Thursday, February 14, 2008

Everything I need to know about Valentine's Day I learned from a sixth grader.

Today I received a single red rose from Sergio, one of my students. He was all dressed up in a suit for our Valentine's Day dance and looked like a little gentleman presenting his rose. So cute. It made my day.

Annie stood next to me in the school gym as we watched kids doing the swing moves I taught them to Ella Fitzgerald. She turned to me and asked, "Have you danced with anyone your age at the dance today?"

I laughed and said, "No."

"Why not?"

"I don't think there are any guys my age to dance with... anywhere. I'm not sure they exist."

Annie looked a bit confused and said, "Oh... Well, you can just dance with me then."

And so we danced.

I found Kayla sitting on the floor of the gym crying because none of the boys were asking her to dance. I stood her up, gave her a hug, and said, "You don't need boys to ask you to dance to have a fun time. Just go out there and dance!" She dried her tears and smiled, and we headed out to the dance floor.

Meanwhile, Matthew had heard why Kayla was upset. Before she knew what hit her, Kayla was surrounded by 6 boys all wanting to dance with her - Matthew at the lead. She lit up as she danced with one kind boy after another.

Jordan gave me a Valentine card that said, "I love you because you are the best teacher in the whole world."

It's amazing how those little monkeys I teach can become so sweet. Today they were wonderful reminders of what is important in life: helping others feel loved.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Thursday, February 7, 2008


Why should it be so difficult to find a good sports bra? Is it so much to ask for a supportive, comfortable, yet snug bra? My favorite two are Nike, and I've been thinking I've got to just go online and find some more like them. But, it kills me to spend more money on a product simply because it has a swoosh on the back. But, hey. I'm talkin' about taking care of my girls, so the money is worth it.

Sorry, Mom. I hope I didn't shock you ranting in "public" about such a topic.

Saturday, February 2, 2008


I know, I know. You've seen these things a hundred times in email, but I confess I like them. The rules of the game are as follows:

A. The rules of the game are posted at the beginning.
B. Each player answers the questions about themselves.
C. At the end of the game the player tags 5 people, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment letting them know they've been tagged and asking them to read your blog.

10 years ago:
I was in my Junior year at BYU. (Yes, I really am getting old. :)
I was living with Katie and Emery in the Chelsea Condos. (Yes, Emery and I really were roommates for the first time 10 1/2 years ago!)
I was applying to work as a counselor at Aspen Grove, the BYU Alumni family camp. (I did get the job and worked there Summer '98.)

5 things on my to-do list today:
1) Put up signs at the church reminding the women that basketball was canceled today.
2) Go to the gym to do cardio.
3) Read the research article for which I will be leading a discussion in class on Wednesday.
4) Do my laundry.
5) Write a stupid 100 question test for my students to take on Monday.

Snacks I enjoy:
I'd love to say apple slices, celery sticks, and wheat germ, but while those are enjoyable, let's be real:
Chocolate and toffee almonds
Utah chocolate almond truffles
Coffee cake
Bagels with Tofutti's "Better Than Cream Cheese"
Ruffles with onion dip (made with "Better Than Sour Cream" of course)
Almost anything chocolate

What I would do if I were suddenly a billionaire:
Pay off my house
Pay off my credit card
Pay off my bookie
(I'm just kidding about that one.)
Pay Emery's school tuition and allow her to quit her job and go to school full time
Hire a domestic assistant to clean my house every week, wash my windows, and do my ironing
Finish my unfinished basement
Support missionaries
Fund and participate in humanitarian projects
Promote world peace

3 of my bad habits:
1) Eating junk food
2) Not returning phone calls
3) Forgetting

5 places I have lived:
Escondido, CA
Provo, UT
Alexandria, VA
East Palo Alto, CA
Salt Lake City, UT

5 jobs that I have had:
Vocal Recording Artist
Feature Film Art Department - Assistant to the Set Decorator
Camp Counselor
6th Grade Teacher
K-6 Computer Lab Teacher

5 things people don't know about me:
1) When you google me, all sorts of results come back for IMDB and other such sites. What you may not know is that it really is me they're referring to!
2) I was a field hockey goalie in high school, and was even recruited by a few colleges.
3) In college, I had 6 ear piercings. Well, I guess I still have them, I just don't wear earrings in them.
4) I have an "art studio" set up in my basement. One day when I have some time, I plan on becoming a great painter.
5) I still sleep with my blanket that I received after being burned at the age of 2. I take it EVERYWHERE I go.

5 people I tag are:
Smith Family

Until We Meet Again

I had the distinct privilege today to attend the funeral services for President Gordon B. Hinckley, prophet and president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The spirit felt at the conference center was peaceful and warm. I loved hearing from his daughter and his fellow church leaders. My testimony of his role as prophet and my faith in Jesus Christ, my Savior, were strengthened. What an honor it has been to learn from President Hinckley, hear his wise words, watch his excellent example, and be blessed by his inspired leadership all these years. He truly was a man of God.

I am so happy to know that President Hinckley is now with his wife again, and that they are both in the presence of friends and family who have gone on before them. I can only imagine how glorious their reunion was on Sunday evening when he passed through the veil to be greeted by his Heavenly Father, the Savior, and his dear, sweet wife. Surely there were tears of joy and embraces. I imagine the Savior said to him, "Well done, my good and faithful servant."

One of the many inspirational and touching thoughts from the funeral this morning was that of Presidnet Hinckley's repeated reassurance that "Things will work out." I tell myself this very thing every day as I face my own little challenges, struggles, and questions. It is a comfort to hear the prophet of the Lord expressing the same sentiments. It gives me renewed faith and courage to go forward with my life, knowing things will work out. And of course they will, if I put my trust in God, my loving, all-knowing Heavenly Father.

I was also filled with joy as I was reminded that this life is not the end of our relationships with our loved ones. President Hinckley has been reunited with his sweetheart, and one day his children, family, and friends will be reunited with him as well. I too will one day be reunited with my own father, and my wonderful mother will be reunited with her sweetheart. My dad's headstone reads, "How sweet will our reunion be!" I have had a glimpse of that sweetness as I have imagined President Hinckley's return to his heavenly home.

My thoughts and prayers are also with President Monson today as he prepares to step forward and take on the mantle of being the next prophet of The Church. As he stood at the pulpit today, ready to begin the services, he paused, as if to collect his thoughts and emotions. I can only imagine what those thoughts were, but I was impressed with the loss he has suffered in the passing of his dear friend and leader, and the responsibility he will be undertaking. I pray for him to receive strength and guidance. I am grateful for his goodness. I know he will be lead by the Lord, as President Hinckley was, to direct the Lord's church and His people.

It has been a beautiful, winter day - a time of contemplation, gratitude, faith, humility, and renewed determination to do the Lord's will. I am determined to live my life in such a way that I continue the legacy that President Hinckley and all the prophets before him have built. I will stand as a witness of Christ and move forward in the work the Lord has for me to do. My greatest desire is to be the person that President Hinckley, my dad, my mom, Heavenly Father, and Jesus Christ expect me to be and know I can be. I am eternally grateful for my blessings and my knowledge of God's plan for me and for us all.