five) and a slice of homemade banana bread in hand.

Happy Little Nothings.

Today has been a really good day. I must say, this is a wonderful start to my weekend :)

-Making Mickey Mouse pancakes
-Listening to some Civil Wars and Mumford and Sons in the morning
-Washing dishes
-Being given a new nickname
-Watching this video with David, Ben, and Colton
-Laughing and giggling until my tummy hurts, and then laughing some more.
-Visiting with Big Ben and Colton in the lobby.
-Long afternoon nap
-Toasted bagel with pumpkin cream cheese
-Dark hot chocolate
-Lighting scented candles at home
-The sound of rain on my bedroom window
-The comfiest Yellowstone sweatshirt from the nineties
-Receiving a facebook email from a friend
-Sitting in a quiet home all to myself
-Potential plans for a great Friday night

Thursday, October 11, 2012

And the music plays on. and on.

Three things.

1. I have to have my "me" time. It's the way I rejuvenate, it's the way I focus, it's the way I feel relaxed and peaceful.

An hour-long drive by myself, and a weekend in a house by myself, seem oh-so welcoming right now. No more background noise. There are only five classes and a meeting between me and the weekend. We can do this :)

2. I am so SO thankful for my friends. The ones who feel and think on the same level that I do, who love me even when I'm grouchy, and who support me in all my endeavors. You know who you are.

3. Sometimes I go through this phase that Mom likes to call, "Post Show Depression".

I just finished a summer where I was performing every day. So you can bet that life seems a little bit boring sometimes, what with no shows for me in the works. I need to get out of this autopilot thing I have going for me right now, which means I need to find a way to be involved in more art. I want to be in the middle of a process, some kind of beautiful work, and I want to be surrounded by people who thrive for that same experience.

...And that's all I have to say for the moment. Now it's time for Institute, so I'm headed over to the campus... even if I really, really don't feel like going right now. If there's a cure for this funk, it's at the institute. Right? Of course right. I love that place.

Five classes and a meeting, five classes and a meeting...
And so here we go. :)

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Life Lately - The Picture Edition.











1. We went to Cousin Chelsey's wedding last weekend. It was really a beautiful event. I know I'm a little bit biased, but it was one of the loveliest weddings I've seen in a while. Chelsey looked stunning, and I couldn't get over the way Dan looked at her the entire night. They are so in love:) We saw lots of family and friends at the wedding, and the entire night was magical.

2. There were so many delicious treats to be had at the wedding. Ice cream, cupcakes, caramel apples, cotton candy, lemon bars, hot cocoa... and I'm pretty sure I tasted almost everything at the reception. I was in heaven.

3. I spent the conference weekend with my sweet family. Saturday morning, Dad took us to a little cafe in Milcreek. My banana/caramel french toast and hot cocoa were nothing short of divine. After breakfast, we drove through the canyon and listened to conference. All of those colors are breathtaking. We got out and walked around for a while. I absolutely love the mountains and the fresh air and the leaves crunching underneath my feet. 

The rest of the weekend was just as wonderful. I slept a lot, watched a lot of conference, ate good food, and spent time at home with the family. It was such a rejuvenating weekend after such a long week of tests, classes, and meetings.

4. I've been spending a lot of time with these boys lately, and they sure do know how to make me laugh. Last night we had dinner together and watched an episode (or four) of Once Upon a Time. Ben has taken it upon himself to teach/motivate me to learn piano. I've always wanted to pick it up... but I've never made it a priority. I guess there's never a time quite like the present. :) Mr. Sam Howe is pretty busy with his folk dance/student gov/chemistry/whatever else, but I make sure and steal some of his time every week. Dalen is a lot of fun too... and he's recently become the peacekeeper between mine and Sam's silly arguments ;)

So all in all, life is treating me well. Things are pretty routine right now and sometimes my classes aren't the most exciting this semester, but I have friends and family and plenty of extra-curriculars to keep me going.

Speaking of extra-curricular activities... it's time for some auditions over in the BC!
Much love :)

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

I Call Him Bicycle Boy.

I was pulling into the familiar institute parking lot, just like any other typical school day. I mean, I had driven in and out of that parking lot a million times before. But that is where it all happened.

I drove into Weber State University's campus Monday morning, staring at the thick blanket of grey clouds through my clean windshield. One of those generic pop songs was humming through the car speakers, and I was quickly going over a mental to-do list as I drove down the street towards the Institute building. 

I pulled into the left hand turn lane and flipped my blinker on, waiting patiently for oncoming traffic to pass so I could turn into the institute. I rolled down the drivers' side window while I waited, preparing to scan the card that would allow me into the gated parking lot. I smiled to myself, grateful that I had a pass to the institute. No more waking up at 6:30am to snag a parking spot over by the BC.

When the oncoming traffic cleared, I glanced to the left. There are always pedestrians walking across the gated entryway to the lot, and sure enough, two girls lazily meandered past the walkway. Once I noticed the girls were safely across, I began to turn left. 

What happened next was incredibly horrifying. I'm talking a minor heart attack/pee your pants kind of horrifying. And it all happened in a matter of seconds. As I turned left, a man on a bicycle came speeding down the hill and collided with the front corner of my Holly Baby. 


Next thing I know, Bicycle Boy is flying head-first over his handlebars, across the hood of my car, and landing on the sidewalk.

He lay on the pavement while I sat in utter shock... too fixated on the body to even move or speak. Several bystanders stood rooted to the ground, their mouths gaping open, riveted to the scene playing out before them. A girl screamed. And then Bicycle Boy stood up.

And then I realized I knew him.

Bicycle Boy looked at me through the glass, confusion masking his face much like the cold sweat that was masking mine. And in that moment, I had never wished so hard that I was invisible.

If only I could disappear, or fly away, or apparate... or even if I could acquire a brown paper bag to pull over the top of my head... anything to take me away from that moment. But all I could do was stare back at Bicycle Boy and all of those gawking bystanders and try to form coherent sentences.

"Are you okay?" I called from the open window of my car. My voice was shaky and panicked, my mind racing a million miles an hour. Bicycle Boy stared back at me, still trying to absorb everything that had just happened. Finally, he replied,
"I'm okay."
"Are you sure??"
"I think so." He said. Now that I knew he wasn't dead or bleeding, I realized I was still in the middle of the entryway to the parking lot. I pulled through the gate, parked in the nearest space and raced right back to help him.

As I ran back to the scene, I was in complete and utter disbelief.

I met Bicycle Boy a week ago. And it just keeps getting better. He is in my singles ward. We bonded at Family Night over delicious ice cream and an evening of bowling... and at the end the night he and his roommate had asked me for my number.

And now I had just hit him. With my car. While he was on his bike.

Out of the hundreds of students at WSU, what were the odds that I would collide with this boy I had barely known a week, a boy in my very own singles ward.

I might as well put my name at the top of the ward's "Do Not Date" list. This was it - my claim to spinsterhood, written out by the 15th Ward for the rest of the year. From here on out, I would be known as That Idiot Girl Who Hit Bicycle Boy With Her Car.


As I came running back to meet Bicycle Boy, I saw that his confused face was replaced with a shocked look of recognition.

Ah... so he finally 'came-to' and figured it all out. That the cute, nerdy girl from family night just wiped him out with her car. How charming.

"Bailee?" He called out to me in what sounded like disbelief. Or maybe it was complete surprise. Or probably something like complete terror, although I couldn't actually decipher in what tone he was calling my name because my ears were pounding and I was trembling to the bone.

I blurted out at least a million or more "Are you okays??" while some doe-eyed girl timidly handed Bicycle Boy a very damaged looking bike and scurried away. Before she left the scene she said,

"At least you know each other. That makes it so much better."

I gave a high-pitched, half-hearted laugh and watched her disappear into the throng of students.

At least we know each other?! I had barely known him for a week. This wasn't my best friend, or my long-time classmate, or even my home teacher (oh please don't say he's going to be assigned as my home teacher.) And he surely doesn't know anything about me. He doesn't even know me well enough to know that I'm actually not a crazy, careless, reckless pedestrian-killing driver... despite what it probably looks like.

No, this was far worse than hitting a complete stranger. If I had hit a complete stranger, I could shove that big brown paper bag over my head and waltz away -- give him the insurance information, make sure he's taken care of, and never see him again.

But no. It couldn't possibly be that easy.
Again I say, what are the chances?

So I drove Bicycle Boy home, drove back to my apartment, called my parents, and ended up getting a police report done at WSU. (I didn't get a ticket though, praises be to The Heavens). I called the insurance people. He got an X-ray done. That night, he called me to say he had a sprained shoulder. Then he casually continues by asking me what the ward was doing for FHE.

I now have a mangled license plate in the trunk to prove it. He has a sling on his arm and a sprain for the next couple of weeks to prove it. I have my wounded pride. He has his wounded shoulder. And we both have a pretty dang good story to tell.
You know, at least the dreams of me decapitating dozens of doomed bicyclists have long-since ended. Now I just flinch every time I see a bicycle on the road.
Oh, and the gnarly skid mark on the top of my hood hasn't completely been washed off yet, but I'm sure it'll fade.
It's all sort of comical, I know.
It's okay, you can laugh.
After the almost crying/almost throwing up part, I laughed too.
Only because the whole thing was dripping in irony.

I'm thinking this would be a good premise for a Singles Ward 3, don't you agree?
This kind of stuff only happens in movies.
Only not. Because it actually happened to me.