Thursday, September 27, 2012

On House Cleaning.

Our house has been a disaster lately.

I've never claimed to be the world's tidiest person, but lately I have been feeling a lot of pressure to have a perfectly clean home to show off our perfectly decorated new married apartment because somehow it is "living the dream" to live in a spotless space where we cook grilled goat cheese sandwiches and eat greek yogurt with fresh blueberries and put it all on Instagram which then sends it to Twitter which will then post my Instagrammed-Tweet on Facebook.

Imagine the notifications.

Now, don't get me wrong. Cj and I do our best to clean up when we can. We put our dishes in the dishwasher, even vacuum periodically. So why do I feel the need to apologize to people when they come over and find that our school books are spread all over the living room floor, or see that there is five piles of clothes in our room because that is the exact amount of outfits I had to try on this morning to make sure I had just the right one on for the poetry reading I was going to today.

What should I really say about that?

"Sorry. We've been really busy living fulfilling and wonderful lives?"

Because we have.

We go to school. We learn wonderful things and think about changing the world even though we are just a history major and a poetry major and nobody seems to care too much about either of those things these days.

We work. I attempt to teach new college students how to feel passionate about expressing their opinion, or even simply how to value their own opinion. Cj spends his nights officiating intramural sports while I participate in said sports and do my best not to freak out when he throws a flag on me in a football game even though I do not think I was flag-guarding (I usually am.)

We do church stuff. We go to our church's temple and we read our scriptures and we even pray to God every night for a really long time because we have a lot to say and a lot going on and mostly because we end up laughing or falling asleep somewhere in the middle and usually have to start over.

We have family things. And friend things. And we're running a marathon next weekend. And we've got some big trips planned. And we've got some small trips planned. And we like people so we want to see them all the time, and we want to call them all the time. We like TV and we like watching it together. We like when Scrubs is on every night at 11 and we like not going to bed early like we promised ourselves we would because we can't help but stay up and watch it. We like laughing our heads off and we do it a lot. Maybe some nights Cj will say "what should we do tonight?" And I might say "the same thing we do every night Cj. Try and take over the world." And then we laugh our heads off because that is always the stupidest joke ever but we still laugh because we love 90's cartoons and we love that we are almost exactly the same age, only 25 days apart, so we both watched all the same cartoons growing up, and we love that we get each other that way and mostly we just really freaking love each other.

And when you love each other, and you love your job, and you love your friends and your life, you just really don't care if your house is that clean.

So this is my final apology. I'm going to stop worrying and keep living, despite the fact that my suitcase from last weekend is still sitting in our hallway, unpacked and in the way.

Sorry I'm not sorry.


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

On Losing Everything.

The day after posting on Facebook that I have recently lost my house keys, mail keys, driver's license and credit cards (wallet), my soccer cleats and my favorite black boots...I somehow managed to lose my car keys in Smith's.

After about thirty minutes of searching and one ba-jillion promises to God that I would stop eating the brownies on our counter and instead eat the fiber one bars that are only 90 calories and much better for me if He would just help me find my keys, a kind person turned them in to the front desk.


I just couldn't imagine calling Cj and telling him I lost the only remaining key (of any kind) we have to our name. Also it was getting really awkward following the customer service lady around and trying to make small talk while I was dying a little bit inside.

It has been a few weeks of not only losing everything but forgetting everything, breaking everything and just...messing things up. Ever have weeks like that?After I loaded my groceries I sat in my car and cried a little because, well, seriously??? What is wrong with me??


Tonight at dinner Cj and I were talking about why I have been so absent-minded lately and I decided that it was probably God telling me that I am a lost cause and that I should quit all major responsibilities in my life and just stay home and watch Jeopardy.

Seeing as how I am pretty good at Jeopardy and second-as-good at Wheel of Fortune (which happens to air right afterward) it seemed like a pretty logical reason to me.

Someone has to be the Jeopardy person. It might as well be me.

I told a friend this plan and she said this: "God does not create lost causes. It would be awful to believe that your only lot in life was to do nothing of importance."

And I thought about it for a while, and while her answer was really sweet I decided "not really."

Because I really like the new pillows we have on our couch and I'm especially fond of sewing and/or when the category on Jeopardy has anything to do with the TV show 30 Rock (which has only happened once but I'll be darned if I didn't get every single answer right.)

Now, I don't mean for this blog post to take a dramatic turn but I can just feel it happening and I'm going to go with it. Because somewhere in the middle of my wallowing-in-self-pity and Final Jeopardy I learned that the levvy in my hometown of Santa Clara, UT broke, seriously damaging 25-30 homes and small businesses.

This has happened to us before. Flooding, that is.

 In 2005 my town flooded enough for me to watch dozens of homes literally wash away in a raging river. I remember staying up through the night on "flood watch" with my friends, as we sat at the edge of a cul-de-sac and radioed in as more pieces of our town broke off and fell in.

This experience taught me that losing a home is tragic. I know it seems obvious when I write it out like that, but I think before that I always equated tragedy with only death.

But this. This was tragic. It was tragic when my close friend and advisor lost all of his family pictures and childhood memories to the flood. Tragic when our family friends lost their new home that was scheduled to be finished in less than two weeks after years of building. And now, it is tragic again to hear of friends and neighbors who have lost their businesses and possessions to a natural disaster that you never imagine will happen in your dry desert.

Your home is a part of your family, so is your hometown. And, just like in 2005, the thing that can be done is to get off your couch (and turn off the TV) and help. Use your hands. Use your kindness. That is what you do when something awful happens. Only I am here, and they are there, which is hard. It's hard not to be there for your people when something tragic happens.

I don't know how this silly post turned into me sharing my heartfelt feelings about the home and the people I love. Sometimes writing takes you places you didn't plan on being.

What I do know is that the past two weeks I have felt like my own levvy was knocked down. Like I have been my own personal flash flood, destroying everything in my life. What can I do? Sometimes, it rains. And sometimes, it rains so hard that a giant wall of water takes down your favorite gas station.

And so, I've decided. I'm going to stop being the flood and start being...not the flood. And I'm going to do that by remembering cheesy and relevant ideas like this:

Even if I have lost all major items that help my life to function, I have in no ways lost everything. Today was a reminder that it could always be worse. That I really don't have it that bad.

Praying for Santa Clara, praying for America. And you, my friends, can too.



Tuesday, September 4, 2012


Cj and I made a 5 second decision on our way to Costco to, instead, be on our way to St. George. 

It is proof that sometimes overly-rushed, un-thought-out and somewhat immature decisions can, in fact, be the best ones. 

We spent the weekend eating cilantro-lime shrimp tacos, surprising all of our friends and family one by one, and watching American Pickers with my parents. 

My Uncle Dave put it best when he said: "Funny how all roads lead to bulk food or Mom's cooking."

I sure am glad we chose the "Mom's cooking" road this weekend.
 It was more delicious and involved sleeping on that awesome Serta in my brother's bedroom. 

St. George 4 Life. 

(No seriously. Should we live there forever? You can vote on it.)