Sunday, November 24, 2013

Letter to My Students

One year. 180 days. 1260 hours. Twelve hundred sixty hours, I spend with sweaty, hormonal, extremely entertaining 14-year-olds. On the first day of school, this is what they are to me—just sweaty, hormonal, odd beings. Then, I teach them. I teach them for one year. 180 days. 1260 hours. I teach geography. I teach them about the world. I teach them about cultures, I teach about people. Nelson Mandella, Immaculee Ilbabagiza (A Rwandan refugee), Anne Frank, and other people who have made a difference in the worlds. They learn, but mostly, I learn. I learn of their struggles, their needs, their desires. I see them at their happiest as they make good choices and I see some darken as their lives are influenced by bad decisions of parents and friends. Throughout all this, I can’t share with them about me—my beliefs, what makes me happy, or where I turn when I am sad.

            I love them. This is what I, their teacher, mentor, and sort-of-friend, would tell them if I could.

1.     You are special. God loves you. He knows you. He wants you to be happy. Our Savior knows your pains and your heartache. He understands you.  Thomas S. Monson stated, “Only the Master knows the depth of our trials. He alone offers us peace in that time of adversity. He alone touches our tortured souls.” He loves you.
2.     I am happy when I live the teachings of Jesus Christ—loving all, serving all, living my standards. These make me my happiest. I think they will make you happy, too.
3.     Figure out what you believe and live it. Own it. It is empowering to believe something and to live it. Do it for you, not for someone else. When you figure it out, share it. If it makes you happy, you’ll be happiest when you share what you love.
4.     Be confident. There is power in loving yourself for who you are, for who God made you to be. Stand tall. People will notice you and they will respect you.
5.     Have hope. God trusts you to take control of your life. Regardless of your parents’ decisions or your past, have hope. You are strong. You are loved. Take confidence in your future.
Joshua 1:9 states, “Be strong and of a good courage, be not afraid. Neither be thou dismayed: For the Lord thy God shall lead the whitersoever thou goest.”

So, to my dear student, you are special, follow our Savior, live what you believe, be confident, and have hope. I love you. Your parents/guardians love you, but most importantly, the Savior loves you. I know it!

Monday, September 23, 2013

The last 6 months...again

Well, it's been another 6 months since I last posted! Here are some pictures to show what I've been up to! 
 I completed my internship at West Jordan High. I loved interning there because it allowed me to have my high school internship experience with students that I already knew because I taught them previously.
 We had a Saturday Comcast Cares day where we fixed up the school alot. It was really refreshing to see so many people come support the school.

 Devin and I ran (ok, walked because there are SO many people) in the Susan G. Komen Race for a Cure 5k. Again, it was powerful to see so many people involved and out for a good cause.
 I'm still dating this guy. It's been a long time! He's wonderful and treats me extremely well.

 We came home to his roommates doing this one night. The fish was still BREATHING. It was horrible.
 One night before school got out, we doubled with Christy and Sam where we rediscovered DONKEY KONG!!! It was heaven.
 We went to the Imagine Dragons concert. It was AWESOME! We had great seats AKA we stood up close the whole time.
 For a ward activity we hiked to the SLC Overlook. It was a beautiful hike.
 We went to a demolition derby. It was quite the experience! I love watching those kinds of things.
Oquirr Mountain temple after work.
 Marge got married! It was probably one of the happiest days of my life. She was just so happy and confident and I loved seeing that. She was beautiful!!

 It was fun to spend the night with her the evening before with Kristen and wake up with her that morning. We had some good times and relived some great memories.
 We went to the REAL game. We won.
 Devin and I had the brilliant idea to run to Target. We figured one of my roommates would be able to pick us up so we didn't have to carry all our groceries back. Well, none of them answered. We carried all sorts of groceries back in our sore hands for the whole 2 mile walk.
 We went to the Manti pageant and had some very interesting conversations!
 The guys at grad school would not allow the vending machines to steal their beloved dinner. It was hilarious.
 When my parents came to town we went to the Stadium of Fire with Kelly Clarkson. It was fun! She was awesome!
 Love my family.

 Bear Lake Reunion
 We saw Brooks there outside Minnetonka Cave. Devin was beside himself.
 I completed my internship at an elementary school over the summer. I learned some interesting new disciplinary tactics. I seriously loved elementary school. Who knew?!
 The cousins for old time sake.
 We went to country explosion to hear Scotty McCreary and Augustana. We weren't overly impressed but it was fun to be outside and enjoy the crowd!
 I spilled my favorite Ben and Jerry's chocolate on my shirt and was so sad to learn that not only did I miss eating the chocolate, but I hugged Courtney and spread the problem!
 Bees Game before Courtlin left for her mission!
 I made this sweet summer wreath!
 Devin is the best roommate-boyfriend ever. He bought these for Courtlin's last night.
 We went to the Eclipse concert. I love them. Thanks, Anne! We loved it!

 We got to eat dinner with these gems. My favorite is that Jake was eating through his football helmet. Hilarious.
 Oh, Jordan. We just love you.
 Jeni got married. The reception was beautiful! So many memories with this crowd!
 We did this SLC scavenger hunt. It was AWESOME. We had to wear orange. Can you tell?
 Sister Cannon taught us how to make homemade salsa.
 It was fun watching Devin and Courtlin's kickball games all summer. Devin is the home run king.
 Just ran into this dear prancing around campus. NBD.
 Golfing during the Bear Lake Ward activity!

 Sporting the onesies--until it got so hot I thought I would die.

 Jared's 30th birthday party
 Beating Devin at ultimate tubing...
 Day with mom :)
 Unique adventures at the Capitol.

 Cleaning the Draper Temple
 Bees game with the parents (and a treat before at City Creek)
 Turns out this skirt is NOT too I thought it was for about 8 years and didn't wear it...
 First date night we have had in a LONG time.

 Baking makes things darker.
 Day 1 of no treats = birthday celebration at an ice cream shop.
 Devin brought me flowers and NIcole made me the best little lunch.
 Peach Days outside the Brigham City temple
 Devin and grandma bonding
 Phase 10 :)

 Spending time with these lovelies from years past!
 Lots of work to do!!!
Classic Skating!!!!