On Faith

Courage is so weak sometimes,
and on days like this
I need a rare form of faith.
I know it exists,
I have seen it -
but more often have felt it.
And when I live on days like this
with fear in my life,
I rely on this faith.

It is so small,
(but it is the most real.)








Monday night before the wedding, the immediate families of the bride and groom went to the The Roof restaurant, overlooking the Salt Lake temple. Kevin and I were married in that temple almost nine months ago, and every time I go there or see it I am reminded of my feelings on our wedding day. Such incomprehensible love. During our sealing, I couldn't keep the tears from filling my eyes. I don't know if I have ever felt such joy, and it is possible I will never feel such joy again in this life.

Julie and Kevin M. were so happy all night - anticipating and anxiously awaiting their marriage in the morning. After waiting three years to get married, Julie kept saying, "I can't believe it's here."

I know how she felt. Wedding planning can be stressful and consuming, and sometimes it is easy to forget why you are getting married in the first place. It's not about the wedding at all. It's about the marriage - and it was so great to see their happiness, because I think they really understood that.


Style Me Pretty


Our wedding was featured on Style Me Pretty yesterday. Such an honor, since it is my favorite wedding blog of all time. Pretty good timing as well, because we were at Julie and Kevin's wedding yesterday - such a beautiful day. I know I have a lot of weddings to attend in my lifetime, which is fine with me. Each one I attend reminds me of how lucky I am to be where I am with who I am.

Check out the feature here.

More on the wedding soon.

photo via


Brave New World

"There's always soma to calm your anger, to reconcile you to your enemies, to make you patient and long-suffering. In the past you could only accomplish these things by making a great effort and after years of hard moral training. Now, you swallow two or three half-gramme tablets, and there you are. Anybody can be virtuous now. You can carry at least half your morality about in a bottle. Christianity without tears-that's what soma is."

Brave New World by Huxley was my second book on cd. I thought it was comparable to 1984 and Fahrenheit 451. A seemingly "progressive" future, rich with satire, and a conservative undertone of relying on the past for what is real.

I think I liked it... I really liked the narrator's voice - his British accent was rich and pleasant, and I maybe drifted off while driving listening to his voice, not necessarily the story itself. The story was interesting, and a very disturbing way to look at the future of our planet. Much of it revolved around a drug called "Soma". Soma is basically a happy pill - taken whenever individuals begin to feel anything but happy. The entire focus of the people in this society revolves around pleasure, therefore there is a lot of erotic content. (A lot of it is shockingly erotic.)

A "savage" named John is introduced to this new society, and the juxtaposition of an uncivilized and over-civilized society followed. I really loved John. He was so refreshing after reading about the characters in the futuristic society. I loved when he cried over Linda, and when he spoke about Othello and when he talked about Jesus. I hope, that if our society ever came to that - I would be a lot more like John and a lot less like everyone else.

Ultimately, it wasn't exactly an enjoyable read, but it was interesting. If you like futuristic societies, and are not afraid of the "Big Brother" approach, you might like it.

Have you read it? What did you think?




Sister gets home from Jerusalem today. I can't think about it without getting emotional. Four months might not seem like a long time, but it feels so long to me. People ask me what the hardest part about getting married is, and I would like to say that it is Kevin's way of not doing the dishes, or playing on his iPhone while I am talking to him, or extraordinary utility bills, but to be honest it would have to be not living with Jess, or knowing that I probably will never live with her again.

I love being married, and I love my husband more than anything. But anyone who has a sister I think knows what I mean when I say that there is something about waking up together and sharing a bathroom sink and coming home late and talking even later, and living on the trampoline and making up dances and lip syncs endlessly and fighting over clothes and practicing duets until we can't see the music because we are laughing so hard that a boy, no matter how perfect and hilarious and good to me is, can't really satisfy entirely.

"I like to see people reunited, I like to see people run to each other, I like the kissing and the crying, I like the impatience, the stories that the mouth can't tell fast enough, the ears that aren't big enough, the eyes that can't take in all of the change, I like the hugging, the bringing together, the end of missing someone."
Jonathan Safran Foer (Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close)

I am so happy that today is my end to missing Jess. Words aren't enough.




We played mafia last night. (I am always mafia, and I always win. I blame it on my dramatic youth... And endless hours of mafia at girls camp.)

The best part of the night was when Kevin died. Death by studying. That sounds rather appropriate. If Kevin were to die from something, it would probably be from studying too much.

He makes me so proud.



I have always loved the way silhouettes look in homes, and was particularly inspired by Nicole's silhouettes in her bedroom. I bought the canvas boards at Hobby Lobby for $13 each. (Cheapest place ever possible to buy them.) Then, with Julie's help Kevin and I posed against the wall with an old fashioned lamp. It was harder than we thought it would be to match the silhouettes, and they are far from perfect, but I love the way they look in our bedroom.




It is so fun to see our apartment come along, piece by piece.




Some lovelies I am enjoying lately:

Leighton Meester: Words I Couldn't Say
Adele: Someone Like You
Brand New: Boy Who Blocked His Own Shot
Grace Mitchell: Just My Type
Maria Taylor: Song Beneath the Song
Anya Marina: Miss Halfway
Chris Martin: In the Sun
Drew and Lacey: Silly Me
Stars: Calendar Girl
Brutal Hearts: Light the Horizon
Sufjan Stevens: Casimir Puluski Day
Imogen Heap: Speeding Cars

I love inspiring music. What are you listening to lately?


Double Date

Friday night we went out for sushi with Julie and Dj. Sushi is a little tricky since I am constantly craving it, and Kevin gets sick to his stomach around even the smell of fish. Eating it for him is definitely out of the question. Happy Sumo is a good substitute because A. It doesn't smell like fish, and B. There are a lot of other things for Kevin to order. Oh, and on VIP night, you can get 50% off your entire order. Oh, and Julie and Dj get married in 8 days, so we decided to sneak in one more date before we can call them our married friends.





I ♥ Date night.

p.s. my hair is a different color now thanks to Brooke. Pictures soon.


Scenes from Apartment 11

The coziest bedroom in the world. I love how white it is. It makes the morning feel bright and clean.


This vintage blue chair with my allmodern.com pillow. I have attempted to sell it several times, because there really isn't room for it here, but every time I get an offer I back out. Its like a puppy that I love but can't keep. I want it to go to a good owner. Are you a responsible owner who will love this chair?


My makeshift nightstand. A thrift store collapsible table and an Ikea fur throw. Surprisingly functional and very soft for the time being.


My growing shelves of shoes. Kevin asks me why I need so many (there are two other rows besides these). I don't know what to tell him. Why do I need so many shoes?


My favorite scene is this one. Kevin usually shuts the door and asks me to be quiet while he studies. (Easier said than done). I love him so much. He studies all day, all night, and usually wakes up before the sun to study even more. I could complain all day about how I miss our date nights and our mornings getting ready together and our texts throughout the day but I am so proud of him that I can do without those things for a little longer.


Happy Weekend Friends.


Movie Reviews

Kevin and I have seen a lot of movies lately, most of which are new releases. I thought I would review them (just my personal opinions!). Of course I would love to hear your thoughts as well.

We loved it. It was witty, fast-paced, surprising and overall pretty delightful. I am not the biggest Angelina fan, but she wasn't so bad in this. Just her normal sultry, anything to be sexy self, but Johnny Depp was normal (for the first time since Finding Neverland maybe) and he was hilarious.

The actual overall plot of the movie was a little weird for me, but we actually really liked this, especially considering most of Jennifer Anniston's chick flicks I consider flops. The saving grace was definitely the little boy, Sebastian. I laughed for days at the very last scene of the movie. For those of you who have seen it - the birthday party and kill shelter? So funny.

Okay, Reese really let me down on this one. I usually love her movies and this one was poorly written, her character was annoying and slightly manly, and there was not really a plot. Owen Wilson really saved this one. I love that man, but overall I would not recommend this.

Probably everyone has seen this, and you should have. It is now one of my top three Disney movies along with Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast. Beautiful animation, such likable characters, and a brilliant plot. It even made me cry a little bit. Every morning Kevin and I sing, "And then I brush and brush and brush and brush my hair." Or teeth. Or toilet. Whatever we are brushing... Just see it. You will love it.

Kevin's choice. He loves Liam Neeson after "Taken". I liked this movie, but didn't love it. It was boring at times, and there was not as much action as I would like. The saving grace was January Jones, who is so graceful and beautiful, and probably intelligent. I also really like Diane Kruger, but not really in this movie. Not the worst guy movie, but not the best either. It wasn't funny at all, and had a lot of dark scenes. (As in the picture quality, not dark as in The Dark Knight dark.)

I liked this movie a lot. A little indie, but a great cast and I could feel the passion. It was very realistic, not so Hollywood. It was almost like I could actually see it happening, exactly the way it was filmed. Diana Agron was in it - and she amazes me in every way, and Adam Brody my favorite man from the OC was also present. If you like indie films you would probably like it, otherwise you would definitely be bored. Also, why does Katie Holmes get cast in anything? Sorry, she has a cute daughter and all but her acting hasn't improved since Dawson's Creek.

Thanks for listening to my rant. Have you seen these films? What did you think?


My Friends

I have the best friends, and I have for as long as I can remember. I think without them I would have been an anti-social bookworm, but because of them I did funny things, and trespassed more, and threw more parties than I would ever dream of.

Because of them I don't take myself so seriously, and because of them I feel like there is so much hope for this world. We used to talk about someday opening our own private communities with our families. Katie would be the doctor and Laura would be the nurse. Liz would design the landscape, Heather would be the banker, Maddi would run the community bakery and Tia would teach our kids at school. Chrissy would be the high school teacher, Becca the soccer coach, Danika would do our taxes, and Stacey would be our personal trainer. Bryan would keep us laughing (and teach seminary. She would be so good at that,) Rachael would decorate our homes with beautiful art and I would run the community library, or be the community poet laureate I haven't decided :)

We all felt like with our differences we could keep our whole community afloat. I think it sounds like the best idea ever. We are all going our separate ways now with husbands and school and even kids, but every time we are together it feels like no time has passed. I feel so lucky. Love you girls.


Everything is Illuminated

"If there is no love in the world, we will make a new world, and we will give it walls, and we will furnish it with soft, red interiors, from the inside out, and give it a knocker that resonates like a diamond falling to a jeweller's felt so that we should never hear it. Love me, because love doesn't exist, and I have tried everything that does."

I finished "Everything is Illuminated" yesterday by Jonathan Safran Foer. Remember how much I loved "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close?"

I wish I could say I loved Everything is Illuminated the way I loved that one, but I can't. Here's the thing, I liked the book, but I would be lying if I said that I loved it. That being said, I do think Safran-Foer is a literary genius. Attempting to write a book after reading him is a little disheartening. He is brilliant, and he writes beautifully.

The book was three stories in one. One a letter, one the present, and one the past. I loved the past story. I loved Brod, I loved her entire story. I loved the Gypsy girl, I loved the characters from the past. I even loved the dark, Nazi-crazed scenes, because they really touched me. But overall, the book was too explicit for my liking.

Even though I got my English degree at BYU, I am not a very innocent reader. I believe that books can get away with a lot more than movies can, and I wouldn't be offended. I am used to reading certain swear words, as well as pretty explicit sex scenes. I even had a professor at BYU Hawaii who had a whole lecture built around writing sex scenes well. (He claims the one in Ceremony is the best ever written.) I enjoyed that lecture thoroughly. But Everything is Illuminated was a little too much for me. I felt almost guilty reading it, it was so explicit.

I still think Safran-Foer is a genius, and there are so many beautiful quotes and truths to pull from this novel. Overall however, I found the book a little offensive. So many novels have beautiful quotes, so many novels have truth, so many have characters I come to love. Why he had to put in so much explicit content I don't know.

Have you read it? What did you think?


New Chairs

First of all, I need to admit: I tried to do these on my own. I found them for $20 a piece on craigslist, and thought I could do it myself. I painted them, (they need to be touched up again), and cut the fabric. I read several tutorials online, but every time I got close to start staple gunning the fabric onto the chair I panicked a little. (Okay a lot).

I saw a link on Caitlin Creer's blog for Brian Maxfield at Rocky Mountain Upholstery. I called several places and he was by far the cheapest. He was fast, nice, and did an awesome job.



The pillow is from my review at CSN stores. I love it. And I really love my new chairs.

(p.s. please ignore that my dining table has no chairs... I am working on that too :)


Good things


My chairs are done at the upholsterer. So excited to see them.

It is payday, which doesn't really mean much because we save everything we make, but it is still fun to know that, and I usually celebrate a little by buying myself a dessert at lunch or something scandalous like that.

I keep singing Friday, which is awesome because it is Friday today. Fun fun fun fun fun fun fun fun.

My sister went to Forever21 in Jordan, and said all of the girls shopping there had full veils with ninja eye slits. She said she doesn't know what they were buying but it was funny. Picturing that keeps making me laugh.

Gosh I love her blog.

Kevin presented his research at a conference yesterday. When I asked him how it went, all he did was tell me how good the food was at the banquet afterwards. So proud of him.

I am getting better at Tiny Wings. Haha! Thanks to Katie and Jeff for hours of mindless distraction.

Someone on my formspring asked, "Do you Love me?" The answer is probably yes.

I'm happy, for no reason really. And that is such a good thing.


one of my favorites


When I Am Asked

When I am asked
how I began writing poems,
I talk about the indifference of nature.

It was soon after my mother died,
a brilliant June day,
everything blooming.

I sat on a gray stone bench
in a lovingly planted garden,
but the day lilies were as deaf
as the ears of drunken sleepers
and the roses curved inward.
Nothing was black or broken
and not a leaf fell
and the sun blared endless commercials
for summer holidays.

I sat on a gray stone bench
ringed with the ingenue faces
of pink and white impatiens
and placed my grief
in the mouth of language,
the only thing that would grieve with me.

- Lisel Mueller

This is one of those poems that never fails to inspire me. We all have a reason for why we begin to write poetry. For some of us it is a loss, so vast that we can't bear it.

For some of us it is our first love. And we feel giddy and speechless and afraid. Afraid that it will end and we will be the way we were before love struck. Fear is a huge motivator.

Others of us feel misunderstood. Poetry is such a cure for those who are misunderstood.

Whatever the reason, poetry heals, almost anything. It grieves with us.





I used to have so many other things to write about.
Break-ups, broken hearts, first kisses, distance.
So many prompts for new poems, new work, new thoughts.

These days I only have one prompt: Happy.
Maybe that muse is not as deep, or dark, but it is truth.
And truth is better than cheating boyfriends and loneliness.

I hate to be annoying and peppy or seem fake,
I really do have hard days, and things really aren't perfect.
But ultimately, I am happier than I have ever been in my life.

Happy is my new prompt.

"The joy that isn't shared, I've heard,
dies young." - A.Sexton





Julie turned 22 last week.

We still don't have a dining room table, so we had a candle-light dinner on the floor, picnic style. Fancy goblets, our best china (cough) and the best cooking that Kevin and I know.

I think dinner tastes better on the floor for one thing, and I think watching Julie blow out her "22" candles was hilarious, and I think that any night that involves good food, good friends and candles is a roaring success.


The Story of Edgar Sawtelle


"He had not opened his eyes in the moment. Her touch had released some tiny increment of the poison bound up in him that would, days to come, ripen into sorrow. And by the time he thought all this he could no longer tell if her caress had truly happened or whether he'd manufactured it out of necessity."

I don't know where to start with this book. It has received a lot of mixed praise and criticism, but I loved it. I loved Edgar so much that my eyes swam with tears more than once because I loved Edgar more than any character in maybe any book.

Edgar Sawtelle is a re-telling of Hamlet. Easily my favorite Shakespeare play, and this book has confirmed it, because of the complexity of the characters. Why did Gertrude marry Claudius? Does Hamlet forgive his mother for that? Does Ophelia understand how much Hamlet loved her? Did Hamlet really go insane? Why the pirates? These are questions I have considered as I read Edgar Sawtelle, and turned back to my copy of Shakespeare's complete works to check on things I thought were there, or to remember certain characters and events. The re-telling is subtle. Which is beautiful because it is not about Hamlet, it is about Edgar. But is also in a way, about each of us.

I was in a Shakespeare class last year and my teacher asked us if we thought that Shakespeare loved Hamlet. I didn't know what to think. Does an author love his characters? Then, (in the spirit of anti-New Criticism) he said, "Does it change your mind if you knew that Shakespeare's own son was named Hamnet?" Of course it did.

Maybe this review doesn't make sense, but reading Edgar Sawtelle was like reading about my own past to some extent. We all feel misunderstood. We all experience that love that you can't express because it is so much. We all lose things and people that are important to us. We are all Hamlet.


Quiet Inside


"It is a small voice, it whispers not shouts. And so you must be very quiet inside."

- Henry B. Eyring

Even though the world around me is so loud, and enters my home and heart everyday, this weekend I am going to try to be so quiet inside. So quiet that I can hear the small voice.

Join me here.

photo via