Thursday, August 29, 2013


Have I mentioned yet how much I love learning things?? I'm pretty sure I have. ;)

So the class I am taking is about Theories in the field of Communication. Theories are my very favorite things to learn about in school. I enjoy seeing all the different ways to look at the world and how to apply it to different situations. My very, VERY favorite class has been Theories of Personality - learning about different psychologists' theories and how they applied it in practice. So awesome.

And now I have this class and I'm flipping out because I've already learned things!! I am in the middle of my chapter readings (you know I love a class when I actually do the readings) and I finished the chapter on Genderlect Styles. It's all about how men and women communicate with each other and within their own genders. I liked hearing this slightly different take on it. Instead of the usual "men are always dominating in conversations" they took the stance of "men and women are simply speaking in a different dialect."

I loved it. Throughout the entire chapter they talked about Deborah Tannen's book You Just Don't Understand. It sounds pretty incredible in helping us learn to understand each other's "dialect" better. I'm hoping to check it out from the library soon!I can't wait to keep learning about these different theories.

These are the moments when I realize how blessed I am (we are) to be in a place where I can learn and grow as much as I want. I have the blessing of schooling in my life, and I can know things that so many others may not know. I am blessed to share knowledge with any others that want to hear it. An education is a true blessing in life and I am grateful for it every day.

I love learning!!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013


I am posting for the first time from my phone. Forgive me if it ends up going skeewhompus.
Today I saw a funny, but true statement from a Buzzfeed post. It was a bunch of quotes from different comedians about working and doing what you love.

Don't become something just because someone else wants you to, or because it's easy; you won't be happy. You have to do what you really, really, really, really want to do, even if it scares the [crap] out of you. --Kristen Wiig 
(I took out the other 4-letter word that was there originally.)

I thought it was appropriate for today since I am returning to school. Tonight is my first class. I'm taking a prerequisite course in order to apply for a graduate program. And I'm actually excited! If you had asked me last year right after I graduated if I'd consider going to Grad School I would've given you a very quick and firm, "no." But I've learned a few things about myself since then.

At work we take a survey/quiz thingy called Strengths Quest. It rates you based on your answers on 30-something different traits, or strengths. It gives you a Top 5 strengths that we then try to use to increase our teamwork and talents. It's more complicated than it sounds, but it's legit. It's made and administered by the Gallup people. And I love it. It really helps me learn why I do things a certain way, and see how I can use those strengths in the workplace and at home.

Anyway, one of my Top 5 is Learner. I really enjoy learning things just for the journey of learning. I don't necessarily want to test my knowledge or show it off. I just love soaking up new information and seeing what I can do with that knowledge.

So when I started yearning to be back in the classroom, I knew what was going on. I was hesitant because I dislike tests and papers very much. And I was worried about time committments. But I knew I would enjoy learning and seeing what I can glean from other people's knowledge. Also, I get some great benefits from working on campus, and it makes taking classes very feasible.

Now here I go. I'm very nervous, and that excites me. Because then I know I'm  taking a risk and I'm going to grow from the experience.

On to a new journey!!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013


Do you know those moments/days/weeks when you don't feel truly connected to your special someone? It could be your spouse, child, mother, or good friend. I don't usually have those moments, but when I do I think it's safe to say I don't like it. At all.

Mosiah 18:21
And he commanded them that there should be no contention one with another, but that they should look forward with one eye, having one faith and one baptism, having their hearts knit together in unity and in love one towards another.
[Emphasis added by me.]

I have always loved scriptures about people who have unity in their communities through love and a single purpose of heart. Because I want this same principle in my marriage, I have decided to think of some ways I can reconnect with my hubby when I occasionally do have those moments of disconnect.

Turn off the TV and really talk to him about his day/activities/etc. for at least 15 minutes each day. Usually when we come home we talk about our day with the TV on and we're playing on our phones. So we need to take away the distractions and really communicate and talk to each other.

Have a good hug. I've talked about The Five Love Languages before, and I super love that book. (Speaking of, I should re-read that. It's been a while.) I know that Steve's top love language is physical touch. The days when one of us is really stressed, we have a long hug and it seems like the stress starts to melt away. So we need to have a regular good hug and it could help us connect and de-stress.

I'm starting out simple. I think small and simple things help in very large ways in the long-run. We'll see how this works out and if hubby will be on board with reconnecting.

Any other ideas on reconnecting with special people in your life? Any ways to keep some unity in your family relationships?

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Book Worm

Ever since I graduated with my bachelor's degree (spring of 2012) I recommitted to reading for pleasure. I especially started reading much more this summer. I've particularly been interested in reading the "classics." I've been wanting to read those older or timeless types of books that everyone has read (except for me).

Here are a few of my favorites that I've read lately:

Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
I was so surprised with how much I enjoyed this book. It is huge and I was not even sure I'd be motivated enough to finish reading it. But I could NOT put it down!! There were so many details and different storylines that went into this story. There were times when I wanted to smack Scarlet back to No Man's Land because of her pride and hurtfulness. And there were times when I wanted to hug her because of her loyalty. I came to love Scarlet and enjoyed watching her overcome her pride and find love. I heard there was a sequel and I need to read it to see what happens to Scarlet and her search for love and a future!!

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
This was another surprise - big time. I was so confused at the beginning and thought it was going to be a ghost story or something. But I loved reading about how Jane grew and learned about herself through all her hardship and trials. I also enjoyed seeing the love grow between Jane and Mr. Rochester. Part of what I love about love stories is the people learning to overcome their pride and show their love. (See a pattern here?) Plus, there are some other very spooky details that added another dimension throughout the story.

Emma by Jane Austen
Now, this is one that I was surprised I did not like very much. It is a similar style to Jane Eyre, and it's an old-timey love story. Those are things I loved about Jane Eyre. Not to mention how crazy people are about Jane Austen. But I couldn't really love the characters. I don't know if I just couldn't relate very well, or if I just didn't like the story. But good for a mushy love triangle story, for sure.

I have also been reading a few religious historical fiction novels. I've really enjoyed them because they help me put the story lines together and keep things straight in my mind when I can picture things through novel-form. (Is that a thing?) I'll write about a few of them another time.

Bottom line: I mostly read these books to cross them off a list of things I really wanted to do. Just to say I did it. And I ended up finding some new favorite books that I will hopefully buy soon for my personal library. Plus, reading rocks. There is nothing like getting caught up in another story of someone's life and wondering where their mind will take you.

Monday, August 19, 2013

The Creative Process

As you all know, I truly enjoy being creative. I don't allllways come through on the motivation to carry out my inspirations...but I really enjoy coming up with an idea, formulating a plan, starting a project, and then seeing a finished product. It's such a rush to see something I made with my own hands.

Well, I am preparing to take the GRE later this year, and I read a tip in my GRE prep book to read scientific/scholarly articles on a regular basis. This helps you learn how to navigate and understand academic language a little easier. That skill will help me on the reading and comprehension parts of the test. I figure it will also help me learn styles and patterns for the writing portion.

Anyway, this is all leading to the article I read today. I decided to read from the Scientific American website lately. When I looked at the website today, there was a featured article that was about the creative process and how that works in the brain. That immediately sparked my interest. I love being creative and I love learning how the brain works. Some of my favorite classes in my psychology minor were the ones where we talked about the brain, what it does, and how things interact and create what we do. If it wasn't so much thinking, I'd think about being a Neuroscientist or something. ;)

Here is the article I read today:  The Real Neuroscience of Creativity. It was a real eye opener about how the idea of the left and right sides of the brain doing completely different things isn't exactly true. It makes sense when you think about it. When you are creating things, you use your spatial skills, your math skills, your logical/critical thinking about the future, and so on. It's crazy, but I love thinking about thinking. Once again, if it wasn't so much crazy thinking (and working in crazy-difficult situations), I would be a psychologist or psychiatrist or something.

Anyway, good times thinking about thinking and how my brain works. Brains are cool. Humans are amazing.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013


Shakes VS Ice Cream

Steve and I occasionally get in arguments about this topic. It's silly and I am very grateful this is one of the few things we ever argue about. I grew up in Indiana until I graduated high school. I moved to Utah and suddenly everyone started calling this (see below) a shake:

I remember the first time I ordered a "shake." Someone handed this to me and I was nearly petrified. A shake? This is a shake???? In Indiana, a shake is something you drink through a straw. "Shake" is short for "milkshake" ... which is something you drink. You can use a spoon if you want, but really you have to drink it at some point.

In Utah, a shake is just ice cream. Like a Blizzard or a Glacier. (This is what they were usually called in Indy.) You can't drink it. You must use a spoon. That picture is NOT a shake. I don't care what you say, it isn't.

And don't even get me started about the "shake" sizes in Utah. The one I am holding in that picture was a size "mini." It was the size of a medium drink cup ... called a mini! What?! No.

I'm not looking for an argument. I just need you all to know that I am right on this. That's all. ;)

PS. If you ever go to St. George, Utah, go to Iceberg. Yummy food and really good shakes ice cream.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Transcriber problems

As many of you know (all of you since you are mostly family and close friends) I am a transcriber. Many misunderstandings and confusion comes from this job title. Many all people do not know what that really is.

In a nutshell, this is generally how the conversation usually goes:

New acquaintance/teacher: So what do you do for a living/in my classroom?
Me: I go to the classroom with a student and I provide real-time captioning. Basically I type really fast while the student watches what I type to provide communication access.

New acquaintance/teacher: Oh really? That's cool. So you do the sign language stuff then?

Me: No. (*thinking* Did I mention ASL anywhere in that response?)


Tuesday, August 6, 2013


Today we are celebrating our FIVE YEAR anniversary! It is so insane and I cannot believe it has been this long! For our actual anniversary we went and saw Grown Ups 2. It was stupid and we loved it. So there ya go!

But this post is going to go over the trip we took to Cedar City for our 5th Anniversary. We decided since it was our 5th we should do something a little different than just the one night away. We decided to go the Shakespeare festival in Cedar City. We both enjoy theatre and thought it would be great.

And we're off!

Pretty much I was obsessed with the beautiful-ness on the drive down.
(These pictures are all natural and not edited at all.)

The first show we saw was Peter and the Starcatcher. Cool set, huh? Except those ships were just the places where the sound effect/music people were. It was a cute show that is based on a novel. The performers were incredible. But it wasn't my favorite show in the world. Just not my favorite type of theatre.

Right before our next show, we went to the Green Show. It was cute to see some performers in those costumes. And it was nice to be outside. Kind of a silly show.

Later that night we saw Anything Goes. I have seen this show before and I really enjoy the music, dancing, and fun story. And these performers were amazing as well! And believe it or not, I didn't realize how many different shows are all in the same places. This stage is the same stage as what we saw earlier in the afternoon. I can't imagine the work they go through immediately after shows are finished to get things ready for the next show. But I loved this show! I really enjoy the stereotypical, classic type of theatre.

We found a fun, local BBQ place. PS-We reeeeally love BBQ. And it was yummy. Other than this place, we really couldn't find another local place we found appealing. It made me sad, but it was fine. Applebee's treated us well. ;)

Here were some statues that were around the theatre where we saw our shows.
King Leer/Lear? I can't remember
The man this is all for.

The second day of our trip we visited St. George. We had never been to that temple. We have a tradition to do sealings in the temple on our anniversary. Since we were only about an hour away from St. George, we decided to go there.
My artsy picture of the temple.
Luckily there was a wedding photographer waiting for his people to come out, so he kindly took our picture for us. Yesss.

When we got home we were going to go on a scenic drive in the Canyon Breaks National Park. Well, on the way up to the park, we got these amazing pictures. It was mostly in the Dixie National Forest. The drive through there was super scenic anyway. And before we even got there, it was twisty-turny enough for me to feel sick. So we just turned around and enjoyed these pictures.
This picture was partially accidental. And it turned out beautifully!

Steve's smile looks funky here, but it's still cute.
Well it was a lovely anniversary. And I'm so glad we got to spend the weekend together. Happy FIVE YEARS to my hubby! And here is to the rest of eternity!!