Thursday, April 21, 2011

Coming Home

Guess who is currently sitting in the Ben Gurion Airport.
Guess who just said goodbye to her home for the past 4 months.
Guess who is missing it already.
Thats right... Me.

With 20 hours of flight time ahead of me, I'll have a ton of time to reflect on the past 4 amazing months. Hopefully most of that time will be put to good use sleeping as well. After a really tough 2 days of saying goodbyes, I am finally ready to start saying some hellos.

Yes, I have walked where Jesus walked. I have bathed my feet on the shores of Galilee; I have tasted the waters of Jacob’s Well, where Jesus talked with the woman of Samaria; I have prayed in Gethsemane; and I have worshipped silently at the garden tomb. Each place stirred my soul and made me feel his holy presence. But I have not seen him in this life, nor have I spoken with him face-to-face. I know, however, that he lives and that he loves me. Through the power of the Holy Spirit I can testify that I know him as if I had seen him with my own eyes and heard his voice with my own ears. -Elder Carlos E. Asay

Playlist Much?

California (Phantom Planet)

Big Jet Plane (Agnus and Julia Stone)

Do You Remember (Jack Johnson)

Pasadena (Modern Skirts)

See You Soon (Coldplay)

Warmer Climate (Snow Patrol)

World Spins Madly On (The Weepies)

.See you soon.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Ohh Jerusalem

Jeru J-Crew
Jerusalem Winter 2011, No Regrets.
There is so much to say about my last days here in Jerusalem.
But I have to pack. SAD. & spend time with my 80 best friends.
So that post will just have to wait.
I just wanted to do one of my last posts while being here,
just to say THANK YOU to my amazing parents for making this whole experience possible. I know I've told you a thousand times how much I love you and how thankful I am, but I could never say it enough. This has been the best 4 months of my life.

I also wanted to say how much I love the people here.
This experience would not have been the same without you all here.
You are all my angels.

You have taught me so much and have changed me for the better.
Amongst all the laughter and tears, we have become best friends.
I can look at every one of you and honestly say that I love you.
Thank you for loving me back, and for making this an unforgettable semester.

If I forget you, Jerusalem,
may my right hand forget its skill.
May my tongue cling to the roof of my mouth
if I do not remember you,
if I do not consider Jerusalem
my highest joy.
Psalm 137: 5-6

Friday, April 15, 2011


Crosses carved by pilgrims traveling to the Holy Land
Church of the Holy Sepulcher

are done!

Now isn't that exciting?
I actually didn't mind studying for finals this time around...
In fact, I think I might have enjoyed it.

It was fun to put together everything that we have learned
and see how it all connected back together.

I think after taking my tests these past two days,
I really realized how much I have learned these past 4 months.

I have had some incredible experiences,
some inspired teachers,
and some pretty amazing friends.

Now I get to focus my last week here on the last week of the Saviors life.
Just in time for Easter.
What a blessing.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Looking Forward

With the return flight fast approaching...
(Do I really only have 8 days left here?)
My dear mother sent me an e-mail with a list of reason
why I should be excited to come home.

I really liked that...
As sad as I am to leave Jerusalem,
I really am excited to come home.

Things on my list to look forward to:
-The Family. Vacation to Hawaii anyone? Yes Please.
-The friends... my good friend Sam just got home from his mission and I can't wait to see him after two whole years!
-The ward. Hidden Springs, you are my family.
-The food... Four months without Mexican food, can't wait for that Carne Asada. Ohh and a Non Kosher Kitchen would be nice... meat and cheese together!
-The clothes! Putting on my purple anthro boots ASAP
-The simple life... Not worrying about having at least two other people with you at all times. Sometimes alone time is nice you know?
-The iTunes Store. New music would be incredible
-The good ol' Titan. I miss my truck, do I even remember how to drive?
-The states. I don't think I ever really appreciated my country and the freedoms we have there as I do right now.
-The beach. Huntington, here I come... please no more Arab men in speedos.
-The workout videos. Yoga Yoga Yoga
-The FroYo. Nubi is calling my name
-The movies. Water for Elephants is coming out in celebration of my coming home... loved the book, love the cast, its sure to be amazing.
-The summer. Best time of the year for sure.
-The books. I've got that list going...
-The sleeping in. Anytime past 7:30 would be nice. Thank you.
-The school. A new major... what an exciting adventure.

&& most importantly...
The new start...
Jerusalem really has changed me in ways that I didn't know were possible or even needed changing. I can feel such a difference in my life, I feel so much happier and excited about the challenges up ahead. I'm excited to see how this rejuvenated me takes on the world... how, when I am put back into a real life situation, I will allow those changes in me to really take effect on the way I live my life.

You don't need an experience like the one i've had here to change your life in amazing ways, although I admit it sure does help. The number one thing that has made that change in me is that fact that I spend everyday focusing my life on the savior and making sure that I am following the paths that he sets for me. I know that no matter where in the world you are, you can make that change, as you put forth the effort to making the Lord your number one priority. I promise that if you do that, everything else will fall into place.

Jerusalem. I love you. I'm going to make sure that the next 8 days are filled with so much joy that I won't be able to contain myself.

P.S. Shout out to Brother Hansen who reads my silly posts every week, don't worry... this won't be the end of my blogging adventures. I hope to fill my life with many more interesting escapades to entertain you with.


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Dead Sea Spa

Sunday we had our very last bus field trip, I'm sad that our bus days are over, but it was a great field trip to end on.
First we hit up Qumran, where we were able to see off in the distance where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found.
After that we headed over to Masada, where Herod built one (or actually two) of his many fortresses. This guy built more palaces than anyone I've ever heard of. It was also where the Zealot Jews fled to after the destruction of the second temple. After that we went on a little nature walk at Ein Gedi where Jess and I found a romantic little spot by a waterfall where we just sat, put our feet in the water, and talked. It was much like the area Lehi and his family would have dwelt by (1 Nephi 2:6,8)

Then we get to everyone's favorite part of the day. The Dead Sea!
We paid 2 shecks to get past this odd Nigerian man in order to get into the changing rooms. After we were all suited up we walked down to the water, which was a bit far since the Dead Sea looses about 3 feet of depth every year. When we got into the water, there were these huge salt stones at the bottom. Once you get past those, you just kind of jump out a little, and no work needed, you just float to the top. Its the weirdest/coolest sensation. We had a ton of fun making chains of people, taking picture, and just full on lounging in the sun.

After we got out, the salt would dry stay on your skin while the water evaporates. We then headed over to get our spa on. We gathered the little mud that we could find and lathered it on for silky soft skin.

After a great day in the sun, we got on the bus for our last trip home. It was a fun run kids. Some of my favorite moments were spent bonding on the bus. From our random dance parties, to stuffing megan in the overhead storage space, to Jenny spilling an entire water bottle on my lap, and too many other to count.

*Thanks again to the talented Lani Liv for letting me use her camera while mine was taking a break for a while && for twirling my hair when I'm sad.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

This Girl

Aimee Christina Fresh
Born 20 years ago today!
I know I must have been so sad in heaven for those several months that she was on the earth and I was not.
When you talk about best friends, you talk about Aimee & I.
I don't think I could begin to tell you how much I love this girl.
She is one of the most kind and caring individuals that I have ever met.
Growing up with Aimee has been the most amazing ride,
I can't wait to continue that ride on to college when we live together in the fall.
It has been our dream to go to BYU together since about... umm forever.

Happy 20th Birthday Aimee Fresh
Its going to be an amazing year for you
I'm so grateful for your friendship and influence in my life.
I still plan on becoming old ladies together and living next door to each other in our fancy houses on Balboa Island.
Get ready for another crazy ride.