The way things are

Life is a really hard game. The pieces keep falling out of those teeny little cars!

Thursday, December 28, 2006


I forgot how obsessed with books I really am.

I didn't really read for pleasure while I was at school this semester...There wasn't time. But I bought two books the other day--"Small Steps" by Louis Sachar and "The Giver" by Lois Lowry. I read one of them yesterday and the other today.

Given--they weren't especially long books, or ones that were particularly difficult to read. In fact, "Small Steps" is the sequel (sort of) to "Holes" (the movie of which many of you may be familiar with) and is more of a children's novel. I don't know what's with me and children's novels, but for some reason I just love reading Louis Sachar and Roald Dahl. I think it's more that I like their style, their creativity, their imaginativeness rather than the actual content of their novels. I enjoy the process of reading them.

"The Giver" I read today. There was a bit more depth to this novel, which I like. Something to mentally chew on. But at the same time, it was very simple and straightforward, which complimented the setting of the story.

This novel takes place in what could be the "future" but could also conceivably be the present. It's about a boy named Jonas who lives in a very controlled society. There is no color. No rain or snow. The ground is all flat. Spouses, children, and jobs are assigned by the Elders, the governing body of the society. A strict set of Rules keeps everyone equal--differences are not acknowledged, touch is not acceptable, and those who are a hinderance to the order of society are "released."

When Jonas becomes a Twelve, the age at which jobs are assigned and training for those jobs begins, he is selected to be the new Receiver--the most honored position in the community. He soon learns from the former Receiver (now The Giver) that Jonas is to receive all memories of the past. The Receiver is burdened with the memories of the world, of "Elsewhere," so that the community doesn't have to be troubled by them. The Elders may then call on the Receiver for advice in times of chaos (which are rare).

I won't go any further than that, just in case anyone wants to actually read it. It's really interesting to think about--how crazy it would be if our society became like theirs...

"The Giver" reminds of me of "Fahrenheit 451" by Ray Bradbury. Another really good one. It's a little bit heavier though...a lot more to think about, a lot more symbolism...all sorts of biblical allusions and stuff like that. I enjoyed it, but if you're looking for something simple and interesting, and less disturbing, then I suggest "The Giver." It's short too.

So I finished reading and went upstairs to see if my parents had kept the other Lois Lowry books we used to have. I had read them all and really liked them, but to my disappointment, they were nowhere to be found. I did come across some other really good books though--I already mentioned "Fahrenheit 451," then there's "His Dark Materials" (aka "The Northern Lights") Trilogy, "To Kill a Mockingbird," "The Scarlet Letter" (which I admit was good, but I would never read it again--Nathaniel Hawthorne is too boring)...There were a ton of good books that I was very tempted to steal from my parents. Only then I remembered how small my apartment is. Not to mention my suitcase.

Anyway. I just love reading. Moderation in all things, I must remind myself. If I don't, then books may take over my life.

Mmm. I don't know if that would be so bad.

Okay well I have a date with a blonde and a Brazilian, so I'm out of here. More to come later about how wonderful California is.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

My first semester in college

Moving into my apartment took several hours. There was no one home, but all evidence pointed to at least one person having already moved in. Luckily, my more-anal-about-organization-and-tidiness-than-me sister was there to make everything fit and look nice. She then took me all over campus, pointing out buildings and expecting me to memorize each one. We bought my books, walked around campus some more, and then I went home. My first night in what would be my home for the next several months wasn't bad. I was only slightly homesick, but mostly bored.

The rest of the week before classes started consisted of hanging out with my sister (hiking the Y, going to Seven Peaks, etc.) and getting acquainted with my roommates. Roommate C was the first I met, and she seemed like a typical nice RM Sister. Roommate B came next, introducing herself and then sitting on my floor for over an hour just rambling to me. Roommates A and D (who are sisters) didn't appear until the day before classes, but I already knew them. In fact, Roommate A and I had been planning to be roommates at the Y since the seventh grade. Pathetic and sooooooo Mormon. I know. Roommate E appeared much later.

My first class: Chem 152. Introductory Organic Chemistry. It actually wasn't too bad. Book of Mormon was next, and I didn't like it from the very beginning. Psychology turned out to be way better than expected, as did Physics and Church History. And HEPE...well, I don't think I really need to say anything about that.

Our ward, it turns out, isn't half bad. We have some really nice, fun people. My FHE group was sooooo cool. Our bishop is way nice, and our ward meets at 9am rather than 1pm. Plus, Ben Criddle (one of the football players) is in our ward and tells the most hilarious stories while teaching Sunday School.

As far as friends go, Roommate B soon became one of my best. It's not awkward to talk to her about anything. No joke, I have not found a topic yet that we can't have a long conversation about. I also had a few freshmen friends--there were 8 of us from Vacaville that were freshmen. But since Roommate A and I were the only ones who lived off-campus and had cars, we only hung out with the others every once in a while.

Then there was the Jerman. I decided one day that I wanted to meet some of the Native's Provo friends. So I stalked them on Myspace and emailed a couple of them--something along the lines of "Hey I'm new in Provo and we have a mutual friend. Let's hang out sometime." The Jerman actually responded immediately and asked if I'd like to go with him and some friends to see Lady in the Water the next night. I nearly chickened out, but the Native persuaded me to go, and I ended up having a lot of fun. Not to mention, I became friends with the Jerman.

By hanging out with the Jerman, I got to meet a lot of people. I met people like Smurf, who's car we later "broke," Wiggle, Sir Robert Chiltern, Pinetree, and AtP, who I completely fell in love with. I also met Latin Stud and many others who I think are amazing. And the Native was happy that I became acquainted with many of his friends.

So I met a lot of cool people. Tons of them. And not just in person either. Guillermo persuaded me to start this blog...It all started with something about "What's your favorite dinosaur?" He began blogging too, and we got the Native involved. Through the Native I found the blogs of Samantha and L and of tons and tons of other people who I've never met but who I've learned a lot from. And Mustacheboy and his friends found me through Guillermo...So thanks Guillermo, for making me blog.

Being away from home wasn't that hard for me. It's gotten harder as the holidays have come around, but I'm getting used to Utah. Don't get me wrong--California will always be my first love, but I'm adapting to the culture/weather/driving here.

Being in the Utah Valley Handbell Choir has been awesome for me as well. I feel so lucky to have found a group that was at just the right level for me. This semester, bells were my only musical involvement, which is odd for me. But it has been so neat to ring with the awesome people in that group, and to perform all over Utah Valley and in Salt Lake. I'm sure I'll be with them for a long time.

As far as classes go, I had a couple of teachers who were absolutely amazing. Brant Jarrett, my psychology teacher, made me look at life in new ways. Alexander Baugh knew more about Church History than anyone I've ever heard of, and he really cared about us and tried to get to know us. Fran Nordmeyer taught Chem with such a good sense of humor that I actually enjoyed going to that class. I didn't get all A's. And I don't particularly care. I probably could have been more responsible about studying and not procrastinating. I could have gotten more sleep. But I don't think I did badly.

And so my first semester in college draws to a close. There were good and bad experiences, but I'm grateful for them all. I have new friends, new thoughts, new ideas. I can drive in the snow. I know my way around Provo, and around campus. I've learned lots, and I have a new idea for a major. I've learned a lot about myself and about my parents. And I've learned that even though I don't know what my future will be like, I can put my trust in my Heavenly Father and it will work out just fine.

And now I must make a phone call and pack. One day and six hours until I arrive in Sacramento.
I can't wait.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Marriage requirement: Must not be a redneck

A couple of weeks ago, Roommate A (aka Shorty, the Pigmy Scapegoat...we really need to just pick a single name for her...) went country dancing with some people. She met this guy there (we will call him CattleProd) who is just a little taller than she is and who was a really good dancer. He somehow ended up with her number and they've gone out twice since then, not because she's interested, but because he is just fun to dance with.

Last night, Roommate A and I decided to go to LOL (a BYU comedy show). CattleProd called her before we went, asked what she was doing, and decided to accompany us with his roommate, SlowPoke. So it became a date.

Roommate A gave me a debriefing before they arrived. They are both from Wyoming, neither of them are students, neither have jobs, and CattleProd is 26 years old. SlowPoke's age is unknown. What a fascinating pair.

They arrived. Knowing that I had absolutely nothing in common with SlowPoke, I said little. Neither of them said anything either. Roommate A and I made small talk with each other, and if we were lucky, Slowpoke or CattleProd might say a word or two in a thick mid-western accent. Roommate A and I got into the back seat of SlowPoke's beige truck, and tolerated the country music. Luckily it was a short ride.

The walk across the parking lot was insufferably long. I wanted to walk as fast as I could, but with Roommate A and CattleProd being so small, we had to walk at a more leisurely pace. It ended up being mega-awkward...CattleProd was always at Roommate A's side, leaving me with the mute SlowPoke, but we ended up just being really spaced out as I tried to increase our speed by walking a little ahead...

We finally made it. Roommate A and I payed for ourselves, and CattleProd paid for SlowPoke. I was tempted to flirt with the ticket guy, who was much cuter than either of our redneck friends, and who said more to me in 60 seconds than SlowPoke said to me the whole night. I refrained.

I sat on the end, next to Roommate A. Then came CattleProd and SlowPoke. Go figure my "date" and I were the furthest apart. I was grateful.

I was also grateful that I brought my OChem review sheets to work on. It saved me from making awkward conversation during intermission when Roommate A left to make a phone call.

After another long walk back to the parking lot, I shared my knowledge about why chickens can run around with their heads cut off (I thought this type of conversation might be more in their league), and then we were home.

And so ends awkward date #2 of the semester.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Christmas shopping

I went Christmas shopping today. I nearly finished. One more small trip to the Bookstore tomorrow (although it's hardly a "trip" since I'll already be on campus) and I'll be finished!

It's funny though. I didn't know how to answer when my mother asked me what I wanted for Christmas. But as I was shopping for other people, I began to think of things I would want. I even bought a few things for myself, but I won't open them until Christmas of course.

So I'm going to make a list of things I might like as gifts, so that next year I'll have a reference. And so all you people can get me presents.

Just kidding.

Presents I like:
1. Brain teaser types of things...I like 3-D puzzles, Snafooz (which I have yet to find in any store, by the way), Rush Hour, Sudoku...Scientific-y things that present a challenge. But not Rubix Cubes. Ever.
2. Games. Preferably not complicated, science fiction, or movie themed. There is a game called "Curses" that Mustacheboy's mom introduced me to in seminary...That would make a good gift. Cool card games are also good. I love card games.
3. Books. If you know a good read, why not pass it on? I'm always looking for stuff to read (not that I have time, but still. I love books). I don't really have a collection of my own...Books I'd like to own in the future might include Lord of the Flies; Fahrenheit 451; Cry, the Beloved Country; the Northern Lights Series (aka His Dark Materials in the US)...I like Roald Dahl (yes I know I'm weird) but I own pretty much all of his books...Preferably not Dan Brown. He's good with complicated plots, but he lacks depth. Although I still haven't read Angels and Demons, so I wouldn't mind that one...
4. Music. Any type of music, besides country perhaps. It's one of my favorite things to find new types of music and new artists...CD's that are thoughtfully put together by friends are also really fun and I usually end up listening to them for a long time afterwards...
5. Jewelry. Necklaces and earrings especially. I have this bad habit of collecting really cool earrings and then having so many that I hardly wear them, but I don't see any harm if I'm given earrings...
6. Random stuff. I like being surprised, and I like it when friends can come up with cool things that incorporate inside jokes. Gifts like that mean the most, and usually cost the least.

Ok that's all I can think of, but I'm sure it will come in handy when people ask me what I want for my birthday or Christmas next year. Huzzah.

I succumbed

Blogger won. I was so frustrated about not being able to post comments on people's blogs that I finally switched to beta.

My dignity is slightly injured. I can't believe I lost to a computer. Again.



At least I can comment now. :/

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Why does blogger hate me?

I suddenly am unable to comment people.
I can sign into blogger.
But on comments, I can't.
I've tried, over and over.
I've octuple-checked my spelling.
I'm sad now. What am I doing wrong?

PS--Mustacheboy (for it was upon your blog that I realized I am comment-challenged) I don't think I'll ever know how to win your Japanese transistor radio game. I still don't even know why I'm Ms. Byng.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

I want

a man.

That is all.

Friday, December 08, 2006

More orange juice

I woke up smiling. I think it was partially having a text conversation with the Native at 4 am, and partially waking up to Christmas music.

I slept with my head the opposite direction I usually do.

And then I got an A on my Physics test.

And I drank more orange juice.

In a much better mood today. I haven't forgotten yesterday or what I was feeling, and I know it could return at any second, so I'm being careful.

And it's time for homework. And a blanket.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Orange juice

Sleep and a shower didn't particularly help my mood. In fact, my sleep was far from peaceful, and I was tired today.

Not to mention irritable.

And homesick.

The Native was able to temporarily cheer me up (thank you my dear friend) but I came home from my concert and had the same sick, empty feeling I've had most of the day. I frosted two boxes of sugar cookies. Roommate B brought home two handwarmer packets that will last until midnight. That made me smile.

But now, I just want to drink some orange juice and snuggle up in bed and sleep without dreaming.

If I can sleep.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Slightly depressed...

There is a cloud of schoolness hanging over me. I've been trying to catch up, but I have this fear that everything is going to dump out all over me. I'm trying! And tomorrow will be better.

I'm also suddenly homesick. I want more than anything for finals to be over so I can go home again.

I am just tired. A shower and some sleep will help. And the homework will keep me distracted.


It will be okay.

Goodnight all.


When we got home from Roommate B's concert last night, there was a large puddle on the floor.

Even though we never set the thermostat higher than 70, it mysteriously gets changed to 55-60 immediately after we set it.

Earlier in the week, Roommate B found a piece of pizza in the vegetable drawer. Not wrapped or anything. A naked slice of pizza just chillin in the drawer.

At about 11:00 pm last night (and on several other occasions), Britney Spears music was being blasted in our apartment. We hoped for a call from the neighbors to tell us to shut it off, but it never came.

We can never find our TV remote. It's always buried in the couch.

Even though we have a DISHWASHER, there are always dirty dishes in the sink.

What the HECK is going on?

Sunday, December 03, 2006


For those of you concerned, my neck was doing much better. Until today. It recracked itself. Not as badly, but it does hurt again. It's a work in progress I suppose...

But enough about necks (you happy, Guillermo?). Thought I'd just update on the past couple of days. On Wednesday I gave my number to a random cute/nice guy I met in the Wilk. It was way beyond my comfort zone to do such a thing, but I did it. Then I ran for my life. He never called.

A few weeks ago, I bought a little Hershey's cookbook full of recipes for amazing treats. Roommate B and I decided to go all out and cook anything that looked remotely delicious. So Thursday night we spent over $70 on groceries (but we saved $40 with our Smith's card) and cooked all day Friday while watching the Nightmare Before Christmas. Twice. We rented Elf and watched it that night. Yesterday we finished up our cooking and then, with aching stomachs, we watched A Muppet Christmas Carol and Teen Girl Squad cartoons to end the day. If anyone wants to be my friend, come over and I'll give you treats. We have plenty.

I went to Park City yesterday afternoon for a bell gig. It was 17 degrees when we got there, and 13 degrees when we left. For me, that was a bit too cold, especially since we played chimes outside for an hour, and by the end of the night I was ready to hack my toes off because they hurt so bad. It was fun though. And I got to try Mexican hot chocolate. SO GOOD.

So I'm basically just enjoying the Christmas music and decorations and goodies and all the hoopla that comes with the season. The snow is beautiful (even though I'm not a fan of the cold), and I'm way excited to go home after finals.