Thursday, June 19, 2008

reflection

Why do we do the things we do? Why do I do the things I do? I have been puzzling over this recently. Why do I stay up doing pretty much nothing until 1:30 in the morning when I still have to do my cleaning for cleaning checks and pack for St. George before 8:45 tomorrow morning? Why do I say the things I say, do the things I do? Why is Facebook so tempting? Why do I say things I don't mean? Why.

As I've thought about this I realized that a lot of the reason why I do things is--unfortunately--for the sake of appearance. It's what's expected, it'll be weird if I don't, they think I should, I think I should, it would be the proper thing to do, no one does that, it's what all the others are doing, etc, etc, etc.

What if I did things because I wanted to do them and didn't worry about what other people thought? Scary. But liberating.

Do I dare?

The other day at the Scera Jordan and I rolled down the hill with a bunch of other kids during Intermission and I didn't care or worry about what the other people there were thinking. I'm convinced it's the start of something new. Bring it on.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

smile--even penguins can :)



tis the season

clapping, singing, cheering, dancing, name-tagging, escorting, milling, scripture-toting, flirting, shrieking, road-blocking, chocolate-milk-chugging, herding, annoying, e.f.y.

Patience is a virtue.


Friday, June 06, 2008

Sixty-four years ago today

Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force! You are about to embark upon a great crusade, toward which we have striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you. The hopes and prayers of liberty loving people everywhere march with you. In company with our brave Allies and brothers in arms on other fronts, you will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.

Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well equipped and battle hardened, he will fight savagely.

But this is the year 1944! Much has happened since the Nazi triumphs of 1940-41. The United Nations have inflicted upon the Germans great defeats, in open battle, man to man. Our air offensive has seriously reduced their strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the ground. Our home fronts have given us an overwhelming superiority in weapons and munitions of war, and placed at our disposal great reserves of trained fighting men. The tide has turned! The free men of the world are marching together to victory!

I have full confidence in your courage, devotion to duty and skill in battle. We will accept nothing less than full victory!

Good Luck! And let us all beseech the blessings of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking.

-President Dwight D. Eisenhower

Delivered to troops by radio the morning of June 6, 1944.

Listen to audio


President Eisenhower speaking to the 101st Airborne before they jump behind enemy lines on D-Day.

Paratroopers

Seaborne divisions approaching the Normandy coast of France.
One of the most famous pictures of the D-day invasion.


"The landing by regiments of the 1st and 29th Infantry divisions and Army Rangers on OMAHA Beach was even more difficult than expected. When the first wave landed at 6:30 a.m., the men found that naval gunfire and prelanding air bombardments had not softened German defenses or resistance. Along the 7,000 yards of Normandy shore German defenses were as close to that of an Atlantic Wall as any of the beaches. Enemy positions that looked down from bluffs as high as 170 feet, and water and beach obstacles strewn across the narrow strip of beach, stopped the assault at the water's edge for much of the morning of D-Day." keep reading

The Germans placed many obstacles on the beach and in the surrounding countryside intended to damage incoming boats or other naval vessels, as well as paratroopers.


So why is this success story such a big deal?

It was, literally, the beginning of the end.


It ended this.




American War Cemetery at Coleville. Just next to and above Omaha Beach, the beach with the most casualties (2,200). Probably my favorite place in France.




I love our veterans.





For more information about the D-day invasion, see Wikipedia or Brittanica
Frequently asked questions about the D-day invasion (submitted by the D-Day Museum in Portsmouth, France)
Pictures of the Timpview Band in France for the 60th commemoration of D-day

Thursday, June 05, 2008

I've been tagged. it's fun, okay?

Thanks, Ashley! Sorry it took me so long!

A. The rules of the game are posted at the beginning.
B. Each player answers the questions about themselves.
C. At the end of the game the player tags 5 people, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment letting them know they've been tagged and asking them to read your blog.

Where were you 10 years ago: Guatemala. Wow, I can't believe that was a DECADE ago. The whole family went down to teach piano lessons to the members there. Of course, I wasn't much help at all, being nine and all, but I remember it being fun to play soccer with the Guatemalan boys (when they weren't terrorizing me with "I love you, Susy!", that is), drinking Crush out of a sandwich bag, and holding our breath through that interminably long tunnel almost every single day.

Five things (that were) on my to-do list today:
1. Get up (done)
2. Ace my waltz test (results pending)
3. Start studying for my physics test tomorrow
4. Prove to Dr. Donaldson for the sixth time that, no, I am not pregnant. (done, don't worry) And fill out the iPledge questions so I can get another refill of acutane.
5. Go grocery shopping. I haven't been since May 19th. Heh heh.


Five snacks I enjoy
:
1. toast!
2. orange julius, smoothies, jambas
3. graham crackers and milk
4. a bowl of cereal regardless of the time of day
5. crantzels. Oh, I mean pretzels. Actually, I just eat these because I don't usually have any better things to snack on.
6. chocolate-covered raisins

What would I do if I were suddenly a billionaire: Buy IKEA and live in it for the rest of my life. You guys can come, too.

Four of my bad habits:
1. I have to check my email, everyone's blogs, Facebook, and maybe even post on my own blog before I can start my homework. Bad, I know.
2. I'm very goal-oriented but I procrastinate doing those goals until the last possible moment so the whole point of the goal is pretty much gone so I should just toss it and get on with my life but I can't so I end up going through the motions on a looooooot of originally well-intentioned aspirations.
That was a lot of abstract, ambiguous talking, so let me give you an example. Scriptures. I know they are good to read and I want to, but I usually "don't get to them" until I've done everything else I need to do in the day. Which means I usually read them around midnight or after. And I'm tired and don't get hardly anything out of them, but I can't NOT read them. Oh no. Never.
3. Hairballs
4. I don't usually eat a very healthy or well-balanced breakfast. Not because I don't want to, but because it seems like I always underestimate how much time things are going to take me and I end up running out the door shoving something very un-breakfasty in my mouth. (I will refrain from giving examples here.)
5. Whining occasionally
6. The tendency to freak out over small, insignificant problems


Five jobs that I have had
:
1. Band President
2. Jolly jump-up
3. Greeter
4. Self-appointed Wrist Nazi
5. Lover of the "I'm-really-really-tired-right-now-but-let's-keep-talking-anyway" attitude but enforcer of the "Okay-that-was-really-really-fun-and-I-want-to-keep-talking-but-I-MUST-sleep-so-
-g'night" attitude. Just ask Becca if you don't believe me.

Five things people don't know about me:
1. I really want to go to New Zealand some day.
2. I don't really care about politics. At all. And I know virtually nothing about the stock market, popular music, or how to change the oil in a car.
3. I have two dessert cravings right now: a banana split and a Brown Cow (thanks, Brick Oven). Yum.
4. Hard-core shoulder massages are some of my favorite things in the world.
5. I have this burning desire to take Abnormal Psychology before I graduate. And I will.
6. I wish wish wish I could be fluent in Spanish some day. Hopefully someday soon.
7. I have a mortal fear of parking garages. And of dark stairwells when I'm by myself. And of crane flies.
8. I think it would be so fun and really want to be an amazing cook someday. Someday when I have money to be able to buy all the ingredients, that is.
9. Sometimes I make ugly noises. You probably already knew that, though.
10. It would be really cool to beat a boy in racquetball someday. Oh, wait, I already did! HA!


5 people I'm tagging

1. Amanda
2. Katya
3. Kristen
4. Kim
5. Anyone else who reads this blog and so desires, consider yourself tagged!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

farewell


ring

thanks to Krista

brought to me all the way from Ecuador

the only ring I’ve ever worn for a significant amount of time

has gotten me more comments than any article of clothing I own

too big for any of my fingers but I wear it anyway

part of my outfit every day

cracked





So long.

the string that ties us all together

I think one of the things everyone in this world wants and needs is to be wanted and needed. This connection to people is absolutely essential for happiness and peace in life. I may be biased because I’m not a hermit and I’ve never met a hermit, but that’s what I believe. Based on my own experiences, the times when I have been the happiest are when I’ve felt connected to and invested in others. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why so many people today aren’t happy – we live in a survival-of-the-fittest society. I remember talking about it in American Heritage and AP History: the rags-to-riches thing is so unique and amazing about America, but has it ultimately come back to slap us in the face? The fact that we can do whatever we want and become whatever we want to be has caused me at times to forget about this important connection with others and focus primarily on myself. Which is one of the few reasons I don’t like college. It is so dang easy for it to become such a selfish time. I realized this last weekend as I was volunteering at the Special Olympics. I didn’t change anyone’s life or make a lasting impression on anyone or anything amazing like that. If anything, I made them hate sit-ups and all other physical exercise by recording how many sit-ups as they could in a minute. Actually, volunteering was more for me than for them. I remembered how I love serving and feeling like I’m contributing to something bigger and better than my own puny life. I remembered that college doesn’t have to become a selfish time. And I’m not going to let it be.

For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.
Matt. 16:25


Monday, June 02, 2008

What's In a Name?

(The author would like to extend a heartfelt thanks to Amanda for inspiring this blog.)


I've always prided myself on learning names and using them pretty much every time I see a person. Maybe it's because when I have a conversation with someone I've met recently (or even if I haven't) and they don't use my name, I wonder if they've forgotten it what with all the important things to remember these days. I certainly don't want people to think I've forgotten their name, so I make it a point to use theirs during the conversation or in passing. Then again, what's in a name, after all? Why does that give me validation? I'm not sure. But for now, I'll keep on memorizing and using names until I figure it out. It can't hurt, right? Well, it might take up more brain space that I could be using to memorize acoustical formulas and Spanish vocabulary, but whatev. I like it.

Yesterday I was completely and utterly put in my place with regard to this whole name thing. Let me explain. Becca, Jordan, and I were riding up to the family's when we passed a couple people on the sidewalk, out to enjoy the Sunday afternoon weather, I suppose. I glanced over as I rode past, and one of the people said, "Hi Suzy!" I did a double take (or as close to one as you can do on a bike without crashing), expecting to see a friend from high school or some other familiar face...but no. I had no clue who that guy was! Let alone know his name. So I did the dreaded of dreadeds--said a confused "Hello" and rode on.

The funny thing is that I've done that so many times to other people--hi + name--in passing, and cracked up as soon as I passed them, their shocked, surprised, and confused faces imprinted in my mind. It's kinda fun. To be on the laughing end, that is. I definitely do NOT like being on the shocked, surprised, and confused end. Which is why I am so perturbed at this moment.

Which reminds me. Who the heck was that guy? In my ward maybe? How about one of my classes, past or present? He looked kind of like a guy in my D&C class that I've never before spoken to, but how in the world did he know my name? (And I know for a fact I've never introduced myself to, let alone talked to, the D&C boy.) Did he work at Brick Oven? A friend of one of my siblings? No, no, no, no, and no.

After much pondering, I have realized that the answer to my perplexing dilemma is this: we're both just having déjà vu from the premortal. Of course! Why didn't I see it before.