Friday, December 20, 2013

That one time in 2012 that we went on vacation...

...and I'm terrible at blogging so I'm just now posting pictures. December 2012. A lovely cruise with the family. We went to Honduras, Belize, and Mexico! I try to leave the country (or at the very least, the state of Utah) at least once a year. I like going places I've never been before. Honduras, Belize, and Mexico were all new to me!
I just realized I don't have many pictures, because most of my adventures involved water. Not camera-friendly.
This is Roatan, Honduras. It is even more beautiful in real life. I didn't take a single picture there (this one is from my mother), because I was too busy scuba diving in that beautiful water. It was the first time in several years that I'd been diving, and after that first initial panic attack from my brain rejecting the idea of breathing underwater, it was a very Finding Nemo-like experience. Sea turtle and all. Definitely my favorite dive thus far! I wish very much that I had an underwater camera to capture the experience. There's nothing like it. The quiet, the peace, the life. Underwater is my favorite place on earth.
Belize was beautiful. We went hiking through a rain forest and then tubing down the river, so I didn't have my camera. It was so relaxing and stunningly beautiful. And I was introduced to All-Spice, and chewed on the leaves fresh from the tree. Um, yum. But this is my mom and me after the adventure!
Also, Belize has chocolate. Just know that.
We went to Costa Maya, Mexico, and saw some ruins! They were huge and ancient and mysterious. My favorite!
And what's a family vacation to Mexico without some "snailing"?
Mexico had some crazy army ants. Thousands upon thousands of them, scurrying along their little highways. Makes me wonder where they're going. Makes me wonder where I'M going! We also went to Cozumel, Mexico. We were supposed to go diving, but it was cancelled because of the weather. My dad found a private little company that would take us, so we hopped in their sketchy truck and trusted them. Long story short, I got wounded in my attempt to escape a cove of rocks to get out to the open ocean, and dad and Aus went on a quick dive in choppy water that wasn't their favorite. I sat out because of my bleeding leg and massive sting of some sort on my thigh, with a boy whose name I don't remember, and we found a giant crab. It wasn't my FAVORITE place that we went, but it was still an adventure! And, of course, I didn't have my camera. I just love to travel. It was a whole year ago that we went, and reminiscing makes me get all wander-lusty! Fast forward to now. A Junior at UVU, studying Community Health Education (plot twist!), LOVING my program a lot, working retail at the mall, dating boys, writing Tyler (my favorite missionary serving in Bulgaria), and finally home for the holidays! Kind of. It's a great life. I'm so blessed to have fun roommates (late night gatherings on someone's bed is a regular occurrence in our apartment), a great ward, a supportive family (including little Ivy,the prettiest baby I've ever known), and friends that love me. :) I want to be good at blogging. I've always been horrible at it. 2014 New Year's resolution, perhaps?

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Poe

I'm writing a paper on this guy:




Edgar Allan Poe. His life is absolutely fascinating, and his writing is genius. It gives me the heebie jeebies.
The other day my friends and I were reading his story called "Berenice" and holy teeth! It's so creepy.
Another favorite is "The System of Dr. Tarr and Professor Fether".
Somehow, Poe knows how to make my skin crawl.
My paper is actually called "Edgar Allan Poe and His Responses to the Insanity Defense". In the 19th century,a criminally insane person was basically someone who did not know what they were doing, or if they did know it, they didn't know that it was bad. But then Poe wrote stories like "The Black Cat" and "The Tell-Tale Heart", in which the main characters committed murders knowing exactly what they were doing and they knew that it was wrong. The reason for their insanity was "loss of rationality" rather than "loss of knowledge". Poe shared his opinion and put a twist on things through these stories!
It's a very interesting topic to study.
I thrive off of this kind of thing.I'm an English Major.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

I'm bad at this game!

........It's been a few months. I think it's about time I blogged.
How best can I sum up the past 8 months of my life?
Hm...
Educational. :)

June: I returned home from Ukraine. :) Later that month, I got engaged and planned a wedding! My fiance was living in Oklahoma over the summer so I barely even saw him.
July: I worked and did more wedding stuff. But the entire time, I felt quite strongly that I wasn't supposed to marry him. .......So.....
August: I flew out to Oklahoma to spend a few days with fiance and my other friends out there. We talked. We both felt wrong about it. So I gave him the ring back and flew back home.
I quit my job, moved to Provo, and registered for UVU.
Talk about life changes! (I don't recommend making so many big changes in just a week. It's a little stressful.)
September: Found a job at a lovely little daycare center in Orem. :)
October-February: Work, school, dates, roommates, etc etc etc. The college life.
I'm studying English-Creative Writing. :D

Heavenly Father loves me. He has a plan for me, and sometimes, when His plan is different than mine, it gets HARD! But if there's one thing I learned in 2011 it's that He will guide me,and put me exactly where I need to be. He will not let me make a big decision without His help. Also... The Atonement is real. I never understood that the Atonement heals pain, but it does! I'm so grateful for that. :) Oh how He loves us.
I'm grateful for my family, and for my roommates and friends. I have the most amazing people in my life right now!
I LOVE my life, and I'm so happy!!
I would post pictures, but I've only taken about 10 pictures in the past 7 months, and they're not very interesting.
That was a super quick blog... I promise that I'll start blogging more again. :)

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Bittersweet










I'll miss this beautiful country, and my Ukrainian kiddos.

America...I'll see you in 2 days!!!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Kamyenets Podilsky

We arrived early Easter Sunday morning ater a long train ride. We got a taxi that took us to the old town, across the bridge, over the canyon that runs through the middle of the city. We had the city to ourselves for a few hours; it was quiet and peaceful and the sun was rising and it was heaven. We found a forest, and spent some time there. We walked around the little village that made me feel like I'd gone back in time 100 years. "Was it a train, or a time machine!?" We found a pump and Macall tried to pump some water. A minute later, an old man came out and started yelling at us in Russian. Assuming he was angry at us for wasting water, we apologized profusely. He then proceeded to show us how to correctly use the pump. "Oh. Spaceeba bolshoy. Ya americanka, izvinitza." I'm sure he thought we were stupid. Then, we went to the castle. The Fortress, actually. We explored it for a few hours. :) I was very careful, 'cause I didn't want my head to fall off.
After eating some delicious pizza at "New York Street Pizza", we went to the canyon. We walked down the lovely stairs by the waterfall, down to the stream. It was very picturesque.
Here's a quick video I took while exploring the castle!
video

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Eastern European Tour

Ok, it's about time I put some pictures up from my adventure.
A couple of weeks ago, I went on vacation with my wonderful ILP group (minus 3, who went to Poland instead.)
We hopped on a big purple double-decker bus filled with Ukrainians, and headed west.
After 24 hours, we arrived in Budapest, Hungary.

A castle

Fisherman's Bastion

Parliament

Parliament

Budapest was kind of a blur; I was so exhausted from the bus ride (lack of sleep, you know)and everything seemed surreal. "Hey guys, remember that one time we went to Hungary?" ".....No."

Next stop, Vienna! We stopped in the beautiful Austrian city for only 4 hours on our way to Prague. We made the most of those 4 hours. We saw all the good stuff. :)





this is what we really wanted to see; Marie Antoinette's childhood summer palace. We hopped on a metro and only got a little bit lost, but thanks to some kind English-speaking Austrian's, we found it. It was stunning. You can't tell from this picture, but there were fountains and gardens and courtyards and statues...it was beautiful!

Prague, Czech Republic was my favorite city. We were there for 4 days, so I really had time to fall in love with it.






Prague was so quaint and lovely. I loved just wandering around, eating gelato, trying not to trip on the cobblestone streets, and seeing all the beautiful sights. I wish I could bottle-up the feeling I had there and take it home to share with everyone, because it's impossible to describe. It's something that has to be experienced.

We went to Dresden, Germany for a day.

We hung out at The Zwinger.

Fed some swans.

Saw some cool buildings.
But I'm going to be 100% honest right now.
We got bored.
In Germany.
After seeing all we needed to see, which only took about an hour or two, we were done. But we still had 4 hours left. So...we sat at a cafe for a while. Then we window shopped. Then we ate some ice cream. Window shopped some more. Shopped. Used the toilet at McDonald's a couple of times.
"Hey guys...remember that one time we got bored in Germany?"

What a GREAT VACATION!! The bus ride back was even longer, but we got to drive through Poland so I saw some beautiful Polish countryside. :)
Europe is beautiful!
And now that it's springtime, Kiev is becoming more and more beautiful every day!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Privyet

Fun Fact #1: There is a cockroach living in the inner-workings of the microwave at our school.
Fun Fact #2: All the boys here have mullets.


Fun Fact #3: Sometimes semi trucks like to drive the sidewalk.
Fun Fact #4: Honey and coffee make a wonderful exfoliator.
Fun Fact #5: Classic rock is frequently played here. And techno.
Fun Fact #6: Puzata Hata is my favorite restaraunt here in Kiev!

Fun Fact #7: If you have a "no smiling" contest with a Ukrainian child...they will win.

Fun Fact #8: I'm taking a train to L'viv tonight!
Fun Fact #9: Learning the cyrillic alphabet messes with your brain. Let's use the word "PHOTO" as an example. You might read it as "rnato" until you realize a few seconds later that it's an English, not Russian.
Fun Fact #10: "Ukraine's Got Talent" is a great show.

Lovelovelovelovelovelovelovelovelovelovelovelovelovelovelovelove.