Sunday, August 30, 2015

Oxford (aka HOGWARTS) packing list

Part of going to Oxford means that you get a packing list eerily similar to one belonging to a 4th year Hogwarts student.

For example, did you know that I have to buy robes? Like, I have to wear black robes to events like matriculation and exams



And yes, I have now turned into that annoying American girl who will compare everything to Harry Potter. Sick of me yet? Too late? Oh well. Might as well embrace it. 

Besides school robes, I have to get fancy dresses for special events. Formal halls, balls, things like that. 

I've been on the hunt for the perfect dress. Because it's not every day a girl gets to go to an Oxford formal hall. 

And I found the dress the other day. 

It's perfect. It's golden-brown, classy, unique, feels like silk, but it is machine washable, baby.  

[Update: Here is the dress, since I neglected to post a picture of it last night. I may or may not be wearing it to church today. Because it's a new dress. And it's a new dress that makes me feel pretty. So even though there is no special occasion, I'm wearing the dress. Ha.] 

I feel like a Roman empress in it. 

Or like Hermione Granger going to the Yule Ball. Except my dress is gold instead of lilac. 

So, like I said. 

This is year 4 at Hogwarts. 

I am Hermione Granger. 


Could life get any cooler? 

Probably not. 

Monday, August 17, 2015

i'll meet you young and free for a dance 'round the memory tree

Hello, world.

I promise that I'm still alive.
I just haven't been in the mood to write lately.
Like, I have things coming.
I can feel them in my mind and in my heart.

Thoughts from things I've read.
Things I've seen.
Things I've heard.
Things I've felt.

But right now?

It's mostly busywork.
Red tape.

I sometimes wonder if purgatory is just a long line in a bureaucratic office where you never move. Ever.
A long, never-ending line without phone service or Wi-Fi.
I'm pretty sure that if Dante had known about visa and immigration offices he would have written about it in his Inferno. 
Queues in bureaucratic offices in general.
A special circle of their own.
"Now serving number 83."

I had things I meant to write.
Kind of like a "little lists" kind of write-up.
Just so I would write, really.
Because often beginning is the hardest.
But I forgot all that I wanted to say.
Even though it was very clever in my mind.
But now.
To-do lists fill my head
instead of the things I'd actually like to think about.

But I am alive.

And I get do to things with people I love.
People who remind me that I am more than a brain.

Those reminders are important.
So thank you to all.
Pictured or not.
Thank you for the memories you give me.
Thank you for reminding me of what I am made of.
That I do have a brain
but that I also have a heart.
And a voice.
And a knack for silliness.
Because goodness knows I need people who will let me be silly every once in awhile.
And who encourage it.
And people who love me the way I am
but believe that I can always be better--
and maximize my potential.
Which is so much more than a brain.

*Song of the day: A Dance 'Round the Memory Tree, by Oren Lavie

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

But a very, very cute drowned rat.

Last Friday I decided to join the ever-lovely Amberlea at the Salt Lake Temple to worship there.

As I was driving up to Salt Lake, ominous grey clouds gathered from the west and they were moving fast. The weather report promised severe thunderstorms and hail. I was hoping to get to the temple before the worst of it started.

Nope. No such luck.

I did manage to park in the Conference Center parking garage before the downpour started . . . but as I climbed the stairs and came outside onto the granite plaza of the Conference Center, there were sheets of rain coming down and forming rivers in the streets.

And there was no sign of it letting up any time soon--goodness, it had just started.

So I decided to run for it.

The temple is about a two-minute walk away from the Conference Center. I knew I wasn't going to get to the temple dry, but I wanted to get there as quickly as I could.

As my luck would have it, I got stuck at the crosswalk and had to wait an extra minute waiting for the light to change. All while buckets of water are pouring on my head, soaking my dress, getting in my shoes, and seeping into my temple bag.

The light changed and I ran across the crosswalk and the sidewalk. (I know--I'm a sinner. Running on the sidewalk. How dare I.) It was raining so hard that there was water getting into my contacts. I couldn't see because there was so much water in my eyes and I was blinking back the rain, hoping that my contacts wouldn't fall out.

When I got to the temple, I looked a lot like this:

Actually, I looked a lot less like the cleaned-up Liesl and a lot closer to Liesl when she's dripping wet and trying to sneak past Maria:


So, if you have ever seen The Sound of Music, then just imagine a soaking Liesl. Because that's exactly who I looked like. My dress even looked similar, except it was navy blue instead of rose pink. 

In other words, I was a sight. I looked like a drowned rat. It's fine. The looks I was getting from the temple workers were hilarious. It was even funnier because I was walking in with Amberlea--beautiful, put-together, classy Amberlea with her perfectly coiffed hair--and then I was standing next to her in all of my diluvial glory. 

It's probably a metaphor for something. 

[Sorry for the terrible lighting. This is the best picture we got of that night. After I had dried off a bit. Even though my clothes were still quite damp.] 

It's always an adventure when we're around. And I'm glad that Amberlea is around for the thick and thin, the storm and the sunshine. 

I couldn't ask for finer people in my life. 

Climb every mountain. Ford every stream. Or sidewalk. Depending on the day. 

P.S. If you get the reference I paraphrase in the blog post title, then brownie points for you. 
P.P.S. The Sound of Music also reminds me of this hilarious corner of the Internet. Enjoy

Saturday, August 8, 2015

"Is it Latin for 'Worst Game Ever Invented'?"

These. These are good. 

 "I brolieve in you." Hahahaha.

 Story of my life.

 Story of my life #2.

 Don't mess with a Queen of Narnia.

I may or may not have done this once or twice in my life.  

 Story of my life #3.

 Um, yes.

And my personal favorite . . . 

This is what happens when you have an out-of-the-blue Narnia phase. I'm a dork. I know. But I figured these were too good not to share. 

Also, I found these all from this tumblr: It's King Edmund, Actually. There are more on the website and they are hilarious. (But be warned, some of them swear, so if you don't like that, be careful.)