Wednesday, December 12, 2012

That's my story and I'm stickin' to it!

This is a shout out to all of my Mormon (LDS) friends who have sat through an odd testimony meeting and felt super uncomfortable, or just plain unable to keep up with what was going on because of the odd stories, references and just strange overall experiences.  That happened to me today.

I'm not trying to bash on someone who has the gumption to get up and share what he or she believes in a meeting with 100 other young adults, but I do feel kind of frustrated when that person takes up 20 minutes telling a story that leads in circles only to finally come to the exact same conclusion as the girl before. 

All of this being said, I was a little worried that the awkwardness felt during Sacrament meeting would cause me to not be able to focus during the rest of church, but the opposite was true. We had an amazing lesson during Sunday School on the House,Scattering, and Gathering of Israel followed by Relief Society on Our Savior.

We were each given a copy of the Living Christ, published by the 12 apostles in the latter days and the first presidency and prophet of our church. If you'd like to know more about a living prophet and the true beliefs of the Mormon church, learn more at Mormon.org or click on the following link to read a copy of The Living Christ. Anyways, we were asked to read through and circle all of the names of Christ mentioned in this one page testimony of Jesus Christ, here is what I found, in no particular order:

  • Jesus Christ
  • Creator
  • Advocate
  • Only begotten Son
  • Risen Lord
  • First and the Last (i.e. Alpha and Omega)
  • King of Kings
  • Lord of Lords
  • King Imanuel
  • Divine Son
  • The Way
  • Light, life and hope of the world
  • Savior
  • Living Savior
  • I Am
  • Great Jehovah
  • Messiah
  • Redeemer
  • Firstborn of the Father
Wow, amazing right? All in a testimony of the man who was Jesus Christ, there are however many more names used in scripture that describe his works.  Maybe because of this lesson, I've decided to read Jesus the Christ, I'll let you know how it goes!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Dating Horror Stories

This blog post is for all of you out there who have gone on that one, or maybe even two miserable, awful, horrible dates that will forever live in your mind. This is the period of time that comprised the worst of the worst, most awkward and possibly even most embarrassing moments of your life.

You all know what I'm talking about. There was the boy who picked you up on his bicycle or tried to woo you over a burger and milkshake. Or maybe you experienced the girl who took you to meet her parents on your first date or went through your apartment talking about what has to go when you get married before you even know her middle name. It has happened to us all, so here are the best of the best that I've heard, or experienced for myself.

Scenario 1: The blind blind date. Take for instance those awkward blind dates. Some call them blind because you don't know the person before you go on the date, others because you don't see the person before the date.  In the case of others, the date is blind because you didn't see him before, on, or after your date. No this is definitely not because you are actually blind, I would never stoop that low. Instead, this is a result of a face painted mask that he didn't bother to wash off after his previous activity.

Ya, talk about lazy. You know your date is a winner when he gets done with his Halloween party, stage make-up class or band practice and skips the shower. face wash and change of clothes and heads straight to spend some quality time with you.  Really makes a girl feel special.  Better yet, you will walk away and not be able to identify him in a police station line-up. Smooth, very smooth.

On the plus side, you never have to have that awkward moment if you run into him at the mall a week later, because you can literally say that you have no idea who he is.

Scenario 2: The attached at your hip blind date.  Blind dates are awkward enough so, to make them worse, throw them in a pot with valentine's day, a formal dance and a very clingy date and you're in for quite a treat.     You could even add a dash of shorter than you, follows you to the bathroom and believes he lives in a 90s comic strip as some extra flavoring. Hey, don't get me wrong I don't have anything against the 90s,cause I've been there, done that.

If that wasn't awkward enough he could perhaps ask to take a video of you dancing within the first few minutes of meeting you. Take this as a warning ladies, when the shoes come off, so do the inhibitions and sometimes it isn't pretty.

Scenario 3: The First Kiss, Sweet or Sassy?  Ok, regardless of whether it is your actual first kiss or just a first kiss with a new guy, everyone needs to learn to take it easy! That's right friends, it is not okay in any situation to just throw your mouth open and swallow your kissing partner's face on the first attempt. There are a few things that no one I know of enjoy in a kiss.

Number one, slobber. When you attempt to slobber on her she may think of you like she thinks of her puppy and never want to kiss you again.

Number two, don't open wide. Only the dentist wants to see that, enough said.

Number three, take it easy buckaroo. A nice little peck on the lips is perfectly fine for the first kiss. Swallowing someone's chin is not only weird but very unattractive and will make most people feel quite uncomfortable.

Last, but definitely not least, try to refrain from throwing firecrackers, hand grenades, knives or anything else that may potentially cause death or dismemberment at the person you'd like to date or are interested in. Unattractive? Yes.  Weird? Most Definitely. Chance at a relationship? Over!

All in all, boys, men, guys, whatever you'd like to call yourselves, you don't have to look like Brad Pit, talk like Chris Hemsworth or sing like John Mayer to get the girls. You just need to be sweet without being overbearing, weird without being psycho, and fun without being immature and for goodness sake work those dimples God gave you.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Moving on...

Guess what? No really guess....Ok you give up? NO I'm not getting married, going to grad school or re-inventing the wheel, at least not yet... I have officially made a decision that will determine where my life is headed from here.  That's right. I have moved out of the wonderful world of Provo, also known as "the bubble" into the great unknown, also known as "The Wild".

As Dr. Suess mentions in his famous "moving on" book,                   

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes
You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
You're on your own.  And you know what you know.
And YOU are the guy who'll decide where to go.


Before anyone makes any snide remarks, I know the brain part is debatable and I do like to run around without shoes the majority of the time...   but I am finally moving and growing up, maybe for real this time. That last part is still to be determined.

Of course that big step was partially determined with some help from my good friends and my trusty side-kick prayer, but I don't regret it one bit. Although making friends has come more slowly here in Salt Lake, partly due to the awkwardness of the ward and partly to the awkwardness of well.... me. I used to be an outgoing, fun kinda girl, but that part of me partially dies when I'm around people I don't know very well.

I did have my first major friend making experience tonight, which is kind of a big deal.  A girl in my ward, who is pretty dang awesome, named Maquel came with my brother and I to see Train, Andy Grammer and Mat Kearney in concert. It was a pretty rockin'  party even though the majority of the crowd was drinking. it made me want to raise my hand and ask who the designated driver was supposed to be, but I doubt anyone would have listened eh?

It's hard to trust musicians performing live, thanks in part due to the likes of "the audiotuners" made famous by the do-rag wearin' gangsta Antoine Dodson who gave us a little magic after an "incident" involving a family member; however, all three of these performers wow-ed, shocked and amazed me, in that order, with their actual voices. Yeah that's right friends, Andy, Mat and Pat can all rock out, for real.

Well, I feel that my jokes are running on short supply here and I've about used up my wisecrack quota for the day so it's time to call it quits to my many adoring fans and "I'm no good at goodbyes."

Heidi

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Living With a Porch Swing

So, I've heard of waiting as described as an action and I've decided it's true.  Even if you aren't actually doing anything, you are simply... waiting. However, just because waiting is an action word, doesn't mean that it is something worth doing frequently.  I learned that anything worth having is worth waiting for. So, I get that there were a lot of repeated words in those last two sentences and to most people it was a heck of a lot of mumbo jumbo, so in English, what I'm really trying to say is, waiting sucks while you're doing it, but in the end it all comes out ok.

I will not tell lies (throw back to Harry Potter there), I am one of those people who posts ooh so cute things on Pinterest only to go blah when they are actually handed to me.  For instance, I've wanted a porch swing ever since I was little and we got rid of our windowed in porch swing.  My mom or dad and I used to sit on the swing during thunderstorms and look out over the cornfields (yes I live in backwoods Indiana), and spot the lightning and watch the rain pour down.  That is something I've learned that I miss greatly.

Yeah, well nostalgia can only do so much apparently because I now have a porch swing, right on my front porch at the house I moved in to in Salt Lake City, but do I use it? Nope, I haven't sat on it one single time, and there have been two kinda gnarly thunderstorms! So, why you ask do I let my dreams pass me by? Well, I could claim its because the swing doesn't look like it's been cleaned for years, or I could say that spiders might come and get me, but everyone who knows me knows those are both just excuses and that I need to just woman up and get the cleaner out, clean that mess and spend some quality time with my porch swing.

So, this is for anyone who wants something. Just get it. Reach out and make it happen, even if it is as little as having a porch swing. Once your dream becomes a reality cherish it.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Cowboy Boots and 10 Gallon Hats

WARNING: This post may contain addictive content. Read at your own risk.

Lately, I've realized that even though I haven't been technically diagnosed I am quite A.D.D. when it comes to music. For instance, one day I will love country music and the next, when other people decide to like country too, I switch to something else. Its silly, I know, but sometimes everyone goes a little crazy right?



Ok, so lately, I've been on a country kick  and as my roommate once pointed out in her own blog, it isn't just songs about beer and cows and fishing... even though there are of course those songs, nor is it a bunch of pre-marital nonsense that we tend to hear about in every other genre of music.

To me, country music is about emotions, love, death, illness, happiness, and learning to deal with these issues. It's about understanding people's stories before judging their character or background.  It's about treating everyone like they are someone special, because believe it or not, they are.Its about recognizing the heroes in this world and learning that family is what matters.  Its about your life journey and what you choose to do with it.  Don't believe me, do you?  That's okay I suppose.  Maybe it would be easier to convince you by showing you these songs...




Are you from Indiana, Oklahoma, Texas, South Dakota, Kansas, New Mexico? You might understand why God made those flyover states.. one of my favorite songs right now from Jason Aldean, along with Tattoos on this Town.



or Keith Urban's "For You" which features the troops and all they have done for us through the years.



Josh Turner's "Time is Love" 

If you'd actually listen to the words you might understand why I love this music so much.. just saying...

I also love... "Like My Mother Does" - Lauren Alaina , Hunter Hayes - "Wanted", Gloriana - "Kissed you Goodnight" , Rascal Flatts - "Banjo", I know.. that is a lot...only two more and I think I'll have you convinced...

"Cowboys and Angels" - Dustin Lynch,   "You" - Chris Young,

Ok.. I've given you most of my favorites.. and if you'll give them a chance I promise you won't be disappointed... :)

If none of these has affected you in the least... pull out your hankies... this is the one... or you may have indeed been born without a heart. "Don't Miss Your Life" - Phil Vassar



Normal people sing country music... not crazed, drugged up homies... just sayin'.


Tuesday, May 1, 2012

My Top Ten (Part 2)

So, here goes the second half of the top ten places I'd love to visit outside of the United States.  Its kind of amazing it took me so long to write this second half. Thanks to Rachel Moore for inadvertently inspiring me to finish this list.

6. Australia - The Great Barrier Reef:

Let's pretend for a second that I'm not terrified of swimming with sharks and that one of my biggest fears does not include swimming in wide open water.  Ever since that dang Dolphin on the bottom of the pool at the YMCA looked at my funny I have been terrified of swimming in wide open water. But, that doesn't stop me from wanting to visit the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and go scuba diving or even just snorkeling.  I can deal with sharks and eels and those scary creatures for a while to be able to enjoy some of God's greatest creations.

Also, I'm not adverse to seeing kangaroos and koalas - regardless of how cliche that is, hearing Australian accents or taking a hop, skip, and a jump across the pond to New Zealand to spend a "few" bucks to watch the All Blacks play some dang good rugby or maybe take some surfing lessons and learn about the Maori culture.  Bring it on!


7. Africa - Safari Time:


In addition to knowing some beautiful people from this continent that would give me reason enough to come visit, I would absolutely love to take a safari tour.  Yes, I know I've already expressed my mild discomfort around large dangerous animals (i.e. sharks), but, if I can overcome my fear of open water and sharks all at once, why not taking on some lions and tigers and cheetahs as well.  No big deal, right? As long as I'm in vehicle I think my survival chances are going to be pretty high. Besides, if I ever want to do the amazing race I will have to buck up and do amazing and often scary things.



8. Indonesian Islands - So Many Islands, So Little Time:  
Even though the chance is extremely slim that I could actually pronounce any of the places I visit correctly, and I'm not altogether entirely sure I'd enjoy much of their food, I'll admit, I'm a fruit and veggies, Mexican American food kinda girl, I would still love to enjoy the culture surrounding these islands.

You can get the tropical feel, the ancient Indonesian culture, volcanoes and unique experiences with the still remaining and fully functioning tribes that lives among these 1,000 islands. 


9. Dublin, Ireland and Scotland: 
I feel like my list would be far from complete without a trip to Ireland or Scotland thrown into the mix.  First of all.  Have you seen pictures of these places...castles, lush green countrysides and beautiful blue green lakes surrounded by a large blue-green ocean.  Let's be honest. What is not to love?  Bagpipes? Okay, they are sometimes a little much to handle in long periods of time, but I find it hard to believe that the fear of continual bag pipe music would keep anyone away from such a beautiful place.


I almost feel like daring you to find a more beautiful destination although, number 6 would probably come pretty close. If you are still conflicted you may want to check out one of the movies filmed in one of these beautiful countries for further confirmation.


Leap Year, P.S. I Love You, Tristan and Isolde, Braveheart, Saving Private Ryan (Supposedly the beach scenes take place in Ireland - though I've never seen it, or been to Ireland to substantiate these claims). 

 
10. Machu Picchu, Peru:
"Welcome to the mysterious ruins of Machu Picchu, Peru. Prepare yourself as you are about to embark on a.. tour of one of the most intriguing destinations on the planet."  No joke, that is the first two lines of the Machu Picchu, Peru trip planning website.  Um.. yes please! Buy me a ticket, book my flight.  I know half of the fun is doing the climb, but wouldn't it be easier and a little more exciting to just drop me off via.. hot air balloon or... ooh I don't know... parachute. 

I know, I'm kind of complaining again, so I'll stop.  But seriously, this place not only looks beautiful, but its amazing to me that this civilization built in a time with very little or no technological advances was able to build a civilization that was able to stand the tests of time, while with the technologies of today we are hardly able to build things that last a decade.

Here it is folks, part two of my travel list is complete, if you are still reading I'm impressed.   I have included some honorable mentions because to be honest with you, Paris has grown on me as well as Thailand and Beijing, maybe with further persuasion they will make their way up the list.




Monday, February 13, 2012

Dreaming

So, this year has been one of weird dreams.  I don't know if its because of all the medications I'm on because of my issues last semester, or if I'm just a strange sleeper/dreamer.  They have actually been so weird that I've considered keeping a dream journal just for the fun of it.

If you don't believe me, here's dream number one... I had a dream that me and one of my roommates were talking about when our other roommate was coming home and she suddenly came out from behind the wall crying her eyes out whining to us that she "heard everything" and couldn't believe we would say such things about her.

This happened 2 or 3 more times in different locations, always with the same two roommates and the same outcome.  When I told my roommate about the dream, interesting conversation followed of course about why I would have such a dream.

The other night I had another good one.  If you have seen the movie "In Time" this will make more sense to you.  The movie In Time is about people who live as long as they have time left on their clocks(arms). Anyways I had a "Time Keeping Machine" that could transport me from century to century based on the numbers I entered into the machine.  Except, if you misused your "jumping" powers the time keepers would take your machine. Well.. I was on a bus, with an unknown male person :). Everyone on the bus had misused their time machines and so the time keeper was coming to retrieve them from us.  Well... we realized this before the time keepers got to us, so we jumped and hid out for a while, until the time keepers found us.. Then it was just like the movie "Jumper". We jumped from time period to time period and had to keep running from the time keepers.  It was a pretty detailed dream.  Anyways.. those are just two of the many extremely strange dreams I've had in the past few weeks...

I'm kind of excited to see if they will continue.. Sorry this post is mostly so I don't forget the dreams.. and I get sick of writing things out by hand, so its not as funny or clever as usual.

 time machine dream
rad dream

Monday, January 23, 2012

From Blonde to Red and Back Again

So, for those of you who missed part of the continuing Heidi saga.. I will fill in the details. I know.. its so dramatic right?..

During the last week I was in the hospital in September my docs talked and decided that my Lupus was so out of control that more aggressive treatment was needed. This was as I was starting my overall recovery... so honestly not entirely sure how that decision came about...

Anyways.. the reason they give Chemo or Cytoxan as they call the milder version I received, to Lupus patients is because it basically kills off the rest of their immune system, making it impossible for my body to react.  In other words.. my body was having such an "allergic reaction" to itself that the only way to stop it was to kill off my immune system so that it would stop trying to fight me.

I think it would have been easier and more comfortable for me to sit down and have a heart to heart with those little annoying germs and tell them that evacuation was necessary or they would be fumigated.  Kind of like those weird Mucinex commercials.. you all know what I'm talking about.. right? If not.. just pretend.

Regardless... I had my first treatment in the hospital, where they have nice heavy anti-nausea medication, so I only threw up twice in the middle of the night after the first treatment.   Although, the hospital and after the second treatment is when I lost the most hair.

Well.. after I was released... my hair was looking pretty nasty and starting to develop bald spots, which is why I all the sudden appeared with thick red hair... Yeah.. my fairy godmother (literally, not kidding here) helped me pick out a wig that would work with my natural skin tone that I could wear for a few months until my treatments were over.

So, thus, Heidi is a fiery, feisty red head! Woo hoo!

Anyways, after the second treatment.. no sickness, just nausea.
Third treatment... I threw up for about 5 hours.. nearly every half an hour.
Fourth treatment was a 7-8 hour long disaster zone. I almost surrendered myself to curling up on the bathroom floor and just waiting it out.  Lucky for me there are some amazing priesthood holders in my ward who don't mind seeing me at my worse and I got a blessing after which the episode subsided.

Two days later I went home for Christmas! Yay Christmas!!

Well.. a few days after returning from Christmas break, the bills started showing up. I won't say how much they were cause its just ridiculous.. but I was scheduled for two more treatments. One this week and then the last one next month. However, after looking at the bills I decided that unless Bill Gates himself made an appearance on my front step with a nice chunky check book, Chemo was not happening anymore.

I got in touch with my doctor today and okayed the nix of the Chemo treatments! I'm still not in the clear completely, they will have me on watch... don't worry no ankle bracelet or alarms going off... just some more needle pokes twice a month, which is no big considering a spot has formed on my arm from the previous 117 needle pokes in the exact same spot.  Easy access makes things a lot more comfortable for everyone.

Anyways.. thus ends this current part of my dramatic/traumatic experience. Thanks for the continued prayers and love sent my way, it has meant the world to me...

Ohh.. p.s. the wig has officially taken its spot on the top shelf of my closet where she will hopefully reside for a long time. I have once again joined the ranks of the blondes!

Before I end though I probably should include some positives of chemo.. right? There is a ray of sunshine in every cloud... except of course unless its snowing like the north pole in Provo.. but that's beside the point...

1.  I never had to shave my legs... Its true folks.. the hair just didn't grow.
2.  I had a legitimate excuse to not work for a day and "rest" on the couch.
3.  HUGS!!! I got LOTS of Hugs! I like hugs...



And thus... officially.. Chemo has taken its place in its part of Heidi history, become part of what has shaped my character and made me stronger than I ever imagined I would be.  Thanks should go to Heavenly Father for knowing I was strong enough to endure such a harrowing trial and come out even stronger.
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