Friday, December 30, 2011

I delight in 56 degrees.

Today it was 56 degrees. Even at 9:00 at night, it was still 56 degrees in Utah on December 30th.

That's crazy. But Utah stays true to its truly unpredictable weather.
At the same time, it was fantastic to go on a walk at 9:00 at night and have it be pleasant in a light jacket. Now it is 11 and the wind is a blowing. Snow? Probably not. Here's to a snow-less December....weird.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

I delight in a new kind of quilt.

Why my computers camera reverses the image in photobooth, I will never know.

I feel like this always happens.
I get busy or a new phase of life comes along and I stop blogging. Its not intentional. I just have to adjust into a new routine, I haven't found it yet.

I may not find it for a while--just saying.

In the meantime, Christmas happened. For me I experienced it in kind of a "whoosh...Christmas is over?" Though, I'm really happy Christmas was on a Sunday this year. Going to church on Christmas seems more than appropriate and helped me to focus on the true meaning of Christmas, on Christmas.

Christmas at my house is a pretty magical experience in terms of the maintenance of the "childlike love" of Christmas traditions. Could Christin be any more excited or any more full of hope of the treasures not only for herself but for others on Christmas morning? Could Craig smile any more as he opened "oldy moldy movies and CDs" that remind us all of the good 'ole days of "worry free media." (Pardon all of those quotations...geez!) And could I enjoy my siblings more? I'm so blessed.

Since Christmas, lots has happened. Lots of good, a little bad, and some in between.

Currently, I'm working buried in a project--a luxury of my last "Christmas break." It is a t-shirt quilt I started an entire year ago. I'm pretty proud of how its turned out thus far. The binding...well that's the last part and I've never done it before but I found a fantastic tutorial here that's proving to be very helpful!

What I've really been thinking a lot about lately is how to approach all I want to do in the following year--habits to be refined and developed, hobbies to enhance, time to be spent doing more worthwhile things, jobs to be found, and always always things to learn and people to help.

And so, I think I need to shake it up this year--approach it in a new way, only I have no idea what kind of new way. All I know so far is that it has to be something different.

How do you approach your new year?

Monday, December 19, 2011

I delight in being home for the holidays.

these folks are no longer my neighbors but i have enjoyed their decorations for EVERY holiday...they're hardcore

Well I'm playing the catch up game but the end of the story is--I'm home for Christmas and couldn't be happier. The past week has been incredible--incredibly stressful and incredibly joyful!
  • I finished my last final ever. Boy does that feel good to say.
  • Christin slept over at my apartment
  • Went to Provo with LB, saw Grandpa and visited BYU (and Cabelas)
  • Craig slept over (it was his first sleepover and boy did we have a blast! I hope we can do it again! Nothing compares to quality time with my amazing brother!
  • Ate red iguana, went to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas concert and saw the lights at temple square, drank hatch's hot chocolate AND drove around looking at Christmas lights with Mary (and we did it all while NOT discussing homework)
  • Moved home
  • Went to church at my Salt Lake ward where I sang in the choir and felt the spirit of Christmas so strong
  • Hung out with my awesome neighbors
  • Feasted with friends--always an entertaining experience
  • Organized all the stuff in my life--its way too much stuff
  • Did some Christmas shopping
  • Watched Christmas movies
  • Bowled with 'the gang'
  • Organized a semester's worth of papers
  • Burned a pile full of PHI info and bank documents--why is that so refreshing?

The point is, there is no place like home for the holidays. Eating meals with other people. Playing two games of Skip-bo over lunch. Praying and delighting as a family. Living in a house with heat and insulation! Finding joy watching Craig and Christin find Clyde, the family elf, every morning. Listening to the canada geese land in the back field. Playing with Ruby--worlds cutest puppy. Singing Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer with LB, world's cutest sis. Moving furniture around and creating a scarf rack with dear dear dad. Enjoying a trip into Sam's Club (for the first time EVER) with my big brother Craig. Watching Mom smell all the different types of perfumes Dad and I "potentially" picked out for her for Christmas. I have so much to be grateful for and so much to delight in. What have you delighted in lately?

Monday, December 12, 2011

I delight in the ability to remember and pray.

I remember these days as if they were yesterday.
They were hard. But they were days of learning and growth.
Tonight as I talked on the phone with my Dad, we complained at length about being grad students and I delighted in every minute of it. Not that I delight in complaining but I delight in the company with whom I am able to complain with.

On my mission (see here), I had the opportunity to come to love a lot of people. When I hear about good things in their lives, my heart becomes so full of gratitude and love that I know them and love them. But when I hear of painful things, my heart is filled with pain. Cancer has come into one of their lives for the second time. Unfortunately, it never affects just one. The family, the friends, the ward, the community, every person who cares for them, the list goes on and on.

The word tumor makes me shutter. I think it always will. My heart goes out to those who are dealing with hard things and my heart is continually marveled at how they endure it with faith. I'm grateful to be able to remember. Remember the good, remember the bad. Remember the pain, the sorrow, and the rays of hope. Remember the lessons learned and the decisions made. Remember the teachings of the gospel of Jesus Christ and remember the power available through covenants. Remember that we are children of Heavenly Father who knows us personally. Remember that change is always possible. Remembering that we signed up for an eternal plan. These are the types of things I am grateful I can remember. I am grateful that where'er we are and where'er we go, we can always pray. always.

Friday, December 9, 2011

I delight in love.

I'm so grateful for the capacity to love.

I believe that certain opportunities are given us to increase our capacity to love. I was given many special opportunities this past semester.

Today I had to say goodbye. I've never been a fan of good-byes. I try to make them like a band-aid. Rip them off and run. But inside it always hurts for a while.

Today I finished my time working as a clinician at the University of Utah Speech-Language and Hearing Clinic. I've been there 3 semesters now (4 if you count my apprenticeship) and I have enjoyed every minute of it. Every minute (well sans the paperwork).

And so, I'm grateful for the ability to love. I'm grateful to love what I do. I'm grateful to love the clients I've been able to work with. They've changed my life.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

I delight in a Christin-ism.

"Sis, I put our dogs in a kennel. I say, "Ruby kennel Ruby." "Ruby say, I think not." "Run away." "Leash, I say, Ruby come, come Ruby." "I trick our dog, leash. Kennel."

"Our dog need puppy school Sis."

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

I delight in "no worries."

because dogs never have worries

Lately, I have been S-T-R-E-S-S-E-D.
No surprise right?
It is the end of the semester.

My delight today is rooted in someone sending a reply to a very important e-mail and in the closing line saying, "no worries."

These seemingly insignifiant words might seem worthless to you, and they usually do to me too because they're usually a lie.

"Yeah no worries," they say but really they mean..."Its only 1/2 your grade."
"Don't worry about it," says the friend whom you've had to cancel on for various but legitimate reasons for the second time but they really mean,"I'm really disappointed you're canceling on me AGAIN."

But this time, even though it was something big and important, the "no worries" seemed sincere and I didn't feel worried. I did not feel worried.

And it was nice for a change.

And so, my goal because of this realization is: When I say, "No worries" to someone, I need to mean it so that the person I'm saying it to can feel a sense of relief. True relief. Its nice.

Monday, December 5, 2011

I delight on a night at temple square.

This is not a picture of this year...we don't have snow like this yet!
Going to temple square every year isn't a tradition for me. However, I'm 2 years strong.

To me, few things epitomize the Spirit of the Christmas season than the feeling at temple square. I delight in temple square whenever I'm there, but Christmas is particularly meaningful. If you can, go. If you need someone to go with you, I'll go. My wardies might agree I am a great and commanding tour guide, but maybe it goes to my head. :)

Saturday, December 3, 2011

I delight in the cousins party.

Christin waiting for the guests to arrive.

My entire life, I've heard about "the cousin's party."

On the first Saturday of December, my Mom and her cousins all get together. It is not a fancy ordeal, it is completely about the company. They eat dinner, laugh, talk, catch up, and best of all, they play bingo for white elephant gifts.

All of my cousins and I have always known that we were not invited to the night our parents seemed to talk about and look forward to so much. A few years ago (or more than a few now), Craig and Christin became regulars at the cousin's party. And because I was home tonight...I got to meet my Mom's cousins, some of whom I'm not sure I remember ever meeting before. They're all delightful people. I'm proud to call them family.

While the cousins party is not a tradition I participate in regularly, I would say a 45-year tradition, stands in the forefront of my mind of the way traditions should be. This one is centered on family, love, and making both a priority. Some cousins flew in just for the occasion.

I'm grateful to be a part of such a strong heritage of making family a priority through quality traditions.

I delight in a new tradition.

In my last post, I mentioned I was going to start sharing Christmas traditions with you.
Today I started a new tradition for my family. In case you don't know this already, I have the best family ever.

One of the amazing characteristics of the best sibilings ever is their ability to have a constant child-like ability to believe in all things good and hopeful. And as such, as any good girl and any good boy knows, it is the season for Santa to send his elves out to check on all the children of the world.

This year a real elf showed up. His name is yet to be determined but he's already on the loose in our house. That's right, he's watching all the good kind deeds done by those who live under this roof, but he also has his eye out for those 'not so nice' things that may happen including but not limited to:
  • looking at Christmas presents before Christmas
  • saying not nice words
  • pretending not to hear the words of other family members
Needless to say, the elf has his work cut out for himself this year.

***If you have not seen this book, check it out asap. Google it. Search it on pinterest. And whatever you do, start this quality and wholesome tradition straight away.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

I delight in December 2011.

This is not a picture from today. Today it was windy x 4 but no snow.

I delight in ringing in a new month, the last month of the year of death (that's what my friend Mary and I termed the year 2011 due to 3 semesters of grad school).

I'm grateful to ring in not only a great month, but a great special and spiritual season. The time that the world rejoices, remembers, and celebrates the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

December is a very traditional month for me. There are decorations I place (but not this year, see previous post), places I go, things I eat and drink, books I read, songs I listen to and people I get to see that I don't do any other time of the year.

Last year however, I decided something needed to be different in the future. Throughout the season I was repeatedly asked in essence, "What are you giving to Jesus?" At first I was taken aback by the question, but upon thinking about it, I re-examined my commitment to coming to Christ and my commitment to change and progress.

I decided it would be fun to add a little "S.A.S." to December this year. I don't want to ruin it though by telling you what my acronym stands for but it is going to be great.

I'm curious about what other peoples traditions are. What places do you visit? What are the books you read? Things you eat? Songs you listen to? I'm going to make sure I share some of mine with you this month as I delight in each one of them.

On the first day of December my true love (who?) gave to me...1 final report, one study guide and soaps x3. I'm sure the other days of Christmas have more promising things in mind. I'm just certain of it.