Tuesday, May 15, 2012

"it looks like you've got bare feet on!"

so. much. to. say.

you know when you get inexplicably behind in your journal and tons of crap has happened and it's like this unbearably overwhelmingly annoyingly necessary thing for you to just go and sit barricaded for a few hours to do a killer catch up session? that's definitely how i'm feeling right about now. or how i've been feeling for months now. i was thinking that what i really needed was just a freaking place to put up a bunch of pictures that would summarize my life facilmente. then i learned that that's what instagram's all about. so i downloaded it. then i left the country without ever even opening the app or using it. whoops. we'll get to that part in a little while.

ah. i freaking don't even know where to start. i'll just go with it. a flood of words and pictures and quotes and thoughts and then i'll hopefully just be done and ya. 


well. believe it or not, i am alive. 
we can just summarize the past four months into complete insanity.
 honestly, sometimes when i really think how on earth i survived this semester, my only answer is by the grace of god. 
he was unbelievably good to me. the blessings flowed so freely i literally didn't have room to receive them. 

 i ended up working at carrabbas (i've alllllways wanted to be a waitress)--which i Loved, capital L. it was such an adventure!

i didn't do it on purpose. it just sorta happened. 
but...i also got a job at the mtc.
it was sooo fun to be able to wear a tag again and feel that beautiful connection to my mission. i was able to teach in the zone where i was as a missionary and the memories came rushing back. i seriously felt overwhelmed with gratitude to be there, to be associating with missionaries, for my mission, for the restoration of the gospel, for the Savior and His atonement, and these wonderfully willing missionaries preparing to go invite others to partake of the atonement by entering into the covenant of baptism. ah. it was so fulfilling!

but between both jobs and 18 credits, i nearly drowned.
the semester was beautiful, i loved my classes, had my brain capacity stretched, and did surprisingly well. 
i survived literally by the grace of god. 
i may not have eaten, slept, or had much of a social life the whole semester, but i was happy. like i said, the lord has blessed me abundantly. and he taught me a lot in the meantime.
i am happy! life is beautiful!

it is physically impossible that i could be more
proud of 
grateful for
he has been such a light, blessing and example to all of us. having him home is...wow. the best. there are few people in the world who know how to make me laugh like he does. and his perspective of life and the world and the gospel and everything has changed bastante. he's going to go so far in life! i can't wait to see all the things he accomplishes, the lives he touches and the changes he makes in the world. 
bro, i love you! 

spreading a little cheer de mexico. 
I gave my family these ponchos for christmas. 

bro sporting his christmas present!
he's a proud chilean. 
i'm a proud mexicana. 
we're getting along okay. :)

aaaaaaah two years coming:
reunion: CAFE WEST. oreo shake. late at night. this was accompanied with a long chat up at one of my favorite vistas by the provo temple listening to all sorts of beautiful tuneage and talking about life.

willy took us to ruth's chris. i guess he was saving up some gift cards for the past two years and we went as a reunited fam. beautiful. delicious. full.

all the cousins together at bro's homecoming! 

before bro left, i took him to Joe's. and we got piñas. and we cried. because we love each other. ha ha no it's because they're so rico they make you shed tears. 
so this was a celebration of reuniting! :)

my niece is freaking adorable.

sister adams had a birthday!!!!! 
happy birthday, sister! and thanks for the excuse to reunite!
(me, sis ploeg, sis adams, sis livingston, sis lee)

this is a funny story. 
for her bday, sister adams took herself shopping. she said she tried to "channel" me and bought a sheer white shirt and a black undershirt. that night at her surprise party, look what i showed up in!
and i guess that's what channeling is.
very accurate.

la, staish and i reunited at el azteca for our high school tradish of fried ice. this pic was taken for our beloved sister park who is KILLING it in the mission! we love you!


i've learned a lot about myself this last little while. 
 this explanation could be really long or really short... i'll go with the latter. basically, i'm way more careless than i thought. maybe irresponsible is a better word. i dunno. either way. the second classes ended, i peaced out to catch a flight (i actually left early. ha). a few nights before school ended i was feeling sad, so, naturally, i got online and found a plane ticket to my heaven. my parents were totally supportive (what could they have done though, really?) and let me fly like a free bird (pun). i was an adult and rented a car and just did whatevertheheck i wanted alllllll weekend long. i didn't plan a thing. all i knew was that i was going to go to a sealing on thursday morning of my dearest darlingest familia rosales--which was honestly one of the most beautiful, sacred things on the earth. and then the rest of the time? whatevertheheck i wnated. allllllll weekend long!
so happy.
haha. so leslie happened to be in town and we met up. then partied for a day. i took her to the battalion. oh yeah. get it.

that first night i slept on a yacht. 
we slept on a yacht. ha ha! it was RIDICULOUS. leslie has pictures of us eating pie and ice cream which i will snag from her. but this was our view when we woke up. 

then i ate breakfast...

no big.

and drove her to the airport. this is downtown. ahh!

sis kearsley. my soul sista.

i loved more than anything surprising my sisters. :)

the cuuuuuutest kids on planet earth! guido, diego and isabela.

i even got to spend time at my tios with my adorable cousins! so fun! we definitely don't get to see each other enough!
after i finished one of my finals (booo) i was OFF to visit people and love my life. 
i was seriously like a three year old.

one of my first stops was the familia salvador. 
i LOVE that family so much. my last night on the mission they asked us to not come back and i thought my heart would burst. but i felt the need to go visit them, and it was a beautiful little reunion. :) 
i have no doubt in my mind that they will come around. the Lord is aware of all of His children--especially such beautiful like Karen and Karla--and He wants them to be an eternal family. and there's NO other way than to accept the gospel, be baptized, be sealed as a family and perseverar hasta el fin.

my dearest papa de chile. making empanadas. :)

second family. 

oh, hermana solano! one of my favorite human beings on planet earth.
this sassy little lady totally made fun of my hat. ha ha ha.

on sunday, after relief society, hermana patterson announced that we were going to sing happy birthday to one of the hermanas. i looked around excitedly wondering whose bday it was. "...de la hermana christensen." what?
first of all, my bday was way far away.
and second of all, how did she know?
third of all, she went out of her way to bake a cake and all. sooooooo sweet!

i was blown away by the goodness of my hermanos all weekend. it's only been a few months since i left them, but i forget how giving and loving and open and FREE they are with everything and everyone. they are such examples to me and i hope someday to be as amazing, thoughtful, selfless and christlike as they are.

felicidades a mi amigo hermano chavez por cumplir UN ANO DE SER MIEMBRO!
congrats hermano chavez! it was recently his one year mark since his baptism. :)
that man... gave la hermana mendoza y yo suuuuuch grief. ha. but we love him so much and are so grateful for his faith, his love for the Lord, his willingness to repent, change, and follow the Savior. I can't WAIT for him to enter the temple and receive ever greater blessings y hacer convenios aun mas altos!

my trip to sd was soooo impromptu and sooo unplanned. anybody who went with me would've hated it. but.
it was perrrrrfect for me. 
lately that's been kinda getting me into trouble--being so...flying by the seat of my pants (whatever that means)--but asi soy! that's just how i am! and i'm just going to embrace it! not knowing where i was going to sleep or eat or do or anything made me feel soooo free. it was liberating and beautiful. 
i heart san diego
she taught me who i am and how to be reeeeally happy. 
and i have a feeling everytime i forget that, she'll be there, ready to re-teach me.


thank goodness for good, timeless, stable friends.
in my moment of need staish graciously organized an...event... that needed to happen. 

it was necessary.
my mom asked if it was mature--what we were doing--which it wasn't. but we did it anyway. it was amazing...watching so much of me and my life fade away into this little mass of reddishness. and ya, the end. we took time to review sad things that'd happened to us and then talked about the good things coming out way. we cried, laughed, hugged, had our childish/girly/whatever moment, and then that was that.

speaking of timeless friends...
mal and makena took me to los for my 23rd. 
i got there a little later than they did, but they'd ordered for me. 
hahaha. only your bestest friends know EXACTLY what you want. call it obesity or freaking awesome friends. it is what it is. and we'll always be that way. 

i sorta hate birthdays. well, not yours. i actually love celebrating other people's bdays, just not mine.
cadence and johnny (other timeless friends) captured me late at night and took me alllllllll around town. i. had. SOOO much fun! we went to winco, beto's, taco amigo, and who knows where else. they gave me great counsel, made me laugh real hard, and ended the day with a bang.
(and this picture is important because i'm actually eating something from beto's. i'm anti. but i took a bite.)

willy, the master planner, has been planning a cruise for...about two years now. ha. it was a reunion cruise. and it wasn't just the immediate but also the extended family. and it was SO FUN.

sunset in atlanta. stunning.

you know how i feel about the rain.
and the ocean.
so the two together?

todo artsy. 

oh yeah.

oreo dream. best.

accidental. but im' always loving them when they happen. every time.

my friends. 
the zebras.
hahaha. i had... quite the zebra-reminiscent tan lines. that's what happens to you when you spend 19 months in a pioneer dress. then you go on a bike ride and get a really weird burn on some parts of your body and not others. then your swim suit does you another one. next thing you know you're a freakin striped, red, awesome mess, and your sister is making fun of you hardcore. and you're making fun of yourself, too. and posing for pictures like this one.

homemade za joint.

i spent the major (ity) of my time with these clowns. 
loved my life.

mchaniff, our baller waiter dude. super on the ball. brought me a bday cake. 

for the beauty of the earth!

buseando en mexico. 

i was in heaven.
i love my gente!

we found a beach we could swim at the last little while of our stay and i darted on in. 
como un pez en el agua!

lovin my tortilla shirt!

my dear friend, michael j pratt, inspired me to read the bom in a short amount of time to get the story line better. 
i had a really beautiful experience reading this sacred book full of plain and precious truths and holy COW is it ever plain and precious! i was just blown away by the repeating message: 
it was sacred to me. i know the Book of Mormon is the word of God. there is no other option. I know that men will get closer to God and Jesus Christ by reading the book and obeying its precepts because i've lived and experienced it. so let's read it again and again, live it, be it, breathe it, and share it! the world needs so desperately what we have!

unreal beauty. full moon on the open ocean.

i loooooved running on the track around the ship. for some reason it empowered me. i got as close to a half marathon as i ever have before. yeeeah!

favorite past-time (besides swimming): frozen yogurt.

drinking from a freaking coconut. and then i went back later and the guy gutted it and gave me straight up fresh coconut. dreeeeeeeeeeeeam.

conversando while the sun was setting on the balcon.

so this deserves an explanation. 
colby, kaylynn and i tried to do a flash mob. for those of you who don't know what that is--shame on you. (just kidding, i just barely learned what it is, ha ha.) but google it. basically a bunch of people learn a dance and then come together in a crowded area and randomly start dancing. it is a completely genius idea. 
so when we found out that they were doing it on the cruise ship we went down with bells and swimming suits on. but! it turned out to be a complete fail. a huuuge fail. too many bodies too much commotion too little difference between dancing randoms and other drunk randoms standing around. so these pictures commemorate first, our anger, and second, our deepest disappointment.

so before bro took those pics he accidentally made a video and this is just so funny. kay and colb were NOT having it. and no one likes my dang nighty.  ha ha.

eventually, our time on the largest cruise ship in the world came to an end. 

this was the whole crew.
thank you gma and pa for everything! it was sooooo fun being one big clan on the seas!


we were all so happy to get back to baby tabstar.


"you cannot limit yourself by what you think is your capacity. we must allow the lord to expand our capacity...and he will."-elder zwick

"your love will be safe with me" -bon

“Every nation contains the center of its happiness within itself” (1967–1968, 5: 509).

this is seriously in the main body of one of my textbooks: "there are so many things that influence other things." wow. thank you. profound.

empathy: the ability to accurately infer the specific content of another person's thoughts and feelings (ickes, 1993, p. 588).


the other night i went longboarding down palisades late at night (one of my favoritest things to do on earth) and this guy walking his dog commented on my lack of shoes by saying, "it looks like you've got bare feet on!" isn't that a weird way of asking why i was barefoot? haha. i just laughed and rolled on to a new epoch of life.

and that's that. 
if you made it through this, the longest post on the planet, i congratulate you.
but i feel good. i feel like i unloaded and now it's out into the cyber universe and we can just move on and talk about other things. 
that'll be in another post though. 

so long! 

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