Monday, November 29, 2010

broken record

i posted a couple (few?) weeks ago about how the upcoming week was going to be the "week of reckoning" that would make or break me this semester... well, funny thing is, i think every week since then has been the same way. only getting 2.5 hours of sleep - like i did last night - is not my favorite way to start out a week!

however, if all i write about is how crazy my life is, i'll probably lose all my blog followers. or, as jessi would say, i would loose all my followers.

so today i'm going to write about something completely unrelated to school: singing in the shower.

this is partially inspired by a brief essay/sketch i read by jesús colón from "a puerto rican in new york,"which delighted me and gave me pause to reflect on my thoughts about the subject. my thoughts went something like this:

i used to sing in the shower when i was a young girl, but one incident ended my shower-singing days. here are the facts: there was a big gathering of extended family at my home, and i don't remember exactly how old i was, but i think i was about 10. anyway, i had recently seen the lion king, and that particular morning i was doing a musical review of the lion king in the shower {at the top of my lungs}. when i got out of the shower, one of my aunts quipped hey, nice singing. now i was a quietish child, a little prone to shyness, so when i realized that not only my aunt but possibly my whole extended family heard me belt the lion king, i was completely and utterly horrified. and to my recollection, i have never sung in the shower since that day.

i think much can be said about my personality from that story. well, maybe not much, but something. i have found myself, many times, unwilling or unable to do something {like sing in the shower} because i was afraid of what other people would think. it's silly, really, to be overly concerned about what other people think, but at times in my life it has been a reality.

on one hand, i find this idea very attractive - acting completely uninfluenced by what other people think. on the other hand, i can recognize the shortcomings of this mindset. first of all, acting completely without regard to others' feelings sounds awfully egocentric. people who always say the first thing that comes to mind regardless of other people's feelings around them, it can be disastrous. for example, i was relating a story to my roommates last year about how my old boss was ranting about the chinese army coming to destroy us, and i yelled "the chinese are coming!!" completely forgetting that our {chinese} roommate was just in the other room. it is always good to have tact. tact is my friend.

yet, i would like to find a balance between sensible tact and unrestrained liberty of action and speech. such a balance should exist, don't you think?

Thursday, November 18, 2010


i just registered to take the GRE. goodbye, $160. hello, preparation manuals and anticipatory dread.

i should have started studying for this test much, much earlier. i really should have taken it months ago... now i'm not going to have any time to retake it if i bomb. pray for me. now that i've committed myself to taking it, there's no backing out, unless i want to kiss that $160 goodbye for no reason at all (which i don't want to do).

yes, i am afraid. math and i are not friends. we're barely brief acquaintances. no one is really going to care that much if i'm math challenged, because i'm applying to an mfa program in creative writing, not mathematical theory or whatever. still, i don't want to shame myself. math tutor needed.

also, i need to start reading the dictionary.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

falling, but not stars

I wrote this mini essay today for my creative nonfiction class. que lo disfruten!

Shooting stars are not really stars at all. That’s probably pretty close to common knowledge, but it’s still a bit disillusioning to me. I mean, when you see a shooting star, it’s rather romantic to think that you’re actually witnessing the death of a star, whose last dying breath left a fiery flash on your corneas. A falling star is just a meteor, and a meteor is just a flash of light visible against the dark canvas of night when a meteoroid enters Earth’s atmosphere. Meteoroids in space aren’t nearly as exciting; they are simply floating rocks kicking around, idly orbiting the sun. We only become interested in them when they cross into our realm—and because they usually create an opportunity to make a wish, we delight in them and check the internet to see when the next meteor shower will occur. Well, at least I do. When meteoroids cross the threshold into our atmosphere, frictional heat causes the visible trail of fire, and the meteoroid is usually burned up on the way down. Sometimes meteoroids survive the trip, and the ones that actually hit the ground are called meteorites, which are rare enough to be something of a phenomenon when they occur.

I’m pretty sure I saw a meteorite survivor once. A few years back, my friend Allison and I were lying on the trampoline in my parents’ backyard, watching a meteor shower. My two younger sisters, who were also with us, had fallen asleep awhile ago, and Allison and I were chatting and watching the sky, our conversation interrupted occasionally with an exclamation of look!! There’s one! Or wow! Did you see that one? We didn’t often see the same falling meteoroids, because we were typically looking at opposite sides of the sky. The meteor shower eventually died down and we began to drift off, still talking, until a bright falling star—the brightest one I’ve ever seen—shot across the sky close to the western horizon. We both saw that one and it killed our conversation midsentence as we both exclaimed WHOOOAAAA!!!! Usually falling stars burn out in less than a second, but this one seemed to linger for several seconds, and it left us speechless and wondering if somewhere a large chunk of rock was hurled like a curveball into the waiting ground. It’s like God was playing baseball, and this was the foul ball, the one that got away.

Humans are so small. I close my eyes and think of everything outside Earth’s atmosphere, how Earth is like a tiny speck of sand in the Sahara, how God directs the planets and solar systems and galaxies together like one unfathomably gigantic orchestra. We barely notice the things that go on outside our own little allotment of space, and it takes something falling to earth, a bright flash and a fiery tale, to capture our attention. Still, these bright flashes spark curiosity, and humans send up satellites and space stations and try to photograph and record and find out something about what lies beyond. But how little we know.

Yes, it makes me feel small, but there’s a small part of me that still feels important. God cared enough about us, tiny atoms inside the speck of sand in the Sahara, to create this world for us. He allows us to experience the births and marriages and deaths, events so monumental to us and yet microscopic to him. We sit and watch falling stars, that are not really stars at all, and every once in a while, something hits home. And we wonder how our lives can be both microscopic and paramount, if and how God really knows us, and how we fit into the vast multitude of organized space. And the meteors fall.

week of reckoning

for some reason, this week feels like the week of reckoning. like this is the week that will make or break my grades for the entire semester. it could be true.

but i'm learning to take things one step at a time. i'm learning that instead of giving 150% of my time to homework, i need to prioritize my time to make sure the other important things in my life don't fall by the wayside (like faith, and family, and food. and brant. and sleep. and friends [in no particular order]). prioritizing has never been my forte; i can be a bit of an obsessive student, so i have always needed to work on paying attention to things in my life more than just schoolwork.

still, my grades are important. i want to say that i did my best, and i want to get into grad school. so my battle with priorities will continue, continue, continue

Saturday, November 6, 2010

adventuras recientes

this has been a busy week! busy, crazy, but happy. muy feliz. nevertheless, a busy week is no excuse for being a blog slacker. so i'm going to make up for it by creating a SUPER POST. i'm finally sitting down to upload a ton of pictures from my camera, so i'm going to give you a pictorial summary of the past couple weeks.

ingrid michaelson concert

i'm a little bit in love with our feet. we had to wait in line FOREVER in the fetching cold, so we froze...
and i didn't bring a coat, which was dumb.

whitney, jenni, christi, freezing in the snow

cute us

beth, whitney, me. excited for ingrid!

the set

halloween weekend in st george

mindy and hai. indian and kitty.


beautiful millie swinging. my favorite niece (well, she's the my only niece, so i'm allowed to say that)

little gavin... well, not so little anymore

my superstar nephew ashton

we took like 15 of these pictures, and i think this is the only "normal" one

the rest were more like this...

millie as alice

we are goofs

little william loves grandpa :)

thriller! the zombies were beth's favorite part.

jessi's 21st birthday

roomies + sabrina at happy sumo

the decor, complete with 108 balloons lovingly blown up by beth

cupcake heaven!

birthday girl! everyone decided to give her scarves (which she was in love with), and we made her wear a birthday crown