Thursday, March 31, 2011


Yesterday was the beginning of a busy few weeks. I worked a dinner meeting in Jacksonville, driving up and back in less than 12 hours. All that driving wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be, even though it rained for a good portion of it. The meeting was at a Ruth's Chris, which was great because I was fed well and had leftovers. (My dad will probably benefit from them more than I will.) The not-so-great part of it was the subject of the meeting: IBS. I'll spare you the details, only saying that "raisinets" was used as a comparison. It's a good thing that there's really no subject that can be discussed over a meal that will make me not want to eat. Well, maybe that isn't a good thing, but it worked out well for me last night.

Next Wednesday I leave to do another meeting and will be gone for a week. I'm looking forward to it, but am a little nervous. It's different doing contracted staff work than being from the home office. I probably over-think everything I do, but I just want to make sure that I don't make things more difficult for the people who have to piece together the information that I give them after the meeting is over. I know how that is and sometimes I felt like a detective. Hmm... maybe I should put that on the list of potential careers. That can be right after Court Reporter. Oh, sorry.

The week after I get back, my brother will be home. There is no number of exclamation points that could properly convey how excited I truly am. It feels like we have all been "nesting" in preparation for him to get back. His room is pretty much finished, except for what needs to be hung on the walls. In reality, he'd be fine if nothing else gets hung up. Bambi has found a new corner, which is all he'll really care about.

His room turned out so well; there was a lot of hard work and love that went in to it. I don't pretend to have had any sort of significant part in that. My parents did most of it, though I did help some. If you'd ever seen his room (which is unlikely because it usually had clothes thigh-deep and you couldn't get past the door), you wouldn't even recognize it now. We hung new drywall on one wall - yes, we as in me, my mom, and my dad, together, no one else - painted the walls, put in crown molding, new baseboards, a new door frame, framed out the window, put in wood floors, and his new headboard will be here soon. Before Bambi found his new home, it looked like very beachy. Now, we affectionately call it Bambi's Beach Bungalow. I may post some before and after pictures, but not until he's see it. He has no idea what's in store for him.

Perhaps the most important "event" coming up is
General Conference. I am so looking foward to camping out at home all weekend with my parents and being spiritually fed by these inspired men and women this weekend. As a kid, I dreaded going, but maybe that was because you had to go to the church and sit in the dark for two hours watching the broadcast in church clothes and uncomfortable chairs . As an adult, I appreciate it and look forward to watching all four sessions. But I also get to do so in comfy clothes and pig out on whatever junk we've stocked up on for the occassion.

Thank heaven for modern technology! And for three more e-mails. :-)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Car Alarm

Our friend, A, had a birthday on Sunday. We were going to see her at church, so we took a birthday card to her. Sometime during the first two hours of church, I realized that I left the card in the car. Not wanting my mom to scold me, I tried to think of the best time to run out to the car and get it. My dad still needed to sign it and A likes to sneak out as soon as she's finished playing the piano in Primary, so I knew that I had to either leave during the lesson in the last hour or really be fast right after church was over.

To be on the safe side, I decided to sneak out during the closing hymn in Relief Society and then go find my dad, roaming the halls somwhere, and get him to sign the card. Then I'd have to catch A before she left. It was a perfect plan and should work out nicely. Or so I thought. My mom's van was parked right outside of where she teaches the Laurel class (16- and 17-year-old girls), where we typically park every week.

Instead of interrupting her class, I used my key to get in the vehicle. I must've unlocked and opened the door too quickly because as soon as I did, the horn started blowing. It wasn't like I reached through the window, unlocked the door and opened it that way. I had a key!!! All I could think was "I have got to make this stop. She's going to kill me when she finds out that it's me making all the noise!" I finally got the alarm turned off and am still confused as to why it even did that. Once that was taken care of, I quickly noticed that the card wasn't even in the van. She had taken it in with her afterall! Thankfully, she just laughed about hearing it, even thinking it sounded familiar, but telling herself that it couldn't be her car because she hadn't touched her keys.

I guess that's because we're all older. It's funny how the dynamics between parents and childrem change when they're all adults. Most of the time, anyway... :-)

P.S. Blogger was a bear tonight with the formatting. It better be fixed by the next time I want to blog.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

i know you haven't made your mind up yet, but i would never do you wrong

I struggle with agency. The one that means "the capacity, condition, or state of acting or of exerting power." Sometimes it's with my own, but often times it's with others'.

I struggle with my own when I think of times that I either didn't use it wisely or I didn't use it at all. I was probably scared or stupid or lazy during those periods in my life. If I could go back and do things over again, I might, but also know that those experiences have made me who I am. And not just the experiences themselves, but the consequences, too. The whole package. I can't, though, so it's silly to even entertain the thought. What I love is that mistakes can be corrected, wrongs can be made right and I can move forward on the path that I always saw myself or wanted to be on.

I struggle with other peoples' agency because I can't always understand what goes in to their decision making process or I don't understand what's behind the choices they make. It could be none of my business and not affect me in any way, but I sort of worry about the potential consequences that they face. The choices could have nothing to do with me, but directly affect me and the way I live my life and I worry about them and me and what the consequences mean for everyone. While I want so badly to do something about it, I really can't. Or I feel like I can't or shouldn't or am not entitled to.

I think I would just love for things to be black and white. Things, life is easier that way. But it isn't the case. There's all this grey area and lots of different shades of grey. I'm well aware of this, I just wish I couldn't see all the shades. If I only saw the black or the white and no grey, I might think less, I might be less crazy, I might worry and wonder less. I'd be very different, though, that's for sure.

Tonight I had the privilege of being at a Q&A fireside with
Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. He was in Orlando to speak a year or so ago, but I didn't go for various reasons. Upon hearing that he was back, I wasn't about to miss him again. As he mentioned more than once, this opportunity doesn't come along that often. I am beyond glad that I went. About three-quarters of the way through the meeting, it occurred to me that I was in a room of a couple hundred people. Up until that point, I felt like I was sitting in a room with him and maybe a handful of others. I'm sure that sounds strange, but I can't really describe it much better than that.

Talk about food for thought. I took a few pages of notes, which probably wouldn't make much sense to anyone else. Heck, I may not even be able to read it all tomorrow. In theory, I'd like to re-write them all and elaborate on what I thought he said or what I was getting out of what he was saying, but I don't think I will. I think I will tuck those notes in my journal to reference later... in life. I think I'll look forward to reading over them again, along with the feelings that I'll capture as I write in my journal tonight.

I know people that I feel are "spiritual giants" and that just ooze knowledge and experience when it comes to the Gospel. I wouldn't think to use "spiritual" as a way to describe myself and I've only ever heard one person say that they thought I was (to my face). I was taken aback when I heard it and just sort of thought "I wish! You are SO out of my league, so how you think that is beyond me. But... okay..." Of course, I didn't say that, though. I'm sure I just smiled and said the first goofball thing that came to my brain-o-mush. Then I tucked it away and decided that I needed to work on getting there. I may never hear someone say it again, but it's something that I'd like to be and that takes work. Constant work.

There were a couple of people that came to mind when thinking about who I could share my "excitement" with on the way home tonight. Unfortunately, they were unreachable for one reason or another. I was glad to be able to talk to my parents when I got home, but sometimes I feel like if I share those "I finally get it!" moments, they're going to think "What took you so long?" Maybe it's good that there was no one to spill my guts to. I was forced to reflect and was able to continue to take it all in. And I was reminded that I'm absolutely on the right track.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

No Bueno

I thought that I'd be posting about the results of my first 15k, but that is not the case. I sprained my ankle yesterday, which made it impossible for me to run the race and I am pretty bummed. In fact, right now, I'd be running with B, but she's being a champ without me today.

Just after I turned 28, I busted my tailbone.
Remember? The day after I turned 29, I sprained my ankle. Both incidences took place on or due to stairs and my inability to maneuver them. So I either need to avoid stairs in March or be extra, extra careful when I turn 30. I mean 29 for the second time.

I sort of wish that this injury had come with a little bit better story, but something tells me that any explaination would be embarrassing. See, what had happened was...

We got to Body Sculpt at 5:30 a.m., which means it's still pitch black outside. I dropped my stuff off on the little dock thing that we work out on, which is like a boardwalk-type contraption that opens up into a big area out over the lake (more like a pond) at the park. As I went to do my warm up lap, I couldn't see the steps that led back down to the sidewalk and I thought there were only three steps, but there were four.

I'm not sure if I realized mid-stride that I was wrong or what, but I ended up landing on my right foot and my body kept going. That's my best recollection of those quick five seconds anyway. And I was not alone, so two other people witnessed my clumsiness. Fantastic. They were really sweet about it, though. They stood with me while I tried to figure out if I was hurt and how bad it was. I wasn't bleeding and no bones were jutting out of skin, so I was going to survive.

I ended up staying through the class and just did what I could and my ankle just started to get puffier and puffier, but I am hard core, so I wasn't leaving. Ha! Actually, I just did arms and abs. I was already awake, so I figured it'd be silly to bail at that point. I knew that I wouldn't be able to make the race, though. B told me that I shouldn't get crazy and should take a rest day like the training says. I should've listened to her! Had I, I wouldn't be blogging, I'd be in Jacksonville with her right now.

It's still pretty swollen. And I hate having to use crutches. I'd rather crawl around to get where I need to go, but that's out of the question, too, because my left knee got scraped (the kind that's reminiscent of falling off your bike in elementary school). I'm a hot mess. I'm just going to have to take it easy for the next few days. Hopefully I'll be back running in a week or two. Surely it doesn't take forever to recover from a sprained ankle. Does it?

And it least it was now and not any closer to the Marine Corps Marathon. Thank heaven for small favors.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The First Time I Turned 29

I wasn't looking forward to turning 29. At all. Clearly my mom wasn't excited about it either and she didn't help things when she told me "You're old!" as she left for work at 6:30 this morning. I think I might actually like this age after all, though. If today was any indication of how the next 364 will go, I think I'll stay 29 forever.

I went for a run when I got up, but didn't get very far because it was raining. I was disappoint, but things seemed to be looking up when my hair decided to cooperate. Cooperative hair is always good. I then got a (free, except for tip!) manicure and had lunch with my dad and Papa. The day was still young, so I thought it'd be a good idea to get a pedicure to go with the manicure. My dad sprung for the pedi, but got lucky when the guys at the nail place only charged me half price since it was my birthday. Oh, and because my dad helps them out since their businesses are a few doors apart.

More people than I ever could've imagined wished me a happy birthday on facebook and via text. I also got birthday wishes in person and over the phone. I'm normally content to blen in with the crowd, but once in a while I do like the attention. Furthermore, I was pleasantly surprised by who wished me a happy birthday a few times. It could only have been better if Tom Selleck had proposed. Or Topher Grace. Topher's probably more age appropriate.

The best part of the day was easily dinner and dessert. My parents and I went to Texas Roadhouse for delicious steaks and rolls with cinnamon butter. Even though I don't really like it, some of the servers sang their birthday song to me. Why does it feel like that thing lasts for 20 minutes? When we got home, we had mini cupcakes that I picked up at
Sweet! in Orlando yesterday. If you've never had their cupcakes and have the chance to, do not miss out. They are amazing.

I have been thinking about all the things that I've "accomplished" over the last year and how much I know I've grown, whether or not anyone notices or realizes. And then I started thinking about all the things that will happen while I'm 29. I think that this is going to be a really good year. By this time next year, I plan on being able to confidently say that I'm a runner. (Currently I feel like I'm 85% runner and 15% poser.) I think that running at least three races will help with that. I'd also like to be gainfully employed by then, for the record.

Basically, my plan is to enjoy every second of the end of my twenties and to continue to look like I barely got to them.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

My Month

I love March. I just do. And my love for it doesn't just have to do with the fact that it's my birthday month. That should just make it more appealing to everyone else! I kid, I kid.

I love March because it's when people start breaking out their warm-weather clothes again and wearing brighter colors and when you can start going to the beach or laying out by the pool and people don't think you've either lost your marbles or just trying to rub it in their faces.

The past few days, I was working a meeting and as I sat looking outside at the pretty palm trees blowing in the wind on the golf course, I just realized "It's March!" I feel like the world just starts to look different this month. I love it. It's fresh, it's fun, Spring is well on it's way. I think the air might even smell a little different. It's also that time of year where it's warmer outside than it is inside and you feel the difference when you leave a building. It's no secret that I do not enjoy cold weather. I love it when I am inside somewhere, like the mall or movie theater, and am hit with warm air. This is the time of year when that starts.

With all this warm weather fast approaching (except for the cold front that's supposed to hit us tomorrow night), it reminds me that I need to be getting more and more serious about working out. This butterball wants to be in a bathing suit and have just one summer where she doesn't have to suck in and walk around all stiff to keep to much from jiggling for just one bathing suit season. And you ladies reading this know exactly what I'm talking about! If you don't, you're either kidding yourself or I hate you. Or both! Hehe

On a completely different note, I just read
Delivering Happiness - A Path to Profits, Passion and Purpose by Tony Hsieh, the CEO of I'm normally a mindless chick-lit reader and I don't deviate much from that, except for the occassion biography of Church leaders or other LDS topics, but I really enjoyed it. It was an easy read, but I feel like I got a lot of good information out of it, so if you're in to that sort of reading, you'll probably like it. In fact, I sort of want to move to Louisville or Vegas to work for zappos now. Maybe I should wait until the Kool-Aid wears off a little before renting an apartment, though. I can't do anything for at least six weeks anyway.

There were A LOT of links in that last paragraph. I'm hopped up on Coca-Cola and the anticipation of birthday cupcakes. I think I have Spring Fever.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

On My Mind

I have a few things on my mind right now, so this will probably go from one topic to the next with no rhyme or reason.

I was watching Holly's World a few days ago (don't judge me.) and something said to Josh, Holly's friend, by his therapist kind of struck a chord with me. His therapist told him that between 30 and 35, you tend to or are supposed to be coasting a bit in life. So your late twenties, 25-29-ish, you should be preparing to coast. It seemed to make sense to me and also let me know that I need to get it together in the next 375 days. In a lot of ways, I am getting things in order. In the employment department, it's still a work in progress. I guess when things are meant to happen and the time is right, they will.

I'm hopeful that my semi-recent interest in being more fit will help me coast through my early thirties. I've gotten together with some of the girls in my ward to run and work out. What's so praise-worthy about that is that they meet at 5:30. In the morning. It's only been two days that I've gone, but I am really liking it. Don't get me wrong, 5:00 is earlier than I've ever gotten up on purpose, even for Seminary. But if it gets my booty in better shape and gives me more motivation to train for my races, I'm all about it. Besides, when other people are there, it makes it a lot easier to do. And I'm much more inclined to stick to some sort of regiment if I think that someone is depending on me or will be questioning me about my laziness. Today, right now, for my situation right now, I'm committed. I mean, the running will have to continue because I've already paid to run the Marine Corps Marathon, so at that's going to keep me going.

The other, completely random, thing that's on my mind is Charlie Sheen. I'm hoping that by getting this out of my head that I won't think about it anymore because it's complete garbage and I have no business worrying about it. I was watching the interviews that he's done this past week and I think he's completely lost it. The thing that really bothered me, though, was his "goddesses." I didn't think it was okay with Hugh Hefner had multiple girlfriends, but it seemed to be a one-off. Now that Charlie Sheen has gone and publicly said that he has two girlfriends and they're all in love with each other and they're helping to raise his kids.

It's just disturbing to me. I may be jumping the gun, but this kind of makes me worry a bit that guys will start thinking that it's okay, or worse - that they're entitled to, carry on relationships with more than one woman simultaneously and publicly. Sure, I know that people cheat all the time and it's wrong just the same, but for it to somehow become accepted or even "cool" to do that sort of thing makes me cringe. Don't get me wrong, I don't see it happening over night, but I do worry that my own kids will have to live in a world that accepts that sort of behavior and it's just one more thing to have protect them from. I feel less sorry for the two consenting women he's involved with and more for his poor kids. He has daughters that will eventually realize what's really going on. How do you explain that to them? How do you teach them that they're worth more than that and deserve better than a guy like their own dad? It's truly sad to me.

I guess I should count my blessings that I'm not involved in any way, shape or form with them. It's just one more thing that reminds me of how blessed I am to have parents with a sense of self-worth and a conscience and morals and who taught me and my brother those things. They taught me to respect myself and to not settle for less than what I deserve and they taught my brother to respect others, women in particular.

I'm positive that this came out strange and probably isn't exactly what I'm thinking or feeling, but I'm just glad to have it out of my head.