So this is the new year

2010 proved to be the best year of my life thus far. I wasn't sure how it would feel, to be a married person at 21. I worried about being too young, not having things figured out, and if I would feel like a different person.

Instead, 2010 has made me feel more loved than I have ever felt. It might not be a terribly exciting life, but it is rich and full of growth.


January: I went to Boston with Kevin for the first time, and introduced him to the beauty that is Mike's Pastries. I also decided I wanted to time travel.


February: I had a countdown to love, and Kevin and I celebrated our first Valentines day (total disaster). Let's make this next one's better.


March: We got engaged on Kevin's birthday between a sandwich of stars. One of the happiest days in my life.


April: We celebrated Easter together for the first time, and I decided that I love interior design.


May: We went to Brian Regan in St. George, and laughed until we cried.


June: I had a crazy month, started a great job, and took our engagements.


July: We took our bridals, threw a party, and went boating a lot.



August: We got married. Best day of my life. And we went to Paradise on our honeymoon.


September: We threw "Fiesta for Jesta" and got used to married life.


October: I got Lasik. Also, I decided I could handle Kevin going to medical school.


November: We went to Columbus and accidentally Chicago for Thanksgiving.

December: We celebrated my birthday, my graduation, and our first Christmas.

I will always love you 2010.


Winter Song


"They say that things just cannot grow,
Beneath the winter snow.
Or so I have been told.

I still believe in summer days,
The seasons always change
And life will find a way."

- Sara Bareilles


Favorite Young Adult Reads

I have been asked what my favorite books are several times, but there are way too many to do one post about. I have had a love affair with reading since I was seven years old.

Here are my favorite young adult books - one of my favorite genres. I have read each of these books more than once and would recommend them to anyone - teenager or adult.

Bloomability: Sharon Creech "And that was the last week of my first life."

Walk Two Moons: Sharon Creech "Sometimes you know in your heart you love someone, but you have to go away before your head can figure it out."

The Hunger Games: Suzanne Collins "You know, you could live a thousand lifetimes and not deserve him."

The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles: Julie Andrews Edwards "Pax amor et lepos in iocando."
What My Mother Doesn't Know: Sonya Sones "And, when he pulls me to him and presses his lips to mine. It feels as if our souls are kissing. And, it‘s exactly how I used to imagine it. Only all that love, all that need, is pouring out of both of us.”

The Luckiest Girl: Beverly Cleary "The wonderful way you have of looking as if you thought something exciting was about to happen."

The Chosen: Chaim Potok "One learns of the pain of others by suffering one's own pain, by turning inside oneself, by finding one's own soul. And it is important to know of pain. It destroys our self pride, our arrogance, our indifference towards others."

Stargirl: Jerry Spinelli "Who are you if you lose your favorite person? Can you lose your favorite person without losing yourself?

Kristy's Great Idea (and all Baby-sitters club books: Ann M. Martin "The Best Friends You'll Ever Have!"

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants: Ann Brashares "Wear them. They'll make you brave."

Speak: Laurie Halse Anderson "You have to know what you stand for, not just what you stand against."

Mary, Bloody Mary (and The Young Royals books): Carolyn Meyer "You must be queen Mary, no matter what the cost to me."



Christmas was wonderful. We had two Christmas mornings - one with my family in Alpine that consisted of a 6:00 am wake-up call by my 8 year old sister. She jumped on our bed and when I told her that no one else wanted to wake up until 8:00 this year, she stayed in bed next to me and told me Christmas stories until everyone else was ready to wake up. We opened presents, and I received the sewing machine I have wanted for months.

Sunday morning Kevin and I had our own celebration. We planned on eating a big breakfast together, but since we are moving this week we haven't gone grocery shopping in awhile. We feasted on Doritos and Junior Mints (the only thing in our cupboards) and received DVD players from each other (totally serious) and I also got the bookshelf I wanted and the cutest mini palm tree.

I love Christmas, and thought I would be sad when it ended but instead I felt grateful.

I hope yours was as imperfectly perfect as ours was.




I think that I shall never see
A poem as lovely as a tree.

Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

- Joyce Kilmer


Snow Day

We woke up to a foot of snow in Utah. It wouldn't be so bad except I have to work at 8.

I opted instead to cuddle with the husband all morning, and find every possible way to stay cozy before trudging through the snow and braving the freeway.

I think it worked.



Kevin took me to Malawi's pizza for my birthday dinner. I had been there once before but it was for a business luncheon, so it wasn't quite as, umm, enjoyable. That place is so cool though. For every meal you purchase they donate a meal to a child in Africa. Knowing that makes me want to eat there every week.

We shared the Island Retreat pizza (mozzarella, grilled pineapple, candied ham and pine-nuts), a fabulous chicken caesar salad, and this gorgeous specimen. Raspberries, blueberries and blackberries on top of marscapone cream, with mint. There were a lot of terrific things about my weekend, and this pizza was definitely one of them.

Also, thank you for your sweet notes. You are all so nice, and I appreciate that you took the time to answer my request in my last post.

Also, Kevin and I are in the process of selling a lot of things, electronics, clothing, furniture, etc. because our new apartment is much smaller. Is anyone interested in me setting up a shop, or is that not cool?

Also, I kind of can't believe Christmas is so soon.


Honest to Blog


I have friends tell me all the time that they read my blog. I have had people in my classes introduce themselves to tell me that they read it - even when I have never met them before. I have even been approached in stores and in public by those who read my blog.

I admit, I started my blog when I was a freshman in college because I was a bad journal writer and I wanted my ex-boyfriend to be able to read what I was thinking about him (so sad but true). It has evolved into something that I don't only love and look forward to, but also something therapeutic for me. It made me realize that I enjoy writing and that others actually read what I write. I have also made friends in unexpected places that I actually rely on and trust.

That being said, I know I have readers. What do you readers like to read about? My thoughts, stories about things that have happened to me, poems, design? Do you want to see what I wear? How I decorate my apartment? Or are there enough blogs like that?

I am not a talented photographer, I don't have any experience with cooking really and I am a wanna-be interior designer. I am not going to pretend I am an expert on anything really. So if we can just be honest for a minute, what do you like about my blog (if anything) and what would you like to see more of?


Mom's Christmas Tree

My entire life I have watched my mom, in awe of her doing everything she does for everyone but herself. She never backs out on what she says she will do. She always comes through for me. Her consistency, her unconditional love, her willingness to do the right thing no matter the cost is what inspires me most.

When I was little I remember her singing and dancing as we set up our Christmas decorations. She would wave her hands in the air and sing "Santa Claus is Coming to Town," and "Sleigh Ride." When I was in junior high I was probably embarrassed about it. Now I look forward to it every year, and I will probably do the same.

Mom, you are the reason I love music, books and life.
And you are the reason I love Christmas.




Looking at this photo from Tiffany's Holiday Campaign made me wonder when my life will be that way. Two beautiful children in tow, holiday shopping as a family - at Tiffany's wouldn't hurt.

It is so easy to want to skip this part of life, where Kevin stresses about getting into medical school, and getting near-perfect grades. Where the constant weight of finances, and the unknown of where our life will go next and where we will be living in a couple years bears down on me. When we will have our first child, and what they will be like and how we will know what to do when he or she comes.

Lately I wake up in the middle of the night and I can't fall back asleep because all I can think about is these worries, and these uncertainties. I feel so afraid for what is ahead, and if I will be ready for it when it comes.

Kevin told me last night before we fell asleep that he can't wait for my birthday next year already. And I realized that even though he is the source of much of my worrying - late nights at the library, a great MCAT score, a secure place for us, I also realize that he is my anchor. Anywhere he goes, I will go too.

I'll follow that kid anywhere.




I know that on my birthday I should have some profound thoughts, but all I keep thinking about is W.S Merwin's poem "A Birthday," and how it speaks to me all throughout the year, but especially on my birthday its words just run through my mind.

Something continues and I don't know what to call it
though the language is full of suggestions
in the way of language
but they are all anonymous
and it's almost your birthday music next to my bones

these nights we hear the horses running in the rain
it stops and the moon comes out and we are still here
the leaks in the roof go on dripping after the rain has passed
smell of ginger flowers slips through the dark house
down near the sea the slow heart of the beacon flashes

the long way to you is still tied to me but it brought me to you
I keep wanting to give you what is already yours
it is the morning of the mornings together
breath of summer oh my found one
the sleep in the same current and each waking to you

when I open my eyes you are what I wanted to see.

I like 22. I think it will be my best year yet.

(last year's birthday)




The other day I told my eight year old sister that she was cute.
She replied, "I don't want to be cute, I want to be cool."

And even though I think being cute is better than being cool,
I know where she is coming from.

I don't want to be stylish,
I want to be elegant.

I don't want to be right,
I want to be kind.

I don't want fame,
I want love.

I don't want talent,
I want genius.

photo via


Last Class


My last class was yesterday. But I didn't treat it like my last class. I always imagined leaving class in tears, shaking my professor's hand, and retreating to the window overlooking the terrace so I could cry in peace, leaving the past four years behind.

But instead I hurried out, tripping over someone's backpack on my way, and rushed to my car to get out of the cold. I forgot to cry, and I didn't even sit on the terrace because I was late for work. The rest of the day I hurried around - attending meetings, signing forms, writing articles. And it wasn't until now, sitting at my desk again, that I even considered that my last class of my undergrad was yesterday, and that, in fact, I finished what I decided to start over five years ago, when I prayed every night that I would get into BYU, and that I would find everything I wanted to find in life there.

And I did. Four years of college, three different states, several different boyfriends, one broken heart, one perfect year with the promise of a ring, wedding plans, and the love of my life. The day I woke up and decided I wanted to be a writer.

Hundreds of books, thousands of pages, millions of thoughts, fifteen different roommates, more time alone than I ever thought I wanted, but time that showed me who I am as a person and who I can be if I choose to be her.

High school was fun, but college was illuminating.
It filled my life with light.

photo via


The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo


"I want you to find out who in the family murdered Harriet,
and who since then has spent almost forty years trying to
drive me insane." (4.195)

Over Thanksgiving Break I read Stieg Larsson's "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo." Most of my family was pretty surprised at the choice, since crime novels aren't exactly my genre of choice. I have to say that for a crime novel, it was pretty intriguing, and the story line was fascinating. However, I would probably not recommend this book.

The book was extremely violent and at times brutal and disgusting. The sexuality was explicit, as was the language. I am not an innocent reader necessarily, but this was over the top. The message of females being the victims of male violence was good I think, because anything to raise awareness is good, but as far as an inspiring, uplifting novel goes, this isn't one of them. Not to mention it is 600 + pages, and personally there is better literature I could have spent my time with.

Have you read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo? What did you think?


Apartment Living

I sent Kevin these images as inspiration for decorating the new condo we signed on last week. It is a beautiful condo, with neutral walls, vaulted ceilings, and high pile carpet. A little on the small side, but still perfect for the two of us.

When he saw the images he said as politely as possible, "You do realize that I am a boy, and I will be living there too, right?" While it's true that my style is a little girly, I told Kevin that he can decorate his closet any way he wants. :)



Kevin surprised me on Friday night and took me to the Nutcracker at Capital Theater in Salt Lake. I have always loved ballets, but this time felt different than any other ballet I have been to.

Maybe it was because it was my first ballet with Kevin, and while they aren't exactly his thing, that made it even better when he let me squeeze his hand during a particularly beautiful part or impressive lift. Maybe it was because there is nothing like the Nutcracker that helps me get in the spirit of Christmas. Or maybe it was because the whole thing was a surprise and it was so sweet it was overwhelming.

Whatever it was, the Nutcracker was magical. During the Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy, with white snow falling all over the stage, and the ballerina's dressed in icy blue, tears fell freely down my face. I love our bodies. I love art. I love my husband.

And I love the Nutcracker for reminding me all of those things I love.


Without Words


I wonder what it was like before we had words,
words that now guide us through our actions
but then, just actions.

Would you laugh at things I did,
not things I said
like now when your eyes squint and your face lifts.

Something tells me that I
would still feel more loved than I could realize
Even without the verbs, and the pronouns,

That slide from your lips,
and remind me of my place
in this world of words.

image via



Last week I had the opportunity to go to a business lunch with Ajay Rochester, past host of Biggest Loser Australia and author of four dieting books. She was both delightful and inspirational. One of the most hilarious people I have ever met as well.

She shared with us her weight loss journey, and spoke about her different charity work involving weight loss. She is the ambassador for the Eating Disorders Foundation, which is something I feel very strong about. Her story really motivated me, not necessarily to lose weight, but to deliberately live my life.

Although she is not exceptionally famous in the U.S.A, she is definitely someone worth knowing about. Seriously delightful. Inside and out.


Clean White Snow


It's not that I mean to hate snow.
It's just that it is so easy to hate.
The pain of pulling yourself out of your warm bed in the morning,
realizing that you may never be truly warm for the rest of the day.

But this morning, after scraping off the ice and snow from my windshield,
pulling out of our driveway, my breath visible inside my car,
I saw that sometime in the night the neighbor cat left footprints in the snow,
circling the driveway, the trees, and the sidewalk.

I raised my head and saw our neighbor boy walking to the bus stop.
Six or seven, with a blue coat and Superman backpack to match.
I watched him bend down every couple steps,
pressing his gloved hand into the snow.

I watched him as he made tracks on his all-fours,
that also circled the driveway, the trees, and the sidewalk,
his tiny tracks marking his space in this big world.
and I decided that I could love snow too.