Monday, November 14, 2011

be resilient.

be resilient.
there is nothing we can't live down, rise above or overcome. -ella wheeler wilcox
i am still slightly suffering from an unfortunate clumsy moment i had last sunday. i went to logan with derek for part of the weekend to spend time with his family. i had more than a good time, soaked in every minute we spent with his lovely family, and i sprained my ankle. not the best way i could have ended our weekend but it was so worth it. we were playing an intense game of 3 bases (tag with some tricky rules and twists) and i tried to tag jd, the byu football star. bad idea. 4 stairs and 1 thud later, and i was on the floor. i was trying so hard to be tough and didn't cry at all. it is still quite swollen and bruised but im walking and driving fine. i wouldn't have changed anything about my weekend.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

be happy.

"the principal thing in this world is to keep one's soul aloft."

happiness is found in a variety of things. these are a few things that have made me very happy lately. 
crunchy fall leaves beneath my feet
warm butternut squash soup on a cold fall day
saying the same thing as my sister at the exact same time
this guy 
serving a chinese family at la jolla
new born babies
going to see sytycd with derek and his fam
looking at the mountains and seeing the brilliant red and orange trees
cute old couples that eat at applebees at 11 pm on a wednesday evening
pumpkin flavored baked goods
new friends 

fall is by far my most favorite time of year. this year i have been particularly mindful and appreciative of what makes this season my favorite. 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

be amazing.

"it is up to you to illuminate the world."

great ending to a very long day. 
(one of my favorite dances)

seeing thriller definitely put me in the halloween mood... 

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

be committed.

"from a certain point onward there is no longer any turning back. that is the point that must be reached." -franz kafka
tonight i got home from institute and to my surprise there was a pan of fresh baked apple crisp cooling on top of the stove. my sweet father made that today. he may not have made it for me, or for anyone else in the family, but  he did it, that's what matters. 
apple crisp is a real indicator to me that fall has begun. apple crisp is a common treat in the whitaker home, and my dad did not let anything stop this fall from being any different. 
today the sky was gloomy. the cement and trees were wet from rain and i got the feeling that a lot of spirits were in that same gloomy mood. nothing treats a case of the blues better than warm apple crisp

Monday, October 3, 2011

be still.

"when you become quiet, it just dawns on you." -thomas edison

this quote is exactly why i love general conference. i love being able to say no i can't work, no i can't do something, no, no, no because i'm watching conference. all is quiet except for the marvelous words coming from our church leaders mouths. the ability to feel and listen to promptings of the spirit is so much easier. things truly just dawn on you. as i've gotten older i have come to really cherish conference and what it does for me personally. i'm so anxious to listen to or read the talks immediately after they're over. the fact that the lord gives us a modern day prophet, apostles and other leaders to guide and direct us and inform us of what he would have us know is amazing. i'm so blessed because of it. i'm so grateful for the guidance we get at conference and also what we get continually through the year via church magazines, devotionals, firesides, etc. i love the feeling of hope and strength i feel after conference. i hope that everyone had a great weekend also and feel that same burst of hope to press onward through our sad, sad world.

be amazed.

"as i started looking, i found more and more."
-valerie steele

i have found a new love. jazz. in high school my voice teacher gave me a little song to sing but i didn't sing it like a jazz song. still, i loved the song and felt like when i sang it i produced a sound that i liked. this summer i started with a new teacher, lindsey partridge (love her) and one of her specialties is jazz. i decided i wanted her help with jazz. no more classical arias or broadway hits for me right now. she told me after school just started that i would be trying out for jazz voices. i looked into it and said no way. she said it'll be a good audition experience, it'll get your name out there and it will just be good. i've been trying to do different things more often and with less hesitation. so i did it. i haven't been well vocally but by some miracle i still made it in. i'm so glad i did. it has been a blast so far and i definitely feel so much joy while singing jazz. it's 180 degrees different than the choirs i've been in previously. and i;m so glad it is. as alan matthews my director says, the sound starts in your toes. it's more fun that way, give it a try. 

be yourself.

"simply the thing that i am shall make me live."
-william shakespeare

my birthday was in september and for the last few years i've had the tradition to go to a concert on or around my birthday. this has only been practiced for the last five birthdays of mine but it's a tradition i plan to continue. i was getting worried about going to one this year because the only people that we're coming close enough to my birthday were t swift and rascal flatts. like them both (though i really don't choose to listen to either of them on a regular basis), and i definitely didn't want to spend $100+ on a ticket. heavenly father really does care about us, even in the slightly unspiritual friend alan day gave me a call and told me that the rocket summer was doing a free show at utah state september 3rd. one of my favorite bands-check. near my birthday-check. free-check. i was stoked. before the concert alan suggested that we go fly kites on antelope island. i didn't even know antelope island existed. it was very pretty though and simply fun. i hadn't flown a kite in years. i brought ash along and she was tearing it up doing two kites at once. actually not really but it looked like it in the picture. 
oops sorry for editing only this pic
after antelope island we headed to logan to camp out front row for the concert. we waited patiently through the openers (one actually wasn't too bad. ash crushed on one of them.) and finally bryce had his turn. within the first 30 seconds of him being on stage the crowd had turned into the worst can of sardines i had ever experienced. i was getting so worried for ash because even i couldn't handle it. this was ashlee's first concert by the way. so after throwing some elbows and yelling at a few huge guys that didn't even look like fans of the rocket summer, i turned to the guys we were with to tell them we needed to get out. as soon as i look at ash i heard, "i think i'm going to pass ouu...." and she was in my arms. i started freaking out, yelling at everyone, trying to get ash on top of everyone so they'd crowd surf her to the "security guards" in front. i use the term security guards with caution because they were really student government people from usu. i tried telling them during the first song that they needed to do something about the moshing but of course they were just jammin out to the music. anyways, i follow immediately after ashlee by clumsily climbing over the front rail looking like a mad woman. i was bawling, ash was barely conscious, but she was getting taken care of. we were in the back tent for a good 3/4 of the show. after weeks of preparation of ashlee and i listening to his new album and we were listening from back stage. but really it was not a big deal and it was quite fun once ash was feeling better. we even met some of the band that was playing with him that night. we were determined to meet bryce and felt like we had a good enough reason to. so we stayed after the concert (found ashlee's shoe that had fallen off during the incident) and waited semi patiently until bryce would see us. after he greeted back stage pass people he came out to us and seriously talked to us for a good five minutes. he said he remembered us (probably cause i was screaming so loud he could even hear). he signed ashlee's shoe and my new rocket summer shirt. you can see in the pictures that he was just as stoked to see us...well i actually don't know what his face is doing in the second one. but he was so real to us and was so humble and sincere. i love his music and think he's a talented musician but i also admire him for having clean uplifting lyrics and for being so real, even though he is a famous rock star. thanks ash, bradyn, alan, and especially bryce avary for a memorable 22nd birthday concert!
my sister was so sweet to me on my actual birthday. She was going to be busy and i wasn't going to be able to see her and i kept giving her crap about it being the first birthday in three years that i've been home for...i shouldn't have made her feel guilty because she went above and beyond. so sweet.
the birthday began with a surprise kidnapping to denny's for a midnight birthday snack. i had been asleep for one hour but i felt like it was already six am. i was put in a trunk, yes a trunk and driven to denny's. when we got there i thought it would just be ash, eric, kev, and ali (those who were the actual kidnappers) who would be there. all of the sudden mich and mick drive past, then jeremy, and as we were walking in andrea and rachel were just sitting on a bench by the door! i'm so blessed, seriously. my friends are the best. it got even better when winston, paul, colton, and their friends came to join us. such a fun time with them. i went back to bed for three hours, got up for class and enjoyed breakfast cereal with my family. rachel stayed in provo long enough to indulge in jdawgs (her first time) for lunch. while i was at school my adorable little sister decorated the house and my car. i can't stress how nice she is to me. without having time for my stomach to empty i headed to brick oven for dinner with my parents and the hirschi family. then kaelo and i (the september birthday girls), my mom, and eric headed to the drowsy chaperone at the hale. it was such a funny show. i was laughing all night. then eric and i went on a full moon ride up sundance with some of his friends. it's not funny how much i love the moon. it was a great birthday and i'm so grateful to my friends and family for being so wonderful to me.

be constructive.

"clear your mind of can't."
-samuel johnson

school has been rough this semester. it has just been rough. i haven't gotten on top of things and i just finished the  fourth week of the semester.  i feel like i'm at least three things away from getting my to do list finished at all times. my choir director alan matthews shared a quote by elder oaks last week that really inspired me to make a better effort and allow the lord to help me be the student i want to be and know that i can be-if i put forth the effort. elder oaks said, "when we have a vision of what we can become, our desire and our power to act increase enormously." the last few days i've worked on getting a vision of what kind of student i can become. i know with the lord's help my desire to be abetter student will increase and all of my can'ts can be cleared from my mind. 

Saturday, September 10, 2011

be alive.

"the purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience." -eleanor roosevelt

soooo my summer has been very busy. i have let my blog go into hibernation for the last few months but i am now ready to start again and work on my goal to blog at least once a week. now begins the catch up...i apologize.
one of my very best friends decided to tie the knot with her perfect match on june 28th, in the oquirrh mountain temple. emmy and jeff made one of the most important decisions that they will ever make and i know that it was the right one. they both looked so indescribably happy. em looked gorgeous. there was a glow about her and i couldn't help but be so happy for her. after months of preparation and hard work they finally made it to the big day and everything looked perfect. the only thing that wasn't perfect was that i forgot my i will have to borrow someone else's photos. oops.
another one of my very best friends also took the plunge and got married for time and all eternity this summer. on august 19th michelle and mick tied the knot in the salt lake temple. i had the privilege to help rachel with the flowers for the wedding. she is a wonderful florist designer and did a fantastic job. the thursday before we had a great time invading the maw basement/ping pong table arranging center pieces, corsages, boutonniers, etc. the reception was held at the maws so it was really fun to see everything come together. it was a beautiful celebration and m & m couldn't have looked happier. i was a mess and cried a river the whole night but i really was so happy for them. 
karissa bosco has been called to serve as a missionary for the church of jesus christ of latter-day saints in the argentina cordoba mission. well she's been more than just called-she's gone. ka went into the mtc this last wednesday in the early afternoon. i'm going to miss her so much but i also know she is doing exactly what the lord wants her to be doing. she is going to be such an amazing missionary. i admire her strength, courage, and desire to serve and grow by serving a mission for the next 18 months. we had a few goodbye get togethers for her and it was really fun to see so much of her the last few months. i'm praying for you sister bosco!
my best friends and i have been through so much together. we've liked boys from different groups of friends, we've liked boys from the same group of friends, we were on different sports teams, went to different colleges, some got married at different times, and yet we still get together and catch up on each others lives. i'm so blessed to have them all in my life and have their examples to look to. i love each one of 'em so much. here's to six years of friendship.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

be excited.

"the minute you begin to do what you really want to do, it's really a different kind of life." 
-buckminster fuller

last thursday completed the whitakers journey at provo high school. ashlee marie graduated with high honors,  received a 4.0 her whole senior year, and she was the last of eight whitakers to have attended provo high school. 
i'm so proud of her and loved being there for part of her special day. after the ceremony we went to rachels house and had a fun family party filled with panda express (ash's favorite), presents and college survival tips. we were all so exhausted come night time but ash was a trooper and still made it to some of her senior all night party. 

the next morning i forced her to rise bright and early so we could go to st george for a little weekend getaway. i drove (with a little too much mt dew to help me stay awake) while ash slept and we eventually made it to st george. i experienced for the first time checking into a hotel by myself-so adult like. we were only able to stay through saturday so we made the most of our time and immediately started laying out. we rented bikes for a day (the only ones left were way too big for us. oh well, it was fun anyway) and had a blast riding around in the perfect 88 degree weather. lunch was a disaster and we were not satisfied with jimmy johns sandwiches so we got cafe rio for dinner. after we gave our tummies a rest we went to dixie rock, and tried out nielsen's frozen custard. we were exhausted once again so we retired fairly early and fell asleep while watching legally blonde. on saturday we went to breakfast, checked out of our hotel, still stayed and swam/laid out, turned our bikes back in, changed from swimsuits into sunday clothes in the car so we could do baptisms at the temple and visited with my friend cody who i haven't seen for almost a year. i ate too much (like i usually do), got sunburned (like i usually do), and loved spending time with my little sister (like i always do). i took the whole week off of work and exercise so now it's time to get back in the routine of things. 

i love you little sister. i'm excited for you to start this stage of your life and i know you will make the most of it!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

be there.

"god calls you to the place where your deep gladness and the world's deep hunger meet." 
frederick buechner

i need something. i don't know what but i feel like right now something is missing. i can think of a number of things that i think are missing but that might not be what god knows is missing. he knows what i need right now and in his time he will send them my way. until then i'll stick around, live the way i know i should, and hope this feeling of not being whole will soon be gone. 

Monday, May 9, 2011

be brave.

"most of our obstacles would melt away if instead of cowering before them, we should make up our minds to walk boldly through them." -orison swett marden

for some reason i decided to sign up for a half marathon. those of you who know me know that i'm not a runner. i don't love it, i'm not good at it and i usually just don't do it. completing a half marathon has been on my mind though and it quickly made it on my list of things to do. i thought that after training for a few months it would be easy and i would be ready. turns out trying to train while working two jobs and going to school was a little harder than i thought. i had only run up to six miles and barely ran three miles, three times a week. i still wanted to do it and felt like if i didn't follow through with it i wouldn't be this close again for a long time. at 8:00 am on may 7, 2011 i began the run in downtown provo with my one of my best friends, her sister, and her brother in law. i felt ok for a while but then i felt like i was going to pass out and didn't feel like i could go on. (having my ipod die by mile 3 didn't help either...) but for whatever reason i was able to keep up with mich and whit and we all finished together- in 2 hours and 12 minutes! that was much faster than i thought and i'm proud of us. the feeling of finishing and having run basically all of it was a great feeling and i really did feel like i accomplished something big. it's been a few days and i'm still sore and i still have a stomach ache from all the chocolate milk i drank after. but it was worth it. half marathon, check. 

Friday, April 22, 2011

be inspired.

'"the soul has greater need of the ideal than the real. it is by the real that we exist, it is by the ideal that we live." 
-victor hugo

celeb sighting number two. elder scott was in magleby's fresh today. 

let me tell you about work today. it was packed. line to the door packed, no where to sit packed, thirty minute wait for your food packed...and it was like that from 8 am to 2 pm. we were all so stressed and i have just been struggling this week anyways so i was not in the best mood all morning. sarah was at the register and when things had slowed down she said elder scott was in the restaurant. i immediately wanted to go meet him but we both didn't want to be those annoying girls who won't let the man enjoy a peaceful lunch with his family. sarah ended up asking a man he was with if it would be ok to go meet him. he said of course and we went over there with butterflies in our stomachs. elder scott gave us both hugs and included with the hug was a cheek to cheek touch. honestly, nothing else would have turned my mood around. he was so sincere, so nice and i felt extremely lucky to have met him. it was one of those moments that caused me to evaluate myself. why can't i be more like him? i had just spent all morning being grumpy, impatient, self centered, and angry. but for what? was it really so hard to keep a good attitude, let things roll off my shoulder, and be more christ like? meeting elder scott and seeing of his absolute humility, kindness and charity inspired me. it inspired me to live the ideal way that i know we all should.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

be positive.

"what you find in your mind is what you put there. put good things there."
-mary ford-
i'm afraid i haven't put the best things in my mind. well i have a few but i definitely could have added more this semester but i didn't. want to know how i know i didn't? the scores of my final exams tell us plain as day that i have not put good things in my mind. but i'm reminded to stay positive. by staying positive i will be able to put good things into my somewhat slow and often confused brain. thank you finals for being over. at least for this semester. 

this semester i truly enjoyed the little things. (obviously i didn't care about the big things like learning, test taking, homework doing etc.) here's a fairly small list of a few of my favorite things of winter semester 2011at brigham young university.  
-one day i was walking to school and a guy farted (sorry for using that word) in front of me and then he turned around to see if anyone was behind him. super awkward when we made eye contact.
-enduring through an rm book of mormon class with my good friend willie.
-i absolutely loved the runners. you all know who i'm talking about. almost every day i was on campus i would see at least one person running frantically to who knows where. 
-having lunch with em every thursday at 11 am. 
-i thought it was so funny how hardly anyone stops to actually talk to people they know between classes. i caught myself doing it also. it's such an inconvenience to stop in the middle of the sidewalk, causing a traffic jam and disrupting peoples groove, so a quick hello and maybe a how are you is all anyone has time for. 
-american heritage movie nights with bff karissa and willie.
-there is one couple that i would see every monday and wednesday before my first class and i seriously love them. he has fire red hair and her hair is so blonde it's almost white. they are always hand in hand, she pulls her roller bag around and the guy just looks at the her while they talk the whole time. you can feel their love for each other and they are just perfect together. one day i heard her talking about rainbows and he was lovingly listening. pure bliss i tell you. 
-realizing that brad rigby's cousin was my ta for american heritage. small world.
-one time a guy was just looking up at the cloudless sky, just loving the beautiful weather. it made me want to stop and take more time to recognize the beauty around me.
-this one i kind of hated but it's still a favorite. trying to walk to and from classes is joke. have you seen the bee movie? in their town the bees don't have any traffic rules or lanes to drive in. it's basically chaos. that's how i feel between classes. you seriously have to get the timing right when walking through another stream of people, and you have to walk on the right side or everyone instantly knows your a newbie. it took a while to get used to but i think i have it down. 
-and last but certainly not least is the fact that my american heritage teacher did the entire napoleon dynamite dance for his classes. the class wasn't my favorite but he's a good guy. i loved picturing him practicing the dance possibly in his living room after dinner, in his bedroom before going to bed, out in the garage so no one could see him...whatever he did worked and it paid off. he sure has moves and that dr bradford made a great napoleon

i didn't finish out too strong but overall it was a good semester. hopefully in the fall i can become better as far as my studies are concerned and pay attention more in class and not to the things happening around me. until then i will just enjoy spring/summer and all that comes with it...