Monday, May 30, 2011

Best Distraction Ever

So this past week I had TONS of assignments and projects (with a few more this week too...) which kept me pretty busy and helped to keep me on my toes. It was much better to be on my toes than jumping up and down staring at the countdown until Scott comes home.

Then Friday night came and I was left with little to do (aka no more motivation). The down time got me pretty down. My roommate Ashley got engaged that night [Hooray!!] but I was a Debby Downer for sure. And I hate being a Debby Downer. As I was sitting in my room I heard someone knock on the front door. Intrigued, I turned down my music, but didn't hear anyone. Then they knocked on my bedroom door and I was super confused as to who would be coming to talk to me at 10:30. Then in walked my mom! I guess I screamed pretty loud and I was in shock- my mama drove to Utah to surprise me for a weekend trip!!

It was the perfect timing! I loved having her here in Utah with me! I was able to show her around Provo, laugh, visit Temple Square and take fun pictures, spend time with family, enjoy the rain, and it was the best weekend. It was just what I needed right when I needed it most!

She stayed until this afternoon when she drove back to California (and she's nearing the end of her drive as I type this!) I was so happy to have my mom here for the weekend! It was the best distraction I could have asked for :)

Now I have lots to do tomorrow - my last full day before Scott comes home!!! 37 hours to go! :D

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

I thrive under pressure

In high school I discovered my true nature of completing assignments - procrastinate and then cram. It worked for me. I got used to it. I still follow this method.

This week all of my classes decided to have their major projects and assignments due, including one midterm. So I am thriving in my element. I turned in a big paper and did a presentation for my class last night, I did 2 hours of service for a project due tomorrow (which I'll finish the other 2 hours of service in the afternoon), and now I still have 2 more lesson plans to complete for a big assignment due at 4. Then my late class tonight has a little activity with a handout that I need to complete, which I'll do in my break between classes.

Some people [like Karina :)] would be super stressed out with all this going on at once. But I am realizing that I like the pressure. I do better with a deadline :) This is my element. Here I go!

Plus having all this to do helps distract me from the fact that Scott comes home in 8 days!!!!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Just some thoughts

If you may not know, I am studying to become an Elementary teacher and my minor is Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages which basically helps prepare me to be an effective teacher for students in my class whose first language is not English. Right now I am staying Spring Term to take a few classes for this minor, one of which is Family, School, and Community Partnerships. For this class I had to visit the home of a family with students who are English Language Learners and I have to write a paper and give a presentation about it. I did my visit yesterday and the father shared some great insights and thoughts with us that really struck me.

He said that he had a great lifestyle and status in Venezuela, greater than he has here now, but that he would not change it for anything. Their family lived in a nice area of the city but they still had many problems with safety and security - like being robbed and their car stolen at gun point. They came to America because they wanted to have a better life for their children. He has a great love for this country and the opportunities it has given him. They are now US Citizens and although he loves his native country of Venezuela, he loves America more.

One of the most impressive things he said to me was that when people question his love for the United States or they comment on his thick accent he says this: I may speak with broken English, but my heart is not broken. It is whole and proud to be an American.

Another thing he said was that many people have esteemed professional jobs in their native countries and they give up everything to come to the United States for their children to have greater opportunities. They leave everything behind and they do menial jobs like cook, clean, and mow lawns when they are doctors, engineers, and teachers in their native country. Just because they speak less English or with an accent does not mean they are less educated.

This man taught me a lot about not judging others and being grateful for the blessings in my life. It was a really great experience for me to spend some time in this family's home and get to know them more, because it is easier to learn a lot more in a real-life situation than in a classroom. I hope that I will remember the things this family told me and I will be able to apply the life lessons they taught.

Friday, May 13, 2011

May is the best month

I have always loved the month of May. Maybe it has to do with the fact that my birthday is in May... but there is so much more!

May is just a beautiful sounding word/name.
May flowers are beautiful.
The weather is finally getting so nice!
School is over/soon over.
You get to wear flip-flops and shorts again!
Yellow and pink are big spring colors.
Mother's Day is in May, and everyone loves Mothers!
Summer is right around the corner with all the exciting plans for vacations.
I could go on and on.

Moral of the story: May rocks.

I have always thought these things, but now May is even more exciting for me. May is the last month that stands between me and Scott. He comes home on June 1st! That is less than 3 weeks from now!! Elder Whitclock reported to the MTC on May 27, 2009 and he is finally coming home June 1, 2011.

The best month of the year is the last month before we are back together - I can take that :) It just makes May that much more happy and exciting for me!

Friday, May 6, 2011

21 years old

Yesterday I turned 21 years old. Wow. I was talking to my brother and I told him that it doesn't seem right that I, the baby, am now 21. Babies are not 21 years old. Its just weird. But very exciting at the same time. I predict that this will be the most exciting and adventurous year of my life :)

So this morning I woke up and I was a teeny bit miserable. I ended up sitting on the bathroom floor. I was very tired and my body hurt. Does this sound like a typical experience the morning after a person turns 21? Well let me tell you how it came to be:

I woke up around 6 am on my birthday (Cinco de Mayo) and I hiked up to the Y here in Provo with my best friend Karina. We wore sombreros for the occasion and got many stares and laughs, we loved it! We got to the top a little before 7:30 and we were able to see the sun spread across Utah Valley; it was gorgeous. For both of us, this was our 5th time hiking the Y, appropriate for 5.5.2011 no? :)

We took many pictures and laughed and loved it all! We got a few songs stuck in our heads along the way, so at the top we listened to them on my new iPhone. One of those songs was the little music video after the game Plants vs. Zombies that my sister showed me, so we looked it up and watched it. At the end of the video it said that the game was created on 5.5.2009 - so we celebrated the birthday of PvZ too! haha

Then we went home, got ready for the day and had a fun picnic at the park! HACKM [Holly, Ashley, Clarissa, Karina, Mark] enjoyed the sun and the glorious weather and took lots of super fun pictures. Then I had work, then class, an hour break, and another class til 9:30 pm. But my roommates informed me that they were going to pick me up during my break, so at home I was greeted by the delicious smell of burritos. And a gorgeous bouquet of daisies from Scott!! And I got a letter with the memory card in it too! I screamed and jumped and smiled so big. It was PERFECT.

We enjoyed our food and my roommates gave me my presents, including a package from my my mama! I then had a slice of cake and had to rush off for my next class. But it was a birthday miracle because we got out at 8:45! :D That NEVER happens! I got to talk to my brother on the phone as I walked home and then relaxed with my roommates and a few friends that happened to be over. Mark then gave me his present - Tangled on DVD! That is my favorite movie! But the friends had to go and Karina and I played some card games as Ashley and Clarissa did laundry and whatnot. But then out of nowhere I had a blindfold on and I was being directed out to the car! My roommates played really loud music and spun me around and wouldn't tell me where we were going.

I was blind, but singing and laughing and then I was guided through a strange area outside before my blindfold was removed and there was a small group of friends around a fire pit with the fixings for s'mores! It was the best! We laughed and danced and ate delicious roasted marshmallows, I loved it! Then we even got to watch Tangled, a perfect ending to the perfect day. :)

So waking up with a stuffed, and then bloody, nose isn't the worst thing to happen. And being tired and sore from so many adventures and clean fun times is NOT the worst way to spend the day after my 21st birthday. :) I definitely started off this year of my life with a bang and I am so ready for everything else that is coming! :D