Tag Archives: growing up


13 Jan

It’s that time of year. The time where we all reflect on the past year and look ahead at what’s to come. 2011 was just the way I like it–lots of travel and many strange and wonderful experiences.

I enjoyed 6 weeks of vacation. I visited four countries and saw 6 states. I crossed the US border 9 times. I took 6 plane rides. I drove from SLC to Vancouver three times and  up the  California coast from San Diego to Sacramento. I visited great friends and had great friends come visit me. I rode a bike in the Netherlands and didn’t die. I went punting down a canal in England and was actually good at it. I drank cactus beer in Belgium. I became an immigrant.

I moved twice and spent the summer with the greatest roommates I’ve ever had.

I started two book clubs, each with moderate success.

I applied to, got accepted to and started graduate school. I got 1/4 of the way closer to becoming a librarian and found out I actually like it. I also discovered I might even be good at it.

I posted 45 times on this blog.

I spent my first Thanksgiving away from home. I made a turkey for the first time and enjoyed the holiday in October and November.

I ate the greatest hamburger in the world, made the best french onion soup, tried poutine, learned to make sushi, and discovered Tim Tams and Coffee Crisp.

I learned to share my twin sister and was truly happy for her on her wedding day. I gained two wonderful brothers-in-law and two amazing step-nephews.

I took out my first student loans.

I attended my first black-tie event and was grateful that my mom taught me good enough manners to blend in reasonably well.

I was pulled over for the first time and got my first speeding ticket.

I was rehired and quit my job at the law firm for (hopefully) the last time.

I went from being an animal hater to an animal hater living with a dog and a cat.

Looking back, 2011 was pretty alright. Although I’ve decided not to worry about 2012–I’m pinning all my hopes on 2013 to be my year–here’s hoping that the next 12 months are as interesting as the last. Or at least that the world won’t end.


Sometimes I surprise myself

18 Oct

Do you ever occasionally have a kind of personal epiphany? You realize something about yourself that’s probably been obvious to everyone else all along, but you never noticed that that’s the kind of person you really are. And then it changes everything. Being all alone in a new place has made me realize what kind of person I am. Not good or bad, just things I never knew before.

We all have this vision of ourselves. I don’t want to say idealized, because no one thinks they are all good… But actually yes, I do want to say idealized. We definitely come to love our faults. Or at least what we perceive to be our faults. Haven’t you ever heard someone talk about how much of a procrastinator they are in almost a bragging way? Like hey, I am so awesome and self-aware that I can talk about how totally imperfect I am and that makes me cool. But really, once you figure yourself out, even just a little bit, you understand how all that bravado was just another way of deceiving yourself.

I’m feeling thoughtful. Can you tell?

My Life List (for the next 6 years at least)

12 Aug

A couple months ago I came up with a list of things I want to accomplish by the time I’m thirty. It seems so far away, but I’m really only 6 years away. I figured if I don’t get started now I won’t make it through even half my list.  Although I know I probably won’t get through all of these, many of the travel ones will be cost prohibitive on my currently non-existent and future librarian’s salary, I hope I will be able to cross a big chunk of these off my life list. I started out wanting to make a list of 30 things (30 before 30 sounds so cute), but I got on a roll and ended up with 42. So here we go…

  1. Make homemade mozzarella cheese
  2. Bake yeast bread from scratch (and have it turn out)
  3. Learn to sail
  4. Go rock climbing on a real outside rock
  5. Make/create something good enough to display in my house
  6. Make a scrapbook/photo book of my time in Thailand
  7. Make 25 thank you cards and use them all
  8. Read 100 books **since I wrote this list I’ve read 6 (10/31/11)**
  9. Visit a continent I’ve never been to (Africa, Australia, South America)
  10. See the Grand Canyon
  11. Visit the Library of Congress
  12. Get a job as a librarian
  13. Get my master’s degree
  14. See Billy Joel in concert. I’ll never forgive myself for missing the last opportunity.
  15. Cook with something that I’ve grown myself
  16. Attend the worship services of another faith
  17. Make homemade pasta
  18. Go to the Renegade Craft Fair
  19. Lose 30 pounds (and stay there) **so far I’m down 18 pounds (10/31/11)**
  20. Fall in love with a good man
  21. Visit a friend in another city/state/country
  22. Build my personal library up to more than 200 books **last I checked I was over 100**
  23. Fill an entire journal
  24. Attend a taping of the Daily Show
  25. Save 6 months worth of expenses in an emergency fund
  26. Read the entire BOM for the first time since I was 16
  27. Take an series of international cooking classes—either focusing on international cuisine or are actually located in another country
  28. Make a perfect chocolate soufflé
  29. Drink butterbeer
  30. Run a half marathon
  31. Play 18 holes of golf
  32. Attend a supreme court hearing
  33. Knit a scarf that’s cute enough to wear
  34. Sing at a karaoke bar
  35. Host a holiday meal **Completed 10/10/11 a.k.a. Canadian Thanksgiving**
  36. Swim with bioluminescent plankton
  37. Have a reunion with my Thailand buddies
  38. Visit Croatia
  39. Go to the Kentucky Derby
  40. See the aurora borealis
  41. Enter something in the State Fair
  42. Take a meditation course

I don’t have to live in a box!

29 Jul

Hey all,

I’m a terrible blogger. I never update my page. Blah, blah, blah. Anyhoo, I figured I let you all know that I FINALLY found a place to live in Vancouver. Now I don’t have to sleep under a bridge or on a park bench. HOORAY! Pretty stoked about it. The roomies have an affinity for Super Nintendo, cooking and learning to rock climb. I think we’ll get along fabulously.

Another exciting fact: I only have 3 more weeks of work until I leave. Well, until I go camping with the fam, and then leave. It’s coming on so fast. I’m so excited, but trying to make the most of the time I have left at home.

I think I might be a librarian

17 Mar

So I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching these days, trying to figure out my life. Mostly trying to figure out where it’s headed and what my next step should be. My conclusion…

I’m seriously thinking about becoming a librarian. I would have to go to grad school, which isn’t really a bonus, but I think it’s something I would be really good at. Not an elementary school librarian. More like a college librarian or maybe at a cool city library. At any rate, I have at least a year before I could start school again. I have a while to think about it. Any thoughts?

Decade in review

7 Jan

Well, it’s been many many moons since I last posted and I’m not sure how to sum it up. It’s been a rough couple of months, but I managed to make it through and things are looking much brighter these days. Since it’s the start of a new decade, I thought I’d review what’s happened to me in the last 10 years (thanks Becky for the idea-although I don’t have any pics because I’m too lazy to scan them from my old yearbooks). My memory is terrible though, so you’ll get only the random highlights I can remember. Also, I have to go by school years because that’s how all students measure time.

1999/2000: 6th grade in all it’s glory. This was my first real year at Riverside Elementary, since we moved halfway through 5th grade and got stuck on terrible B track. Molly and I were in Mr Stavros’ class this year with Jennie, Amanda and Angela. I loved pre-algebra with Mr Z. This is also the year I became friends with Rachel T. I can’t believe it’s been 10 years and she’s still one of my best friends. I remember many long walks discussing my love for Joe and her drama with Micah. I also played Dromio in possibly the best Shakespear play ever performed by 12 year olds. *Bonus funny story: one of my best friends was named Jessica. Towards the end of the year I asked her if she thought we’d still be friends in middle school. She promptly and matter-of-factly answered no. Tragic. The friendship ended there.

2000/2001: My first year of middle school. My first friend in middle school was Megan G. We met in art class and bonded over our love for Newsies. I had the infamous Mrs. Cox for TLC-TWICE! Whoa Nelly! (Only the WJMS alumni will understand). This was the year I was introduced to the torture that is swimming for gym class. Imagine running dripping wet from the pool to the school in the middle of winter. And then the added benefit of smelling like chlorine all day. I remember I had home ec. right after gym and Mrs. Brumfield threatened to dock my grade because I had more than 20 tardies.

2001/2002: Eighth grade was memorable. Both 9/11 and the Elizabeth Smart kidnapping happened during this school year, which will help me remember this year forever. I also chopped all my hair off this year. I loved it, everyone else hated it. Especially the boys. I don’t know why they are so prejudiced against short hair. Lame. I LOVED Mr. Brooks and Mr. Holt for English and History. Who can forget Brooks’ grammar songs? I will remember the “be” verbs until the day I die. I won the We the People speech contest and got to go to the state competition. Molly and I also got in our first real and lasting fight this year. It was terrible. Fortunately we were able to work things out and have been closer than ever ever since.

2002/2003: My last year of middle school. I was on stage crew and the National Junior Honor Society historian. Believe it or not, these were fairly cool positions to have. This year was full of awards. I got Lion of the Quarter and plenty at the end of the year assembly: best student of the year in both Enlish and Science and something for getting a 4.0 for my entire Jr. High career. This was probably the peak of my academic success. I pretty much coasted after that. I also got my first job that summer working at Glacier’s Yummy Ice. I became (and still am) addicted to blueberry coconut snowcones with cream.

2003/2004: A year of firsts. On my first day of school I fell flat on my face in the cafeteria during lunch. I learned how to drive and got in my first car accident only 3 days after getting my license. I went on my first date. I got my first cell phone. I got my first B, which was both devastating and incredibly liberating. I got my first real job at Shopko, followed quickly by my second real job at the law firm. My had my first kiss with a random boy at the skating rink, which literally swept me off my feet (I fell on the ice immediately afterwards). I also had the most rocking sweet 16 party ever. My parents surprised us with a party at this awesome cabin with about 20 of our closest guy and girl friends-girls slept over and guys went home after.

2004/2005: The year that I loved, even though it almost killed me. This was by far my most difficult year of school as far as classes go. I was in AP History and Calculus, which kicked my butt pretty much every day. I remember having a integrals party with my friend Jessica (different than 6th grade Jessica) during spring break while my sister had a legitimate party. I had my first real kiss at prom this year. I kissed him because I was sick of waiting for him to do it. One of my favorite memories was our backwards party: everything was backwards including the clothes everyone wore. This was also the year we designated our group of friends the Terrible 10 during one particularly boring day in physics. We each had our own “terrible” nickname, mine was Chainsaw Chel. I was never pleased with it. This summer I went to Chicago for the TSA national competition-my first vacation on my own.

2005/2006: My final year as a minor. I turned 18, which was no big deal except that I registered to vote and I went to the Price is Right. I was the editor of the school paper. It’s not as impressive as it sounds. The JagWire was a pretty pathetic paper that was marginally less pathetic by the time I finished with it. I got the National Merit Scholarship that opened the door to Westminster College for me. I was school Salutatorian, meaning that I had to sit quietly on the stage during graduation instead of chatting in the back with my friends. I also took an amazing trip to Hawaii with my family.

2006/2007: College freshman. I moved out of my parents’ into the ghetto-est house EVER in Sugarhouse. We had plants from the outside growing on the inside. Luckily it was right across the street from Westminster. School was new and exciting, but Honors Humanities was the hardest class I have ever taken. I decided on Communication as a major, without really knowing what I wanted to do. I sent Andy out on a mission and wrote many many letters. In March I bought a new car all by myself and moved home to save money.

2007/2008: The beginning of my year of travel. I took a spur of the moment trip to San Francisco with three of my friends, officially beginning my year of travel. School was the same as usual. I continued plugging along, taking advanced French in addition to Comm and Honors courses. I used this new skill as an excuse to take a May Term trip to Europe with my friend Angela. Three weeks in France and Spain further solidified my already rock-solid love for travel. My grandfather died this year, which was an odd experience for me. I wasn’t close with him at all, and I was filled with regret for never getting to know him and guilt for my lack of grief.

2008/2009: The end of my year of travel. I took the fall semester off to accomodate my travels to Boston, Vermont and Hawaii. Totalled, I spent more than 8 weeks on vacation in 12 months. Amazing is all I can say. I returned to school reluctantly, but I eager to see everyone again. A significant highlight was learning to snowboard. I’m too poor and too busy to get good at it, but I love it anyway. Andy came home this year and promptly broke up with me, more than slightly breaking my heart. In hindsight it was a wise move, but it was difficult at the time.

2009-present: As I said before, this year has been a difficult one. I have struggled mentally and emotionally, which caused me to struggle academically. However, my family came to my rescue and I was able to pull myself together enough to finish up the semester and enjoy the holidays. With the help of my family and my doctor things are looking way way up. I began my last semester of college this week with a mixture of anticipation and dread. I am looking forward to my summer adventure in Thailand (I’ll write more about that later) and hopefully many more adventures to follow.

Reflecting on the last 10 years makes me realize how very lucky I am. Thanks you all of you who have helped me grow up over the last decade. Without you I am sure I would be a very different person.