Friday, January 10, 2014

2014: Plans

I'm really looking forward to this year. I just have a feeling it's going to be AMAZING. I don't quite know why, but it's a nice feeling. :) I hope it really is.

As usual, I've made some goals. I know we're 10 days in already (almost 11) and most people blogged about this two weeks ago. But, I wasn't sure if I wanted to. I figure putting it on here may help me stay more accountable though, so I am in the end.

I HAVE been working on a lot of my goals already though. Like, for example, I've already been to the temple once (thanks, Candie, for going with me!), and I'm up on my Old Testament reading plan. So, that's something. :) I'll start incorporating even more this next week when I get back to a more established/routine life in Vegas. I have 2 more days here in California with my family and I'm going to enjoy every minute of it...and then I'm excited to get back to life as I now know it. :)

I'm a nerd, so I made a spreadsheet I'm using to track things. :) haha


  • Do something social/meet new people - 2/month (at least)
  • Visit somewhere on Vegas bucket list - 2/quarter
  • Go on a date - 1/month

    • Make something from cookbooks/magazines (not Pinterest/blogs) - 1/month
    • Make something from Pinterest/blogs (food/other) - 1/month
    • Craft/Create something - 1/month
    • Attend temple - 2/month
    • Attend institute - weekly (if possible)
    • Attend institute Friday Forums - 2/month (as possible)
    • Read the Old Testament - follow daily goal sheet
    • Read all conference talks at least 1 more time before the following conference - develop calendar to follow
    • Do visiting teaching every month
    • Get straight A's again
    • Finish papers/projects early whenever possible

    Monday, November 18, 2013

    Christmas Movie Marathon

    As I sit here "taking a break" from working on my research project that's due in 2 days, I am thinking about Christmas movies that I want to watch. Here's on my watch list for the coming month/month & a half:

    1st, probably  my favorite Christmas movie (or at least one of my top picks...can't let Christmas go by without watching it):

    Home Alone

    Dad's favorite that always gets us laughing:

    Christmas Vacation

    What would Christmas (post 2003) be like without Buddy???!!?!

    I've been thinking about this one lately. Funny stuff:
    Christmas With the Kranks

    This one keeps me dreaming (even though White Christmases have never been a part of my life):
    White Christmas

    Oh, George Bailey! A must-see every year:
    It's a Wonderful Life

    A classic I've loved my whole life:
    How The Grinch Stole Christmas

    Maybe even this version too:
    The Grinch

    Another childhood favorite:
    A Charlie Brown Christmas

    Lesser-known family classic:
    Trapped in Paradise

    I just watched this one a couple weeks ago, but I think I'll probably need to rewatch it soon:
    While You Were Sleeping

    This one per my roommates suggestion (I don't think I've seen it all):
    Jingle All The Way

    And there's a good chance I'll throw in a few others along the way as the mood strikes (or the TV brings to my living room). Also, I may likely watch some cheesy Hallmark Christmas movies (the best!)

    What would you add?

    Sunday, November 10, 2013

    Life Goals

    When I was in my early 20's (maybe late teens), my dad had us all write up 50 things we wanted to do in our lives. I was thinking about those things lately. I thought it would be fun to see where I am now and how many I've accomplished...and what I have left.

    AND, I thought I'd share them all with you. :)

    (Please ignore any weird ones that may appear...I was young, and these were private. :))

    50 Things I Want To Do

    1. Finish School - Graduate from BYU
    2. Go on a mission
    3. Get married in the temple
    4. Start an eternal family
    5. Learn to play the guitar
    6. Become fluent in Spanish
    7. Learn a 3rd Language
    8. Buy a house
    9. Get a car (any)
    10. Get a credit card
    11. Get a NICE car
    12. Attend the temple often
    13. Go on a cruise
    14. Go to Hawaii
    15. Visit historic Church sites
    16. Improve on the piano
    17. Exercise @ least 3 times/week
    18. Learn how to cook a roast
    19. Learn to make candy...yummm
    20. Get a laptop
    21. Memorize favorite scriptures/quotes
    22. Go to Disneyworld
    23. Live in Cali (@ some point) 
    24. Become a better friend
    25. Become a better sister
    26. Become a better daughter
    27. Become a better disciple of Christ
    28. Read good books
    29. Study God's words
    30. See General Conference in the Conference Center
    31. Go on Ward Temple Trips
    32. Learn to clog
    33. Learn to Ballroom Dance
    34. Get (fun) books from BYU Library & read them
    35. Take floral arranging
    36. Learn Calligraphy
    37. Learn to cut hair
    38. Get a stereo w/ Karaoke function
    39. Go out of the country
    40. Speak Spanish on vacation
    41. Give away a Book of Mormon
    42. Go Scuba Diving
    43. Meet a General Authority
    44. Go to as many temples as possible
    45. Swim in the Atlantic ocean
    46. Ride lots of roller coasters
    47. Become a neater person
    48. Go to @ least 3 of the places from "Kokomo" by the Beach Boys
    49. Go to Europe
    50. See the Statue of LIBERTY
    And, at some point, I added one more:
       51.  Go to the circus

    From my calculations, I've accomplished about 50% of these goals in the last decade. Not too bad. Some of these are ongoing too, so maybe I could count more, but I left them for now...I can always improve on becoming a better Disciple of Christ and becoming a neater person, for example, but I feel like I have gotten better than when I wrote this list.

    I am going to ponder on what I want to accomplish now. Obviously, I still want to keep most of what is on this list that has yet to be accomplished, but I want to add to it now. Fun to look back though!

    Thanks for the idea, Dad!

    Saturday, March 30, 2013


    I've just spent over an hour chatting on Facebook to a dear, dear friend. The conversation has made me think about the idea that we are so intertwined. It reminds me of Elder Maynes words last weekend when he said something to the effect of "We are woven into stories that affect other people's lives, so we need to the Holy Ghost to guide us.". We can have a profound effect on those around us, sometimes without even realizing it.

    I'm humbled to be reminded of that. I'm grateful for any part I can play in lifting someone up. I just try to live my life as best I can according to what I know is true.

    I'm reminded again of one of my favorite quotes:

    God is so, so good. I'm grateful to know he is aware of me and those I know. It helps me know he is aware of all of us. Like Nephi, I don't know the meaning of all things, but I do know that God loveth his children (1 Nephi 11:17)

    Follow the example of our Savior and go out an do some good (weave your thread)! That is my plan.

    Sunday, March 24, 2013

    Mind. Blown.

    I feel like I've been learning a lot lately. I think maybe my heart is just in the right place. I can feel change ahead. Not only do I need it, I know it's there on the horizon. So, I've been turning to the Lord a LOT (a lot, a lot) to figure things out. I've learned to recognize these feelings, and it's best to figure things out. :)

    Mind Blowing #1
    In the last month I have definitely been taught (for the millionth time) a very important lesson:
    The Lord Knows Each of Us and what we need.
    There is nothing I am more sure of at this very moment in my life. It's a lesson I'm taught over and over again...I'm a little hard-headed sometimes...either that or I just let life drift me away from that truth sometimes.

    It's too personal to detail on a public blog that anyone can stumble across, but I had an experience recently where I simultaneously felt chastised and comforted. I know for myself that my life is going EXACTLY as He planned. He has been and always will bless me. I need to stop assuming that he's delaying some blessings. He IS blessing me. He loves me. More than I can understand. And, He will fulfill all of the blessings he has promised.

    Mind Blowing #2
    I was recently an instrument in the hands of the Lord. I think this happens more than we know, but I'm grateful that this person let me know. It's humbling to be reminded that thoughts are often from a much greater source than my own "good ideas". 

    Mind Blowing #3
    Although I'd gladly give it up for a family, I am grateful to be able to attend some amazing conferences because I am single. It's a unique opportunity that I try to take advantage of at this stage in my life (especially since I know that the Lord wants me right here right now - see #1). 

    This weekend I attended the Silicon Valley LDS Education Conference. I met some cool people, and I received many answers to my prayers. I learned so many amazing things. I wanted to document just a few here.

    • Have "more faith than fear". We'll still have fear at times, we just need to rely on faith and have more of it than fear. - Elder Richard J. Maynes, Presidency of the 70
    • We are woven into stories that affect other people's lives, so we need to the Holy Ghost to guide us. - Elder Maynes
    • Remember, Remember that God loves broken things (dreams, hopes, righteous desires) - Elder Jeffrey R. Holland
      • Just hang on through the broken things because God can fix all things
      • Broken clouds -> broken ground -> broken grain -> broken bread -> nourishes man
    • Remember as long as you live that the 1st principle of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is FAITH - Elder Holland
    • The Children of God are required, by covenant, to sacrifice - Elder Holland
      • Don't flee your chance to make your sacrifice
      • You get the sacrifice back; that's the meaning of resurrection/restoration
    • You're stronger than you thought; you have seeds of divinity within you - Elder Holland
    • Maybe the more you suffer, God loves you more than at any other time in your life - Elder Holland
    • If we truly love God, why not bend to his loving care?
    • Go to the Lord early & often; don't give your priorities mixed up; make certain things non-negotiable
    • We must find joy in the journey no matter the potholes along the way
    • You may be small, but that's a STRENGTH in the eyes of the Lord (like David & Goliath)
    • Be World Class in all that you do
    • Real forgiveness involves a deep understanding that there is evil in the world
    • Sacrifice is what we give up, consecration is what we give (D&C 64:23)
    • The Lord always answers our prayers, just not always in the way we think
    • 2 Nephi 27:21 - The Lord can do his own work, it's our privilege to participate
    • If you're intent on making something happen, you have to be a DOER
    • Don't dwell on failures & spiral down. "fail quickly" - pick self up & carry on
    • Don't wait for perfect. If you like it, go for it.
    I promise that is just a few of the thoughts that touched me. :)

    And I just wanted to share this video. This was one of the amazing speakers at the conference. He showed this video as part of his portion. I thought it was really fun, so I wanted to share. Happy Sunday!

    Friday, December 21, 2012

    My Company is Cool: Google Analytics Reference Guide Style

    I'm pretty sure I've mentioned this before, but I work for an amazing company with very intelligent and cool people!

    Here's one of the latest awesomeness that's come out of this group: Google Analytics Reference Guide & Tips. If you've ever hoped to get better at Google Analytics, check this out.

    It is FREE! And PRINTABLE! And AWESOME. Because that's just how we roll at Blast.

    Tuesday, November 6, 2012

    Looking to the Future...

    I sit here tonight watching the Presidential Election results roll in. At this point, most of the news networks are calling the election in favor of President Obama. As I look on Facebook, I see so many friends lamenting that it is now the end of the world, or at least of America. I can't bring myself to accept that.

    I wanted Mitt Romney to win. I voted for him and I would vote for him again. I believe he would and could be an excellent leader. I think he has the experience and knowledge to do good things for our country, but it doesn't look like that will be the case. I remember sitting in a very similar situation 4 years ago. I remember actually feeling scared for what would happen if Barack Obama was elected president. I didn't want it to happen then either, but it did. And we survived. Yes, we are struggling...and we may struggle more in the next 4 years, but I don't think it's the end. And, I hope that I'm right.

    In the last few weeks, I keep thinking about an experience I had when I was young. It must have been in 1993, which means I was 12. President Bill Clinton was elected president and I said something negative about him in front of my grandpa. Now, I was 12. I didn't know anything about politics really, or even about the president. I'm sure whatever I said was based on things I'd heard my older family members say. In fact, I distinctly remember hearing my grandpa say negative things about President Clinton before the election. So, it surprised me on that day, when I said something negative, that my grandpa said to me, "It doesn't matter if you don't agree with him, he is the president of the United States, so you need to respect that". That has always stuck with me.

    I don't agree with many things that President Obama does or says, but he's still the president. This is the way that our country works. Sometimes the people we don't want to be elected are. Sometimes the bills and propositions we don't want to pass do. And the good news is that sometimes the opposite happens. We win! We get what we want! But, no matter what, we can't give up. I believe that.

    The good news, in my opinion, is that the President should answer to the people. I know people are concerned that he won't listen to what we, the people, have to say. I know there have been time this has been the case in the past even (i.e., Obamacare). But, I choose to hope for the best. I think the key now is to STAY INVOLVED. Keep track of what is happening. Write to your congressmen. Make things an issue. Don't let things slide by. Keep the president, whoever that may be, on track with what we believe as a country.

    I think that this is where we fail sometimes as a people. We talk a lot about politics, but we don't follow through. I've been thinking about that a lot lately. I need to be more involved. And I think many people are just like me; WE all need to be more involved in how our country is run.

    Yes, sometimes the majority gets it wrong. Personally, I think this may be the case here. BUT, I'm not going to give up. I'm not going to throw my hands in the air and say, "that's it! America is over!" We can never give up. We, the people, of the United States of America can and should constantly stay involved in what is happening in our country. Because, you know what? I'm still proud to be an American!