Sunday, February 27, 2011

What a Wonderful Time to Live!

Another week.  Another update.

Monday~Ah, a day of no school.  Around BYU, President's Day weekend is referred to as Spring Break. Yes, we get a one day spring break.  But I guess that is fine since we get out in April :D  I spent the day at my grandparents' and shopping with my grandma for things for Hannah for her birthday and baptism.  I came back to my dorm later that night and went to FHE.  We played Wii sports.  Apparently my brothers thought it would be fun to put Heather and I against each other in boxing...yeah, it didn't go very well.  I can't play video games.  Period.

Tuesday~It was actually Monday.  BYU declared it so.  This means that we have Monday/Wednesday classes, which was good because it meant DANCE!! I LOVE my dance class.  Definitely one of the highlights of this semester.  After classes and finishing some homework, Heather and I went to the library to be part of a music video.  Yes, an a cappella group here on campus filmed their first music video in the library and we were part of it! We saw David, Alec, and Jordan there too as well as a few girls from the ward.  It was a lot of fun being in it.  Once it gets put online I will try to remember to post the link :)

Wednesday~It was actually Wednesday which means DANCE!! Yes, this week was good, dance two days in a row! That night, I went to a missionary fireside with Emily and two of her roommates.  It was so good! Even though I am not planning on serving a mission, it was still so great to go to.  I learned so much and it made me so excited for my guys who are going to serve missions soon!  Later that night, after I got home, I was just getting ready to go to bed when there was a HUGE thudding knock on my door.  I went to open it and this is what I found...
(except the paper was COVERED in the fish)
Ryan from my ward, asked me to go to the ward date Saturday night with him.  
SO MANY FISH!! Good thing I love them :-d
This is how I responded (with a plate of cookies of course)

Thursday~Another day in the college life: classes, an exam, doing laundry, more class, homework and cooking.  BUT, the highlight of the day was definitely towards the end of the day: DANCE LAB!! Dance lab is a night where members of all of the different levels of Social Dance come together in the Ballroom and just dance! We practice the dances that we know (I even learned a new one: the two step) and just have fun.  It was nice to dance with a lot of different guys, most of whom I didn't even know.  But I have to say that my favorite dances were my last two (technically three).  I danced a cha cha with Jason.  I have greatly improved since the last time we cha cha-ed.  After I danced with Jason I danced the last two songs with my FHE brother, Ramon.  We danced a waltz and a two-step.  It was really fun and I can't wait to go to the next one (three more weeks!) I also found out that I didn't get the RA job, but that is ok because I will be rooming with my best friend Emily next year and it will be a BLAST! In addition to that, I found out that my little bro got accepted to BYU! Watch out Provo! The Cherry kids will be rocking this campus.  

Friday~Yay Friday! This is what I woke up to...

It was totally sunny and with no snow on the ground on Thursday...oh well.  It was a nice surprise and kind of reminded me of home :) Also on Friday, after my classes, I made a birthday lunch and birthday cookies for Jordan (even though his birthday was on Sunday).  After Jordan left, I did homework (I think...) and that night, I went to Mr. Heritage (a "beauty pageant" for the guys' dorms in Heritage Halls) The guy from my ward, Michael, WON!! I was so glad because he really was the best.  After getting home, Heather and I caught up on our TV shows from the week while on our MONSTER BED! Yes, we pushed our two beds together and watched our shows on her computer.  It was really fun :)
Yeah, we are definitely in college.

Saturday~ Happy Birthday Hannah! Today, my baby sister turned eight years old! She is getting so big! I am sad that I didn't get to go home but I talked to her on the phone for a while and that was good :)  I watched the BYU v. SDSU game on TV with David and Emily.  We won: 80-67! Boo to the ya.  After the game, I went to the library to get some homework done.  Then, I walked back (in the snow!) to get ready for the ward date.  A little before 6:00, Ryan picked me up and we walked over to the stake center for our etiquette dinner.  It was a really fun date.  We had a delicious dinner of Hawaiian haystacks and Ryan and I actually talked! We got along really well and there wasn't any awkwardness which was good seeing as I have never actually met him before tonight.  I have seen him at church but that was pretty much it.  After dinner, there was dance instruction on the cha cha.  Luckily, since I already knew it, I taught Ryan a little bit quicker than everyone else was being taught and he even learned a few more steps I showed him.  He was really good! Especially for not knowing the cha cha beforehand.  After dancing, everyone helped clean up and then, Ryan and I shot the basketball around and ended up playing a quick game of 4-on-4.  Let me tell you, it is hard to play basketball in a dress and tights: no traction and it's hard to post-up and box-out and jump modestly while wearing a dress.  But it was so much fun! Definitely one of the best dates I've been on.  After getting home, I talked to my dad for a bit and then watched some TV with Heather.  At around 11:00 Emily called and I met up with her, a few or her roommates, Alec and David to go sledding.  

After sledding and getting snow inside of every piece of clothing I was wearing, we built a snowman. 
 Emily built her first snowman EVER! (She's from San Jose)
 Alec is a snow-hugger.  But we still love him ;)

Sunday~What a wonderful day! There were wonderful talks and FANTASTIC musical numbers as well as an amazing Temple Prep class at church today.  My baby sister got baptized! And it was my best friend's birthday.  But, if that wasn't enough, I was able to Skype my family followed by one of the best firesides I have ever been to.

Sister Beck, the General Relief Society President came and spoke to just our stake.  She said that the church was not fully restored until the Relief Society was put into action.  She also said that Relief Society is often lumped with Primary and Young Women's because they are all run by women.  But, Relief Society should be lumped with Elders Quorum because we are much more similar.  We are both a support system and are referred to as a sisterhood and brotherhood.  We are both responsible for taking care of our own and supporting the others of the Church.  She said that Relief Society is specifically part of our Heavenly Father's plan.  We aren't just what is "left over."  After her speaking to us, she opened up to the audience for questions that we may have.  I learned so much! What amazed me was the fact that she had no idea what question was going to be asked but she pulled out a scripture or two for almost every question that fit perfectly with what she was trying to convey.  She answered questions like, how can I be a better missionary to my family? How can I better trust in the Lord? How can we gain righteous desires and endure to the end? Where do we start to become the person God needs us to be? How can we prepare now to go to the Temple? How can we get personal revelation? How can the men who hold the Priesthood support the women of the Church? How can we find comfort in times of hardship? After answering these questions, she gave us so much encouragement!  We live in crazy times but we as the young adults of the Church have so much potential! The Church invests so much time, effort and money into the youth programs and young adult programs and schools and education of the young people.  It is because we will be expected to do great things! The Church and the gospel are sweeping the globe.  There is so much growth, so quickly.  We will be called to be the next leaders of the rising church.  She told us that, while the world is a scary and crazy place now, it is also such an exciting time to live! There is so many wonderful and good things happening now! We will be part of a great and marvelous work! We are so lucky to live now, in this time!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Dear Good Guy, I Know You're Out There

This week has been a long week, full of me being exhausted, dizzy and sick.  But, in spite of all of this, I realized just how wonderful the guys in my life are.  The are such a HUGE blessing to me and I am so thankful that they are part of my life.
For starters, my dad sent me flowers and a cute monkey for Valentine's day and my friend David gave me Conversation Hearts.  Now that may not seem like a lot, but, I came home from a rough morning of classes only to find flowers at my door from my wonderful dad.  Also, Conversation Hearts are my FAVORITE thing about Valentine's day.  Usually my mom or my sister will give me a box on Valentine's day so I was sort of sad that I wasn't going to be getting a box from anyone but then Heather came home from class and threw a box of them at me and said they were from David.

Also, when I was sick towards the end of the week Jordan came over and hung out and talked to me for a bit.  It was nice to have human contact after being dead on the couch for a day and a half.

And last but not least, my guy friends all helped me with my Relief Society lesson today.  Part of it was on modesty so I asked a handful of guys that I knew pretty well what their thoughts on girls and modesty were.  Here are their responses:
  • Modesty is good.   If I have to concentrate on fighting temptation, I won’t be able to focus on you.  There should not be any reason for immodesty.
  • Immodesty makes me uncomfortable.  It makes me feel like someone would rather take my attention away from their personality.
  • Modest is hottest :) I personally love it.  Girls always look way better when they are modest. 
  • Immodesty is a big turn off.  Really.  When I see a girl who is immodestly dressed, I don’t really want to talk to her, because it is hard to view her as a daughter of God instead of something on a magazine cover.
  • I like girls that are modest, it shows me that respect themselves and those around them. It also shows me that they love the Lord and are faithful. These are two of the most important traits I want in my future wife.
  • I know modesty doesn't often seem fair.  For some reason, it doesn't come naturally to validate a modest girl.  I'm not sure I've ever gone up to a girl and said, "You know, I've noticed that all of your shorts are fingertip length.  That's awesome!"  particularly at the Y, where modesty is more of the norm than it is outside of Utah.  Meanwhile, I know that the girls that are compromising their wardrobes and pushing the limits a little bit are getting the crowds of boys around them and the turned heads.  I'd be lying if I said I was never in one of those groups.

    Despite how little glory there is right now in being modest, the relationships that I know stick (and are meant for all eternity) are those that rely on love and not lust.  Yes, you've all seen the girl in a tank top and boxer shorts who seem to have every boy hanging on her, but the truth is that the boys' attraction to her is only shallow, so any relationships she forms with them are shallow, too.

    Contrast that with the girl who sticks with modesty.  The boys she'll attract are those who the gospel matters to.  When it comes down to it, the righteous priesthood holders, those who are prepared to lead their families with you equally in the gospel, are looking for girls committed to gospel standards, and a powerful indicator of this is your personal modesty.  When your Captain Moroni comes along, he'll be looking to bring to the temple a woman who he loves emotionally and spiritually, not just physically.  And, if he's truly the spiritual giant you deserve, he'll only consider a woman who's completely modest.  When he doesn't have to worry about your hemlines, it becomes so much easier for him to learn two things.  First, he learns the attributes that make you beautiful eternally: your personality, your preparation for motherhood, your interests, your dreams.  Second, he learns his own responsibilities:  what you expect from him emotionally, as a father, and as an eternal companion.

    I know modesty's never been harder or seemed more unfair at times.  But sticking with it is the best way I know to invite the Lord in your life and, in the future, attract the man who's everything you deserve in a husband and father.

    Aren't guys just amazing?!? Thanks to all of the guys in my life.  Thank you for being who you are and thank you for everything you do for me.  I really do appreciate it :)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Extra Special Surprises

Looking back on this week, it seems like every day had at least one thing that was extra special about it.

So, here are my extra special happenings from this past week.

Monday~Emily and I picked up tickets for the dance on Friday and I talked to her for a little bit :) For FHE we opted out of Nerts and switched it up and played Pictionary.  It was a nice change and still just as competitive.  :)

Tuesday~Tuesday I went to Jordan's to pick out a tie for him to wear.  Heather and I went to the Temple where we saw Alex and Sydney.  That was a nice surprise.  After the Temple, I made cupcakes and Emily called so we went to get ice cream and to talk (one of our favorite past times :)

Isn't the Provo Temple BEAUTIFUL?!?

It's a very gorgeous place to be :)

It was cold on the way back so Heather and I needed to wear our crazy awesome hats.

Wednesday~HAPPY BIRTHDAY ALEC!!! I took over the cupcakes I made for Alec.  He loved them! The color of the frosting was just perfect apparently :) I also had my first dance test on Wednesday and it went amazingly well.  I'm sort of sad that we are done with the Foxtrot but the Cha Cha is slowly growing on me ;)

Thursday~I was SO productive! I came home from Spanish at 9:00 and I got my laundry and all of my homework (except for my Book of Mormon reading) DONE before I had to leave for my 1:00 class.  I was proud of my productivity and was really glad I was because I had a date Thursday night and it was nice to not have to do homework.  My friend Jason came over and we made (get ready for it) gummy bear pancakes for dinner (I know they sound so bizarre but they are so fantastic) After dinner, he helped me practice the Cha Cha.  I am enjoying it a lot more now.  My hips still aren't moving as much as they need to but my movements are a lot snappier so it looks better :D
Me and my favorite text book ;)

Friday~Probably the best day of my week :) I was again very productive which was good because I had another date to a dance Friday night.  I was so antsy that afternoon, I couldn't have gotten any homework done even if I had tried.  I was quite proud of myself for doing my own hair and make-up.  I've never done my own for a dance before.  And it didn't turn into too big of a disaster (the hair and make-up that is ;) I went over to Emily's after I got ready so we could give each other a final once-over before the guys came to pick us up.  After picture taking in the kitchen, our little group of six walked over to the Wilk for the dance.  It was a really fun night and I am so glad that Jordan said yes and went with me.  He was a fantastic date :)
 Katie and David, Jordan and me, and Alec and Emily
Here we look normal...
 And now we tried to be funny...but I think we just look weird.  
Oh, you know, it's just me and my fantastically amazing date :)

Saturday~For the third day in a row I was SUPER productive!! I went to a mid-term review and the library from 9:30 until about 2:00! I got so much done, but my brain hurt. So, I came home and relaxed until the BYU v. U of U basketball game came on.  Then I watched that and it was a great game (we won!) After the basketball game, I went to a stake Valentine's Day dance which was pretty fun.  After the dance I helped Emily clean up a bit and then I went over to her dorm and we talked...for a long time...about stuff....yeah...

Sunday~Today I went to church and had good lessons :) It was SOOOOO nice today!! I LOVE the sunshine and the warmth! I also went up to my grandparents' again to celebrate my aunt's birthday.  Then the standard hall meeting and ward prayer.  I talked to my mom for a bit and now I'm ready to pass out!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Missions, Hearts, Scheming, and Speed Dating

Just a few things that made this week extra special:

Mission Call: My best friend, Jordan, got his mission call this week!! He is going to the Georgia, Atlanta North mission speaking Spanish.  I'm so excited for him and proud.  I LOVE that my guy friends are getting their mission calls.
Probably one of my favorite pictures ever.  Jordan couldn't stop smiling like that the entire night :)

I was thinking about it today in Fast and Testimony meeting.  Thanks to two young men who had decided to serve missions when they were nineteen, I am here today.  My mom is a convert and thanks to the missionaries who taught her, she got baptized and she and my dad were married in the Salt Lake City Temple and had me and my siblings born in the Church.  We are together for time and all eternity.  Thanks to those two missionaries, I am here at an AMAZING university where I have had more spiritual experiences in the last six months then I have had in the last eighteen years.  I have such a strong testimony of missionaries and I am so proud of the guys that I know (and even those I don't know) who are serving and planning to serve missions.

Temple: My 8:00 class was canceled on Thursday so, I slept in a little bit and went to the Temple that morning.  I went by myself but it was really fantastic.  I needed to spend some time by myself.  It wasn't very busy so I got to do a lot more baptisms than usual which made it extra special :) It was so cold this week! On my way home, my hair FROZE!

Scheming and Planning: I was talking to Emily Thursday night (over ice cream of course ;) and told her about a preference dance that is happening next Friday.  I asked if she would like to ask someone and I would ask someone and we could go together as a little group.  She said yes (THANK YOU EMILY!!!!) So, after she said yes, we got to planning.  The next day I was going to have lunch with Jordan so I asked him (very slyly ;) what he and Alec were doing the next Friday.  He had no idea which Emily and I took as a good sign: they had no plans.  So after Jordan left, I called Emily and we put together our plans on how to ask the two guys.  Emily made a scavenger hunt for Alec and I got Jordan's favorite candy bar and attached a little note to it.  So after we hid Alec's scavenger hunt pieces, we took two envelopes (one for Jordan and one for Alec) each with a clue in it.  Emily set the envelopes down in front of their door, I held open the front door, she knocked and we busted it out of there.  It was really fun.  We thought we were pretty sneaky....until Jordan called me and asked what he should do. *facepalm* He wanted to know if he should do his first or if he should wait for Alec or what.  He said that he knew Emily and I were scheming something. (Apparently we aren't as sneaky as we thought we were)  Anyways, I told him to wait and he and Alec could do them together.  One of the clues was at my apartment so, they both came over and Jordan said yes then I helped Alec figure out his last clue.  Emily got a yes too...but she wasn't home when Alec got his last clue so he wrote a new puzzle on Emily's scavenger hunt spelling out YES on her clues.  We had a lot of fun "scheming" and carrying out plans.  We are excited for the dance on Friday. :)

Speed Dating: Yes, I went speed dating: BYU style.  This means that my Relief Society and the Elders Quorum 1 met at the Central Building and got to know each other better.  Complete with polygadates, "mood" music and very cheesy getting to know you questions, we made our way through the evening talking to a new person every two minutes.  It was actually pretty fun.  A lot better than I was expecting it to be.

Sports and Hearts: On Saturday, I spent a good amount of time helping Emily cut out hearts for the Stake Valentine's Day dance.  I helped her in the morning then she and David came over to watch the basketball game (we beat UNLV) where we cut out even more! Later that night, David and I went to the volleyball game (which we also won against UCLA).  After the volleyball game, Emily and I talked for a while and then played a game with David and one of Emily's roommates.
These are looks that David and I give each other ALL the time :)
We are really good friends in case you didn't know.

I like to play with my camera settings...
Here is Emily in our sea of hearts.

And David

And me :)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Tribute to Elder Clark

Another early post! Which means another one of my guys got his mission call!! Elder Jordan Clark is one of my best friends at BYU and tonight he opened his mission call.  He is going to serve in the

Georgia Atlanta North Mission
In case you're curious, Jordan is the cousin of Alec (who I blogged about LAST Wednesday) and they are both going on SPANISH speaking missions.  This makes me happy because I will be able to write to them in Spanish :D (which will be fantastic practice for me :)

So, this blog post is in honor of him :)

So, Jordan Clark was the second guy friend I had at BYU.  He has always been a fantastic friend but these last few months I have definitely considered him one of my best friends.  I can talk to Jordan about anything and he is always willing and ready to help me.  I can't count the number of times he has come over to give me or Heather a blessings or how many times he has made me happy when I'm having a bad day.  Jordan probably has the biggest heart of anyone you will ever meet.  He is so nice to everyone and doesn't have a bad bone in his body.  Jordan can make anyone happy.  I know that I cannot help but smile whenever I see him.  When I'm having a bad day all I have to do is see Jordan give me a goofy grin and I just have to smile back.  The other thing Jordan is fantastic at (probably one of my favorite things about him) is giving hugs.  It's going to be hard to not have a Jordan hug for two years but, he will be serving the Lord, bringing the people in the Atlanta area the Gospel.  That makes everything better :)

I'll say it again: Missionary work is a WONDERFUL thing.  I would not be here without it.  I am so proud of you Jordan! Thank you for choosing to serve the Lord! Thank you for giving up two years of your life to serve a mission! You are such a fantastic friend and a wonderful person.  Everyone is going to love you :)

Thank you for being my friend.  Thank you for always being there for me.  Thank you for holding the Priesthood and for being able and wiling to exercise it.  Thank you for being the wonderful son of God you are.  I'm going to miss you like you can't believe but knowing you are serving the Lord will make it easier.

Te quiero Jordan. Será un misionero fantástico.

Sorry I'm posting this picture again, but it really is one of my favorites :)
These are two of the best guys you will ever meet in your entire life.

This is Jordan and I at Halloween.  It was a really fun night :)

Here Jordan and I are at the bowling alley.  This was another very fun night filled with friends and fantastic memories.


Elder Clark
I can't write that without smiling :)

This is probably one of my favorite pictures of all time.
I love my best friend Jordan :)