Sunday, April 29, 2012

Summer Reading

I've been trying to compile my summer book list. 
I already have quite a few books that I've started and haven't finished.
The dilemma is that I started getting all of the plots and story lines mixed up, which really makes for one giant exciting story I guess. So while I'm finishing those off, I'd like to know what some of your favorite reads are... any that I absolutely MUST read? 

My Current List

To The Lighthouse - Virginia Woolf 
Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte 
Pilgrim at Tinker Creek - Annie Dillard 
The Catcher in the Rye - J. D. Salinger 
Safe Haven - Nicholas Sparks 
Jesus the Christ - James E. Talmage
Animal Farm - George Orwell
Persuasion - Jane Austen
The Secret Garden -  Frances Hodgson Burnett
Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy 
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn - Betty Smith
Bleak House - Charles Dickens
Their Eyes Were Watching God - Zora Neale Hurston
Night - Elie Wiesel
Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest - Ken Kesey

There are so many classic novels that I somehow missed in High School English, and there are a lot on here that I'd really like to read again... Okay so MOST of them are ones that I want to read again. What are your favorite books, authors, or genres? Send them along so I can enjoy too! 

Friday, April 13, 2012

Camping Ya'll

Ever since Winter has been "over", I've been itching to go camping. 
I never really used to be an "outdoorsy" kind of girl. Who knows, maybe I'm still not all that outdoorsy. 
But after all the hiking I did in Jerusalem and a camping trip last summer, I've been dying to get out in the woods again. I loved packing up the trail mix and throwing all our gear in the back of the car. I loved staying up late, counting the stars and letting my skin soak in the smell of the fire. I loved waking up to the sunshine and hearing the birds in the trees. Since it's still too cold (and we are too busy) to actually GO camping... Aimee and I decided we'd set up camp in our living room. It wasn't as rewarding as real camping, but it was nice to have things like a bathroom at our disposal. 

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Okay, I'm a looser.
You caught me.

Here Comes the Sun.

Over Conference weekend, the girls and I thought we would take a trip to the park Saturday afternoon. The sun had been so nice, so we packed up our blankets & books... we even made a side trip to Cafe Rio. It was one of those absolutely perfect days. We caught up on our favorite reads, rolled around in the grass, and watched the clouds as they turned from white and fluffy to shades of oranges and pink. I'm looking forward to many more days like that in the near future, I've just got to make it past finals first. IMG_0974 IMG_0986 IMG_Park IMG_PARK3 IMG_PARK$ IMG_PARK5 IMG_PARK6 IMG_PARK7 IMG_1107 IMG_1121 IMG_1122 IMG_1123 IMG_1124 IMG_PARK8

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter


Wishing you all the happiest of Easter days. What a wonderful time of year to remember the sacrifice and resurrection of our Redeemer, Jesus Christ. I feel so incredibly blessed to belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and to be able to have a personal relationship with my Savior (to read an Easter message from the leaders of my faith, click here). I am so grateful that he not only took upon my sins, but also my pains and sorrows. Most importantly, I am grateful that he made it possible for me to live with him forever. What a beautiful gift to receive. On this sunny, springy day... I look forward to bright colors, warm sun, inspiring messages, and great friends.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Happy Days

Last weekend was LDS General Conference! Which is basically Mecca for Mormons.
Aimee and her family got tickets for the Saturday morning session, so I got to go with them.
Afterwards, we went to her sisters house to watch the afternoon session while eating pancakes and playing with the babies. Conference is always more fun with babies.
Since it was April Fools, Zoe and I thought it would be funny to play the over obvious facebook prank of "I'm Preggers" and "I'm Engaged" by combining them together. We sure fooled them!

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Since the Sun has been out, all I've wanted to do is go camping. 
We took a quick trip to the park with Cafe Rio on Saturday and it was heavenly.
We put on our summer shorts, brought our favorite books, and rolled around in the grass. 
Nothing makes me happier than good friends, bright sun, and fresh air.

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Things in Provo have been very pink. I adore this tree outside of our apartment. When the wind blows, the tiny pink leaves fall outside of our door, decorating the walkway like pastel confetti. I also saw this recipe on Pinterest for chocolate donuts with a blood orange glaze... Lets just say that not everything on Pinterest is as appetizing as it looks. 

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Also, my mama came into town! It was fun to see my family and make time to just relax. My mom took me grocery shopping and bought me these beautiful yellow sunflowers. Flowers are a definite weakness of mine. I hope to have an endless supply of flowers in my kitchen when I grow up. 
We also went up to SLC to see Young the Giant perform. My mama has excellent taste in music, thank heavens for that. 

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Lastly, I've been bashing my brains out writing this paper about the Dome of the Rock. I spent probably around 15-20 hours writing, researching, and editing it and I still was flipping through the pages before I turned it in. It came out to be around 17 pages total, with the addition of all of my research printed out and highlighted for my teacher. As hard as it was, I slightly enjoyed writing it and reliving my love for Jerusalem and Islamic art. However, it completely wore me out, which is bad considering finals are in a week. After that I am California bound. 

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Lets see if I can make it out alive. Wishing you all happy days ahead!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Palm Sunday

What with April Fools happening yesterday, I had almost forgotten all about Palm Sunday. 
Palm Sunday isn't something that I had ever celebrated before... but last year while in Jerusalem, we got to walk with thousands of other Christians on the path that Jesus took as he rode upon a donkey into the city of Jerusalem. I don't think I ever had the chance to post about it, so why not be a year late? 

That morning, we got a group together for waffles in West Jerusalem. There is nothing on earth that is quite as heavenly as a waffle bar. 

Then we headed back to the Jerusalem Center to meet up with everyone and begin the palm sunday walk! By the time we had gotten there, most of the palms were gone. So we had to make do with other kinds of palms...

It was amazing to see all the different cultures, countries, languages, and people that were all there to celebrate the savior. We sang together (or mumbled, when we didn't know the language), we danced together, we clapped together, and mostly walked together. 

Happy Palm Sunday everyone.
This week I'll be re-reading my journal entries as we went through the last week of the saviors life.
I cannot believe that I left Jerusalem almost a year ago.
Who pressed the fast forward button?