Saturday, January 31, 2009


It has been a rather long week. My semester has been going great... until this week. All of the sudden every one of my classes surprised me with something huge that was due. It started with Tuesday's surprise exam in ASL (it might not have been totally surprise but I think I didn't understand some of the signs I thought I did...). I had a Psychology paper due, a history paper due, an exam in Geography, and a quiz of Psych as well. All of this was due on Thursday and Friday... So my week was spent trying to keep up with the work and not let the readings fall behind. Needless to say, the stress made me a little less-than-happy...

Thursday was a long day and I couldn't wait to be finished with it. After I worked on my paper and some reading I went to work. You know its bad when going to work is a welcome break from what you are already doing... but it makes for a long day when I know I have hours of homework to still do. When 5:30 came around I finished up and went out to my car. When I opened my door my heart jumped into my chest. There was something florescent yellow sitting on my seat. At a second glance I saw that it was a little elephant! Underneath him was a little note explaining that it was "Special Stress absorbent material designed especially for Jess. When she needs an extra hug. Love- Bryce" On the back was a little inspirational quote and scripture telling me how I could make it. I named the elephant Theodore. He is possible the cutest elephant EVER! :)
He was successful in cheering me up and I realized how blessed I am. My friends and family are absolutely amazing! They care about me even if I feel like I don't deserve it. I went to bed with positive ideas about the upcoming stressful day and felt like I could do it. Unfortunately... I had another lesson to learn this week...

Yesterday was one of those "Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Days." Alexander and I seem to have a lot in common...
I woke up, got ready and went to campus. I had a little trouble printing my paper for history but it eventually came out... but made me in a rush to make it to my psych class. I had my geography book with me so I could study as much as I could without the study guide I was supposed to pick up from my professor's office. The plan was to go from history to the SWKT (Spencer W. Kimball Tower) to pick it up, go home to grab some lunch, and study to take my test by about... 5:00... *sigh* Lets just say... that is not how the plan went today. I was pushed to the point that I just wanted to give up. I went to history and forgot to turn in my paper. When I went back to give it to my professor, he wasn't there. I couldn't find my geography professor or TA where they were supposed to be to find the new study guide for the exam I had to take. I was interrupted over and over again while trying to study... the list goes on... finally at 8:00 I went over to the testing center to take the test. When I got it, I realized I forgot to study a very important part of the material... it was on another sheet... and I couldn't remember what numbers I needed... *sigh* that was when I decided I needed to give up for the day. It was just too much for me to handle. I finished my test and called Bryce who wanted to come pick me up. So I went outside into the cold to wait for him.

As I went outside I saw a light. (no I am not dead... nor was it a near-death experience) It was on the side of the mountain. I also heard a helicopter. The light was scanning the entire face of Y mountain! I believe they were looking for someone... my heart stopped cold. Immediately my day did not seem so bad. I was about to get into a warm car and go to my warm apartment and there was someone on the mountain as it got later and later in a very cold night. I said a quick prayer for them and for those on the helicopter. I thanked Heavenly Father for my newest humbling experience.

No matter how bad I think I have it, its not. There is always something to be grateful for and I am definitely one of the most blessed. I have no reason to not be happy or feel sorry for myself. I need to serve and recognize all that is good in my life! So thanks to all of you who are each a blessing of the best!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Ice, Bryce, and Spice

After I posted the last entry Bryce decided to spice up the weekend with a little creativity. While I was filing he was formulating a plan. Friday night deserves a special date-night activity. Something a little more exciting than a movie at home.

Our adventure started with a trip to the MOA. (for those who don't understand the acronyms of BYU [Brigham Young University] the MOA is the BYU Museum of Art) The current exhibit displayed is an exhibit of... garbage... literally. There were black garbage bags fused together and attached to a fan (so they ballooned out). There was also a panel of little honey packets attached in rows to a wall (see picture to the right), a wad of balloons blown up and tied together, a room where they had hooked up a row of flickering lights, and my favorite... a corner of packing peanuts with a fan blowing them around. Who knew you could get rich and famous off my garbage?! (well ok, maybe not so famous... but really?) Seriously... I should have thought of it. Someone beat me to it... It was kinda cool though...

The original plan was to go from the museum to the dollar store where we would find an item that best described the other and take it home to cave said object out of a block of ice. As it turned out, the dollar store was closed (all part of the adventure) so we ended up at Smith's. Instead of buying the objects we took pictures of random items we found that had significance or described the other person. It was pretty funny when we got back together and found that we had both taken a picture of an Ibuprofen bottle... :) That is, consequently the item he chose for me to carve. I made him carve a giant kiss.

The ice carving turned out to be a cold experience (one could imagine). We split an ice block in half and brought out the screwdrivers. By the time our ice had shape the kitchen was soaked with ice puddles... (it was cleaning check the next morning, we figured it wouldn't be too bad if we helped start it...) but the sculptures turned out better than the previous expectations. Well... Bryce's did... mine fit expectation almost exactly... :)Bryce was rather pleased with himself and rightfully proud of his creation. We set them outside and commenced the clean up. All-in-all a very exciting adventure!

Friday, January 23, 2009

A little note, a little lost, and a lotta love

You know those days where an hour seems like a week and no matter how hard you try, all efforts to be productive seemingly float out the window? Those days that, despite your best efforts, nothing just seems to go your way. It is difficult to see the sunshine behind the clouds on days like this. But I learned a lot about sunshine yesterday and it all came about with a little note, a little Lost, and a whole lot of love.

My day started just like any other day. Ica's alarm went off way earlier than it should have... Although I did not arouse into complete consciousness, I was awake enough to recognize the migraine that took residence overnight in my right temporal lobe of my brain. A very promising start to any day... it set the stage for all following events as well. It was as if each event felt added pressure to make my life just as frustrating all the while having the migraine encouraging constantly.

When 4:45 finally came around I was completely exhausted and only wanted to go home. I had plans set up and considered calling it all off on account of my sour mood. By the time 5:30 crept up I picked up my stuff and practically ran out the door to find my Jeep and get home. I was anxious to see my boy and eat dinner in desperate hope that I would find a smile. I didn't make it far, however before the first ray of sun broke through the clouds. Stuck behind my door handle on my Jeep was a little note. Inside was a note of appreciation and attempts to make me smile. Who from? You guessed it, Bryce. I got in my car as my tears tried to decide if they wanted to escape. They must have decided that it was too cold to make a break for it this time and I drove home to my warm apartment, dinner, and my wonderful boy finally able to smile about something.

The long awaited night had finally arrived. I don't just mean that it was a long day... it was the night that I have been waiting for since summer started. January 21, 2009... the premiere episode of season 5 of... yep you guessed it again... LOST!!!
Although yesterday was the 22nd, it was still long awaited. (we had more pressing priorities on the 21) Bryce consented to come with Ica and I to my family's house to see the newest twists and turns this show held for us. Yes, that's right, we spent our 2 month mark watching LOST. Romantic eh? Surprisingly, this premiere was not as emotionally draining as most. It was more of a brain teaser/challenger... (which for one with a migraine makes it even more interesting). We talked about it and pondered about the difficulty of time... and comprehending it... and made our way back home to make it back by pumpkin time.

Even in the darkest days Heavenly Father will bless us if we're trying our best. It takes a lot of effort to stay positive on days like those I described... but there is always something to smile about. I lost sight of that (teehee... lost...) but now realize that I have so much to smile about! I am surrounded with the most amazing people who love me for who I am (at least that's what they say... :] ). What a blessing to know that I'm being watched over by those here and by those upstairs... that right there can bring a smile to my soul!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


I have just discovered that people actually leave comments on my blog... :) I'm a little slow on the uptake.. I guess... but I thought I would address them! :) So...

Yes the holiday was great and Marian, of course your visit was on the top ten of the holidays! However, it was pushed to number two when we went to Kanab... something about this handsome boy I'm dating... so sorry! ;]

As life continues with its fast pace of stuff I need to learn and know... and those amazingly entertaining books I am reading... With roommates and family dinner... There is one thing that could only make life a lot more entertaining and hectic. A boyfriend. Let me tell you, he is totally worth it! (I know you are going to read this Bryce, so if you get embarrassed, I'm not around tonight! ;] ) For anyone who is not Bryce... you might find this a tad ridiculous... and so I will not be offended if you skip my post for today. :)

Bryce is a BYU Cougars fan who enjoys educating me in the sports field. He played football all throughout high school and follows the teams here relatively closely. He graduated high school with an associates degree and served his mission in the Baton Rouge, Louisiana mission. He loves to tell me his stories. Bryce is going to be 24 in February (yes, he's old. I remind him of that constantly... :] ) and will graduate with his Bachelor's degree in Business this April. He has been studying Human Resources and will be looking for some sort of management... something... :) He is very friendly and very sincere making him a talented people person. He also has a hobby of working on computers (because he is really smart like that) and of course sports... he has recently taken the task upon himself to try to teach me how to play racquetball... which it quite the feat.

Bryce is very sweet and kind. Everyday he inspires me to be a better person through his example and commitment to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We like to have adventures and tease each other about stupid things. We can have an entire conversation that is purely sarcastic comment in reply to another sarcastic comment. We have gone on many an adventure and they keep getting better! He calls it "spicing up life" because who wants to have a boring life right? We've got to live it up and enjoy the ride!

This past weekend was possibly the best adventure we've had yet! Because we went to Kanab at the end of the holiday our plans to go out to Roosevelt with his family were postponed until this past weekend. I know... meet the family and all that.. and the story unfolds...

*insert fuzzy edges of a memory scene here* Friday turned out to be an early one for me. Dear old Ica got extremely sick at about 1:30 in the morning and by two was shaking so bad I didn't know what to do. Luckily Bryce and my wonderful home teacher Gerrit were ok to come give her a blessing around 2:00. My classes all turned out to be second priority as I was up nearly all night with Ica to make sure she would be ok. I emailed all my professors and worked on a little homework between dosing periods. At about 1:00 pm I was supposed to run over to the office to make sure I was completely trained for the I have. but at about 11:30 I was needing a little support. I was tired, and stressed, and somewhat nervous about that afternoon (as we were going to leave for Roosevelt around 3:00). I finished packing and called Bryce to see if he wanted to come over for lunch. He was cleaning out his car and told me he'd be there ten minutes later. We had lunch and as I was about to check on something in my car, he told me he had some other things he had to do so he'd see me at three. When I got to my car, there on my seat was a pink carnation with a note that says, "Bryce *heart*'s Jessica." :) He was pretty proud of himself when I saw him a little later. :)

On the drive up to Roosevelt (a two hour and 15 minute drive... give or take a few...) we discussed some pretty deep doctrine... and music albums... and other various topics. There are really never silent moments between us as we can talk for hours about anything. I was not too nervous about the weekend ahead as I have met other friend's parents before so I know the general routine. It was not until we reached the little town of Roosevelt that my breath got a little shorter. Bryce took me on a tour around town. Its true, I had to blink a few more times than I thought before we'd seen it all... ;) But I was alright until he pointed out his grandparent's house and was about to turn the corner toward his. Its when the realization of "wow... this is it..." hit me. Bryce's parents were helping at his sister's dinner for the Winter Ball and were not going to be at the house when we arrived. It worked out well. We brought our stuff inside to meet his two youngest sisters, Emily (12) and Alexis (8). They showed me to their room where I would be staying. When I came out of the room I couldn't find Bryce anywhere so I made fast friends of the sisters and had them start the tour off downstairs. :) Bryce and Tyler came out of another room and Bryce helped finish the rest of the "ten cent" tour. Alexis likes to play games and was already dying to play one with her older brother and new friend. So we played Scattegories and Emily and Tyler joined in for a few rounds. At about 7:30 I met the parents. I got a hug from his mom and a very friendly handshake from his dad. They had some extra Chicken cordon bleu from the date's dinner and the formal dining room was set for the occasion. "The slaughtering of the fatted calf" as Tyler put it as we sat around with the china... After dinner and clean up we played a game called "the Great Dalmudi" (I wouldn't know how to spell it...). Its like scum... only backward. I sat in the scum spot for most of the game but eventually worked my way up to third from the top. It was a lot of fun! Mr. LeBaron and I gave each other a hard time and I helped Tyler move up from scum. As it got later the younger ones went to bed and Bryce and I went downstairs to where his childhood pictures were. :D I won't go into details here... but lets just say I have some pretty good ammunition should I need it in the future. ;) and Bryce is well aware of it! His sister Lindsey (16) got home from her date and came down to meet me. She is way cute and super nice.

Sleeping in a different bed, in a situation that is forever potentially awkward makes for a difficult time sleeping... and when cursed with a curse like mine, it only adds to the difficulty. I woke up around 6:30 and couldn't fall back asleep. So I eventually got up, got a drink of water, and read in Acts until I was called into breakfast around 8:30. It was the beginning of a very fun and inspiring day for me. After breakfast the family and I went over to the clubhouse where the dinner had transpired the night before to help clean up the tables and decorations that had been left. Clue and home videos... until the boys had a ping pong match and played for a good while. While I watched I helped Alexis practice with the billiards and then she set up the bowling on the t.v. It is exhausting to try to keep up with such a bundle of energy! :) I did teach the family how to play Rummy 500 and Alexis ended up winning... Bryce then took me to get a taste of Roosevelt. To get a shake... and I did get to see Moqui! :) There are stars in Roosevelt! and I did get to see the law enforcement in action. :)

Yep, quite the adventure! I had an amazing time and absolutely love his family. I immediately felt accepted and welcomed. I am very humbled to have had the opportunity to meet them and participate in the family activities. The only other place I have felt so loved is with my family. I have nothing but good to say about the entire adventure and all that I saw and felt. It was AMAZING!!! :)

Every time I see Bryce it brightens up my day. He has a smile that will melt ice and kind and gentle eyes that take my breath away. He is strong and protective... and warm... and will always try to get me to laugh. Yep, you guessed it, I am head over heels for this boy and I am loving every minute spent with him. :)

So now you know a little more about my boy... and more than you wanted about my random adventures! :) But if you actually read it and got bored, its your own fault! Until next time!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Catch up!

Hello again to anyone who actually reads these random ramblings. :) With the hustle and bustle of the Holiday season I had much happen and no time to tell about it! A quick catch up is in order [insert here]

Christmas was great! We had to wake my brother up to go downstairs to where the tree was. I got a wonderful memory foam pad for my apartment bed... its like sleeping on a heavenly cloud and my roommates are all pretty jealous. But I also got an electric blanket! Good bye shivers, Hello good night's sleep! :D Christmas day was probably the most lazy day I've ever spent but it was nice as I didn't have any school to worry about.

Ica and I did go sledding with Dan and Phil one day. It was quite the adventure... Phil took us to a hill that not many know about and let me tell you, there is a reason... I sled down it a grand total of 5 times and I face planted at the bottom (or middle) every time! :) It was fun though. This picture was taken just after Ica went head first into a bush at the bottom... she told me it wasn't all that tasty... I was so wet that I had iceicles in my hair! This is also before Phil pushed me through a bush and off a cliff... yep, good times...

The fam and I partied it up for a few days, Mom and I hit our "after Christmas" stores, and Ica and I finished up our roommate gifts. New Years Eve came and with it my boy came back from Roosevelt. We stayed up late and I was up and ready to go at 7. Bryce was actually brave enough to come down to the ranch in Kanab with my family and I. It turned out to be a lot of fun! I whooped him in Rummy 500... and the stars were pretty amazing at night. :) There was ice on the lake and naturally the boys spent at least an hour and a half sliding around on the ATVs. The hardest part of going down there is the hard reality of school starting again... *sigh*

As it always does, vacation ended and now we're back in school. I have a new roommate who bought Kerry's contract... she is way nice, a little crazy, and super fun. I think she will fit in nicely here. :) All of us crazy girls are back safe and sound. And so far we have survived the classes of the first week. My schedule is pretty intense but I am excited for it too. I start classes on MWF with Geography 101 at 8:00 am, ASL 102 10:00, Social Psychology 11:00, History 202 12:00. Mondays I have an evening 2nd half of the New Testament class from 5:00-6:50 to get home in time to run FHE. My Tuesdays and Thrusdays start at 9:00 with World Dance, and ASL at 10:00... so yeah, I will definately be kept on my toes this semester. I am also hoping that one of these job interviews will end with me getting a job... so cross your fingers and pray for me! :)

In world news (as far as I know anyway): The missionaries are all working hard. Xander just had his first transfer and is doing really well in Indonesia. The work in Europe is progressing forward, both in Spain with Jonathan and in France with Travis. In Japan, our Elders Stufflebeam and Badger are finding good things to write home about. In all honesty, there is not a whole lot of news from Brazil... I hope its still there! :) And finally from the MTC, Elder Raynor is finishing up his last two weeks there and will then be on his way to Mexico! The church is true where ever you are and I am so proud of them all!

Well thats it for now, hopefully I'll have a more exciting story to tell sometime soon! :) Tschau!