Thursday, October 28, 2010


[tune in: #44, "the riddle" by five for fighting. because it makes my soul feel good.]

location: kitchen table. in my apt that is no longer a flood disaster zone.

what i see: an empty bowl of homemade soup & a PILE of punkin choc chip cookies. yeah, it's been a domestic day.

so remember when my life took a turn for the different and i imagined up a pile of goals?

let's recall one of them: "really dedicate myself to my service endeavors"

and by golly, i've gone and done it.

Katie's AZ Service Team, aka KAST

i played off the kast/cast idea and picked a theme scripture:
Isa. 61:1 - "He hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted."

the story: i made a facebook group. i invited a few people. i started planning projects.

2 months later, we have 160 members. we've completed nearly 250 hours of service as a whole.

i'm overwhelmed, ecstatic, grateful, fulfilled, and happier than i've been in a long time.

don't you love when you find something that simply feels like you were born to do it? it's the way i felt the first time i attended a volunteer training with the Make-A-Wish Foundation in 2008 and knew i'd be involved with it for the rest of my life.

KAST even has an official logo, thanks to the talented Kelsey Ann (yeah, hit her up for your wedding & grad invites)

here's what we've done so far:

FEED MY STARVING CHILDREN (thrice, actually)



on the docket in the next 2 months:
two more habitat for humanity builds
one more feed my starving children
special olympics arizona
delivering gifts to refugee families for the international rescue committee

and much, much more to come.

yeah ... i'm basically in love.

p.s. how much do i love october? so much.

Monday, October 18, 2010

global osculation

[suggested musica: #162, "welcome home" by radical face. because it fits my current location.]

: my old room at my parents' casa

what i see: a suitcase of clothes and a closet of high-school memorabilia

explanation: my dear condo flooded. turns out kitchens and laundry rooms don't take it so well when a water pipe explodes in the ceiling. so here i find myself ... back to the motherland. eating the motherfood. except for the commute, i'm not complaining ...

what is it about being at my parents' home that makes me feel like i'm on vacation and don't need to accomplish anything of significance?

case in point, i am without extensive thought or creativity at the moment. so ima simply share a recent texting convo that amused me:

i: just saw a couple making out in the parking lot. Target makes me feel that way too, kids.
he: it's hard to contain yourself when you're near a place that sells map-of-the-world shower curtains
i: i know right
he: not many people are making out in internal combustion engine class right now. it can't be the material though. it must be the guy-to-girl ratio.
i: not many as in ... some people are ...?
he: well ... physically ... No.

it makes me smile :)

Monday, October 11, 2010

we didn't start the fire

so ...

remember how the huffington post published a couple of my blogs? remember how they were about things like britney spears and wizards?

... i decided to write a REAL blog.

24 hours later = front page = 1100+ comments = people talking about me on twitter = feeling a little overwhelmed. but good overwhelmed.

i think i started a riot.

check it out:

The Burqa Ban: Another Misguided Step Toward So-Called Equality

note: don't read the comments if you're going to be upset by people insulting me. it's really not fazing me, because a) i appreciate their input, b) everyone's entitled to their own opinions, and c) i still stand by everything i said. so people can ream my religion/standards/alma mater all they want.

my dislike for conflict and controversy aside, when i really believe in something (e.g. my religion, motherhood, parenting, etc.) it turns out i'm pretty good at having a thick skin about it.

plus, things like the following note make the 900+ naysayers all worth it. thank you to Anila, the kind stranger with the encouraging words:

Hi Katie,

Just read your article about the burqa ban and wanted to give you two thumbs up :)! As a Muslim woman who covers, I know the irritating feeling of someone 'oppressing' me by banning what I FEEL is right. I hope more people can open their eyes and minds to see that Islam is NOT an oppressive religion towards women, and that those women who truly engage in practicing Islam and covering up, they do it themselves. Thanks once again and hope to read more eye-opening articles from you.

Take care,
Anila H.

i just love that. makes being a right-wing zealot and a narrow-minded BYU alumna with 1950s values worth it, eh?

funny that i've never considered having 1950s values a negative thing. i almost wanted to be snarky and thank that commenter for the compliment.

don't worry, Part II of my epic roadtrip blog will show up soon. as soon as i get the pictures from my camera to my computer. which is easier said than done.

Friday, October 1, 2010

katie vs. the open road, part I

[recommended music: #179, "nothing better" by the postal service. because i really dig it.]

location: draper, utah (yes, somewhere besides my bed in az-town)

what i see: two other people on macbooks

current adventure: journey to utah for conference. so excited i could just wiggle and shout.

the truth is, i really don't like doing things by myself. i tend to be near other people ... always. there are a couple rare exceptions that i can enjoy equally by myself or with others. the first is shopping. i truly don't mind clothes shopping alone. the second is road-tripping. true, it's nice to have a buddy ... but it's also nice to pick my own music, listen to a cheesy book on CD, pile the passenger seat with food, or just ponder in silence because i darn well please. it's also nice to alternate between these activities every 20 min without anyone complaining about my mood swings.

but let's cut straight to the chase. because i'm going this adventure alone, i haven't had anyone to share all my joyous discoveries with. and what's a road trip without some delightful sightings along the way ...

first, i forgot to eat lunch before i left work to hit the highway. so, necessity called for stopping for a legit meal. and what came across my path first? mcdonalds. let me point out: i have a strong aversion to greasy fast food. but i thought i could pick something safe. (i.e. i chose "chicken selects" over "chicken nuggets." something about the word NUGGET anywhere in a food description fills me with the squeams. (as in, makes me squeamish.) the point is, my taste buds delighted at the taste of fried food (it'd been a LONG time) ... but as soon as that stuff passed my esophagus, i'm pretty sure my tummy swore at me. (i've been trying to teach it better habits, but for obvious reasons i'm reluctant to wash it out with soap.)
luckily, the golden arches made it up to me later on when i later saw one with a burnt-out sign that simply read, "nalds." something about that really made me giggle ... and i decided mickey-d's and i could put our differences behind us and agree to disagree.

but i've really got to stop rambling or this post will be much too lengthy. so moving on.

the man with socks and flip flops at the gas station. classy. can't say i haven't done employed this method on more than one occasion.

Furr's Family Dining. whoever decided the word "furr" is okay in a restaurant name needs to hire a new PR manager.

when i drove thru the city of surprise, a.z., i thought to myself, "i didn't know this city was right here." and then i laughed at the irony.

the license plate that said GUNFITR. i thought, "gun fitter? what?" ... then i got it. then the driver (ol' gun fitter himself) opened the door of his truck at a stoplight and puked on the road. my thoughts on this:

in other news. i've never figured out why they put the wrong way sign in the median. how are you supposed to know which side of the road it's talking to? bad move, street makers.

speaking of street makers. i kept seeing those adopt-a-highway signs, and a couple simply said, "available." i'm glad no one makes me wear a sign when i'm single.

blessing the rains at the nevada state line (thank you toto). took this pic for my friends rustin and tyson ... who always drive to nevada ... and always bless the rains. this was right before i hit the dam traffic at the dam checkpoint. which i was okay with, because it gave me an excuse to text some dam jokes to people. (which is probably only funny if you don't normally swear. so yeah, it was funny.)

driving thru wickenburg. the billboards made me all kinds of promises: "small town, big museum." "where memories are made." "where the west is still wild." i mean really, w.burg, which is it? don't fiddle with my heart strings.

the house in the middle of nowhere with a playground set with a huge, handmade banner on it that said "wilson for justice." i don't know who wilson is, but i absolutely want to vote for him. i'm writing him in on the next presidential ballot.

the sign in the middle of nowhere that had an arrow pointing into the desert and the words: "pick your own apples." that's a terrible lure, desert thieves. terribly transparent.

my salvation on this trip (plus a bag of whole-wheat english muffins). mmmboy.

the trailer park in the middle of nowhere with one large billboard: "free dental implants." um, pass.

the rocket ship outside of wikieup with snoopy riding on it. (snoopy, if i lived in wikieup, i'd be calling shotgun.)

finally arriving in the ol' den of sin:

negating the "den of sin" idea with a visit to the (gorgeous, i must say) Las Vegas Temple:

(recognize that yellow dress?) also, that bodacious blonde babe is my friend katie (yes, another katie. k-rob.) this morning she made me this:

i knew i liked her. she also packed me snacks for the next leg of my trip. including:
(that's a fish of the swedish variety, if you can't tell.)

paid a much-needed visit to my home-away-from-home, the CC, aka cedar city. dear heavens i miss and adore this little town. i saw two mulleted men in a pickup truck and almost got teary-eyed. okay fine, i DID get teary-eyed. i stopped for a couple hours to visit old friends, including justin (bff from freshman year) and emily (who's convinced that i will marry justin and adopt her.) i agreed to the deal if i got to rename her rainbow fuzzypants. she didn't argue. anyway, we indulged her with a couple family photos. don't we look dignified? (and neon?)

i also saw miss katie lewis/hunter (yes, yet another katie). unfortunately no pics with her. but she looked all adorable in her apron and played me one of her amazing songs on her guitar. it was about autumn. and she should be famous. that's all.

then off on the next portion of my epic northward journey. i forgot how absolutely beautiful utah can be when it's not frozen over. i really, really miss this:

and after finally arriving at my destination, i capped off the night with fro yo, painting my nails silver and a round of "mystery date" with miss katie lee (um yeah, another katie. i'm out of control.)
(don't ask about the game. just embrace it, accept that sometimes i am still a 13-yr-old girl, and know that i utterly lost and won zero imaginary dates with beach-tanned hotties. sigh.)

my (tom?) cruise control decided to just up and quit on me. that got old after about 30 min of constantly keeping my foot on the gas pedal. less awesome. ima blame scientology.