Sunday, July 27, 2014

a time and a place

I teach 4th grade, at a year round elementary school in Utah. I love my job (most days), and the year round schedule is the greatest thing on planet earth. Teach 9 weeks, get 3 weeks off. Genius. I just love it...

Except for the entire month of June. It's kind of horrible. I mean, I love the tiny humans, and we do some wicked fun activities, but the month of June, when every other student on planet earth is on vacation? It's rough.  

There was one particular day towards the middle of June when these little ones were acting more like psycho non-human-beings that were trying to drain me of all sanity. I finally had to throw out the math lesson and have a little Come-to-Jesus meeting with them. We talked about the on-going headache I had been experiencing, the lack of patience we all had, and the fact that we were literally still in school for 3 more weeks, and I needed them to chill out so no one died. We talked about having fun, and making the last few weeks memorable, and how that would be much more enjoyable than having their teacher go certifiably insane. I kept saying there was a time-and-a-place for their lunacy, crazy outbursts, and hyperactivity, and that we all needed to work together. It was beautiful.
For like 3 hours.

I kept saying 'Guys, time and a place, come on! Time and a place!" and I made the face that looks just like the weary/tired emoji. -------->

After saying that exact phrase multiple times over the next day or so, one kid said "Why do you keep saying that? What does time-and-a-place even mean?!" (he said this quite dramatically, mind you, it was probably one of my favorite moments, ever)

Hanging my head in defeat, I threw another lesson out the window (this time reading) and we had what I like to call an "Un-Common Core" lesson (that is for all my teacher friends...don't even get me started). We talked about appropriate behavior and how some actions are allowed in situations where at other times they aren't. We talked about different examples in the classroom, as well as in everyday life. My favorite examples of inappropriate behavior they came up with were: 
1. "I probably shouldn't sing Let It Go during sacrament meeting, my mom looked at me so mad!" 
2. "Like when Jaxon was talking like Elmo during the fraction activity last week?" 
3. "When my sister started rolling on the floor at the dentist office. Ummmm, awkward!"

Yes. Kind of. Good work tiny ones. 

It was a great real life moment for the kiddos and I. We made an agreement, and I'm happy to report that "time-and-a-place" was all I had to say for the remainder of the year in order to get my class to a semi normal, yet workable state. 

Luckily July 3rd came (yes, we are in class until JULY 3rd!) no one poked their eye balls out, and there were even tears of parting on the last day of school...but for weeks I haven't been able to get that question out of my head: "What does time-and-a-place even mean?!"

I've been asking myself that and trying to apply it to my life.  It's one of those concepts that on any given day I can totally understand and appreciate, and then 4 hours later, I'm throwing my hands up in the air in complete exasperation. #typicalgirl

For the past 7 months I have found myself really struggling with this. I was going through some weird emotional turmoil, convincing myself daily that I was happy, but living with a broken heart and not attempting or knowing how to fix it. 

So I packed up my bags, (literally) and filled up an entire 10 foot Uhaul (real life tetris people), and moved.... again. (I am 3 for 3 when it comes to moving in January, sheesh). This move did not come easy, I uprooted my life a little bit. I left my friends, my church calling, people I loved, and a life I was comfortable with. It was one of the hardest things I have had to do, and there was a part of me that hated the other part of me for doing it...Lots of tears, insecurities, not knowing anyone, and feeling rejected by people I had once confided in and felt so close to, and suddenly being overwhelmed with that feeling unimportance. 

It was a weird few months...but when it comes down to the facts, there is a time and a place for everything, right? And as much as I hated closing one chapter, it was time. It was time to worry about me, my sanity, and my happiness. It's been a struggle, but luckily (with time) this struggle, and this next chapter is turning out to be pretty okay too. 

I think about the opportunities and situations I have found myself in over the past several months, and am grateful for that leap of faith I sometimes have in not knowing that it is in order to make other things possible. I'm genuinely grateful for my struggles, and the lessons I have been able to learn... even if they were suuuuuuuuper sucky in the process. There is so much that God has in store for each of us, but it's hard to even comprehend the possibility of something good when we only focus on the bad, especially when we close ourselves off to only the timing that WE feel is best. Things will happen in their time, and in their place, there is no sense stressing, and no sense being unhappy if we can just stop and realize that the now is good too. So here's to 1986, and all of its wisdom,

Life sure has a way of breaking us if we let it, I'm happy to report I'm embracing the here and the now. Because THIS is the time, and THIS is the place. #accidentalbrighamyoungquote #imkeepingit

PS. Cheers to the tiny humans who give me a headache far too often, yet allow me to feel needed, loved, and help me ponder life's simple lessons. 

PSS. I feel like it would be blasphemous if I posted without a Jason Mraz moment... so here. Don't worry, it's super applicable, at least in my brain...

Monday, October 21, 2013

illuminated in love

I used to blog all the time. Daily. Sometimes multiple times a day.
And then life happened.
And when I say 'life' happened, I don't really know what that means....
but that is the excuse I am using.

I could go into more, but I've got my heart on a string these days, so I think I'll just let my main-man say it for me. He always says it better anyway:

"In all my “research” on Love, I conclude it has nothing to do with partnership, that’s secondary. Love begins within. When you listen to the little voice in your head, or to the urge in your gut, and you obey it, you will likely lead yourself down the path which you were meant to travel all along. By ignoring your intuition or disobeying your dreams, one becomes stuck, the body grows heavy and tired with incompletion or defeat, and sadness finds it’s way into the movie of your life. When you let your heart lead you, Love triumphs and fills you with the experience of being happy and successful."
In the past year and a half, I've experienced more joy, love, and happiness, than I could have ever imagined....
as well as pain, confusion, and the absolute strange sensation of a hurting heart.
those feelings have somehow been intricately laced in between all that good stuff.
and although it took me some time to come to this conclusion,
I wouldn't trade it for anything else.
Because all these experiences are for me to learn and grow from. I've definitely been letting my heart lead me, and although it's been a ridiculous roller coaster of a journey, I know it's a rollercoaster made just for me, and that makes me happy.
"When you take action to live the life you truly wish to live, you become illuminated in love. You lose yourself entirely and become what in many religions call, a servant of God, or a servant of Love. Others will take note of your glow, either with attraction or envy, both of which inspire. And if partnership is on your wish list, it will find you. You will attract it with your walk and talk and worry-free demeanor."

so here's to life.
here's to becoming illuminated in love.
here's to the ups and downs of the journey,
and the uncomfortable yet thrilling spirals and loops along the way. 
because it's worth it.

*quotes taken from
*photo credit

Sunday, January 13, 2013

the mindless pit that is my brain... golden globes edition

Boy, do I LOOOOOOVE me some Golden Globes
I have my Aggie sweats on and some tissues at my side (for my cold, not my emotions.) I'm ecstatic that Amy and Tina are hosts, so let the games begin!

Red Carpet Pre-show. Crap I missed the first half

  • I just love Jimmy Fallon! "Hummm I think Jimmy Kimmel just walked by..." he's just the cutest
  • Anne Hathaway... I think I must admit that I now love her. Used to despise her.... now its love. I am also loving her Chanel dress...she better win big tonight
  • I wish I was on a first name basis with Kevin...Costner
  • HUGH!!!!
  • Mental note... GO SEE 'QUARTET.' Maggie Smith is a genius
  • Ewan just gets more and more attractive
  • I wish Hellen Mirren was my inner voice
  • Or maybe Sofia Vergara. yes. her
  • speaking of Sofia...I have been insta-following her forever. #truefan
They are startingggg!
  • Tina's dress... dang gurl!
  • "When it comes to torture, I trust the lady who was married to James Cameron for 3 years... ...dig!
  • Hunger Games, Life of Pi.... that was a good one.
  • so many jokes. 
  • can't keep up
  • "Meryl Streep is not here tonight. She has the flu, and I hear she is amazing in it!" 
  • I want to watch that opening monologue again. SO GREAT!
  • ummm Kate Hudson looks like her mom! 
  • Maggie Smith! Holla!!!
  • If Paul Rudd asked me to marry him tomorrow.... I would be going to bed now so tomorrow came sooner.
  • J. LO's dress looks like its straight out of a Britney Spears video!
  • Please ANYTHING but that Taylor Swift Hunger Games song... PLEASE!
  • Oh bless you Adele. Way to take one for the team. PS lovely dress
  • "That was Hillary Clinton's husband!!!"
  • Kristen and Will....must host next year!
  • "What does it say? I beat Meryl" good one J.Law, shout out to First Wives Club!!!
  • trailer for COMMUNITY!!! Less than 1 month!!
  • I would also take John Krasinski AND/OR Robert Downey Jr tomorrow, no question
  • Schmidt Max Greenfield looks so dapper!
  • Oh hey Anne Princess of Genovia... "Thank you for this blunt force object that I will forever use as a weapon for self doubt." Dang, she is awesome. Classy. 
  • Sylvester Stalone's head looks wayyyy too small for his body
  • "Russell Crowe had 4 months of singing lessons...that was money well spent"
  • Jason Bateman, so fine.
  • "Taylor Swift, you stay away from Michael J Foxx's son... or go for it..." ha! I must point out the fact that the camera did NOT show T Swift, but DID show Michael J Fox... yes.
  • "You know I'm just gonna put it out there loud and proud, I'm gonna need your support on this- I am, um, single" -Jodie Foster
  • "I was going to bring my walker tonight, but it didn't go with the cleavage." -- Jodie Foster, after cheering, "I'm 50!"
  • confession... all google commercials make me cry (those tissues apparently WERE for my emotions too)
  • Ben Affleck....stand up guy
  • dunananananana, Batman!
  • "Elektra just gave Wolverine a Golden Globe!!" Hugh Jackman baby! I wanted to kiss this TV just now, happiness! And his shout out to his wife... Presh!
  • I just really wanted Eddie Redmayne to give a speech...
  • Sooooo many shout-outs to the flu. Strange.
  • Why have I still not seen Lincoln? #fail

If you made it this far, you are aware of the fact that I obviously have issues. I just really love movies!

Favorite moments:

and don't forget to check out all the DRESSES! I still think Anne's was my favorite... yes. yes it was. 

over and out. 

Friday, November 16, 2012

this is my life

I have been watching jungle gold and gold rush the past 2 nights, and it makes me feel incredibly stressed... yet I can't look away. What does this mean?

A couple of my kids found out I went on a date this week...oh boy! (apparently some of them have bat like hearing...I swear I was whispering to my team). 1st comment though was "Miss Ward! I knew you weren't going to die alone!" Naturally, I thought of this song. Thanks are the best!

Sometimes I have dreams that are so on the border of reality, I have to take a few minutes in the morning and decipher wether it actually happened or not. And usually, it is something dumb like being asleep in my dream and people coming in my I try to wake up enough to brush my teeth.... my brain is so weird.

I significantly lowered the number of shows in my Hulu queue while off track the past few weeks. I am not even going to tell you how significantly...

Which reminds me: #February17thIsOctober19th best news ever!

Remember how I moved to Midvale in January? Up 3 flights of stairs? I have to move down those 3 flights of stairs soon. Yup...moving again. But only 7 blocks away. Awesome.

I have a love hate relationship with the heater. Mostly HATE. I would much rather have it be cold and cuddle up in my Aggie sweats, slippers, and blankets, than turn the heater on. Most people don't agree with me.

Which also reminds me... I just REALLY need to make it to an Aggie basketball game soon. I have lot's of screaming to do... Who's with me?

Fact: I kind of dislike the thought of the twins being 16 and going on dates. It makes me feel old and weird. Yes, I said it.

My coworker and I are applying to present at the UCET conference in March. #soexcited #ultimatenerdalert. Someone should just buy me suspenders and a pocket protector already....

I literally had to talk myself out of putting up my Christmas happiness tonight. I LOVE Thanksgiving....but I just am so excited to decorate! I blame my mother.

Have a ever mentioned how great my job is? I work with some crazy kids, and some crazy adults, and I love it.

Now I leave you with some of my latest faves:

this song has been playing nonstop for several months

same with this song + the rest of the album, and this song + the rest of the album. Just can't get enough.

I admit.... I wasted a lot of time on this site a bit ago..... and just now.

Watch this.... I bawled my eyes out

Saturday, November 10, 2012

"Be vulnerable. Brene would want you to..."

Here is a fun fact:
I live for a good TED talk. (if you don't know TED...stop what you are doing and spend a couple hours watching the amazingness that the site has to offer)

I mean TED itself stands for technology, education, and design, which are by far 3 of my top 5 most favorite interests. So clearly, this site is just for me.

I love brilliant ideas, creativity, and witnessing amazing people at work, which is what TED is all about.

A few weeks ago, I was having a heart to heart talk with a good friend. We were discussing daily irritations, confusions, joys, and just the meaning of life and love in general. (pretty serious business, right?) Well during this chat (which I swear to you, was not entirely about dating, contrary to what you might be thinking) she asked me if I had seen this particular TED video. Brene Brown: The Power of Vulnerability. She told me how she breaks down vulnerability and how important it is in our daily lives.  I went home that night, and immediately looked it up.

Let me tell you. This talk is amazing, and precisly what I needed to hear. I watched it twice right then, it was just that good. She talks about connection, shame, and fear, but wraps it up in a hilarious and very relatable speech. Seriously, take 26 minutes right now to watch this video... you won't regret it.

I have since watched it 3 more times. And am referencing her in regular conversation (yes, the title of this post was something that really came out of my mouth....followed by much laughter of course) 

Here are some of my favorite quotes
  • If you cannot measure it, it does not exist
  • “Vulnerability is our most accurate measurement of courage.”
  • “That's what life is about: about daring greatly, about being in the arena.”
  • Lean into the discomfort
  • “You’re imperfect, and you’re wired for struggle, but you are worthy of love and belonging.”
  • "The people who have a strong sense of love and belonging, BELIEVE they are worthy of love and belonging."
  • "I have a slight office supply addiction, but that's another talk"
  • "I lost the fight, but probably won my whole life back"
  • "Courage; it means to tell the story of who you are with your whole heart"
  • Wholehearted people have:
    • the courage to be imperfect, 
    • the compassion to be kind to themselves first and then to others, 
    • connection as a result of authenticity 
    • the willingness to let go of who they think they should be in order to be who they are.
    • fully embraced vulnerability and believe what makes them vulnerable, makes them beautiful
  • "You can not selectively numb vulnerability. When we numb the bad things, we also numb everything... joy, gratitude, happiness, and then we are miserable."
Oh there are just so many great things about this talk. I can't wait to get my hands on her book and dive in even more. "Vulnerability is not weakness...." what a lesson! There are so many aspects of my life that I can and need to apply this to. It is about taking matters into my own hands, being truly happy with my life and making opportunities and experiences happen for myself. I love to create things, I love when things change for the better, but so often do I find myself not crossing that line of comfort, afraid of what people might say, or think. Afraid I might get hurt or let down. Afraid it won't work out, or feeling inadequate, weak and even unworthy of, or not good enough for a particular joy. "Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change." Clearly, everything she says are words to live by. So be vulnerable peeps, Brene would want you to...

images taken from TEDtalks-Brene Brown: The Power of Vulnerability

Thursday, October 11, 2012

MoTab seats without the red snuggies...

How do you sum up an experience so incredible in one blog post? I'm not really sure. But this is an attempt nonetheless.

Let's just say I have this thing with amphitheaters and performance venues. It's the choir nerd in me, but acoustically speaking, some places are just better to sing in than others. For example, the shower is always a good choice. My laundry room is not...believe me, I have tried.

Well, let's rewind to back when I was in 6th grade, and the first session of conference was being held in the new conference center that April, I told myself I was going to sing there some day. Now, of course this initial dream came from the kid version of myself thinking that it would be when I am 60 and in MoTab with my super awesome husband of some sort. Thank heavens I didn't have to wait for THAT to happen.... it only took 12 years, but I finally made it to those cush-y, perfect posture, burgandy seats. This place is incredible. This was not my first time inside the conference center of course, but every time I step foot in this place, something else literally stuns me.
We could talk about how this place is over 1.4 million square feet, or how it is the largest auditorium IN the world. (#iknowweirdfacts) We could talk about how it seats over 21,000 people, and every time I have been to an event here, there are not many an empty chair in sight. We could talk about how the organ ranges 9 1/2 octaves, and the pipes alone range from a couple inches in height, to over 32 feet. We could talk about the gorgeous pulpit coming from Hinckley's black walnut tree, and how my heart aches a little bit whenever I see it.

I could keep going...but instead I will just have you know, that this was way more than just something to cross off my bucketlist. It was way more than just singing in a choir, and it was way more than a Relief Society broadcast.

I spent basically the whole month of September rehearsing for this, and each and every single rehearsal was been overwhelming, rejuvenating, and so rewarding. It sounds so cheesy, and I apologize since I normally don't get too preachy on this here blog of mine, but I have to document this somewhere, and this place just kind of works....

I had been hoping and wishing and praying for something to happen lately. I don't know what exactly I was wanting, I just knew I needed to be inspired somehow... and then this opportunity was literally handed to me.

It's funny how things work out, you know?

Let's just say it was perfect and I am a changed person. Highlights include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Our director...I basically worship the ground she walks on now. A junior high choir teacher from Bountiful, and my new favorite person for real. So funny, and so inspiring. I asked her if I could be in every choir she directs....
  • Having this be a 3 stake dealio meant I got to see old friends from my Holladay days, friends from college, and even make new friends. Who knew spending time with over 300 women could ACTUALLY be fun?
  • Singing. Performing. Working my vocal chords. Ohhhhh how I miss the days where this was a constant occurance. Man, it felt good to be back at it again.
  • Getting to sit in the MoTab seats WITHOUT wearing the red snuggies.
  • Buying a new skirt. Hey, it's the little things too....
  • Diving into the words of familiar primary songs, and making them come alive again. I never thought I could be emotional while singing "I'm Trying to Be Like Jesus" but boy was I surprised when the waterworks started up, especially during the end ...'have faith, have hope, live like His son...'
  • Singing my favorite hymn of all time "I Need Thee Every Hour," and trying to 'cry pretty' while doing it.
  • learning that you can fight a sneeze by saying the word purple, and if you have an itch, just squish your toes together in your shoe. It works. I'm sold. 
  • did I mention that organ? How about the digital button that plays 'Les Cloches de Hinckley.' That gave me chills 
  • All the 'Sister Wives' jokes.... sick. Yet funny. But not... I still would like to know who decided on white button down blouses and black skirts for a group of women...
  • Finally seeing the teleprompter....Don't ask me why, but this was a REALLY exciting moment for me.
  • Sister Burton and I are pretty tight, (serious, we have inside jokes and everything)... so it felt kind of stellar to be there for her first broadcast
  • FINALLY GETTING TO SING IN THE MOTAB SEATS!? Seriously people. Dream. Come. True. 
  • Being within feet of the prophet
  • Feeling the immediate sense of peace. Everything that was said that night was tailor made for me. Seriously. 
  • Adding this to my future MoTab resume....just kidding...kind of?
  • Getting the thumbs up at the end from Elder Uchtdorf. 
Obviously, September was a good month. That it was. 
Check out the main events:

Midvale YSA 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

2,074 miles is far

There are the times in all of our lives when we have to face the facts of growing up.
There's the working, and the bills, 
and the major life decisions, 
and the dating crap (just wait for a fascinating post on that in the near future), 
and the bills,
and the dating crap  
and the blah blah blah....

And we just all think to ourselves
"How did this happen? I did not sign up for this junk, and I demand to be taken off this crap list..."
Maybe it's just me, but I have had that thought many a time even in my 24 years.
Well, today was one of those days where something just down right unfair happened.
My best friend left.
Now it was one thing when she got married 2 years ago,
I approved of this marriage and gave it the go-ahead...
plus I lived a 15 minute drive away at the most,
I couldn't really complain, right?
BUT, it's another thing when said husband decides to pull a fast one 
and transport my life line across the country!
That's 2,074 miles away people.
35 straight driving hours.
Across like 10 states!
That's really far!
And really unfair. 
I'm just feeling particularly upset today.
I texted her after work, and she was just plowing through Nebraska...
(no pun intended)
And here I am in Utah, Katie Craigo less,
Revenge-watching-buddy-less (don't judge)
and feeling blue.
Who will reminisce of those dear Logan days with me?
Who will go to Citrus with me?
Who will I go on Ikea runs with?
Who will watch ridiculous movies with me?
Who will crotchet me awesome blankets now?
Seriously, this is no fun...

Let's just say a trip across those 10 states is in my near future. 
I will definitely be flying, and not driving 3 days, but
it is sure to be epic.
DC Cherry blossoms AND Katie is one trip?
Heck to the yes.
Is it April yet?!
You are missed....obviously!
I hope the Cafe Rio out there is gross so you come back soon!

P.S. Katie I totally looked for our foot holding picture. That was a special moment we shared.... LOVE YOU!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Paris is always a good idea...

My heart skipped a beat...
anyone want to go, right now?

seriously, I am not joking right now.
I'm reaching desperation!
I'm sick of waiting!

ugh. Being poor and a grown up is hard.
Excuse my while I go watch my favorite movie now....

Monday, August 13, 2012

Saturday, July 28, 2012

wise words

this guy. 
ya, this guy,
always knows what to say...

definitely having a jason night. 
like always.....