Monday, December 31, 2012

That Feeling of being Light

I have now been moved out of dear old Minnesota for 5 weeks. When I first arrived I was sure that this place was going to do amazing things to my life. Shortly after thinking that, I wished I hadn't. ( Thats a whole other story.) Since that moment of thought regretting I have constantly been on the edge of something. Im not sure it's got a name so Im going to give it one; forced happiness. Now sometimes this "forced happiness" is not as bad as one would think, occasionally it has turned into real moments of happiness, however short. Other times though I would find myself laughing because that's what everyone else was doing or smiling at the right times but not feeling fully committed to it. That has all changed in the blink of an eye. Possibly two blinks, actually that's a lie-two full days of blinking and all that negative stuff is gone. Just gone! 

This is what Saturday included: Hello Panda, an Asian party with egg rolls, Red hair, the Temple, a Sister missionary from Madagascar, hot chocolate, and an awesome friend!

This is what Sunday had in store for me!: Church that felt as though it was scripted just for me, another hour of church sitting with the coolest kids, home cooked amazingness in my mouth, new music, kent, game night, and a new friend that I think is already one of my best.

The forced happiness feeling I now recognize as weight. That staggering, debilitating weight has disappeared, and I am light.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Let's Kick some Kevin Butt!

"Let's kick some Kevin butt!" My cousins are so awesome! We spent the entire week together playing, and playing, and playing. Every time I thought that I was going to get worn out they would say something so funny or start another Nerf gun war and the crazy fun would just keep going! Let me try to describe what we did this week, they are the coolest kids. Ever.

Christmas eve we did what most people do on the real Christmas ( Christmas Eve is kind of just a wanna be..) we opened presents! I was absolutely astonished to see just how many Lego sets are actually in existence because Im 97.67% sure that they have every single one. AND to make my astonishment greater, they came with instructions! The Legos I played with as a kid were basically just blocks, or very tiny blocks, but they never had a guide of what to build...we will get back to that later. Matt ( 10 years old) also got a bunch of Pokenmon stuff! I say "stuff" and not just "cards" because again there was so much more than just the original cards! He had guide books, and cheats for his DS game, he had chips and stories too! Before Monday night if I had been asked if Pokenmon and Legos were cool, I would have said "Absolutely no way!" But I would have been SO wrong! 

Christmas morning was the next adventure. We were all told, by Aunt and Uncle..or Mom and Dad to the cousins, that we could open our stockings but could not wake them up. They had warned me that sleeping on the couch I might be woken up by smaller cousins playing. I underestimated exactly what they meant. I have never before Tuesday morning been woken up by getting shot in the head by a Nerf gun. So many new experiences! The harmless weapons became the most favorite stocking suffer ever invented. Actually I take back calling them "harmless", although they don't exactly cause pain when shot directly at the body they may eventually cause temporary insanity.

Orange rolls, cinnamon rolls, egg bake and orange juice made up a delicious breakfast! So after the eating came the building! We built a police station! I got to put together the car and that was the most proud of myself I have been in a very long time. I decided that anyone would be proud of themselves if they spent an hour connecting Legos creating the coolest police car anyone has ever seen! It had stickers and lights and even had a little police guy inside, although he didn't last for very long because he got shot. 

We didn't have a set time of playing pokemon. This was because pokemon was constantly being played! I learned more about that game in three days than I had in 21 years! The littlest cousin is so good at it too! He would discover new poke-guys and then battle them! He is so good, he never loses.

Yesterday was Bryan's birthday! He is 16! I couldn't believe it! The baby cousin that my older brothers taught how to give a peace sign and say " Waazz uuup" in the cutest voice ever to be imagined is 16! His day started out with donuts! Mmmm, mine had pudding cream stuff in the middle. Be jealous. After that we played with mustaches! Yep, mustaches! Kevin ( 11)  got them for Christmas. I couldn't stop laughing. I laughed so hard I was crying when we turned Bryan into a Hun. And then when Uncle Dave became Charlie Chaplin I stopped making noise all together and just giggled, rolling around on the bed. 

The playing continued at Jump Time! Jump Time is to a gymnast like meth is to a drug addict. It had trampolines, foam pits, and dodge ball! Smacking little kids with balls is actually more fun than I thought it would be. But they got me back. The little ones ganged up on me. I guess it was fair because I thoroughly beat up on them. Bryan also learned how to do a back flip. I think I count as a pretty cool cousin too! 


Saturday, December 22, 2012

Grandpa and Dolly

                                                                (Family Reunion 2006)

Each Christmas Eve my siblings and I piled into our car squeezed in as tight as possible with our over sized fluffy coats, we were headed to Grandpa's! We knew that this was the place where we would crack open nuts, tease a tea cup poodle, open presents, and hear the story. Taken for granted it was always the same story. We knew the end already, actually we knew the beginning and middle as well. I can't speak for the rest of them but in all honesty I didn't care to hear the same story over and over so I would let my mind wander. I thought about what presents laid waiting for me under the tree at home. I thought about building snow men and how I was being forced to take one day off from gymnastics. Christmas was fun, but often times it was an inconvenience.

July 3rd 2012 was a very special day. It was the day that I said good-bye to my biggest fan here on earth. He has cheered me on and loved me all the way back until I can't remember anymore, and probably before that too. Watching his frail frame suck in breaths of air that wouldn't ease the harshness of his brow was hard. We sang hymns, I wasn't really sure why though, maybe to help set him at peace. Or perhaps the singing was so awful he wanted to leave. I sang for a while until I just felt sick. We went to the hall, David and I, and quickly began to play. It wasn't 5 minutes later that Daddy came out to tell me he was gone. Gone? His body is right there, I could still see his feet. Dad was right though, his spirit had gone to be with Grandma. In those 5 minutes I had forgotten the sick feeling but seeing Dad's face made it come right back. I ran away. Out the door, down the sidewalk. There was a fence in my way, higher than my head. I climbed over and ran some more. Now I was rushing through a pasture all I could see was the mountains. I knew there were highways blocking me from flying to the peaks but I kept my pace for as long as I could. I wouldn't have stopped but he made me slow down. He let me just cry.

I had planned on being sad some more when I got back home but other events gave my grandpa a swift shove to the back of my mind. Thinking about the Christmas story was what made me crave his voice. He called me "Dolly". I suspect that's the name he used for all of the grand girls if he couldn't remember our names. 

I am 9 years old again, crawling into the back seat of his silver Intrepid. It always smelled like his old man smell, plus a yucky toy poodle that everyone forgot to wash. It was cold outside but being inside the car made me sweat. He wore his hat and jacket, the same ones every winter. Even though he wore thick glasses I knew he could navigate our way to gymnastics, he knew that town better than probably anyone. We slowed to a stop, I unbuckled and opened the door " Thanks! Love you Grandpa!" I closed the door.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Seeing Christmas

Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will one day walk on water?
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will save our sons and daughters?
Did you know
That your baby boy has come to make you new?
And this child that you've delivered
Will soon deliver you

Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will give sight to a blind man?
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will calm a storm with his hand?
Did you know
That your baby boy has walked where angels trod?
And when you kiss your little baby
You've kissed the face of God
Oh, Mary, did you know?
Mary, did you know?

The blind will see
The deaf will hear
And the dead will live again
The lame will leap
The dumb will speak
The praises of the lamb

Mary, did you know
That your baby boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will one day rule the nations?
Did you know
That your baby boy is heaven's perfect lamb?
And this sleeping child you're holding
Is the great I am

I have no words to express my gratitude for Christ the Savior of the world. How could I possibly put in to words the pain and sorrow he has saved me from? This Christmas all I ask is that you remember to give your praise to the Almighty and His Son who love us so much to become subject to such a cruel death and humiliation. 

This awe inspiring song adjusts my perspective to focus on the beauty and grace that I am given the chance to partake in. My world spins up storms of trouble, heartache, and hardship and yet none of it can compare to the ultimate joy that is in store for me. When things go off course I get frustrated but always there is a soft feeling of importance in that trial, a reminder that I have no reason to fear

When I think of Christmas I picture in my mind a quiet night full of stars dancing in the sky. I see a tiny child with a serene face being worshiped by grown men who have bowed down before the Son to give him adoration. The gratitude and joy that is in their hearts as they gaze at Him cannot be verbalized. It's magnitude is too great for spoken words, so they send prayers to heaven knowing He will hear. Each person who sets their eyes upon him feels wonders with their soul. They are given the understanding that before them lays the Messiah.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

True and Honest Words

I crawl onto the top bunk and wiggle under the covers again, just enough to conceal up to my chin and I lay there sprawled out in an awkward position. Not even having the energy enough to hug my knees and bow my head this time. But it's still the same. I cry out to the silence, knowing that someone is there, knowing that He is holding me so closely. "Please just allow me to fall asleep fast this time, please" I pray.... An unknown amount of hours later I wake up the troubled hurried feeling from the night previous has dulled but I know if I go digging, if I go thinking it will swell up again and hit me like a tsunami- that's why I had no power, you wouldn't either after being thrown back by a title wave.

It's scary every time it happens. Like the last time didn't teach me anything. So unprepared, even though I prepared for it. It isn't like a really hard test or routine that with enough practice and study gets easier each time. It is more like breaking your ankle while ripping all of the ligaments in your knee at the same time, letting them heal and then doing the exact same thing that destroyed them before. It probably hurts the same amount except for this time I feel complete stupidity too because I wasn't careful enough, I didn't protect myself enough. So I got ripped to shreds. Again.

Why is it that when happiness comes around I still cannot feel safe? The answer must be simply because I am not. Maybe that's what trust is? Not being safe but allowing someone else to know you, letting that person in deeper than the last, actually giving another human being your very soul right there on a beautiful silver platter and saying " Here, this is for you. I want you to have it because sharing it with you makes so much more out of it than I could all by myself." And now, even when I put all of my desire into not wanting to trust or hope I find myself letting others in. That must be the flaw disguised as a gift. 

A dear friend on mine told me a few weeks ago that he doesn't worry about me. He, being one of  the watchman of spiritual safety for me specifically said "There are people who have not experienced a tenth of the tragedy and hard times that you have and I worry for them, but not for you. You will be okay." That is what I cling to. That this man has faith in me. He has been on the sidelines and seen me fall time after time and yet still he bets in my favor. 

"You don't want to fight anymore do you?" He asked
"No, I don't....but I will."

Monday, December 10, 2012

Agency CAN'T be taken.

"I can't control what I say or do when I am that mad."- I refuse to believe that statement.

Anger, fear, resentment, pain, sadness, offense does not and cannot force us to DO anything.Our agency is a  masterful gift from a creator who knows in his infinite wisdom that humanity must choose for themselves what their thoughts and actions will be, otherwise the plan is flawed. So how do some rationalize that the instant they become upset that their gift of choice is taken from them? Why is it that responsibility for one's decisions disappears when the consequences don't look pleasing?

Choice is what will remain when everything else is simply gone.

My days are bursting with countless choices that I must make. I say must because even by not wanting to act  that feeling then becomes a conscious decision. Some of the things I will choose today are - To fight for my happiness. To be grateful. To smile. To love myself. I choose to control myself.

One of the most perplexing and scariest facts of life to me is that I actually can't control anyone else besides myself! Most often others do not want to be controlled, even children who depend on adults for necessities fight against being told what or how to do things. Adults then have that much more capacity to keep their agency safe even when the choices they are making lead to suffering.  

So what is the solution? Is there one?


Thursday, November 15, 2012


When I was younger with each passing school year I was desperate for change. To meet new people, to look better, have more dedicated study practices, or perhaps get some sort of a new personality. Although I yearned for this each fall, by December I would give up on my hopes because I could see absolutely no change. By the time high school came around I was sure this was when it would happen. But year after year after year, still nothing. I was frustrated. 

Keep in mind. Hindsight is 20-20.

Reading through journal entries, talking with adults who knew me through my tweeny teen years, and simply skimming through my own memories has taught me so much. No matter how much I wanted change, most often times I was not willing to work for it. But when it did come I was not paying close enough attention to my life to see it! I was so caught up in desiring change that I had completely forgotten to look for it! This is the experience that has brought me to my reminiscent mood; Last night I walked out of the gym for perhaps the last time that I would ever be able to practice with a high school team. I know I am nearly 21 and should have been done years ago, but I can't quite ditch my longing to be around encouragement, friendship, and diligence. Driving home I noticed that I was actually driving! I was in control of a motor vehicle! When had that happened? I laughed out loud because I have been driving for years. Change had happened but it took me until now to notice it. After that I began seeing everything that has changed and that will shortly be changing in my young life. I live away from home. I work full-time, I am transferring collages, I have so many new friends, people that I would have never dreamed that I would be close with we now share intimate details of our lives. Compared to the small, innocent 7th grader, I am a brand new person. To some this may be funny, they may say "Of course your a new person! It has been 9 years!" But to me this is a new revelation so try not to make fun of my being so behind.

Another big change is in the works. I am picking up and moving! Although I love my life, family, and friends here I am taking a huge step and leaving. This was decided so many months ago, but it is actually happening, very soon! I couldn't be more excited. Im not even frightened...yet. This is an opportunity for everything! Continuing my life across the country will be challenging, exciting, and fun! I am about to have so many new experiences!  I will miss certain things and people from home, but just like I do not desire to go back to middle school I won't want to take a backward step and return. So onward it is! On to new learning and new people! On to the next stage of my life!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Am I in the Middle?

Prayer is an instant message that is directly sent to the only Being in existence capable of calming my worries and fears before I even utter the words that so desperately need to escape my heart. It is a reliance that I cling to daily. On the days when I have been close to tears I have not even needed to verbalize my thoughts, they were taken and I was at peace once more. This on going intimate conversation always leaves me awe struck. Each time I kneel down to pour out my entire being I am assured that I am known and loved so dearly and that my achings hold my eternal happiness, it will all be made up to me.

I often tell myself that I am in the middle of the greatest struggle mortality has ever faced. However when I really get to thinking about it logically, I am so far past the middle! I am at the very end! The place where I now give all of myself to conquering the bad. I can do it! I wish even with all this encouragement that it was that simple. That I could just draw my sword and claw through the vines to slay the evil dragon. but it isn't. The "bad" is not the only thing that stands between the end's victory and me. Pain, heartache, suffering,and fear are what are also there. Unlike bad things the pain is much more difficult to get a good grasp on because often times it is hidden very strategically. Physically it may feel completely dissipated but then the spirit will give a not so gentle reminder that although it may be healing the wound is still very real. 

At this moment in time I make a proclamation- Happiness is my choice.It is not dependent on my circumstances or the tragedies that may come and go. I am happy.                                                                            

Four months and one day have passed and what have I learned? I have learned to restructure my life to focus more upon others than myself. I have learned to choose happiness. I have learned that the atonement has no limits. I have learned how to be happy. 

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Forgive and Forget

There I was literally working by butt off on the balance beam when 3 year old Tegan bounds from the top of a 5 foot high pile of mats to a cement floor. Even though I was 10 feet away I ran as fast as I could to her side expecting her to be hurt. But as blessings ( not luck) would have it, she popped right up with a huge smile on her face ready to reenact the same jump that gave me a heart attack. I grabbed her arm and reminded her firmly that her mother had moments ago specifically instructed her NOT to jump down. She was upset with me for ruining her fun, but I suspect also for not enjoying the entertainment she believed she was giving me. As she ran away to pout behind another large stack of mats all I could think about was that I wish she understood that I was only trying to keep her safe. 

For the next ten minutes as I moved around the gym completing my work out Tegan would position herself so that she could peak out to see where I was, so I couldn't come scold her again, but only enough so that if I was to look she could quickly scamper back and be out of sight. Eventually she tired of her game and left to get a snack. Not 5 minutes later she returned to my practice area and gave me the low down on her skittles. They were the tropical kind, her favorite one was the blue. However she did eat them all at the same time. I was so confused. I had thought that for sure she would not have talked to me for the rest of the open gym period. Had I not scared her slightly? I had. Had I not told her something that she did not want to hear? I had. Then how could she possibly want to be my friend? All that time I had been lost in my pride thinking that such a small person could not fully comprehend the lesson I was trying to convey to her, when in reality she had just taught me one of the only principles that truly matters in life, and that is forgiveness. 

I am indebted to Tegan for that simply sweet lesson she taught to me. I challenge all who read this to apply forgiveness in their lives. To forget about the things that others owe to you and just be grateful for the things that you can do to help someone else.  

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

The Optimist Creed

 Promise Yourself ...
To be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.
To talk health, happiness and prosperity to every person you meet. 
To make all your friends feel that there is something in them.
To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.
To think only of the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own. 
To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future. 
To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living creature you meet a smile.
To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others. 
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

Why are we not all optimistic people? Your smile and enthusiasm for life can have an enormous impact on so many people, most of whom you probably do not even know. Today is a great day to start! I challenge you to live your life with more confidence. With more strength. With more joy. And with more looking ahead to a bright future!

I commit to living "The Optimist Creed"

Sure, there will still be days when I am sad. Times when I feel so low that I do not even want to get out of bed...this morning. But there will be no self pity, no slothfulness, and no pessimism! Instead I chose to replace those feelings with hope, encouraging thoughts, and gratitude.

Friday, July 27, 2012

A Happy Celebration

My entire life has been turned upside down and shaken with such force that I am surprised I can stand upright most of the time. But I try to keep in mind that I have a beautiful blessed life and I am so grateful for that. 

Weddings are wonderful events with flowers, music and cake! They are happy occasions to participate in and they show everyone involved that true love really does happen! I was fortunate enough to be able to attend one such wedding with one of my best friends! It was one of the last moments I have had where I have been truly happy. I'll get there again sometime though, because I trust that I am loved and being taken care of.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

My David

He is so beautiful. Have you ever met someone who takes your breath away? Someone who every time they look at you, makes you feel so special? Have you ever said to yourself  "I want this person to be with me forever."? I have.

I shook his hand, the hand I would later hold and even later crave, after he had given the Sunday school lesson. He was one of a kind. Excitement crowded his very person. I was drawn to him. I immediately realized that this was the first person I had ever encountered that had a passion for life that could compete with my own. He won that competition, "killed it", as he would have said. That day we ate enough cherry cobbler to last us a life time. I felt strange, I had only known him for 3 hours. Was it 3 hours or was it longer? Was it possible that I had known him before my life had even begun. Yes, I think so. His spirit was familiar to mine.

There was no chase. I did not verbalize it or even recognize it, but I loved him. I was literally his at "Hello." We began to talk. He would say the things in his head that I only wanted to say. Now I say everything I want to say. We laughed all of the time. I can picture so perfectly his eyebrows raising, his mouth opening, his pure eyes lighting up when that laugh came through his throat. I quickly began to understand that he was mine as well.

Jackie Evencho. Her voice held the beauty of life in every note. I think that's why that small girl was his favorite. She, like he, had only experienced a few years of life but already understood it. He knew the secrets. Now I know them as well. 1. God loves and teaches no matter what. 2. Giving love and receiving it is always worth it. 3. Life is short, simple, and beautiful. "I Know That My Redeemer Lives" was the song he chose for us. For me, he chose it for me. He already knew with a perfect, absolute knowledge that our Savior lives. His purpose in selecting that song was for me to know. It was meant to bring solace many weeks later. It was meant to be a powerful, spiritual moment so that it would be turned into a cherished memory.

If I ran, he followed, well not for long because he was faster. We would play games all of the time. Made up games. Real games too. Running, laughing, throwing, splashing, rolling, catching, dancing. Each time I was in his arms dancing I knew we were alive. The few minutes of each song would stretch into hours. He moved with smooth fluidity that had no match. I imagine that he was meant to give me back my dream of dancing that I had put away only months before he entered my life.

David Charles Cancilla shared his love with me. He brought so much joy into my life, so much that the only way I can now live is to spread that joy and service to everyone. He is so like Christ. He lifted up the hands that hung down. He comforted everyone, he served, there was no task too small. He has charity. I know that when he was called home it was because he no longer needed to be tested. He had aced it. He was already ready for Heavenly things. He did not need mortality any longer. He is now safely serving another mission. He is still blessing generations. He still teaches with vibrancy and love for all. I can now say with surety and an absolute knowledge. I know that my Redeemer lives. I know that His Plan is the only plan. The Gospel is true. Service will bring joy. David has joy because he placed Jesus first, others second, and himself last. The last will be first. I will always love that special man. Thank you David for sharing yourself with me.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Adventures Anyone?

I love to drive. Most of this obsession with vehicles wears off after the initial 16 year old freak out. Not for me. I could hop in my little yellow Tinkerbell and drive for hours and be so content. I am beginning to get really good at navigating Minnesota from all of my excursions, Im pretty proud of myself actually. It's not just the driving around that I enjoy, it's being able to spend time ( a lot of time) with really awesome people!


Im scared of water. More specifically not being able to breath. But I love swimming. Lakes, oceans, bathtubs, pools and everything else. It is only the first day of summer and I have already been swimming and tanning like a hundred times. The sunshine ranks in the top 3 things on my "love" list. 

Biking, running, walking, playing at the park, frisbee, football, volleyball, bored games, movies, late nights, tons of ice cream, water fun and quality time with friends and family. 

I have resolved to have the best summer yet! I'm going to get creative, so let the adventures begin!!

( David's Birthday dinner @ Peking Garden )

( Laura and I @ Minnehaha )

( Part of the Minnehaha waterfalls) 

( We are very proud of our legs!)

Monday, June 11, 2012

**Very Important Life Lessons...

These are the top 10 very important lessons that I learned in the past week. Take note of them, they could be vital for you as well:

10) There is a BIG difference between the words "hombre" and "hambre"...make yourself aware of it.

9) Having clean clothes could be the difference between a second date and "Um...I'll call you..." 

8) Never let a 6 year old choose her own lunch, she may end up eating a whole pint of cottage cheese and ranch dressing straight from the bottle. So later when she says "I need to go potty, but I can't" you'll know why.

7) Color coding does not work for the color blind people.

6) When above 6 year old say that she does not want ice cream, and then doesn't get any will be angry. For a punishment you could be stuck watching "Swan Lake" a million times or having to play in a cold sprinkler on a not so hot day.

**WARNING! THIS MAY SEEM LIKE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE...for our purposes lets call it flirting..

5) Most guys don't hit girls.Some prepared to hit back. But watch out because some also prepared to bite back. 

4) To a small child all alcohol may be considered "beer" also if you drink it that makes you a boy. 

3) A plastic baby doll does not count as a garter...even if everyone is intoxicated. 

2) Don't drive your friends Audi when she says not to, upsetting and getting chewed out by a Scottish girl is not worth a dollar...or even 5. 

1) There is a time and place for winking at a friend, or even a stranger for that matter...the showers in a locker room are not it.  

Friday, June 1, 2012

I Eat Ice

I don't make my bed. Ever. Unless I happen to be around people who seem to be the kind of people to make their beds everyday. Then I will try to make it look nice, even then underneath the top blanket the sheets are either not there or crumpled in to the corner. 

I like buying jewelry and wearing it once or maybe two times. Actually it is quite possible that I have some that I have never worn. But I do like how it looks hanging up in my room. Sometimes the only time it leaves the beautifully carved wooden and glass box is when I have nothing to do on any given night of the week and I decide to play dress up.

I love pictures! Taking pictures and looking through them. Why don't I have a camera? Because every time I am about to buy a nice one someone rationalizes with me that I may spend a lot of money on something that I might not ever use. Wrong. I know they are all wrong. So that is what is on the top of my shopping list..for now. The few pictures I have of my past I absolutely adore. I also am entertained for hours by just looking through other peoples pictures. I am POSITIVE  I can learn their entire life story from seeing them on the top of a horse crying...

I don't paint my fingernails. For 12 years during competition season I was't allowed to have anything on them so now it feels funny to have anything on them and no matter how pretty or sparkly they are I chip it off in a matter of days. My toes however are a different story. I think that I have cute feet ( you may think differently ) so I like to put color on them to make them look that much better. Although right now they are unpainted because I got bored with the colors that I have.

I eat ice. I don't suck on it until it melts in my mouth. I chew it. Bite it. Crunch it. It bothers some people, but I love it. I would rather have a glass full of ice to munch on than water to drink.

I am obsessed with gymnastics. Although I have not competed in 2 years it is still a major part of my life and I want it to stay that way. It's hard not to buy really cool leotards, even though I don't practice enough to make it a worth while purchase. I am a coach at the moment but have the desire to become a judge at some point.

When I am nervous I chew on the inside of my mouth. When I am bored I bite my lips, often times making them get dry and cracked. 

At night if I am really tired I can get irritable very quickly

I am very curious. Which would be a very bad quality if I was a cat.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Preschool Plus

Seven four-year olds run at me full speed, each one fighting for a spot at which they can cling around my legs. "Coach Sabrina, I lost a tooth!" "My skin peeled off on the monkey bars today at school!" "I got a new leotard!" Each girl sprints,skips, hops, and chase's around the floor in a wide circle, being very careful to point her toes and make her hands look pretty too. Maria, the smallest and least talkative of the group, outshines everyone when it comes to strength. She cannot weigh more than 30lbs and each one is solid muscle. She doesn't smile often because her tiny face is so concentrated on kicking her legs up high enough or tucking her chin down. I see a blonde curly-haired pony tail bouncing up and down on the floor and hear a small voice muttering " spaghetti, meatballs, spaghetti, meatballs" which is our preschool version of sit ups. Her name is Ella and she is the life of the party. You know the one I mean, all of the kids want to be her friend and even though she doesn't try every comment that comes out of her mouth is just so funny that all the adults look at each other and wonder whose kid she is. Ava and Elle both wear pink leotards and have the brightest natural blonde hair I have ever seen! Although they look similar, their personalities are vastly different. Ava has an attitude but knows exactly where "the line" is and doesn't cross it. Elle only talks if she is made aware that her partner is doing something wrong, she then becomes very vocal until a coach corrects the problem. The sweetheart of my group is Breanne, she never complains or even questions the coaches. She wears the same smile to every event  and everyone can tell she is becoming what I call a "lifer", someone who falls in love with the sport early and sticks with it through out their entire life. The born leader in the group is Mariah. Being one of the more advanced girls she is willing to demonstrate skills and give corrections ( sometimes unwanted) to the rest of the class. Half of the time her long brown hair is whipping her in the face or it is tightly in a bun because it was previously whipping her in the face. Either way she doesn't mind because she is too busy cartwheeling all over the gym. The girl who tells me the most about her day, or her twin brother, or her plans for the weekend is Rylie. It doesn't matter how many times I tell her we have to take quick turns, she will refuse to budge until her story is complete. Last class she finally got the concept of a handstand and her smile would have stopped traffic! Every Tuesday and Thursday night I go home from work utterly grateful for the opportunity I am blessed with to teach these young girls. From where I stand this is how I see it, if children are our future, the future looks pretty darn great from where I sit.  

Monday, May 21, 2012

Go Nowhere Near It!

Things I am good at:    Making Lists
                                   Making Messes
                                   Working Hard
                                   Writing Letters

Things I am working on: Being Patient
                                     Writing in my Journal
                                     Being Healthy
                                     Sharing Joy
                                     Being productive all of the time

The second list could go on forever. But using both of them together I have been able to create a third list.
Summer Goals:  Run
                         Always be in the process of learning new things
                         Write in my journal on a regular basis
                         Send letters weekly
                         Use my organization skills to remain a productive person
                         Teach others how to have joy in life. ( Jesus. Others.Yourself. J.O.Y!)

Yesterday at church the pastor talked about something I have been wanting for a long time. Living for God. It struck me that it is impossible to live for God and Satan. I also know that the closer you draw to one, the further away you will get to the other. I liken it to this story: "A very wealthy man was interviewing potential employees for his limo service. When asked this question all three men gave differing answers, When driving up a mountain how close can you get to the edge without going over? The first man declared with enthusiasm  
that he could get the front tire riding the very peak of the cliffs without taking the car tumbling down hill. The second told the employer that it was his habit to stay in the very middle, not wanting to be too close to the edge, but also not wanting to seem like a scared driver. The last man's answer was simple, if there is an edge in sight, I will go nowhere near it." This should be our approach to sin. The advice that Joseph of Egypt exampled for us is so easily sufficient; flee, run away, get out of any potentially dangerous situation. He knew who he lived for and he was not willing to give that up. Know who you live for, don't give Him up!


Wednesday, May 9, 2012

What Matters the Most

Diligently doing the things that matter most will lead you to the Savior of the world. - Pres. Uchtdorf 

There are 24 hours in a day, what do you spend them doing? Working, eating, cleaning, talking, driving, thinking? About what? Do you ever work hard for someone else? Could you make a special meal for someone that you love? Have you ever helped a sibling clean their room? Is there somebody you see everyday that you could talk to tomorrow? And how about giving a ride to someone who maybe doesn't have a vehicle?

Others. Service. Thats what matters most. 

The way I see it, the more you think about yourself the more lonely and potentially miserable you become.

In times of hardship, or when problems arise try turning your focus toward helping someone else and maybe you will be inclined to find the solution to your circumstance too.  

We get so caught up in everyday life that we begin to forget about the small maybe minuscule things in our lives that bring us joy. When I was a kid I would rather spend every waking minute outdoors than do anything inside. Now I only go outside when there is a planned activity or something to do that is of consequence. Why? Because my attention has been turned else where, and I have not realized that I am missing out on the beautiful sunshine.

Right now what matters most in your life? It's different for each individual. For me it is that I give love and support to my awesome younger sister who has broken her own school record in the pole vault 3 times already this season! It's making sure that I stay grateful for every single thing I have, and not covet others possessions. Getting in shape to run a 5k with my older brother. Writing my experiences in a journal. Never missing out on a opportunity for charity. Sending letters each week to my friends and sister who are serving missions around the world. Ultimately it is gaining a stronger knowledge daily that the only source of true happiness comes from my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ


He knew what mattered most. He did not spend His days being idle, instead He sacrificed literally everything He had to serve others.

Nike. Just Do It. 

Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Plan...The Goal

Lately I have been catching myself doing something most people find helpful, but that can lead to my destruction. Planning. My brain process goes something like this, *Plan for the day check *Plan for the week check *Plan for the weekend check *Plan for next week *Plan for weekends in advance *Plan for school breaks *Plan for summer vacation *Plan for school next year. This is constantly going on in my head, and it needs to stop. Here is what "the plan" looks like so far. Today- study, work out, work. Weekend- general conference, work, study. Next Week- study more, work more....see a pattern? There is nothing wrong with planning ahead and being prepared, but I think what would work better for me is to set goals. I have SO many. The biggest one is to change the world. Think I should start smaller? Me too. I begin by making two lists, one for things I want to accomplish short term, and the other for long term goals. Here it is!!

Short Term
1. Complete year #2 of college with good grades
2. Sign up for classes to aid in eventual graduation
3. Practice good physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health
4. Attend track meets! ( Abby is preparing for her 2nd trip to the state meet for pole vaulting)

Long Term
1. Graduate college
2. Read the BOM 5 times this year
3. Continue teaching, coaching, and start judging gymnastics
4. Be financially independent 
5- #1!!!!! Change the world!

Each of these goals has about 60 things I need to do to be able to check it off my list, but every baby step I take brings me closer to ultimately becoming what I want to be, which is successful. I want to be able to look back at the choices I make and know that I chose things that were good. Things that would bring good things not only for myself but for everyone affected by my decisions. I use these lists and my "plans" to motivate myself everyday. Every moment spent idle is a moment wasted. That doesn't mean that I can't have fun too! Each thing I do, I go hard at. Work hard, Play hard!I know that it's a little late for New Years resolutions, but I made them and surprise! Im actually sticking to them! I'll share each one, the reason for it and the goal it will help me to accomplish.

1. I resolved to not drink anymore soda pop. I did this because I tend to take in a lot of sugar, bad sugar and I needed to stop. Doing so will help me to become more mentally and physically strong. 

2. Love more. A very wise person knows that every time someone chooses to love, they are taking a risk of being hurt. But that wise person also knows that love is always worth it. I chose this because the more love I can have in my life the happier I become. I know this will help me to change the world!

3. Stand a little taller. I stole this from my best friends resolution. I want to just be better in all that I do. I strive to smile more, encourage more, listen more, and be a better person. I am doing this because it can benefit, and possibly inspire so many people as I do it. This will help me change the world too!

The song "Set the World on Fire" by Britt Nicole embodies my one big goal! I want to set the world on fire, and change it for the best!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Climbing Skyward

It started out as just another workout, jogging down the road, and really it turned out to be a wonderful life experience. I am the type of person that when told I can't accomplish a task I become bound and determined to do it! As I was running down the road I was going past a sky scraper of a hill. It was so steep, beautiful, yet intimidating. Glancing at it a few times I got the impression to climb it. "You cannot do it!" A voice sounded in my head. I stopped. I studied the hill for a few more seconds trying to decide if I had enough time to make it to the top. "Don't even try! You will disappoint yourself." Said the voice again. "Stop!" I silently yelled back. "Yes, I know I can do it!"  "Even if you are able to reach the top, look at all of the branches, you will be hurt." I couldn't tell where this degrading voice was coming from. It couldn't be inside me, I'm much too positive to think like that.  It didn't matter because if I was going to climb I had to start right away. I took one more look around before beginning the steep ascent. The first 30 meters weren't so hard, but then out of no where there were large sharp rocks underneath the leaves that lay at my feet. They made it much more difficult to menuv around. I fought hard to dodge tree branches and slippery rocks all while keeping my body balanced going up hill. I made a habit of stopping to rest at large trees. They helped for a few seconds and then I would continue the journey I was almost regretting by now. After what seemed like a life time I noticed that I only had about 50 meters left, which also came with the realization that this was the steepest, rockiest and most tree-less area I had yet to cover. Using every muscle in my body, climbing with my hands, knees,and feet I made it! I had conquered the massive hill. Almost imidiately the hill seemed smaller, less scary. I walked back and forth at the top seeing the different paths that if I had taken the time to think about, would have made my travel up much easier. Even so I was elated! I had done what someone thought that I could not do. There was true happiness in me! I sat at the top contemplating what I had just accomplished. The voice had to of been someone who is against me. Someone who hates seeing me succeed, and tells me that I am worthless- SATAN. The tree branches I had known of from the start that had hurt me and helped me - SIN. The buried rocks - MISTAKES others make that effect my life negatively. Resting trees - RECOVERY and REPENTANCE. Could I really just have made a hiking story in to a real life lesson for myself? If so, where was God in the mix? He is everything. He is everywhere. My determination- GOD. The dirt I pushed off of - GOD. The air I breathed - GOD. All of it. I was in amazement. This journey had not been about me overcoming an obstacle, it had been about Him. About how He overcame every obstacle for me. He felt the pain and disappointment of those scratching tree branches, and scrapes from the embedded rocks. He clung to the trees pushing me even though I was in pain. He made it to the top.

Monday, January 30, 2012

The Best is yet to come??

Most days present themselves with new challenges and obstacles to overcome. Or at least that's what I thought. My weekend proved otherwise. Waking up at 5:30 on a Saturday morning would usually ruin my entire day, but for some reason I was okay with it. I thought my challenge of the day would be to be able to locate and drive from my home to the cities and back, probable crisis averted I rode with someone else to the meet.

Next possible cause for strife in what was shaping up to be a wonderful day was my Electronics homework. Again with the help of friends and one awesome teacher I was able to accomplish the task without much of any stress. Sunday morning arrived and I had the opportunity to worship at a friends church which had beautiful music and an awesome message! 
 After followed the almost ritualistic Sunday nap that always helps me feel more refreshed, even if I'm not very tired to begin with. The rest of my day included spending time with a great bunch of people and attending a Christian concert which I loved!

I guess the moral to my story is that I am happy. I don't see problems quite the same way as I used to. I cannot think of a time in the last few months where I have found myself wishing and hoping that things will get better for me or that I could somehow change my circumstances. I almost find it hard to believe the saying "The Best is yet to come." because when I take the time to check over my life I am unable to pick out any major issue and so the result is increased happiness. With that being said, I cannot do it alone.

 Each day is a blessing to be alive, healthy, and happy. I know where my blessings come from, Do you?? When challenges arise and you are about ready to break under the pressure of stress, just remember that what D&C 121:7 says is true, thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment. And know that the BEST is yet to come!