Friday, October 3, 2014

Summer recap part 1

I did this last year, and then I did it again.

Summer apparently just isn't the time for blogging. And that's mostly okay.

It's been a weird year. Real weird. But lots of good things.

This summary begins in May, just a little bit after I turned 26, which I have previous discussed as a major turning point.

1. I went to Mesa, Arizona to see my rockstar brother graduate from law school at ASU. We hung out by the pool, shopped a little, and hung out all together. The graduation was particularly exciting-- one Steve Young was the commencement speaker and he is cool. (PHOTOS TO COME)

2. I BOUGHT A CAR. This was pretty much an agonizing experience. I knew exactly what I wanted from day 1 (and clearly wouldn't accept anything else), but it still took me several weeks and many trips to the dealership to actually decide. I just started seeing the new Honda Civics driving around and knew I was in love. It was like an, "I want that one," situation. So basically, this is how my last visit to the dealership went down:
5:45- I arrive. I brought my two roommates (Lauren drove me there). We test drove the car one last time.
6:10- The salesman, Phil (my favorite car guy ever), paired my phone with the car and a song immediately started playing, BUT IT WASN'T SONG I HAD PICKED AS THE INAUGURAL SONG. Clearly this meant bad luck. Phil knew I was starting to panic.
6:20- we sat at the desk in the office while Phil ran my credit and I was panicking a lot. My roommates started to get a little pressurey-- and really, they were just trying to help.
6:25- I told the roommates to go home. They were making me mad.
6:27- roommates left me all alone. I was so glad.
6:28- I expressed doubt to Phil about the car I had chosen being the right one. I said, "do you have any more 2014 white civics that are better than mine?" (I was concerned that the car I had been driving had also been test driven by other people. there was a spot of mud inside the driver's side as proof. it had also been ruined by the song.)
6:28:10: Phil said he would check the other white one and come back and tell me which one was better.
6:30- After waiting with white knuckles, Phil confirmed that the other Civic that I had never driven was better because it only had 5 miles on it and had never been driven by anyone besides honda people from factory to dealership. No songs had ever been played in the car.
6:31- I accepted.
6:32- I went in to talk to the finance guy and sign the papers.
6:35- I had lots of questions. The finance man kept calling Phil because I was confused.
6:50- Phil finally came in to calm me down.
7:30- I am still sitting there, staring at the papers.
7:45- I made one initial.
7:50- I asked some more questions and started talking myself into it out loud.
8:00- I asked if I could see the car. Phil said, "of course."
8:02- I notice a miniscule mark in the honda logo on the back of my car. I panic. Phil said they would fix it.
8:10- sitting in the driver's seat, with the door open, and Phil crouching on the asphalt outside the door, talking me through it, I signed another spot on the paperwork.
8:20- keep in mind that I am still panicking a lot.
8:30- my phone is about to die. Phil offers to take it in to charge in his office.
8:45- after sitting alone in the car with no phone (the anxiety! and I wanted to call my mom!), I made another signature.
8:46- I made the last signature in a rush of not thinking.
8:55- Holding on to the papers (not ready to relinquish my signatures), I went in to get my phone.
8:56- I called my mom.
8:58- My mom told me I was being stupid.
9:00- I handed Phil the papers and almost puked.
9:05- He handed my the keys and explained all the booklets and stuff to me.
9:15- We got in the car, and Phil took my phone. He set up the song, making sure it was on pause, then paired my phone to the car.
9:25- I sat there for another while, catching my breath. Phil brought me a water. And some free movie tickets.
9:30- I drove away-- and headed straight to best buy to get a car charger. My phone was still on it's way out for the night, and I desperately needed to use the bluetooth in my NEW CAR!!! (PS I told the lady in Best Buy all about my new car and how Phil was probably the most patient individual in the world, and he was perfectly excited for me.)
Let me emphasize that after my roommates left, I was in Ogden, by myself, with a nearly dead phone, and no other way to get home besides the dang car I was supposed to by. And it still took me three hours to sign the papers. I would also like to say that I never had a euphoric, I did it!!! moment. I was sick about it for days. and days. Phil texted the next day and I was like, "do you feel better??" I did not. I told him I still wanted to puke. I think he felt bad. But I do really, really, really, love my car. And today, there are rules:

1. no food in the car unless packaged and in the trunk.
2. no pets.
3. no sweaty bodies. I have towels for you in the trunk.
4. no wet clothes. Again, the towels.
5. no other weird smells of any sort.
6. no slamming the doors.
7. water in a spill-proof water bottle is allowed.

My mom says, "just wait until you have kids."

But you know what? My car still smells new.

3. I went to St. George for the Mojo's graduation from Dixie High School. My proud mama has had 4 of her children graduate from that wonderful place. And the little mojo was a little Diamond D! The weekend included a lot of auntie and cousin time-- Judy and Nicole and Koa kept us company for sleepovers and hikes and delicious eats. It was one of those weekends that I didn't want to end.

4. ROOMMATE REUNION NO REGRETS 2014 took place in Charleston, South Carolina at the end of May, beginning of June. And it was a wonderful dream with 8 of my very favorite people and 2 babies.

Charleston is a place of.....I don't know, can I think of a word? It's so beautiful and unique and charming and there was like this charisma oozing out of the buildings downtown. Adventures of Charleston included:

  • lotsa late night chats with all girls or just with my Rachelle. The first night was spend reminiscing and giggling lots. And Rachelle announced that she was going to have another little girl! 
  • a really stormy trip to the beach that ended about 30 minutes after we got there. We had a mad dash back to the cars and then just sat there huffing and puffing.
  • A trip to Shem Creek for dinner, where we literally saw dolphins jumping between the docks. The BBQ was YUM.
  • a really, very stormy carriage tour through old town Charleston. We didn't hear much of what the tour guide was saying--we were too busy huddling closer together and screaming when the rain splashed and trying to protect the babies. I'm telling you, the streets were flooding. And most of us exited the carriage completely soaked through. See picture below.
  • We ate lunch in our wet clothes at this Mexican place a little bit out of town. It was a cold meal. Cold as in, our clothes were wet and the place was air conditioned.
  • meandering through the old slave markets--- there are open buildings downtown where vendors come and sell their wares-- like a craft fair or flea market or farmer's market. It was open but covered, so the rain wasn't too terrible at this point. We were able to walk around the city for a while afterward, and that was nice. The buildings are ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. I love old brick buildings all built and stacked together. love them. ALSO. at the market I wanted to buy this bracelet, but I didn't do it, and I still regret it. 
  • Did you know my phone stopped working??? Pretty sure it happened the afternoon that we ran from the beach. I took it to the Verizon store on our way home from dinner that night, and they said it was a known problem and I should take it to the Apple store and they would give me a new one. Luckily, there was an apple store downtown, right by our tour and the market! So, I went, and I got. a brand new iphone. It was spectacular and clean. I mean, now it's chipped worse that the one I protected for over a year, but sometimes you can't help it when you are half asleep in the morning and you accidentally throw your phone instead of turn off the alarm. Things happen.
  • We planned all our meals out ahead of time and did all the grocery shopping on the first day. We took turns cooking, and that made it so we ate REAL WELL the whole time, BUT we had gazillions of leftovers all the time, too. Haha and we probably spent more on food than was necessary. :) Highlights include the cafe rio style salads Rachelle and I worked over for several hours, the gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches Crystal made that have inspired me to create several different other gourmet sandwiches since coming home, and our traditional Southern meal from Lauren that included jambalaya and other yummies. YUM.
  • On Sunday we went to Church. and we took this lovely picture outside:
  • And then Rachelle and I (and no one else-- I will never know why no one else wanted to come...) went to FORT SUMTER. Location of the first skirmish in the Civil War. We rode the ferry out there and it was real, real windy. But the place was amazing. It was originally a really small pile of rocks and sand, but they built it up with giant granite slabs to protect Charleston Harbor, and then they built a fort on it! The current ruins of the fort are much smaller than it was originally-- but the slave-made brick was beautiful and haunting and historic. And there were still cannon balls imbedded in the walls. The walls were partially made of this mud/stone stuff that also had seashells. Imagine, a wall of seashell cement! Real cool. We walked around the island, just on the rocks, on the outside of the fort, and I felt kind of like some Southern Belle who didn't know how to manage and stone and the wind at the same time. 
  • Monday was for the most heavenly plantation. Boone Hall Plantation. The manor house wasn't too impressive because it wasn't original, but we took a wagon ride around the plantation and it was the most beautiful. There were orchards and lakes and marshes and forests and strawberry patches and grape vines and all sorts of little patches of heaven. Apparently just before the Civil War, the Boones knew that trouble was coming and that they might lose their slaves. So they planted the orchards and hoped to make their money from pecans. So, before our wagon ride we got some pecan ice cream from the little shop! The plantation also had some slave cabins-- and really, it made slavery seem more real to me than anything else before, and left me feeling quite somber. It was a lesson in humanity and how people really lived. Heartbreaking, really. 
  • Boone Hall Plantation and the Avenue of Oaks. Picture that scene in The Notebook where the car is driving down the road to Ali's house, and there are these beautiful oaks lining the dirt road for what seems like ages? Well, it. was. that. road. Those oaks. And they were breathtaking. I'm saying I could barely even handle the scenery at this place. Really, I wouldn't mind living in the South. It's so green and wonderful.
  • That afternoon we went to the beach on Sullivan's Island. I live for waves. No one is ever brave enough to go out as far as I like to... but that might just make me kind of a dummy. But the ocean doesn't scare me. I love how it makes me feel so small. Love it. And how you really have little control. And water just swings you around. ah waves. 
  • I hiked up to MY VERY FIRST LIGHTHOUSE with Kaitlin, Meghan, and baby Sarie. The sun went behind the lighthouse right when we got there, so it looks kind of like the Tower of Sauron in Mordor. But that makes it cooler, right? 
  • We had dinner at Poe's Tavern. Apparently Edgar Allen stayed on Sullivan's Island once or something. But it was all delicious and I got a burger with a fried egg on it. 
  • That last day together included some last minute giggling and sharing of stories and we all agreed that we must do this again some time soon. 
5. I saw THE SCRIPT IN CONCERT. And One Republic. And I have been waiting to see The Script for years, and they finally came to Utah, and PLAYED WITH MY FAVORITE BAND. It was exceptional. If you have never seen OneRepublic live, you definitely should. I will see them every time they come to town. You all know already how I love Ryan Tedder. And that Danny O'Donaghue from the Script came out into the audience and I freaked out a bit and started shoving people to try to get a picture. bad luck, though, this is what I got:

6. I did a couple hikes and went sailing.

7. I decided one day, sort of out of the blue, to go to the temple and receive my endowment. I talked to my bishop and stake president the same Sunday, called my mom and told her, and then drove to St. George the next Friday and went to the temple. And it was.... overwhelming. But I've never made a more important decision nor done a more important thing. And I am SO GLAD that I did it on my own timetable, when I knew it was what needed to be done, and not because I was getting married or going on a mission-- but precisely because I wanted to.

July and August to come!