Friday, August 29, 2008


Well, here i am at BYU! can you believe it? crazy. i've been here for about 4 days now and since school doesn't start til next Tuesday it's been nice to just settle in and wander around trying to get my feet under me. I am making curtains for our living room....look at me go :)

FIRSTLY, I'm reading a REALLY excellent book, it's called "The Hiding Place" and it's by a woman who hid Jewish people in her house during WWII, and eventually got arrested because of it. I can't tell you how it ends because a) that would be lame of me, and b) i'm only halfway through the book so far :) But holy heck it's amazing, and it's been really nice to sit around and READ, because there never seems to be enough time for that. The best part is that it's a true story, and the people in it are the most devoted Christians I can ever remember reading about, or I guess meeting in real life, either. Their story continually inspires me with their absolute, trusting faith. Beautiful.

Things are getting better a little at a time. I was pretty scared when i first got here, but they've only been improving and my courage level is on the upswing, so i figure it can only get bigger and better from here, right? The truth is, even though lots of scary/frustrating/overwhelming things have happened, SO many good things keep happening to balance things out. Tender mercies from heaven. For example...

1. I went to buy my books all by myself on Tuesday, and even though it went well I found myself getting frightened by the sheer number of people and places on campus. However, on my walk back to my apartment, I ran in to no less than 3 people that I know. What are the odds? It really made me feel better, and a lot less alone.
2. When i got back from the bookstore i found myself locked out of my apartment...luckily, right when i sat down on my porch swing in despair, a girl randomly wandered by who used to live here, and she taught me the secret to breaking in through the window. Problem solved!
3. Wednesdasy night i decided to be brave and go check out the local frisbee scene. GAH! (that sums up my response...) Everyone was really nice but they were SUPER competitive. It might seem like frisbee is something silly, but considering that my entire social life revolved around my
frisbee team last year, i was realllllly counting on having that in my life again, just for something familiar and stable i guess! So, even though it wasn't awful, i wasn't feeling too optimistic about playing on this team.....but THEN, yesterday, a friend-of-a-friend randomly called me and told me they had heard that i play frisbee, and they invited me to play with them last night. So i went, and it was perfect! Definitely more my flavor of frisbee-playing. Plus, these boys all went to high school with two of my best friends from my freshman year at SUU (Justin & Mike), so being around them felt really familiar. (And let's be honest, the number of "familiar" things in this place are minimal, so I was grateful.)
4. Yesterday i auditioned for concert choir. I had heard it was pretty competitive, but i wanted to be in it SO bad that i knew i had to try anyways. And, well, like most other things seem to be in Provo, it was definitely COMPETITIVE. I did my very best at the audition, but they won't post the list until next Wednesday, and i think they were trying to let me down'm not really expecting to make it, honestly. But, somehow it didn't make me feel too sad, and when i came home i decided to see about adding another class to my schedule in place of where choir would have been. Turns out i am NOW taking guitar lessons from one of the professors, AND i added another religion class. It's a family genealogy class, and the truth is, my patriarchal blessing says i'm supposed to do stuff with that but i've never really known how. But hopefully this class will get me rolling in that area of life! Hooray!
5. I've been hunting online for a job for about 2.5 months now, and nothing was coming through, so i was getting discouraged. WELL, about a month ago i had interviewed for a job i REALLY's for a public relations office (basically like newspaper writing but ten times less stress, plus ALL the stories are happy and positive, so no more feeding off conflict and yuckiness!) Anyways, the people were super nice and it seemed to be a perfect fit for my schedule, but it turned out they didn't have a position open for me in the
end....HOWEVER, yesterday right after my discouraging choir audition, i got an email from them saying that a girl quit and they wanted to hire me! I start this afternoon :) I'm just so happy.

Well that's a small taste of all the crazyness and wonderfulness and Tender Mercy-ness that's been going on in my life these last few days! I just feel so blessed. Part of me is still scared for all the unknown that is still sure to come this semester, but this week has done so much to remind me that Heavenly Father is SO aware of me. He truly REALLY wants me to succeed, because (as you can see) everytime something happens that makes me want to sit down and cry, something
wonderful is not far behind it. And with Heavenly Father backing me up like that, how could I possibly fail?

Life is an awfully big adventure. I never planned on being in this exact place at this exact time in my life (honestly, who would PLAN on picking up and starting completely over as a senior in
college??) but planned on or not, it is already proving to be EXACTLY what needs to be happening to me. I'm just so excited about all the opportunity and new possibilities i have ahead of me. I'm sure I will have a plentiful plethora of stories to share...

So stay tuned :)

Friday, August 8, 2008


I think there are very few people out there who are truly 100% comfortable in their own skin. Me? I'm on my way.

Working at EFY always seems to help the cause....I mean, you have to wear the same ill-fitting polo as everyone else, so when you're constantly getting side-hugs and sincere compliments from teenagers saying they want to grow up to be like you, you KNOW it has little to do with your physical appearance. I like to think that in heaven we will all wear versions of The Great Unifying Polo...probably in white.

This summer has been a summer of firsts for me. For a long time I've had a lot of ideas about myself, but I'm gaining a new perspective on a lot of things. For instance, I've never worn heels before...NEVER. Always flipflops or threadbare moccasins were always my go-to kicks of choice. My reasoning? Well, besides the comfort factor, I've always been self-conscious about being too tall. Wait, I'm only 5'6, right? Well add in the whole awkwardly-skinny factor and I felt like adding any inches to my height only resulted in me looking like a spaghetti noodle. In fact, I used to try on my roommate's heels and laugh at myself in the mirror and call myself "Lurpzilla." For the same reasons, I always tended to gravitate toward wearing jeans that were slightly too big for me....I hated feeling like a twig. I know, I know, every perfectly plump girl who reads this is ready to jump on my case and tell me I have no reason to complain...but, it's all in the eye of the beholder, right? (And trust me, those same media images telling all the heftier girls they need to starve themselves are the same ones throwing curvacious, womanly figures in my face. It's a double standard, my friends.)

So this is the realization I've come to this look is about ME. And my self-image is just that...a SELF image. My reasonings behind my former viewpoints were lukewarm, at best. They all boiled down to how other people would perceive me, and who wants to live life trying to impress everyone else? Hello, not me. I finally caved and (with the help of Miss Katie Lee, the self-image master) bought a pair of heels. And a pair of jeans that actually fit me. It has definitely taken some getting used to...but it's a transition that I'm thoroughly enjoying. I feel like a lady...not a lurpzilla.

And by no means do I think I'm conforming or losing myself to the latest trends....because trust me, the parts of me that want to wear sweatpants and baseball hats are still holding sway in my daily apparel decisions. And that's what i LOVE about's just ME. It's not what other people tell me to's not how other people say I should cut or dye my's not how I'm too tall or too skinny or wear too many bright colors or shop at DI (thrift stores forever!!)'s about ME and what I want for me. If I let my self-image revolve around other people's opinions then I'm probably on a quick spiral staircase to No-happiness Land.

And besides, I'm feeling ever-more strongly that self-confidence has little to do with physical appearance, because I think courage and self-esteem are built as we become comfortable with ourselves....and comfort with ourselves only comes when we know we are living our lives correctly....and considering the divinity in each of us, I've concluded that our best selves and best chance at self-esteem are only available if we are cultivating those godly characteristics within us. Hence....a person's best bet at confidence is absolute purity and unselective obedience to Gospel standards, not what shoes you choose to wear in the morning :)

In the words of a wise, prophetic man...."You can't spend your life worrying that the world is staring at you."

And in the words of a best friend's dog...."I do what I want."
Turns out little Murphy knew it all along.