Sunday, December 19, 2010
It is a good thing to observe Christmas day. The mere marking of times and seasons, when men agree to stop work and make merry together, is a wise and wholesome custom. It helps one to feel the supremacy of the common life over the individual life. It reminds a man to set his own little watch, now and then, by the great clock of humanity which runs on sun time.
But there is a better thing than the observance of Christmas day, and that is, keeping Christmas.
Are you willing to forget what you have done for other people, and to remember what other people have done for you; to ignore what the world owes you, and to think what you owe the world; to put your rights in the background, and your duties in the middle distance, and your chances to do a little more than your duty in the foreground; to see that your fellow-men are just as real as you are, and try to look beyond their faces to their hearts, hungry for joy; to own that probably the only good reason for your existence is not what you are going to get out of life, but what you are going to give to life; to close your book of complaints against the management of the universe, and look around you for a place where you can sow a few seeds of happiness-- are you willing to do these things even for a day? Then you can keep Christmas.
Are you willing to stoop down and consider the needs and the desires of little children; to remember the weakness and loneliness of people who are growing old; to stop asking how much your friends love you, and ask yourself whether you love them enough; to bear in mind the things other people have to bear on their hearts; to try to understand what those who live in the same house with you really want, without waiting for them to tell you; to trip your lamp so that it will give more light and less smoke, and to carry it in front so that your shadow will fall behind you; to make a grave for your ugly thoughts, and a garden for your kindly feelings, with the gate open-- are you willing to do these things even for a day? Then you can keep Christmas.
Are you willing to believe that love is the strongest thing in the world-- stronger than hate, stronger than evil, stronger than death-- and that the blessed life which began in Bethlehem nineteen hundred years ago is the image and brightness of the Eternal Love? Then you can keep Christmas.
And if you keep it for a day, why not always?
But you can never keep it alone.
--Henry Van Dyke
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Often I remember something about him or I hear something that reminds me of him. He had his own dialect, unique probably to Idahoans and Utahns of his era, and sometimes I hear older people who talk like him. "Sundee, Mondee,Tuesdee, etc." He also had a slew of expressions that our family remember and use from time to time like, "Well for heaven's sake". He had so many unique ones too that I can't think of. He had nicknames for the kids like McGilicudy and Button and Peanut.
Speaking of which, Grandpa was very fond of nuts and always had a stash by his chair: peanuts, pistachios, walnuts, pecans, macadamia. I would sneak them--I love nuts too. He was also very fond of fishin and would tell stories about his fishin trips and camping trips. When I was little, I really liked rocks and started a rock collection. Grandpa gave me some of his--he knew a lot about them and had the tools to cut and polish them. He was known by many as a great jeweler, and I lucked out and got some jewelry from him over the years. On my 12th birthday we happened to go to my Grandparents house, and he went into his office and came out with my first string of pearls! I felt so lucky! Eleven years later I wore them on my wedding day.
I remember Grandpa would squeeze some orange juice in the mornings. I have this image of him in the kitchen in some plaid pajamas juicing a few large oranges from his tree outside. I have no idea if this is just my memory of one day, or if it happened often, but he just made enough to fill a glass. Grandpa was always making things in his shop. He made me my first little dollhouse. It was so cute! Once I was assigned to make a pioneer wagon for school, so he and I made one out of wood. I have no idea how I did that ;) Another thing about Grandpa is he was always handing everybody money. That was so cool. And at Christmas he would type up his testimony and give everyone a copy. I have a stack of those letters in one of my boxes at home that I am excited to read again. He was at all my big events growing up, he blessed me when I was a baby, he confirmed me when I was baptized. I think of him whenever I sing How Great Thou Art because he loved that song. He is a great example to me, and I'm grateful to be his granddaughter.
Thursday, December 9, 2010
Sunday, November 28, 2010
It was a very special Thanksgiving
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Instructions: Copy this into your NOTES. Bold those books you've read in their entirety, italicize the ones you started but didn't finish or read an excerpt. Tag other book nerds.
1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2. The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolken
3. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell
9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulk
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34 Emma -Jane Austen
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh - A.A. Mine
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce
76 The Inferno - Dante
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession - AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web - E.B. White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo
Now I have a new book list!
Saturday, November 13, 2010
Monday came, and so did a notice letting me know I had been laid off... Apparently my companies profit margin was to small, & costs were too high here in the Utah area, they did address that if I was graduated they would have liked to keep me, but move me down to Arizona or Las Vegas. But that wasn't happening. But thats the way it goes... At one point you're on top, bringing in sales, the next you're no longer needed. I'm still waiting on my pay, and reimbursement from them since the 1st of this month.
But just as that so happens to be closing, My companies biggest competitor here in Utah, called me up & invited me to an interview. After two interviews, they'd like to hire me, and have me do the same things I was doing with my company, that is recruiting training, & selling. The difference would be that I can knock everydoor in Provo, that my new company owns the network in Provo, and we can continue to knock doors on the Utopia network throughout Orem Payson, Lindon, Murray, S. Salt Lake, Midvale, Brigham City. So my big push is going to hire guys up in the Salt Lake area. To create a Salt lake team, & a Utah county utopia, & Provo Team. Along with that we can also sell directv & dish in the Utah area, so if anyone wants to sign up for those, it would be helpful if you signed up with me. (there's my spill selling to friends, sorry about that). Well, I started as a door salesmen, I was let go as a door salesmen, & I'm hired again as a... door salesmen.
& Thats The Way it Goes... Sometimes...
Thursday, November 11, 2010
go to the Blue Lemon restaraunt
see the Waldorf Astoria (stay there??)
go to the Festival of trees
go to that pizza place i can't think of the name of in SLC
go to studio 600
go to a Mountain West ballet
go to zions (i'm iffy on that one)
go snowboarding some more
see manti pageant
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
The next morning we drove into town
Blue blue skies
We enjoyed Seattle in all its colors
We spent our first morning driving all over the city
We had to go to the one-day sale since I was missing it back home
Went to the open marketand the first Starbucks
We drove around the peninsula. It took a whole evening, but it was so beautiful.
Ate fresh fish
We had our competition. We took 5th in Amateur. Hair and makeup took longer than the actual competition, as always
We played pirates
We got rained on at the temple
Found our future house
Found Raimo's old apartment
Found the Grangers, one of Raimo's favorite couples from his mission. They Looove him.
Digby, who was and still is the ward mission leader, told us his favorite story of Raimo. They tracted into a man who was very negative and kept telling them all the things he already knew about the church. I already know this, I already know that. And Raimo just said, "Well how about a tap dance." He still gets a kick out of remembering some of those times. They had the best things to say--that he and his companion were the highest baptizing and the best missionaries.
Stopped by the chapel (it is surrounded by the most gorgeous trees)
Went to Gig Harbor, or the Gigity Gig as Raimo says. It was my favorite city
His apt in Gig Harbor
On the way back I read him the third Hunger Games outloud. It was such a wonderful trip. I'm glad we went--it was great.
Friday, October 15, 2010
There is a girl who doesn't like my husband very much. I think she just hasn't really gotten to know the real him--like she hasn't allowed herself to be close enough to really know his character. Anyone who knows him knows he is really upbeat and positive and also very selfless. While he does like to play the "cool" card, it in no way interferes with his kindness and humility. It got me thinking about how easy it is to make a judgment about someone else, and to then continue thinking badly of them no matter what they do later on. In high school I learned that I had to put myself out there more. I actually felt really shy around people I didn't know very well, but it ended up looking like I was really snooty. I still try to make a real effort to be friendly--I am just not much of a talker and not particularly expressive, so I know I have to let people know that I really do like them!
So I am just thinking about all of this, and I'm guessing that the majority of the time, we just get people wrong. It's interesting to think about--there are so many different personalities out there (maybe some more different than others!) and yet we always expect people to think the same thing as us. How backwards is that?
And on a completely different note, I am thinking just how wrong she is and how wonderful my husband is. Sure, he is a cool cat. And he may seem like he is overly confident and perhaps arrogant at times. If she really knew him, however, she would know that he acts that way kind of as a joke. I mean, sure--he likes to dress "cool" and play "cool," but he is much more than that and is, in fact, a very humble, hardworking, sincere guy and would do anything to help someone else.
I'm thinking about my expectations for other people--I'm sure I have them. And what are they? I expect that they act a certain way, that they will have certain reactions, that they will like one thing and dislike another. Are expectations a good thing? Are they limiting? Or do they help us in some way? It is really interesting.
I think of President Monson's talk in the General Relief Society broadcast. He could not have been more spot-on in his choice of topic. Women especially are so bad about thinking the worst of others and judging when they ought to be understanding. I know I've often pointed out someone's dirty laundry on the line, when in reality it was probably just my window that needed cleaning. Sometimes those little judgments can blow up to major resentments of others. I am hoping I can see people for who they really are, and I am hoping I can be the person that gets up early to clean that dirty window!
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
I am currently reading Emily of New Moon by L.M. Montgomery. It is such a wonderful book. Here are a couple of favorite passages:
"Can you sing?" asked a thin, freckled girl, who yet contrived to be very pretty in spite of thinness and freckles.
"No," said Emily.
"Can you dance?"
"Can you sew?"
"Can you cook?"
"Can you knit lace?"
"Can you crochet?"
"Then what can you do?" said the freckled-one in a contemptuous tone.
"I can write poetry," said Emily, without in the least meaning to say it. But at that instant she knew she could write poetry. And with this queer unreasonable conviction came--the flash! Right there, surrounded by hostility and suspicion, fighting alone for her standing, without backing or advantage, came the wonderful moment when soul seemed to cast aside the bonds of flesh and spring upward to the stars.
Another line I liked very much was "To love is easy and therefore common--but to understand--how rare it is!" This line comes just when she has finally met another human being who is like her father--someone she can really talk with and share her true feelings with. She hadn't had that connection with her starchy aunts or sarcastic great aunt or even with her school playmates. It isn't until she meets a fellow writer that she really connects on that level. I just love that italicized understand. I love those kind of relationships.
P.S. I just talked with Traci for an hour. When we get on the phone together, we just go off. It is so fun for me.
Sunday, October 3, 2010
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Isn't it fun hearing Raimo's commentary on life from time to time? I don't think I would hear those things from him otherwise. I enjoyed his notes on tetris, especially since the game has been keeping him locked up in the bathroom for even longer than usual lately. I'm glad to know that it helped in the rearranging of our house:It's so much more open now. I love it.
Today is the first day of fall. We've been leaving the windows open at night, and every morning is so crisp and cool in our apartment. And since we live in the shadows, it remains quite cool all day. Today I wore a sweatshirt for the first time (inside the house). I painted my nails an autumn bronze, I cleaned up my house and added a little fall decor, and I sliced up some garden fresh tomatoes and ate them with lots of salt (Raimo brought them home from work--from an old lady he met on the doors.... they were big and plump and so-much-better-than-grocery-store tomatoes). My friend did a soup week in honor of fall, and I'm thinking I need to make some delicious homemade soups because that sounds soo good.
I have the day off work today. It has been nice to sleep a little later, get caught up around the house, do some laundry, and see some daylight.
That is all that's going on. Lately I am loving:
--the sound of plastic hangers clacking against each other or screeching across a metal pole. This means either I am shopping or I am going to hit my sales goal at work.
--having a stack of good sheet music next to me at the piano (every once in a while, I go play at the church across the street)
--living the simple life with Raimo. Sometimes we really wish we had this or that awesome thing, and sometimes I really wish we had fun plans to move or to do something exciting, but then we have nice days like today and I am quite content where I am.
Here are some recent photos
So that's about it!
In everyday life, our apartment is like tetris, we have only so much space, and our furniture are the blocks that we have to arrange so that we can live within that space. Also our scheduling is like tetris, sometimes it can be a stretch trying to get Jess & I's schedules to match up and sometimes we plan everything right or we just get the right pieces and we clear a "Tetris" which is the term used when you make 4 lines disappear at the same time. Usually by the end of the semester, all the peices of hectic lives are coming down super fast and you don't have time to think all you can do is react and place at the lowest possible place. that includes homework, rent, bills, work, dating, family, and everything else.
Friday, September 17, 2010
Well enough about that, I was going to follow up with another person on the street and walked by a gentlemen that was standing by a house where there was supposed to be an address that I was suppossed to knock, So I asked him where this particular address is. It turned out he lived there, he had qwest and I could get him about 40mbps more speed for his internet, and save him $34 about. He was a nice guy.
I also followed up with another older lady, she had to buy a new computer, and is going through a lot right now. Her husband is starting to forget how to basic things. I listened to her for some 30 minutes. I think she needed to vent a little bit, and then she gave me some tomatoes from her garden. She's a very nice lady, and asked me to follow up with her in a couple of weeks. I hope everything will work out.
So that was another day on the job.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
"When an author combines brilliant artistry with the desire to uplift and edify, the attentive reader achieves a deepened sense of what it is to be human. A great book is designed to change your mind, touch your heart, and lift your spirit. You should emerge from the experience of reading with some new wisdom about the human condition and a deeper perspective about the experiences of your own life. The careful and compassionate observation of the human soul is the gift that a great novel brings us. We cannot live everywhere; we cannot be everyone. But we can read, and by so doing send out a “cord of communion” (to quote Jane Eyre) to another kind of person, and then another, and then another, until we are reinvented by our interconnectedness. Those few authors that have created truly great novels deserve our serious attention; they add to our ability to live creative and thoughtful lives."
"...That is why it is so important that literature paint an accurate, rather than an idealized representation of the human heart. Franz Kafka said, “A book must be an ice-axe to break the seas frozen inside our soul,” and Chaim Potok described the process of writing as “mapping the human heart.” The best books show us our true selves, warts and all, yet somehow inspire us to rise above those weaknesses to something finer. To have this kind of life-changing experience, we must reach beyond the level of simple entertainment. Some great books have happy endings, some do not, but each one teaches us something true about ourselves that may lead to more satisfying resolutions of our real-life dramas."
You can read the introduction to her book in Meridian Magazine here
and her book is available on Amazon here.
And all the proceeds go to charity. Cool, huh?
And don't you love it when a book is your ice-axe that breaks the seas frozen in your soul? What books have done that for you, OR what did you think about my aunt's introduction to her book?
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Sunday, September 12, 2010
It is at this point I realize that my hair wasn't combed, and let me just say, it was going in all directions, so from that point on I make a joke about not using a comb. it worked out good, the family signed up with a triple play, which means tv phone & internet. I was totally going to let them think about it, but they invited me in and made me a sale. Love it when that happens, but realized that I do need to close sales more.
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
Actually that wasn't the funny thing that happened on the way back home with Axle, I noticed out of the corner of my eye, some thing flying, it turned out that I hadn't taken off the sales tag from my jacket. I laughed, I had a lot of people drive by laughing. The other annoying thing I noticed is: you run into a lot of bugs when riding a scooter. I'm serious when the sun has gone down but its not fully dark yet, the bugs fly straight for your headlight and somehow end up hitting you neck, chest, arms, face, it was... an interesting feeling. One day I'll put pictures on with my writing but until then, you'll have to bare with my boring stories.
Do you ever notice that right when you decide to do something, the phone or doorbell rings?
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
~from Toni Morrison's Beloved
That's a good way to describe it. Seasons sure aren't very theatrical in California, but here in Utah we see a little more of nature's theatrics.
"Each one enters like a prima donna, convinced its performance is the reason the world has people in it.... summer had been hooted offstage and autumn with its bottles of blood and gold had everybody's attention."
Autumn is definitely SO bold and dramatic. In fact, on the first day of school, it was already overcast and slightly cooler, even though it was still August! I'm a little sad because I don't feel like we had a real summer--we skipped over beach days and a lot of other summer activities. But it's hard to be sad when it's a perfect 70 degrees outside. It's time to trade in the swimsuit for jeans and sweaters...
p.s. My new job at Macy's is going to be really great, I think. I am getting trained right now.
Thursday, September 2, 2010
I feel like things are not fair this week. Not everyone in our family is being fair and Raimo's boss is unfair and one of our friends is very unfair. I've been crying, but the good thing is that once I move past it... I won't care.
But probably not until I finish one of these rolls
Thanks for listening :) Phew
It was mid March at the time I was assigned a couple blocks, I could knock every in the highlighted map, and so with that I had a system of two highlighters green if they didn't answer, & pink if I talked to them. With this in mind I rode with my co-worker/friend. His area was right next to mine, my first person I talked to had recently bought a snow cat. If you don't know what that is, thats ok, for the most part it looks like a car, with huge tredds under it so it can climb up any mountain covered in snow. It was sweet looking, naturally the guy already had the services we were offering so no sale on that. I met an accountant who wanted me to come back after april when tax season was over, he didn't have any time to talk, met some other people and then ran into a current customer of ours who didn't have the television service we were offering at the time. He was really nice and liked the idea of bundling the service I explained the packages he could have and the pricing, I set it up with the middle package so that if he wanted a little more that was an option or if the price was too high we had other options below. He asked if I could come back later in the evening and show all this to his wife. so I knocked some more. Talked with a guy who was preparing for armageddon, buying all these supplies and food, and gear. I went back later the family was eating dinner at that time. "have you eaten dinner?" they asked me. I hadn't, so they invited me in. We ate meatloaf, and got to know the family. The family had 3 kids, who liked the idea of getting television in the home. the wife wasn't feeling it as much but felt that if the kids did their chores and homework for a week they'd add the service. (naturally that didn't come to fruition so I lost a sale). I was determined to not go home without a sale for the night, I had been knocking for a couple hours already and didn't want to quit yet. I decided to keep going, the last house on the street I meet a gentleman who has dish, and is tired of the price of it. I share with him our promotions and actual price he likes it, and invites me in, we fill out some paper work, and poof a sale.
What happened back there, that sale didn't come because of my amazing selling abilities. Nope, nor did it come because of my good looks and charm. It came because of persistence & the desire to keep going. that was the key. I wasn't very good right off the bat. It took me about 3 weeks of consistant and constant focus, & going out everyday and knocking doors sharpening my approaches and getting used to talking with people.