Sunday, July 18, 2010

Isn't it nice to know that the lining is silver?

I've felt especially blessed to have three things in my life lately. The Book of Mormon, my brother Brent, and music. Here's why...

BOM: I've never loved a book so much. Alma is filled with exactly what I've been needing to hear. It amazes me how subtly the Lord works. I am just eating it up. And I don't think I've ever comprehended anything like this before. I am seeing why this book has changed the world because it's changing my life. For good.

Brent: I don't know if I've ever met anyone like him before. He is probably my best friend in the entire world. I really don't know what I'd do without him. We have our differences. But learning how to get over those differences and just love the other person has taught us some incredibly valuable lessons. Who else do you know that would take a $400 class and drive back and forth an hour and a half both ways every night for two weeks just to be nice? He is an amazing example. I love this guy a whole lot and if you don't know him, you're missing out.

Music: I have no musical abilities. I don't play any instruments. Heck, I can't even read music. But I love it. I love it more than most. I love it in a different way than most. I'm really not sure I can describe it in words. The way the lyrics and music and the singers voice just run through my veins, it's like nothing else I've experienced. I really don't know how to describe it, I just know I love it and feel blessed to have it in my life.

The title is from a song by Relient K. "The Lining Is Silver". I cant find a link cuz it's on the B sides album. But it's good nonetheless.

"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference."

Friday, July 9, 2010

I Walk Down The Road And I'm Alone Again But I Will Sing A Song As I Go

I realized that my posts are super long. And most people don't want to take tons of time out of their day to read eight bazillion paragraphs. So i'll try to keep this one a little bit shorter. PS The title is the same song as the name of my blog, and I already posted the link in an earlier post :)

BYU Basketball camp. Approximately 8 hours of basketball a day for 4 days. Tired at the end? Try exhausted. BUT, it was worth it :) I had a lot of fun and so did Bezait. Congrats to her and her team (Compton Criminals, don't look at me, they picked their own name) on winning the 5v5 championship!

Every women's basketball fan should be familiar with the name Abbey Wilson (top row, second from right), she'll be on your Wheaties box before you know it. Same with Carly Stratton. Those girls know how to play some serious basketball. I met a lot of neat people and made some odd friendships. Sad thing is, I just restricted myself from FB and now I can't add them as friends! Oh well, more fuel to the flame of finishing the BOM! I've made quite a bit of progress actually, but the lack of facebook is harder than I thought.

Anyways, it was cool to get to meet some of the players and see the real side of college athletics. Big shout out to Coriann Wood (soon to be Fraughton) who was an awesome coach and one of the friendliest persons i've ever met. Congrats on getting engaged, Tucker is a lucky guy. Keep an eye out for #23, she's bound for greatness!

Okay besides the awesome friends and good basketball times, highlight of my week has to be having a wicked flashback of two years ago when I went to the same camp. I was sitting in the chairs waiting for camp to start on the first day as the "coaches" started to trickle in. The coaches were some womens bball players, some random dudes who had connections with the team, and some Cougar alum. I swore I recognized one of the huge polynesian guys shooting baskets but I couldn't quite put my finger on it. And then I saw another huge polynesian dude, even bigger than the first. And then it hit me. I was witnessing Harvey Unga and Fui Vakapuna in the flesh. If you don't know BYU football, that probably means nothing to you. But if you DO know BYU football, then you can probably imagine how incredibly excited I was to be seeing these guys in real life. And not just at a football game. Just shootin' hoops in bball clothes. They were real life human beings! For the uneducated folk, those two were some of the most amazing athletes and funnest to watch players to ever grace the field at LaVell Edwards stadium. At the time, Harvey had just broken the school record for most rushing yards by a freshman running back. I worked up the nerve to ask to get my picture taken with them, but by some dastardly turn of fate, I can't find the disposable camera that holds the proof.

Well, fast forward to this year, about 5 days ago. This time, there is this black guy that looks super familiar. But he looks too short to be a basketball player. And then I thought about the John Beck era of Cougar football and how short his running back looked from the stands. And I thought to myself, there is no freaking way that Curtis Brown came back to BYU for a girls basketball camp. He was a freaking stud when it came to football and he had graduated years ago. Why would one of the greatest running backs in BYU's history (he held the school record for rushing yards until Harvey came along and broke that record too) come to a fundamentals camp for high school girls for a sport that he didn't even play? Well I'm not really sure if that question ever got answered, but sure enough, it was the one and only Curtis Brown. This time, there was no messing with disposable cameras. I had my iPhone out and ready before they even introduced him.

It was a good learning experience and I got my fill of Cannon Center food and most importantly, the best fountain Red Cream Soda known to man. If I end up at BYU, Barq's RCS could be a large reason why. I did one of the scariest things i've ever done. I gave my friend a Book of Mormon with my testimony written in it. I had asked some of the other girls from our basketball team to put their testimonies in it too and i'm very grateful to them for being so willing. I can't really say much about the experience because I have no idea if she'll end up reading it or use it as a paperweight. But I know it's been a long time since i've been that nervous. It really was hard to share something so close to my heart and put it out there, vulnerable and open to rejection. But if there is any chance that she actually does read it and something clicks for her, it is worth all the nervousness in the world. I am looking forward to sleeping in my own bed for approximately the 7th time in the past 6 weeks. Gotta love summer eah?
PS Congrats to my good friend Tori Nye on getting engaged this week as well, I wish the best to you and Ryan!
PSS Here are some other pictures of me and my team (Y-Factor all the way! Its like the x-factor, BYU style) and others of me and some friends.
PSSS Don't mind how fabulous I look in these pictures. Basketball all day minus any makeup or hairstyling effort equals pure beauty, obviously.

Left to right...kind of...
Shell-butt, Daylene (yellow), Me, T-Payne, K-Dub, Soper (green), Cori, Tiff, Mel, Boozer, Whitters

L to R
E-money, Daylene, Me, Tiff, Cori, Soper, Rissa, Boozer, T-Payne, Shell-butt, Whitters, K-Dub

Sha-NayNay, me, the aforementioned C-Stratt

Sopes! n' Me
I still don't remember what her first name is, but with a last name like Soper, who needs a first name? She was probably one of my favorite people that I met here. She goes to Manti and guess what their mascot is. The Templars. Looks exceedingly similar to TEMPLES if you ask me...

"It is hard to fail, but worse to have never tried to succeed."

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Just Watch The Fireworks

The title of this post is the name of a song by Jimmy Eat World. Not just what every five year old kid has heard a bazillion times this weekend. I don't think I can really explain this one, it just means a lot of things in a lot of different ways. If you are really intrigued, you can ask me later. On to the actual post! But first, the link :)

Today I decided to ground myself from Facebook. As soon as everybody picks their jaws up off the floor, I'll continue...Okay, okay I guess I should explain. I've been trying to read the Book Of Mormon the whole way through. And i've made more progress than I originally thought I would. But i'm still less than half way through Alma and it's been many months since I began. So I decided to ground myself from Facebook because of a few different inspirations, until I have finished reading the BOM.

Inspiration #1: Tonya Shay Anderson. What a great girl, eah? If you don't know her, you are seriously missing out. I had a really amazing talk with her last Friday after a little meeting that i'm sure i'll be writing about later. It was one of those talks that I always seem to have with her. It was a lot about the gospel and LTC and life in general I guess. I realized after this talk that I needed to re-prioritize and kind of fix the things that have been needing fixing for a long time.

Inspiration #2: "Where The Heart Is" as in the movie, not the location. Most people know it as The Wal-Mart Baby. For those who haven't seen the movie, the main character (Novalee) is a 17 yr old pregnant girl whose boyfriend abandons her at a Wal-Mart. After the baby is born and many details skipped later, Novalee takes in her best friend and 5 kids. The friend's ex-boyfriend had severely beaten her and two of her kids when she took them in. Novalee has a heart to heart with the friend who asks her what she is supposed to tell her kids when they ask why this had to happen to them. And I LOVED what Novalee responds with. This is it, with a lil editing on my part.

"You tell them that our--
our lives can change with every breath we take.
We both know that.

And you tell them to let go of what's gone.
'Cause men like Roger Brisco never win.

And tell them to hold on
like HECK to what they've got--
each other and a mother
who would die for them...
and almost did.

You tell them
we've all got meanness in us.

But we've got good in us too.

And the only thing
worth livin' for is the good.

And that is why we've got
to make sure to pass it on."

Most probably don't see how this has to do anything with reading the BOM or FB. But to me, it was something that told me to pass on the good. And the greatest good I know is the gospel of Jesus Christ. How am I supoosed to pass it on when I haven't even read the most important book all the way through? Well, that's about to change.

Inspiration #3: LTC & the friends I made there. The more I think about the experiences from that week, the more I realize just how big of an impact they have already had on my life and the way that I desire to live it. It sort of reminded me of EFY at first. Super spiritual week where you love every minute and just want to soak it all up. But I think my favorite difference between EFY and LTC is that the friends you make and the bonds between you can last beyond the week. I know there are special cases of people who make life long friendships from EFY and I think those people are so lucky and I'm so happy for them. But I think it would be hard
NOT to keep the friendships you make at LTC. I've had experiences and talks with some of the girls from up there that I wouldn't trade for anything in this world. [Including sleep :)]

In the midst of those talks, I stumbled upon something I did not know of before and I probably still wouldn't if it weren't for those talks. I had a burning desire to finish the Book of Mormon. I also realized something extremely sad. I have been letting idle and unimportant worldly things get in the way of that goal. I'm not condemning Facebook or trying to say that it is evil. But for me, it has stood in the way long enough and I will not be logging on until I have eaten up every last page of that blue book. It is time for me to do the things that I know need to be done and that I WANT to do.

I'm going to a BYU basketball camp next week with a good friend of mine and I am totally psyched! I'll write about it when I can. Hope everyone has had a fantastic Fourth of July, especially my friend Michelle Althouse who turned 18 today. Hope you have had a super Happy Birthday my dear friend, you deserve it! You are the only person i've ever had a 14 hour non-stop conversation with :)

"Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear."