when you're born forty years too late

May 3, 2016



Seeing the Beach Boys in concert will be a highlight of the year, and maybe even a highlight of all the many snapshot memories I've gathered over the last 26 years. Their music reminds me that life is good, and can be simple, and really, really happy; listen to some of their less popular songs like Sloop John B or Don't Worry Baby - and then tell me otherwise. Good, simple, happy.

However, it didn't take long for us to realize once we arrived that we were by farrr the youngest ones in the crowd -- I told Max at first that I secretly wished I had my parents with me so I could pretend I was there with them (______ judging space). But then that music came on. And that harmony started. And I was in heaven.

And this is where the snapshot memory comes in: Right as they finished one of their last songs, it began POURING rain (the concert was held outside!) Most people started hurrying out of their chairs, and edging toward the exit, when they began singing the one and only Barbara Ann. And then every sixty-plus something in that audience started dancing right then and there despite the pouring rain. I honestly cried. Hormones most likely, but I cried as I listened to one of my favorite songs, by one of my favorite bands, dancing in the rain along with everyone else that night. Like I said, it's just what happens when you're born forty years too late.

byu grad

April 26, 2016

Max graduated from BYU this April with a bachelor's degree in Neuroscience, and to say I'm so proud I burst at the seams would be a gross understatement. Max is tremendously talented and in my opinion, naturally genius, but that's not to say he hasn't worked incredibly hard to get where he is today.



(i took zero pictures during graduation, and this was the only one my sister sent, which unfortunately won't upload all the way, and our faces wash out ... carry on, the quality will have to suffice for now) 

Over the course of commencement, convocation and all the other graduation activities, I felt a twinge of sadness deep down knowing that our chapters at BYU are officially ending. Max was my tie to that school, a reason to still visit campus and consider myself college-student-ish in a way. Luckily at a University of Utah banquet a few weeks ago, we met with other students and spouses who will also begin Medical School this fall, and I found myself a kindred spirit! When I learned he went to BYU for his undergrad, he whispered "I still bleed blue."Amen and amennnn brother. Always.

birds of a feather flock together....even after 12 years

April 18, 2016



"In friendship…we think we have chosen our peer. In reality a few years’ difference in the dates of our births, a few more miles between certain houses, the choice of one university instead of another…the accident of a topic being raised or not raised at a first meeting—any of these chances might have kept us apart. But, for a Christian, there are, strictly speaking, no chances. "
-C.S. Lewis

(even when your kindredest spirit takes an "isidewith" election quiz and sides 97% Bernie Sanders... where did I go wrong sara?!)

our first picnic this year

April 10, 2016









The first Sunday it was warm enough to picnic, we packed our sandwiches and headed to the park for the afternoon. I'm sorry to report that my ee cummings book has mysteriously disappeared, but I guess that's why we have smart phones and the internet, and excerpts like these:

“When spring came, even the false spring, there were no problems except where to be happiest. The only thing that could spoil a day was people and if you could keep from making engagements, each day had no limits. People were always the limiters of happiness except for the very few that were as good as spring itself.”  
- Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast 

“If people did not love one another, I really don't see what use there would be in having any spring.” 
- Victor Hugo, Les Miserables

“It's spring fever. That is what the name of it is. And when you've got it, you want—oh, you don't quite know what it is you do want, but it just fairly makes your heart ache, you want it so!” 
- Mark Twain

happy birthday caitlyn!

March 21, 2016

We celebrated my dad's birthday with just enough sugar and helium to last us until next year. It was so much fun celebrating with the entire family together, and all he asked for on his special day was to play a round of scattergories. He loves game nights that do not involve the game Trouble (because it's the only game my mom will ever play!)


There aren't a lot of people I would consider "my very best friends," but my dad is one of them. I could talk to him about anything in this world, and I hope he knows how much I love and look up to him. If you know him, you would agree with me - he's going STRAIGHT UP TO HEAVEN when he dies because he's the best person you will ever meet/know. I might not make it up there with him, since I called him Caitlyn in this post (and he will understand why...) but some things just have to be done.

Love you x infinity dad!

"to not only love each other more, but to love each other better"

March 9, 2016

I had originally drafted this post a few months ago, but I wanted to post it after "International Women's Day" (which I honestly thought was like a European Mother's Day or something).  

"Remember, Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, 
but backwards and in high heels."

If you're a woman, you'll understand that there is nothing quite like getting together with a group of really good friends and spending an entire night talking. At my bridal shower I remember being told that the best advice for marriage was "to keep your girlfriends." I thought that advice was perhaps a little bit sarcastic and funny at the time, but after my own experience, I can't tell you how honest and real it has become for me. I got together with a couple of friends a few weeks ago and although the night consisted of eating muddy buddies and sitting on a living room floor for three hours, I went to bed telling Max just how amazing these women are, and how good I feel about myself around them. And as much as I love my husband, there are just some things that women need - and that's each other.

A few days later, I met with a different group of women for a church meeting. We are all at various stages in life, different ages and personalities, different jobs, different backgrounds and interests, but we get together once a month to meet and discuss our roles and responsibilities regarding our church callings. And I've always enjoyed our meetings, but this time after we finished discussing what was on the agenda, we just started to talk to each other. And we talked and we talked and we talked. Everything from marriage and kids, to Bruce Caitlyn Jenner and books we'd recommend... and I think at least four or five times I heard someone say, "It's so nice to be able to open up..." -- by the end of the night I felt like these women had been three of my lifelong friends. Friends who could just talk and share and be there for one another, even if we didn't really know each other all that well the day before. I went to bed that night again, telling Max just how much relationships like these mean to me.

Frankly, I've always felt like "guys were easier to be friends with," but the older I've grown, the more I've realized just how much women need each other. We need to be each other's teammates and cheerleaders and friends. I don't understand and I can't tell you why it seems easier to pit women against women, or why women tend to compete with one another, but I like the charge Bonnie Oscarson once gave: "I invite you [women] to not only love each other more, but to love each other better."

What I've Been Reading Lately....

March 8, 2016


“You only get one life. It's actually your duty to live it as fully as possible.” 
-Jojo Moyes, Me Before You






---

“And time is a curious thing. Most of us only live for the time that lies right ahead of us. A few days, weeks, years. One of the most painful moments in a person's life probably comes with the insight that an age has been reached when there is more to look back on than ahead. And when time no longer lies ahead of one, other things have to be lived for. Memories, perhaps.” 

“Loving someone is like moving into a house. At first you fall in love with all the new things, amazed every morning that all this belongs to you, as if fearing that someone would suddenly come rushing in through the door to explain that a terrible mistake had been made, you weren't actually supposed to live in a wonderful place like this. Then over the years the walls become weathered, the wood splinters here and there, and you start to love that house not so much because of all its perfection, but rather its imperfections. You get to know all the nooks and crannies. How to avoid getting the key caught in the lock when it's cold outside. Which of the floorboards flex slightly when one steps on them or exactly how to open the wardrobe doors without their creaking. These are the little secrets that make it your home.” 
- Fredrik Backman,  A Man Called Ove
                                          ---

“Sometimes broken things deserve to be repaired.” 
- Camron Wright, The Rent Collector 





---

The only way we will survive is by being kind. The only way we can get by in this world is through the help we receive from others. No one can do it alone, no matter how great the machines are.” 
- Amy Poehler, Yes Please

swimming with sharks

February 18, 2016

I've been in bed the last three days with pneumonia, a partially collapsed lung, and the flu. After a 2 AM visit to the ER on Monday night, I've been sleeping 24/7 and for the very first time in the last 72 hours I have had the energy to get out of bed and eat something besides crackers. Holla! (or as my Dad would say, "hola")

Max stopped by the store to pick up some gatorade the other night, and surprised me with our developed pictures from Hawaii too! With all this free time on my hands I wanted to share some of the pictures online. We're no underwater photographers, but I was so excited to see how the pictures turned out. You should know that I was a naysayer the entire time about this swimming with the sharks thing, and if Max hadn't just spontaneously booked our tickets, I don't think I would have worked up the courage to do it. I'm the Monica-from-Friends-type, so even after Max talked me through how amazing it was going to be, I was still freaking out a little bit. Okay, a lot a bit.

Luckily, it ended up being one of the neatest things I've ever done in my life. I was soooooo seasick on our ride out into the ocean; sixteen foot waves that day and within five minutes, I lost my lunch (IT WAS SO BAD). The upside was that I entirely forgot about the fact I was about to swim with something that could bite my arm off. So maybe it was a good thing? In fact, by the time we were far enough out into the ocean and we saw a group of sharks, all I wanted to do was get out of that dang boat and into that water!


It was amazing.


Swimming with sharks, if you're any sort of fan of shark week especially, is honestly surreal. The only thing that made me a little bit nervous about the entire experience was looking down below the cage and not seeing any end in sight. Something eerie about being so small in something so vast. It makes me uncomfortable even thinking about it now.


Anyway, thanks to Max I can now cross off swimming with sharks, though that was not on my bucket list before. I'd highly recommend the experience to anyone (especially if you're near Haliewa!) and if you tend to get sea sick, take a million zillion katrillion Dramamines beforehand. 

one of the greatest love songs ever written

February 10, 2016

I've been a big Beach Boys fan since I was 8 or 9. Mainly because my Dad wouldn't let me buy the Britney Spears CD, which he had said promoted domestic abuse, so I was stuck with the Beach Boys. Except I wasn't really stuck with them because I loved them. I loved them so much. And I still do today. No, they're not as cute as my Dream Street boyfriends who came along a little bit later in life, but hands down Pet Sounds is still one of my very favorite albums; and I still think God Only Knows is one of the greatest love songs of all time.


Happy Month of Love!

the highs are high, and the lows are low

January 29, 2016

Christmas in Hawaii was a dream, and finalizing our plans for medical school felt like a miracle. Seriously, a miracle. After all these years of uncertainty, anxiousness, prayers galore... MIRACLE. And then bam. This week happened. Max and I were both in separate car accidents in the last 4 days (positive note: not our faults at least), I have mono (again), and it's like wait a second, What on earth is happening here? We were on a roller coaster going up! Only up! WHAT IS HAPPENING.

(All caps and metaphors are entirely for dramatic purposes... but this week has been rough).

However, if I've learned anything over the last month (or this last week especially), I've been reminded of something I had read years ago when I was a teenager. John Bytheway once wrote about an experience he had had in high school. It was a rough day/week/month/whatever and when he talked to his Dad about it, his Dad had comforted him by saying, "John, this too shall pass." And it did. As all bad days and weeks and months always do. Not long after, however, as John was flying high and life was going just his way, he let his dad know that the bad days were gone for good - and that is when his Dad had to remind him yet again, "John, this too shall pass."

And as Frank Sinatra once sang, that's life.

So let me share once more what I've shared several times before, (so many times actually, that I now have it memorized as this seems to be one of the greatest tid bits of wisdom for my life):

"Life is like that—ups and downs, a bump on the head, and a crack on the shins. It was ever thus. Hamlet went about crying, “To be or not to be,” but that didn’t solve any of his problems. There is something of a tendency among us to think that everything must be lovely and rosy and beautiful without realizing that even adversity has some sweet uses. One of my favorite newspaper columnists is Jenkin Lloyd Jones. In a recent article published in the News, he commented:. . .


Life is like an old-time rail journey—delays, sidetracks, smoke, dust, cinders, and jolts, interspersed only occasionally by beautiful vistas and thrilling bursts of speed. The trick is to thank the Lord for letting you have the ride."

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