Wednesday, September 18, 2013


IF you can keep your head when all about you 
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated, don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream - and not make dreams your master;
If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools: 

If you can make one heap of all your winnings 
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: 'Hold on!'

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings - nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And - which is more - you'll be a Man, my son!


Thursday, August 15, 2013

The Joy of Solitude

"One can be instructed in society, one is inspired only in solitude."


Lately I have been discussing introversion with a good friend. Is it a good thing? Is it a bad thing? Should we be more outgoing? Oddly enough, a day or so after talking about it, my other friend Torrie wrote a post about it. She summed up my feelings pretty well when she said:

"Some people can take in loads of new stimuli and seek out excitement and new people and new experiences and only be energized by it all.

Those people are extroverts.

Then you have the people who are more like me---we still crave new experiences and new people, but those novelties must be mixed with just the right amount of solo time, otherwise we get overwhelmed, stressed out, and even anxious.

We are the introverts of the world."

Those that know me know I LOVE adventure. Traveling to new and foreign places, jumping off cliffs, shooting down whitewater rapids, climbing tall rocks, trying exotic foods, just about anything that gets my adrenaline going really. However, after any grand adventure, there is just something to be said about coming back to the peace and quiet of home. Most of the time I prefer curling up to a good book rather than going out to a big party. I have a few really close friends, rather than a multitude of friends. And I find making the rounds at social functions making small talk to be exhausting. 

I'm not a loner. I wouldn't say I'm socially awkward. I'm just an introvert. I recharge and refuel by being alone. 

I used to think that was a bad thing. In high school, I took a drama class to be more outgoing. Then, that somehow turned into me competing at the regional drama competition. AND THEN somehow getting straight superiors and competing in the state competition. So, I can be an extrovert when it's needed, it's just not where I'm most comfortable. I would definitely say there was value to me deciding to sign up for that drama class. I learned a lot and did "come out of my shell" so to speak. It's good to expand your horizons and  get out of your comfort zone every so often. It's just that now I don't feel like I there is something inherently wrong with my love of solitude. I've accepted that I'm an introvert and there's nothing wrong with it. Yes, on occasion I do talk myself into going to parties when I'd rather just stay in my room. And to be honest, once I'm there I generally have a good time. But, I also let myself stay home and skip a party now and then too. And I don't worry about it. 

“I find it wholesome to be alone the greater part of the time. To be in company, even with the best, is soon wearisome and dissipating. I love to be alone. I never found the companion that was so companionable as solitude.”
Henry David Thoreau, Walden

One of my favorite things to do is go on a hike and find a tall spot with a good view and just sit and look at all of God's incredible creations. It's amazing what you can see and feel when you just take a moment to get away from it all and be still. Above are two pics I snapped in Alpine, WY. I went on a small walk and found a shady spot to sit. I watched that deer wander into the meadow and work her way toward me. I just sat stock-still and stayed quiet. She wandered past so close I could have reached out and touched her. I also snuck up on this little wood mouse taking a nap. No zoom used, I had my camera up just a couple inches from it. I've been able to see a multitude of wild beautiful animals through quiet observation.

Some of my most spiritual moments have been while surrounded by wilderness. Listening to the birds sing, basking in the soft sun on a bed of pine needles. The pungent smell of the pine wafting through the air. Breathtaking views all around. There's nothing quite like it. I'm forever grateful for the sweet blessing and joy of solitude.

Saturday, March 16, 2013


Kissin' a Grouper

Something is lurking in the water!

Racing on the slides at Atlantis

Arrrr Matey!!!

Proud of my photography skills on this one

Lovin' the sunshine

Jeff kiteboarding

Turtle-shark hybrid


Found a branch to attend

Beautiful place

Such an awesome trip. Awesome people, beautiful scenery, and lots of adventure!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Big Sky Weekend

We ate at Big Jud's in Ashton on our way to Big Sky. I don't think I've ever been so full in all my life!

Our snow cave collapsed on us as we were putting on the final touches.

Having a great time snowshoeing!
Perfect timing! Brandi about to get slammed by a giant snowball.
Tackling Brandi
Channeling my inner Super Woman

More Big Sky

Chillin' at Ousel Falls
Goofing off after seeing the falls
Digging out the snow cave

Ice Skating

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Tuesday Tell-All...Wednesday Edition

*Does anyone else out there have to work night shifts? That's what I get to do tonight and boy do I despise them! They throw off my eating and workout schedule. Plus, I always feel awful the next day. I'm totally a go to bed early, get up early kind of gal, so this stuff is rough. Here's to hoping seven am gets here quickly.

*Last weekend was my trip to Big Sky, Montana. We had a group of about 25 people and we rented a big cabin. Just like last year, it was a lot of fun! I'll have to do a separate post with some pictures.

*Some exciting news: my grandparents received their mission call and they are going to serve in the Atlanta, Georgia mission! They leave the second week of March. I am really excited for them. Although, I'm not gonna lie, I am going to miss my Grandma Geneal like crazy. I tend to escape to her house whenever I'm having a bad day. It's alright though, I can still write letters. The blessings will far outweigh any small inconvenience on my end.

*Every Thursday there is a small group of us that gets together and plays volleyball. Growing up I never really played. High school was filled with soccer, basketball, and track. Although the volleyball coach did try to recruit me several times. Soccer always won out though. That being said, I must say that I have found a new love in volleyball. It is a LOT of fun. I'm not the best, but I am a lot better than I used to be. The soccer player in me tends to come out still. I have been known to kick the ball across the net on several occasions. Good thing it's legal!

*My bike trainer came in the mail. I'm actually pretty excited to use it. Still can't believe I won it.

*I am at that point where I am really ready for winter to be over with. Unfortunately, winter in Idaho lasts until about April. One of these days I need to move somewhere warmer. In the mean time, thank goodness I have a tropical vacation planned. Only one more week!!

*So Valentines Day is coming up and Happy Valentines to me I will be headed for the Bahamas that very day. I never can decide if I'm a fan of this holiday. I certainly never have a significant other for the blessed event. I don't really believe in being a Negative Nancy either, so what I generally end up doing is sending flowers and writing ridiculous poems for my friends. Surprising others is one of my favorite things and it certainly brightens my day.

*It was my friend Jeremy's birthday yesterday. I generally don't like to brag, but the cheesecake I made turned out extra awesome. There were no cracks, the top was a perfect smooth beautiful cream color and I even put it in a professional looking cake box. Jeremy said it was the best cheesecake he has ever had. Brandi agreed. And I felt super special. Thank you mama for teaching me how to make a killer dessert!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Tuesday Tell-All

*Today began at 4:40 am for me. In order to get my workout in before work I have to be at the gym at 5:00. Get in a good hard workout and then go run the hallways of the hospital for 12.5 hours. This training on work days may be the death of me.

*I don't even wanna think about what it's gonna be like training during the times I have to do night shifts. Heaven help me...

*I made an awesome discovery today. It's the My Fitness app. Makes counting calories and achieving nutrition/weight loss goals so much easier. Yay for technology!

*For the life of me I can't figure out why Idaho Falls doesn't plow their dang roads. This has been bugging me all winter. It snowed 7 or 8 inches the other day. Cars were getting stuck on main busy roads. For reasons unfathomable to me, the snow removal system seems to be 'let the people with trucks drive on the roads to pack it down for the poor saps with cars.' It bothers me more than it should.

*I will now take the time to say I'm super grateful I have a truck.

*It's only 8:45, but I am totally going to bed. Physical and mental exhaustion have set in. Have a great night everyone.