Thursday, January 30, 2014

Instant Motivation

So today I was supposed to be productive, but instead I found myself perusing the internet for something interesting. And in that endeavor, I was successful! At least I think so.

I work out. I'd like to do it five or six times a week, but I probably average about three. I can definitely use some motivation sometimes. I know not everyone works out, but you should because it's good for you and it is seriously the BEST stress reliever out there.

So if you ever need some extra motivation for working out, check out this website. It's pretty cool.

http://www.instamotivation.com/

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Kid President is Back


Video: http://www.youtube.com/soulpancake


Seriously, this kid is incredible. This video was everything I needed to hear right now, and I know it has a lot of things we all need to hear again. Some of my favorite quotes:

"Laughing is the best."

"Somedays gross things will happen. Some days awesome things will happen. Some days you'll get ice cream. Some days you won't. Some days your kite will fly high. Some days it will get stuck in a tree. It's just how it is here."

"There's plenty of reasons to dance, you've just got to look for them."

"Being a person is hard sometimes. You should give people high-fives just for getting out of bed."

"Just treat everybody like it's their birthday, even if they don't deserve it, because we all mess up sometimes. The biggest mess up: Not forgiving each other's mess ups."

"Try this, take a breath. Isn't that amazing? It's called breathing! You're going to do it a lot, and nobody knows exactly how much, so enjoy it."

"You're going to do so much. But it's not about what you do, it's about who you are."

"You're made from love, to be loved, to spread love."

"Love is always louder."

"We're really glad you're here. We don't say that enough to each other here because, well, life gets busy. You're going to be important, and you're going to do a lot, and you're going to smell great, but don't get too busy."

"For now, remember this: You're awake, you're awesome, live like it."

I know this is a video to newborn children, but seriously, this is a message we should hear every single day. Laughing is still the best, life is still hard sometimes, and breathing is still amazing. None of these lessons have changed, and they are probably more important now then ever, since we are constantly getting older. I saw a different quote the other day, and I don't know who it's by, but I really, really liked it.

"Live your life. Take chances. Be crazy. Because right now is the oldest you've ever been and the youngest you'll ever be again."

So don't wait to make a difference in someone's life, and don't wait to change yours if you need to. Tomorrow, try to be a little kinder, a little happier, and a little more positive. Because life really is wonderful.



Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Real Beauty

We all know that almost any time you see a photo of a woman, whether it's in a magazine or on a website, she has been photoshopped. This has provided terrible messages to the world, telling women that they have to strive for bodies that are completely unrealistic. It tells them that they have to look a way that is physically impossible, and it harms a lot of self esteem.

However, in the past year or so, I have noticed a lot of celebrities standing up against this idea. Jennifer Lawrence, Kelly Clarkson, Kate Winslet, Keira Knightley, and Jessica Simpson, just to name a few, have all spoken out against photoshopping to make them look flawless. I can't tell you how happy I am that people are finally doing this!

Something new that made me very happy today: Aerie, American Eagle's lingerie brand, is not retouching its models for its new campaign.

http://i.huffpost.com/gen/1569269/thumbs/o-AERIE-570.jpg?8
Photo: http://i.huffpost.com/gen/1569269/thumbs/o-AERIE-570.jpg?8



The models are still beautiful of course, but that's the whole point. No one needs to be retouched to be beautiful. 

http://s3-ec.buzzfed.com/static/2014-01/enhanced/webdr02/21/12/enhanced-buzz-2816-1390326894-11.jpg

Photo: http://s3-ec.buzzfed.com/static/2014-01/enhanced/webdr02/21/12/enhanced-buzz-2816-1390326894-11.jpg



Thank you, Aerie. 

http://www.venusbuzz.com/wp-content/uploads/aeri-campaign.png?ae345b 

Photo: http://www.venusbuzz.com/wp-content/uploads/aeri-campaign.png?ae345b


Monday, January 20, 2014

Vocal Point!

This post is a little late, but I have to tell you about one of BYU's a capella groups, Vocal Point.

Photo: arts.byu.edu


Vocal Point has been around since 1991. I discovered them in 2010, when they were contestants on "The Sing-Off, where they finished in the top 5 (although they should have won!). After The Sing-Off was over, I listened to them on and off, occasionally watching their Sing-Off performances on Youtube with one of my friends who had also followed the show. Truthfully, I was so in love with the "Sing-Off" group of men that I couldn't stand the thought of liking new members, since they add and lose people every year.

When I found out I was accepted to BYU, one of my first thoughts was that it would be so cool if I could meet them one day. But I assumed at a college of 30,000 students, that was a long shot. Then one day I was walking across campus after my last class of the day when I saw that a crowd had formed around something. As I got closer I heard singing, and to my amazement Vocal Point was giving a surprise performance in the middle of campus! They were incredible, and this was only the second week of school, so they hadn't been practicing for very long. After their performance, I got up the courage to introduce myself to Parker, one of the members. He was extremely friendly, and after a short conversation I began my way back to my apartment, elated. I called everyone I knew, just wanting to tell someone about the life-changing experience I had just had. (Not really, but it felt like that at the time.) I couldn't get a hold of anyone, but I left several breathless messages that I am kind of embarrassed about now when I think back to them.

Once again, I was on a Vocal Point high. Then, only a few weeks ago, I saw that they had just made a matinee concert for when they were performing at BYU (their 7:30 showing had sold out long ago) and I went to buy tickets immediately with two of my friends. Our seats? Second row, directly in the middle. Yeah.

The concert was two days ago, and I had a BLAST. They are just incredibly talented guys, and you can tell they have so much fun onstage. Afterwards we waited in line for like an hour to meet them, and they were so genuine, asking each of us our names, where we were from, and making great conversation. They are very down to earth and so kind. Oh, and way good-looking. And only one, Jake, is married, so there is hope!

Seriously though, I highly recommend listening to them. They have a few CDs out, and they're releasing a new one in April, which I am definitely getting.

Check out their website for information on the members, upcoming performances, and more:

http://www.byuvocalpoint.com/

And their Youtube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/vocalpointbyu

Do it.






I Really Don't Deserve You

So for my Book of Mormon class this semester, we have an 11 Hour Project we are going to be working on throughout the semester. What I chose as my topic was to write a poem, story, etc., every week that related to what we read and talked about. This week we read in Alma 35-42, and this is what I came up with:


I Really Don't Deserve You
By, Anne Taylor

I’m not a perfect person.
I stumble and I trip and I fall.
I try to be good, I really do,
But sometimes I can’t do it all.

I know the difference between right and wrong
I know the choice I should make
But sometimes I choose wrong over right
And afterwards, my heart breaks

All I want to do is be perfect for You.
All I want to do is be Yours.
All I want to do is make You smile.
But these bruises of imperfection make me sore.

I’m sorry for hurting You like this.
I’m sorry for making You sad.
I’m sorry for my faults and my doubts and my fears
I’m sorry that I am so bad.

I don’t deserve You, I really don’t.
I never really did.
You suffered for me, You died for me,
All because of my sin.

You love me perfectly
With a love I can’t comprehend
You gave me an infinitely intimate Atonement
A love that has no end.

You served the justice that I should have bore
You suffered and bled and died
So that later You could show me mercy
When I pleaded and begged and cried

I don’t deserve You, I really don’t
But that’s something You just dismiss
Because You love me so much more than I know
That’s just the way it is

You were there when I celebrated
You were there when I mourned
You were there when I praised you in joy
You were there when my heart was torn

You were there when I hurt
You were there when the days were long
You were there when I was happy
You were even there when I did wrong

So I really don’t deserve You,
I never really will
But I hope You know how much I love You

I always have and I always will.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

A Positive Outlook

I was at work today, and I was lucky enough to have a wonderful person say a few things to me that I really needed to hear.

I am a security guard at an art museum, so my job involves a lot of standing and walking around. Today I was standing near a wall when an elderly man in a wheel chair came up to me and said "You must be pretty used to standing by now, huh?" I chuckled and replied, "Yep, I definitely am by now." 

Then he kind of looked in the distance wistfully and said, "I used to stand a lot too, but now I'm used to sitting."

He paused, and I felt both sad and a little awkward, not sure how to reply to his comment.

But then he smiled, looked up at me, and said, "But now I just get to see things from a different perspective." Then he left.

His comment touched me deeply. Someone in his situation could easily be bitter and upset that he was stuck in a wheelchair for the rest of his life. But while he was obviously sad, he chose to see it as an opportunity to "see things from a different perspective." 

We should all learn a lesson from this wonderful man. Any situation we're put in should be viewed as an opportunity to learn and grow. I have been very stressed out these first couple weeks of school because I am taking an extra class and doing some volunteering on top of my regular schooling and work schedule. I have viewed this business many times as an awful thing that I didn't know how I was going to get through. But truthfully, I am so blessed to be doing these things. The extra class is teaching me skills that I had lost many years ago, and the volunteering is giving me incredible experience for my future job. And on top of it all, my packed schedule is giving me a wonderful lesson in time management, something I definitely need to work on. 

So let's all try from now on to view trials as simply a way to "see things from a different perspective."

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Summer Lover in a Winter World

I have spent my entire life in Washington and most of it in eastern Washington, so I've become very accustomed to the four seasons it holds: almost winter, winter, still winter, and road construction. Just kidding, we actually have a pretty normal four seasons, but I have never been a fan of the cold so winter always seems to last longer than it should.

Right after Christmas is about when I start getting sick of snow, slush, and the COLD. I spend countless hours daydreaming about sandy beaches and warm sunshine, and just as many hours cursing the weather. However, as much as I complain and really do not enjoy the freezing temperatures, every single time I go outside there is something that reminds me just how beautiful the world is.

For example, over Christmas break I was at my house and my family took a hike to the top of the mountain we live on. It was a difficult hike and I was that awful mix of hot and cold from sweating in single-digit weather, but the moment we reached the top I forgot every negative emotion I had been feeling. The view was breathtaking. These pictures don't do it justice at all, but it looked like a scene taken right out of "Frozen".



















And I had to include this picture of my dog Obie, because he is adorable and I love him so much. :)













Heavenly Father is wonderful.


Thursday, January 9, 2014

Back Into Things

Man, sorry I haven't been on for a while. It was Christmas break the last couple weeks, I was with my family, and I just wasn't on the computer very much. But school has started again (I have mixed feelings about this) and I am back into my daily routine, so I'll be more on top of things.

I hope you all had a GREAT holiday season. I had a wonderful time seeing my family, and I can't wait to see them again in the summer.

I know this isn't a very good post because I actually have some homework due very soon, but I promise good things very soon!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy New Year!

Well, 2013 has come and gone. The new year is a time of reflection in most people's lives, as well as a time for change. Resolutions to be better and live more fully are made everywhere. I have never really been one to make resolutions, although I'm not sure why.

However, I want this year to be different, and to start I'm actually going to make some resolutions. Here they are:

1. Get a flat stomach, along with a six-pack. This is going to tie greatly into my second resolution, which is:

2. LESS SUGAR. I am probably the world's worse sweet tooth, so this is going to be hard, but I need it. And laying off sugar is definitely going to be the deciding factor in my first goal.

3. Be more outgoing. I have always been shy, but I need to break out of my shell and just smile and say hi to people more without being afraid.

4. Read my scriptures for at least five minutes every single day.

5. Have something I've written published. I don't care what it is or where it's published, but this has been on my bucket list for a while. And you know what, why not this year?

Ok. That's it. I promise to keep you updated on these.