Friday, January 31, 2014

Friday Confessions.

Confession #1: I've listened to this song approximately 3,000 times this week.
Confession #2: I've listened to this one just as many.
Confession #3: I stayed up til 2:00 am to finish reading Frankenstein after reading an essay about the monster in Volume III. I've never felt like such a nerd in my whole life--and I loved it.
Confession #4: I've kept a fake engagement ring in my purse since I served a strange table a couple weeks ago. When I realized they were in my section last night, I may or may not have put the ring on and made sure they saw it. Sorry dudes, I'm not your "perfect woman," and I'm only bringing you the sandwich you requested because it's my job...#sorrynotsorry
Confession #5: I shamelessly stalked Awkward Girls for a long time in order to find some kind of outfit inspiration. All I found was a ton of clothing I didn't have, but seem to need.
Confession #6: I made a countdown on my phone for the Katy Perry concert. The amount of fangirling my big and I are going to do is unreal. [241 days. I also may have tried to talk myself into dyeing my hair that color.]
Confession #7: I ugly cried for a solid six minutes and 42 seconds while I watched this video. 
Confession #8: I scoured Pinterest and Etsy for far too long trying to find something that combined giraffes and Audrey Hepburn in a way that wasn't atrocious. Nothing. 

Here's to one of my favorite weekends of the year...because for some reason, the SuperBowl is the only day I feel like I can eat whatever I want and not have it counteract everything I've been doing at the gym. 
Happy Friday, folks! 

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Miss halfway.

I've had Bon Jovi's Livin' on a Prayer stuck in my head all day long.
Woooaahh, we're halfway there. Woooahhh, livin on a prayer.
Because we are halfway there. The countdown is finally on.
Because in [about] 365 days, my best friend will be home. 
You don't realize how long a year is until you're counting every day.
You notice every weekend, every holiday.
You keep track of the emails, the letters, the packages.
You find weird ways of measuring time [only ____ more Friday nights! Only ____ more finals weeks!].
And as the days pass, you learn a lot about yourself. You do things by yourself, or for the first time. You change.
In the last 365 days, I have:
Moved four times.
Worked two different jobs.
Gone on three vacations.
Taken eight finals.
Mentored 35 freshman.
Dyed my hair five times.
Joined a sorority.
Made dozens of new friends.
Written and received over 100 letters.

Things have changed--but not too much.
I'm in my second year of college, and I study by myself in the library--but I still have an alarm set for Monday morning emails, and the mailman is my best friend on Friday afternoons.
I can drive the canyon [at night and in the snow] by myself without freaking out--but I listen to Rascal Flatts like it's a bad habit.
I still can't pop my own knuckles--but I've learned how to change a tire and a brake light.
I've made friends that are more like family--but I still wish he was with me on all the crazy adventures we go on.
I've learned a lot about who I am and how to stand on my own two feet--but I still miss my best friend, and I can't wait til he's home. So finally, after 365 days, 52 weekends, 36 letters, 12 Fast Sundays, and one incredibly long year, I can say...
See you in 365, Elder! 

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

More than words.

I had a freshman student email me last week and ask me a couple of questions about my major. 
Now, as a Literary Studies major, I've become pretty used to the same basic questions. 
...and what exactly does a literary studies major study? 
...are you using that as a kind of "pre-law" degree or something? 
...what exactly are you going to do with a degree in literature? 

And I always answer the same way. 
I get to study books. I read dozens of books each semester, and then talk about those books. Then I read books about the books I'm studying and analyze the books that are analyzing the books we're reading. 
I'm pretty sure I'm not going to law school anytime soon. I don't like school that much!
If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me that question, I wouldn't have to find a job with my degree--but honestly, I don't know. Teach? Write? Who knows. 

But this student didn't ask those questions. He gave me two new questions to answer, because he was interested in the program and wanted to know what I thought. 
1. Why are you studying it? What's in it for you?
2. Why do you love it? 

I tell everyone I love my classes, but I hadn't really ever thought about why. 
So I started thinking. 
Why am I studying it? What's in it for me? Why do I love it?
I love that there isn't any right or wrong answers. Everything is open to interpretation in a million different ways, and it doesn't matter what you think about what you're reading, as long as you're thinking about it. 
I love that you can learn so many different things about different aspects of the world by reading literature from different regions, authors, or time periods. 
I love that there are hundreds of thousands of words in the English language, and no two books tell the same story. 
I love that I can go from crying to laughing to fuming in a single night of homework. 
I love that there is absolutely no math involved. 
I love that I get a life lesson from each assignment: Frankenstein has taught me that monsters do exist, and most of them are human. The Count of Monte Cristo taught me that patience and hope are key to success. Harry Potter taught me that good will always win. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn taught me that doing the right thing is always the right choice, regardless of what society says. Alice in Wonderland taught me that all the best people are a little mad. The Great Gatsby taught me that money isn't everything--and you can't buy happiness. 
I love that words are powerful--and I love that you can get lost in them.
Sometimes, I try to pretend like I'm not the biggest nerd on the planet. But when it comes down to it, I'm more content with my nose in a book than I am anywhere else. 
I'm not studying English because it's going to give me a fabulously high paying job or because it's the most sought after career in the world. I'm studying English because I love it. 
So there you have it, Mr. Freshman boy who wants a new major. Whether you decide English is what you need to do--or even if you choose engineering, or computer science, or botany--find something you love. I did. 

Books are proof that humans can work magic. 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Change is good.

2013 was wonderful, but the last couple of days have kept me thinking about what I can do to make 2014 even better. Because change is good--for everybody. 
Truthfully, I started some of these resolutions back in August with the new school year. But a couple of experiences recently [ie my savings account dwindling far too quickly & an insane lack of sleep this last semester] inspired the rest of them.

1. Take more shifts than I give away--because Village Inn really isn't as bad as it seems at 2:30 in the morning. And serving pancakes is way more productive than Pinterest or Instagram. 
2. Save more than I spend--I don't need another pair of shoes. Or another purse. Or dress. Or more nail polish or jewelry. 
3. Write more letters--not just to my missionary friends, either. Because who doesn't love getting mail? 
4. Read my scriptures every night--when I was on Seminary Council, I didn't miss a day for a year and a half. I want to be able to say that again. 
5. Get more sleep--5 or 6 hours a night didn't cut it last semester. 
6. Write in my journal every day--memories don't mean a thing if you can't remember them. This way, I'll remember what I wanted to tell everybody that comes home this year!
7. Drink more water--we all know it's completely unrealistic to say that I'm going to stop drinking Dr. Pepper. But I can say that I'll drink more water. 
8. Go to the temple at least twice a month--this one speaks for itself. 
9. Finish my 20 x 20 list. Or at least start it--I only have six months and nine days before it becomes irrelevant. 
10. Prioritize better--homework is more important than socializing. Sleep is more important than Netflix. Church & my family is more important than anything else. 

They're nothing monumental--but they'll keep me busy.

What are some of your New Years' resolutions?