Saturday, June 23, 2012

Twenty Things You Might Not Know About Me

I am finally 20! 
So I thought I would share twenty things about myself that most people {other than my family} probably don't know before my birthday week is up! And because I am home and have access to childhood pictures, I shared some at the bottom!

1. I was born on Father's Day.
Best present ever, right? My birthday would've been on father's day again this year 
if it wasn't for leap day.

2. I can gleek. 
When I was younger I would sneak up behind family members and do it on their necks. 
{much to their disgust}. Don't know what gleeking is? Go here. 

3. I am double-jointed. 
It's mostly in my hands, which are hypermobile. This is usually the point in the conversation where I show you what I can do with my hands. So next time you see me, ask and I'll show you! When I was in elementary school I would bend my fingers flat against the back of my hand. 
And if I practiced/stretched enough I could probably still do it. 
{I also crack my knuckles, jaw, back, and ankles}.

4. I have never ridden a roller-coaster. 
Unless you count Space Mountain at Disney. Something about those sharp drops plummeting towards the earth does not appeal to my stomach. I am, however, fine with spinning and upside-down rides. Tower of Terror? Forget it. You could not pay me to get on that thing. 

5. My nickname growing up was Toad.
Not because of the character {although every time I play mario kart I choose him. SO CUTE}, but because I used to squat a lot as a toddler. Apparently. And when I misbehave the name is Toadfish. I have seen a Toadfish in real life, and let me tell you, those things are ugly.

6. I was a vegetarian for three years.
Not for health reasons, but because I love animals and can't stand the way slaughterhouses treat them. Bacon {and convenience} brought me back to the meat side of things. But eventually {when I have the means} I plan on only eating free-range and organic meat and animal products. 

7. I have never had a caffeinated beverage.
That's right, I have never even tried Coke or Dr. Pepper. I grew up not allowed to drink it and since then I haven't seen the point in starting. It's bad for you anyway, and I can't miss something I've never tried. Besides, I don't really like soda that much at all.

8. My favorite animal is a panda and I would rather own a dog as a pet than a cat.
Contrary to popular belief, cats are not my favorite animal and If I had a choice of only one pet to have I would pick a dog. And Ever since I can remember I have been in love with pandas; they used to cover my room. Before I die I want to touch/hold one. Also Orangutans. They are my second favorite animal. {So there everyone! I am not obsessed with cats, I am just obsessed with animals in general!}

9. I hate seafood.
It's gross, and I will not eat it unless I have to. I haven't tried shrimp, crab, lobster, or any other "delicious" sea creature. The only time I have tasted fish and liked it was in Thailand. And you might tell me I can't say it's gross unless I try it, but I think the idea of it is repulsive. You want me to eat what? A tough, slimy muscle that lives in a shell? No way, Jose. 
And raw sushi? Forget about it. {oh and I don't like pie either...}

10. I play the piano and the violin.
I started taking playing piano lessons in 2nd grade and quit after 10th grade. I hated practicing piano and I wasn't good at playing with my bottom hand. However, I actually loved violin {to a point}. I started playing in 6th grade and quit after 11th grade. I even played in the Naples Youth Philharmonic for a while. But the program in my school was awful and my private teacher wanted me to put practicing before school {so I could play at weddings with her}, so I quit. At one point I thought about continuing into college to play in a BYU orchestra, but decided I didn't want to put in all the work. And I miss it. A lot. Playing it, actually playing it well, is magical and exhilarating. But now I am resigned to listening to other people and tremendously appreciating all their hard work and skill. {Although, If I could play anything, it would be the cello. Also, I'm pretty good at whistling}.

11. I have a fear of drowning and being home alone at night. 
And both for rational reasons. If you're interested, ask me about it in person sometime.

12. I have had surgery four times.
On both knees, on my nose, and on my mouth. Oh and I fractured my wrist trying to hop a fence when I was eight. {And drugs don't make me do anything interesting. I just cry a lot}.

13. I have never been able to sit criss-cross-applesauce easily.
Even before my knee surgeries it was hard to cross my legs. I remember not looking forward reading time in kindergarten for this exact reason. And if you sit any other way one of your limbs will fall asleep. It also makes yoga a bit harder. 

14. I am really good at belching.
I debated sharing this one, but I figured I might as well be transparent in this post. I know it's gross and very un-ladylike, but I have never been beaten in a belching contest. I can say your name and then some all in one burp. People never expect this to come out of my mouth. I don't share this little talent very often, but if you live me with me for a period of time, I eventually let you in on it.

15. I was {am} pretty nerdy. 
Now I am an art major that pretty much couldn't care less about grades, but growing up I was almost the exact opposite. I used to be obsessed with getting straight A's and cried when I got my first B. I loved school and always thought I would major in something science related like biology. I remember in elementary school having a goal to become valedictorian in high school, and then go on to attend Harvard. {haha how precocious!} I have since calmed down, thank goodness. I always wanted to be an astronaut too. In middle school I was in "star lab" club, and even wrote a letter to a female astronaut once and she sent me back a signed photograph! {I still have it}. At my senior awards ceremony in high school I got the astronomy award. I'm lame right? {I graduated in the top 10% with honors but I am more happy with an astronomy award}. If I remember correctly, when I applied to BYU I put that I was planning to be an english major on my application. So I pretty much love every subject {except chemistry, AP chem was the bane of my existence}. And currently, I don't even check my grades or step foot in the library. I like it better this way. I love my major, and because of this I don't get anything less than an A- oddly enough. {Don't get me wrong, I still love reading and learning!}

16. I am allergic to most animals that shed.
Which include cats, horses, and dogs. But I still plan on owning all three of those at some point. I just take medicine and don't touch my eyes, face or neck, and I can tolerate it. I am the most allergic to horses. Last time I rode one I broke out in hives. 

17. I have gone through more sessions in the Nauvoo Temple than any other.
My family owns property in Nauvoo, IL so I used to spend summers there. I love and miss it a lot. Especially now that my grandparents live there, I am hoping I can go back soon. 
{Thanksgiving, maybe?}

18. I used to love country music.
If you are friends with me now you'll know that I can't stand country music, even the Taylor Swift variety. But growing up my mom liked it, so naturally I listened to it as well. I especially loved the Dixies Chicks, Shania Twain, and Faith Hill. Then around middle school my siblings and friends introduced me to rock, alternative, and indie, so now that's mostly what I listen to. 

19. I don't get nightmares and I have wicked awesome dreams.
I haven't had a nightmare that I can remember since I was like 6 years old. But I do have some crazy and creative dreams. Recently they all have been indiana-jones-style adventures. And if I know you well enough or have met you recently I can almost guarantee that you have been in one of my dreams. I have one dream that happens annually, and I have even dreamt about something that later happened in real life. {I have deja-vu every now and then}.

20. One day I want to open a wildlife rehabilitation center in Africa or Indonesia.
It's always been a dream of mine. Even more so since I read Jane Goodall's biography around my middle school days {I think}. Africa is an obvious place for this purpose, but I include Indonesia because I love orangutans. It doesn't get much better than intelligent, adorable, red-headed apes being hand-fed by a bottle! Then after I rehabilitate them, it's off into the wild {or preserve} they go! 

 Clancy! Our basset hound! We were bff's.
Check out that face!
Chocolate-covered. Obviously a smart kid.
Straight-up G right there.

Sunbeam! {See I used to have bangs!}
Cracks me up. I think I was in pain from his claws. {That was our macaw Montego. He could say "shut-up" and "hello"}.

 Reppin' that Pocahontas shirt. I had a whole outfit too.
 I've been skiing since I was like 5. I'm the one on the right.
My Dad taught me to kill fish at a young age. I've since revolted. 

 Seattle with my sisters and cousins. {I'm the second from the back. In the pink. I LOVED pink}.

BYU bound from birth. See those classy high-heeled tennis shoes? They were a staple for about three years in a row. I just kept buying them in larger sizes. {And look how tan I am! What the heck happened?!}

See what I mean? Precocious child complete with powerpuff girls lunch box.

My brother actually baptized me when he got back from his mission in Chile!

6th grade violin lessons.
Best for last! 4th of July Parade in Provo with 3/5 of my siblings. Laughed for a while at this one. 
{I'm in the middle if you couldn't tell}.

So there you are! Don't think too much less of me ;) Now I'm off to work on my scuba dive certification course so I can be ready in time for my dives on the 4th of July weekend! 

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Girls' Camp High Adventure Snorkeling Trip: Key Largo

in our stake the fourth year girls (age 15) go on a "high adventure" trip for most of the week of girls' camp. i was asked to come along as one of the leaders, which i loved. {back in my day we went backpacking in the appalachian mountains and whitewater river rafting. it was the best. anddd it might've helped that my dad was stake president back then and could pull some strings...}

 there were about 15 girls and their trip was tent camping {on really hard rocks} at john pennekamp in key largo, snorkeling on a reef, and kayaking. it was a incredibly fun and extremely hot. whoever said florida was paradise?! {especially since the AC in our suburban stopped working the second we loaded up and headed south. but at least i had keith johnson there to tell me all about his world-wide archaeological exploits for the book of mormon in the car. so incredibly fascinating. when his book comes out, you'll all need to read it!}.

i mostly just used my underwater camera to take pictures of the snorkeling portion...whoops.
trying to take pictures of fish before they swim away is harder than you would think. especially if one of your arms is occupied by someone else {more on that later}.
i just love the way some of these came out:

 teresita! we were snorkeling buddies. i was supposed to swim ahead and help with the advanced group but she was really nervous {she was shaking, poor thing!} so i stayed behind and had her cling on to me for dear life the entire time. i have never swam with someone attached to me and let me tell you it is DANG hard. especially with the current and me doing most of the work. i feel really bad that this picture didn't come out well...this was her first time snorkeling and i was so proud of her, she did great! i even had her an arms-length away and taking pictures by the end of it! so fun!

i know. blindingly white. 

fritz-mide! i spent the beginning of the trip stuck to the ladder of the boat holding her hand trying to convince her that if she got in the water i PROMISED she would be okay and no sharks would eat her. eventually she did brave getting in and said it was worth it. gold star. 

and, a random picture of one of the beaches we watercolor painted, did yoga, and had devotional at:

later that day we went kayaking and saw a manatee! my whole life living in florida and that is only the second time i have ever seen one! i am absolutely in love with kayaking & canoeing. {when i was little i was obsessed with pocahontas {and still am}, so it is only natural. i mean other than belle, i obviously identify with her the most- i would paint with the colors of the wind, play with animals, and be one with nature in a heartbeat}. but kayaking was quite the fiasco. i got tipped twice trying to help others with theirs. at one point about 4 or 5 were tipped all at once. it was pretty hilarious. and i only got a tiny tiny bit sunburned. i'm pretty happy about that. overall: AWESOME. high adventures are the best, and being a leader is always a perk. so glad they asked me to come!

Friday, June 15, 2012


guess what! i got bangs!
at first i wasn't sure if i liked them.
but after a bit of weeping & breathing i think i am okay.
i mean, i haven't had bangs like this since elementary school!

so what do you think?
everyone keeps saying i look even more like my sister amber now. {twinners!}
also, my dad told me my haircut was cute, let me paint my nails in the living room, and let the cats sit on his lap! i think he is finally starting to understand women haha.

ps- if you have bang care-taking tips i would love some. especially since my hair is naturally wavy, and styling these were kind of a pain. 

{the next post will be pictures from my key largo trip! stay tuned!}

Sunday, June 10, 2012

new music + bon iver concert

so much new music i love right now. SO much. 
which means i just have to share. 

{ps- "h.r." means honorable mention. so listen to those too}

regina spektor: all the rowboats

edward sharpe & the magnetic zeroes: man on fire

florence + the machine: breath of life

the staves: the motherlode
{h.r.: mexico, icarus}

the lumineers: big parade

kimbra: sally i can see you

santigold: the keepers

the civil wars: i've got this friend

{and because i can't find them on youtube you'll need to follow the link to listen to these next two. but they are both reallyyyy good, so do it.}

glacier face: fahrenheit

deep sea diver: weekend wars

fenster: oh canyon

m. ward: primitive girl

feist: comfort me

i also went to a bon iver concert in miami beach last wednesday with marley and it was wonderful. justin vernon has a magical voice and is funny as well which is always great. and in between all the cascades of falcetto i got glimpses into the lower register of his voice, which i have to admit i absolutely loved {and wish we got to hear more often}. "creature fear" was mysterious and wonderfully strange, each and ebb and flow of the chorus swept me away into a dynamic and foggy musical dream. "re:stacks" was sung alone, with honesty and vulnerability, a nakedness of voice and emotion. and "skinny love" focused on the vocals, each member rising harmoniously above the enchanting daze of previous songs that were left lingering, to give the audience a soulful and achey release.

the aesthetics were one of my favorite parts. they had little lights that twinkled with life for each of the crescendos and decrescrendos, fading in and out to create the perfect mood. and with each heart-trembling beat of the drums a flash of drama and blinding light. not to mention the amount of instruments on stage. nine musicians were playing {my preference being for the violinist of course} to create a complexity sound and feeling, pulling your ear in every direction only to wander off, following each trail of music in order to find the source. bon iver truly was a great concert.
the staves {as listed above} were the opening act, a perfect pairing. plus marley is my music twin, so the conversation to and from was also fantastic. 

favorite line of the night from justin:

"there are some bon iver {bahn eye-ver} comment cards out there you can fill out. 
*gasps, whispers, and 'i told you so's from the audience*
yes, it's pronounced bon iver {bone ee-vair}, but they are bon iver {bahn eye-ver} comment cards."