Thursday, February 21, 2013

summertime soul

Mm, I cannot wait until summertime :)

I want to soak up the warm sun, wear shorts, and walk barefoot on the beach. 

I'm listening to Louis Armstrong, and the jazzy, relaxing music paints the perfect summery picture in my head.
and I want to be there.

Away from the cold, and the midterms. and even farther away from the cold.
I think, if I were a season, I would be summer.
Just easygoing, and happy with the simple things, and loving to go on adventures - 
even if it's just going out to eat at a new restaurant, or finding a new hike to go on.

This summer will be in a brand new house, in a brand new place, once again!

We have lived in...

Illinois. (Nauvoo, specifically(: )
New Jersey
and most recently, Virginia.

Luckily, my family is staying in Virginia this move around, and I am so grateful for that. I absolutely love it here (:
Virginia is probably my favorite - although Utah & Colorado are pretty high up there too.

People always ask me what it's been like, moving around so much

and it's been hard, but it's also been amazing.
Funny how those two traits are paired together pretty often, huh?

The people I've met, and the experiences I've had, are ones that I couldn't have had any other way, and are ones I wouldn't trade the world for.
It's amazing how different the cultures and people are within our own country, and it's amazing how there are people who are kind and who are good and who influence your life for the better everywhere you go.

It's definitely shaped who I am

I mean, always making new friends and changing schools gave me some good social-skills, but let's face it - sometimes - especially being me - it is just awkward! haha.

Especially being the really sweet, kinda shy new girl.
So it's taught me to be independent, and not rely on other people for my happiness
and how to reach out to people who maybe normally you wouldn't usually be friends with - really, how to make (& be) a friend to pretty much anyone
and how to just be happy with myself, on my own
It's given me a passion for learning new things and seeing new places
and how to appreciate every place & every person for the uniqueness & goodness they have
and it's taught me to rely on the Lord for my happiness and strength
and to be close to my family, because they make the best friends ever.

and so... it's been a great life. I wouldn't have it any other way (:
Makes planning a little difficult though, for the future. I honestly have no idea what to expect, and no idea where I'll end up.... what things life will throw at me.
if I could choose right now, I would choose Virginia - probably somewhere up by DC.
But we'll see how the story unfolds (:

I'm countin' down the days till summer!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

certainly love

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this picture (via pinterest)

Mmm, Valentines Day.

That exciting day when everyone wears rosy hues and glowing happy people carry chocolate and roses and sweet little letters to and from their loved ones.

It is such a beautiful day for it today - the sun is shining, and the green grass growing that brings springtime makes me want to take off my shoes and run with my bare feet on the lovely green.

The day for valentines is a really sweet holiday. Yeah, it can definitely make you wistfully aware of the empty puzzle piece of your heart where your love will be someday. But that's the key word - someday. Someday, that piece will be filled. And I'm sure that piece will be more wonderful and more perfectly suited to you than you can possibly imagine - because it will be your love! Your puzzle piece that fits quite snugly and cozily in that sweet heart of yours.

I enjoy valentines day (: It's a great day to show your love for your family and for your friends.
One of my favorite valentines memories - as I said here - is when I was in kindergarten, or somewhere around that age, and my Daddy gave me a necklace for valentines day. I remember I just felt so important and special and loved. Relationships in families have the greatest opportunities to love and be loved (:
It's also a fun day to go out on a date with a friend, or some charming guy you've met recently! And, if for some reason there is no hunky man (or, for a guy, foxy lady) in your life at the moment, it is a fantastic excuse to buy yourself chocolate and watch cute movies with the girlfriends.  Remember - and celebrate - that it's one valentines day closer to when you'll have the one best person in your life to celebrate it with.

one more thought - valentines day is great and all for showing you love someone. it's an opportunity to do something special for someone.
but really, love should be shown throughout the whole year.
in Institute today we read this quote

"Often we assume that [the people around us] must know how much we love them. But we should never assume; we should let them know... We will never regret the kind words spoken or the affection shown. Rather, our regrets will come if such things are ommitted from our relationships with those who mean the most to us."
- Pres Monson

Deeds, not words - and consistency - and showing love in ways they will understand -  are needed to show people that we love them.

I challenge myself to love - and live - like that. Replace fear with faith. Don't be afraid to go out and take a chance on someone. Also, don't be afraid to save the best stuff - your heart and the best aspects of you - for someone who will cherish it, who will value it, and who will be able to give their heart and best aspects of themselves back to you. Because a person who can do that is out there (: and it'll happen in the right time, at the right place, and with the right person.

and, for now, appreciate the people that you love in your life. your parents. your brothers and sisters. your friends. your heroes. your examples. as Elder Bednar says "we can begin... by telling the people we love that we love them. Such expressions do not need to be flowery or lengthy. We simply should sincerely and frequently express love".

So, go out and express some love (: Happy Valentines Day!

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Sunday, February 10, 2013

awkward & awesome


being sick at school. seriously. I've been a mess of sniffling, coughing, achy sickness for the past few days. all I can do is curl up with my quilt and herb tea and scare myself silly with some mystery novels (Agatha Christie & Mary Higgins Clark. So good!). there's nothing like being sick at college that makes you just want your mom again. or someone - anyone who loves you - to baby you. what I would give for those sweet childhood days when your mom would put a cold wrap on your forehead and give you some soup.... mm, mm.

when you run into your old english professor at walmart. what exactly is the right/non awkward thing to say in that social situation?

Valentines Day (aka single awareness/forever alone day) is this week. that will be interesting at SVU - I'm intrigued to see what that will be like. I think I'll be eatin' me some sweet frog & watchin some chick flicks with the girls.


jewelry sales at walmart. which means super cute earrings, and necklaces, for only three bucks. three bucks, people!! awesome!

the play. specifically, Battlefield of Love. super funny, and cute, and a bit weird. perfect play for Valentines Day.

also, my new job. great coworkers, tips, and free sandwiches & cookies. yummy yum yum.

oh, and finding out my broken laptop can be fixed for only fifty bucks. woot woot :) it will be as good as new - my cute little grandpa computer.

also - probably my favorite part this week. singing at the golden living center. all these sweet, sweet old people sit and watch us, and clap, and sing along as we sing hymns to them every sunday. their always an absolute joy.

there is one couple who is so sweet - the wife is so frail, and just sits there with her eyes closed. her husband sits next to her, holding her hand, and never takes his eyes from her when we sing - he just listens and watches her sleep. it's probably the sweetest thing I have ever seen.

also, Michael, my favorite Irish man. he is an absolute ray of sunshine on a dim day. he wears his Irish hat, and claps after the songs, and always says the sweetest, funniest things. like telling my friend that he shook her hand just so he could hold her hand. and telling us we look lovely.  he is the sweetest person.

one lovely thing happened today with him that made me want him as my third grandpa.

this frail, blind woman came into the room, using her cane to guide her way as she looked for her chair. he sat there in his wheelchair, and saw some hymnbooks that were in her way as she sat. he rolled his chair over, reached across the table, and scooted away the hymnbooks so she could sit. I don't think she even realized he was there. it was one of the sweetest things I've ever seen - so thoughtful.

I love people. I really do. there's so much bad out there, but the good moments and noble things people do - as simple as moving hymnbooks so someone can sit - just overpower all of those things.

it's lovely :)

and, my quilt & paints (also awesome) are calling my name. the end, for now!

Thursday, February 7, 2013


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and.. it's thursday already.
does anybody else feel like time is just speeding by?
it's so crazy!
some pretty awesome things have happened recently.
this past weekend, I went caving with some awesome friends. Needless to say, it was a crazy awesome experience.
we hiked down the mountain, using ropes to scale down the hills, and climbed into the caves, and explored for a few hours.
we encountered some wild bats, massive spiders, a rat, and a happy looking clay-man.
we climbed up treacherous cliffs along thin walls, with deep chasms going into the hill
and crawled through spaces that made us wiggle through small tunnels on our bellies.
it was also flooded from all the rain, so we got unbelievably muddy & soaking wet!
it was so amazing!
it was so  beautiful inside as well - with the glittering fool's gold ceiling, that looked like stars.
I also felt like a total rock star wearing a headlamp and my friend's Army hat, haha.
It was sweet :)
on the way out though... well...
it was about eight when we crawled out of the caves.
we were soaking wet, and tired, and happy (from the amazing exploring)
and we go out of the warm cave - and it's snowing. and dark. and we are soaking wet, and tired!
so we struggled back up the hill. and I honestly thought there was a possibility I could die - or atleast get frostbite.
my hands and feet were frozen, and us girls were emotional from being so tired and so cold
there is no way we could have made it back without help from eachother.
but, after what felt like forever, we made it back to the car!
so we are at the car, in the blizzard, putting our stuff in the trunk
when this other car (cruising through the blizzard) slows down to help us
we start to wave to them that it's okay, but suddenly
they slipped on the ice, lost control of the car, and it spun around the road a few times, bouncing off the sides of the bridge walls!
the guys ran over to help them, and luckily everyone was okay.
but it was the craziest night I have had in forever - probably makes the top ten list of the craziest nights of my life, haha.
it was so crazy!! but it was an amazing experience... just being in nature, with great friends, and just feeling close to God, because I know He helped us out - especially at the end, hiking up those snowy hills...
it's been a great week :)

besides that,
my classes are making me want to travel to europe & study art & sketch there
I'm surrounded by lovely, awesome people who just inspire me every day

I also had a random experience, haha

I was walking to class, and I was looking down at my feet, thinking about something...
I got to the door, and this guy opened it for me.
 I looked up to say thank you, and we made eye contact -
 and it was the most intense stare!
We both just stared at eachother, and then he said "Hi Whitney" and walked away.
I was shocked! He knew my name! And.. I have no idea who he is.
He was very handsome, and nice, and I have no idea who he is.
But that's okay. It's nice to take a break from guys for a while :)
it's lovely caring about someone, but it's also so awkward and can be completely distracting and painful in the beginning haha
(although the things I'm learning in marriage & family is definitely helping my confusion with guys)
so, yeah. anyways. I'm perfectly happy with my single, lovely friends life for now, and just takin' life how it comes - while I work toward my goals & enjoy the steps along the way.

so... life is good.
last night I drew, for hours, and cleaned, and read, and talked to my mom.
and I woke up this morning feeling more peace in my heart then I've felt in a long time.
so life is good (: