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Jan 26, 2014

Gratitude Part 1

So I know many of us are tired of reading the overly zealous Facebook statuses about how so-and-so's spouse is just so amazing because they brought flowers home AGAIN or how so-and-so really can't get over the preciousness of the very earlobe of their newborn. 

But, I am not tired of those things. It makes me so happy to know that people are happy about the simple things in life. Once a dear friend of mine told me he liked spending time with me because I suck the joy out of life and another told me that he liked that I seemed to see the beauty in the smallest of things. That's a trait of mine that comes and goes and I would rather it come and stay. 

In a recent institute (basically Sunday School not on Sunday) lesson I was reminded that those who are grateful are happy.

And happy is something that I've kind of sucked at these past two weeks, so in honor of that I am going to tell you some things I am grateful for today and every Sunday and you, my dear (and so often neglected) audience are free to read or skip depending on the level of cynicism in your heart currently. I'll try and make them interesting or humorous or poetic because I know people like those things.


I am grateful for:

The Heart's Content - Brandi Carlile
any A Fine Frenzy song
I Choose You - Sara Bareilles 
Best Thing I Never Had / Halo / Listen - Beyonce 
Stay - Rihanna
Unconditionally / The One That Got Away / Love Me - Katy Perry
You Were Meant for Me - Jewel
Maybe Your Right - Miley Cyrus
You've Got the Love - Florence and the Machine
Lights - Ellie Glouding 

For being my jamz these days. 

Mostly I'm grateful for E. for teaching me it's okay to like girl music. I would still be listening to only The Get Up Kids and Saves the Day if it wasn't for her. (I still love those guys). 

I'm grateful for the love of pop music I developed post-mission because some of it isn't the worst. Sometimes it says the very things you need. And sometimes it's the worst.

Those people who held my hand (figuratively and physically) through last semester when I took on more than I could handle but also did things I was incredibly proud of. 

My dear sweet mother who I would like to be just like someday.

All the girls in all the Relief Society presidencies in my ward that have no idea I think they're absolutely brilliant.

The New Yorker I met in line who was standing close to me so I felt like I should talk to him.

-So are you a filmmaker?
-No. My wife and I just come for the festival every year. We watch most of the movies at the Sundance resort but we came here for three movies today. I don't know why people keep asking if I'm a filmmaker. Maybe because I don't know my way around. 
-It's probably the scarf.
-I'm from New York. I always wear a scarf. Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall.

Jennie Mangum Brown who remains faithful through her own trails as well as dragging me through mine. She is everything good and sassy and determined all in one. 
I could really go on and on, but I'll save some for next week.


Jan 24, 2014

New Years Rsolutoons*

I thought I picked resolutions that were really easy but I haven't managed to do them yet.

Happy January 24th.

*One thing I have been really good at this year is phone typos.

Dec 30, 2013

2013: Year in Review

This last semester was a bit of a hurricane, but as I thought back over the year I have decided that 2013 has really been one of the best. I am so blessed to have the beautiful, supportive people that I have in my life and I have really done some worthwhile things.

Here's the year. Buzzfeed style:

This was technically 2012, but we'll count it:

Di and I Hosted the Golden Globes:

I Wasn't an Actress:

But then I "was"

This all started:

I Watched a Few Movies:

I Took a Business Class:


This happened once or twice or more:

And We Were Also Obsessed With This Place:

I wrote one moderately successful blog post:
Vulnerabilities and Being Sexy

Valentine's Tradition Was Alive and Well:

That One Time I Got Free Stuff By Cleaning Out A Celebrity's Guest Home:

Cool Stuff Happened:
Became besties with these ones in 24 hours.

We Went to LA 


I worked for the library:

but was not a librarian.

I Was Still Writing...

Many of Our Favorites Came Back...In 3D:

I celebrated my 24th birthday in the best way I knew how:

I Ate My Birthday all Month Long:
And it almost killed us all. #eatyourbirthday

The World (or at the very least the film program) Fell in Love with This Girl:

And I Fell in Love with This Girl/Hero/Idol/omgshessocooliwanttobeher:

Weird Things Kept Happening at the Library:

This was still happening:

We Wrangled a Mob of High Schoolers to Make This:

4th of July Basically Looked Like This:

I Figured it All Out: 

This happened:

Everyone Got a Little Older:

(and I was the family photographer)

Weeping Premiered and I Got Teary-Eyed:

A LOT of this happened:

This, this, and this happened: 

and somehow they're all part of the same movie.

And somehow in the middle of it all, I met this knight in mint green menswear:

Which was lucky for me.

This One Visited Me at School:

I almost wrote a feature:
63 pages down...more to go.

Not pictured:
I saw a snowblower for the first time ever.
I was proposed to by no less than three Nigerian men.
Lots of weddings of close friends.
Roommate engagement, roommate engagement, roommate engagement.
I watched When Harry Met Sally at least three times.
I photographed women's conference.
Lots of impromptu raps/dance parties and puns.
and MUCH, MUCH, MORE. I had to stop somewhere.

Thank you to the many many people who shared this year with me. Here's to the next one! 

Jul 18, 2013

Life is Hard

Sometimes life is like when my friend tried to teach me how to drive stick...
or when someone 11 years younger than me tried to teach me how to dive...
or when my friend tried to teach me how to cartwheel.

You think, No. This thing you are trying to teach me to do is ACTUALLY impossible. I cannot do it. Or nothing in the world could actually be worth doing this. Why on earth would you be asking me to position my body head-first into something solid? 

Tuesday I went to kickboxing and tried to kick something at face-level. I was so determined to hit the pad that was being held up by this kid a foot shorter than me that I ended up flipping myself onto my back--really intimidating to the theoretical opponent.

But this is life, as people who barely know English sometimes say.

Sometimes it's good to throw yourself head-first into the water. Sometimes doing things that are hard are actually good for us (have you tried running for more than five minutes lately? Ugh, it's such the worst, but hurts so good).

But maybe it's also okay to accept that we can't kick someone in the face before we learn to kick them in the stomach. Baby steps.

My mom loves to say, "Life is hard, but you can do hard things." Sometimes I believe her. Sometimes I don't. But I actually think the very purpose of life is to do hard things and experience these mini triumphs.

Sometimes, you need someone to push you into the water. Or you need that handsome yet cynical kickboxing instructor to hold your hand (literally) so you don't fall over while you do a roundhouse kick. Or you need your film professor to tell you 26 drafts just isn't enough when it could be better.

Years ago a smart kid at BYU made a film called Butterflies which was about a kid who is a little shy. At one point he gets on a roller coaster and he says, "I don't want to do this!" but it's too late, because he's already on the thing and it's going up. I find myself often in that same position squeezing my eyes shut and saying to myself, "I don't want to do this!" about things that I know I have to finish whether I want to or not. Like when I had to go get shots or when I have to wake up at 7am.

But hard things are always worth. So go do something hard. If nothing else it's a thrill.

Jul 2, 2013

RomCom Scribblings 1

So I decided I need to just write stuff so that I'm writing stuff. So I happily present...RomCom Scribblings. A segment where I will free-write for 15 minutes or so and it'll probably sound like a RomCom. 

You might not know this about me, but I actually do that thing that girls do in movies/tv shows where I narrate my life and thoughts as if I was in a romantic comedy. Because life is a comedy for sure. So sometimes I play things out in my mind because they'd make interesting scenes in a movie or a tv show...Here we go. This is not based on a true story. Also it is an unedited free-write.

"What do you think about...us?"

Was I going to be honest? I should probably be honest. Honesty was this new things I decided I should vehemently believe in. Not that it seemed anyone else was into honesty these days--figures I would now be sitting across from a boy who was suddenly interested in openness. 

Deep breath. "Honestly, I want...I want to come over to your air-conditioned apartment and sit on the floor while you sit on the couch. I'll work on my musical and you'll study physics while we listen to Radiohead and Sufjan Stevens. Eventually I'll make my way to the couch and we can watch an episode of tv on Netflix and cuddle.  I've been told that my shoulders are kind of bony but otherwise I'm a great cuddler. We'll alternate what we watch because we probably don't agree on any show except Arrested Development and 30 Rock and we've already seen them all a million times.

We can go to parties together. You can drive, or I'll drive, it doesn't matter. You can take me out to dinner every once in a while. You'll think it's weird that I'm more into Indian and Thai places than steakhouses.

We'll just laugh and kind of shrug cutely when people ask if "we are a thing." We'll look great together at all the receptions I have to go to because you wear skinny ties and I'll wear high heels--it's so much easier to walk in heels when you have someone to link arms with. We will tell each of our friends and our parents different definitions of this relationship, whatever it is and when we ask each other we'll say "Yeah, I mean, we're kind of a thing, right? Who needs labels?"

Our first kiss will be highly unromantic. On a couch or in a car somewhere--it definitely won't be raining or on top of a mountain.

Mostly, I am here, sitting across from you right now because I miss having someone I can call 'Babe' which I acknowledge is sort of a cliche nickname, but also not at all if you think about how Johnny Cash uses it in one of his songs and who's more bad-A than Johnny Cash? I'll say no one.

I miss having someone who would bring me a sandwich because I notoriously forget my lunch and I get SO cranky when I'm hungry. I need someone taller than me to come over and help me fix a light bulb.

I know enough to pretend like I know a lot about the things you care about and you'll be really interested in my projects--until months later you realize I'm still working on the same thing and it all gets boring. You'll do little romantic gestures that I'll tell all my friends about, but forget to tell you how much it meant. I'll make you mixed tapes that you'll accidentally lose. You probably will forget to call when you say you will and I'll fall asleep mid-texting.

I'll force whatever the current pop song is to be applicable to our relationship and listen to it on repeat and put it on that mix tape you lost. Or you'll say, "I am so sick of this song" when it comes on the radio and I'll secretly feel hurt because there's so much symbolism there. You'll say I'm "the perfect height" when I'm wearing three-inch heels, which consequentially, will not make me feel perfect at all. I'll wish you dressed more like John Krasinski and smelled more like Giorgio Armani.

After a handful of weeks or months we'll mutually part ways acknowledging that we "kind of drive each other nuts" and "it's totally mutual." We'll have one last make-out, because that's what people on tv do. We'll tell our friends and parents different stories about what happened exactly and then we'll be cordial when we run into each other--probably at future wedding receptions where we'll both be arm-in-arm with someone else (probably a mutual friend).

See, I don't actually think this would work out--but I'm kind of interested in finding out why. I think it's worth a try even if I already know how it'll end."

Instead I said, "We should just be friends."

Jun 19, 2013

What is Love?

If you haven't picked up on this yet...I love love (I love being in love, I don't care what it does to me [1]).

I find myself watching and writing RomComs or writing a musical called Lovestruck. I have a playlist of 158 love songs (only my favorites). But I am also secretly cynical about what love really means.

I just spent a couple hours watching The Wedding Planner (while I did other things). And I'll tell you, I miss the days where every RomCom consisted of:

1. One person literally saving the other person's life because they are either: in a coma, about to get hit by a car, or about to get hit by a runaway garbage dumpster

2. A wedding (or two) called off at the altar. 

3. An Italian lover that comes out of nowhere. Or if the family is Greek a boy who is NOT Greek that comes out of nowhere.

4. The moment of PANIC when someone runs into an ex-lover that broke his/her heart and the consoling from the new lover that follows.

5. If you're lucky Hugh Grant, but if not there's always Matthew M. with a pager:

Of course he can't literally safe your life without it ending in a compromising pose. 

After having The Great Gatsby OST on repeat for the last month I have come to the conclusion that this song is the definition of love. You can hate on Lana Del Ray all you want, this is a good song. 

Real and true love is not for people in their 20s or in their 30s or in their 60s or for children. It's for people who are willing to love and be loved in all stages of their lives. It's about someone who doesn't care that your soul sometimes aches or that you have things you're trying to figure out. 

It's about someone who knows how to be child-like and enjoy the simple things in life. It's about changing seasons and changing circumstances and commitment enduring through all of those. It's also about someone who makes you want to party.

Young and Beautiful by Lana Del Rey on Grooveshark

I've seen the world
Done it all
Had my cake now
Diamonds, brilliant
In Bel Air now
Hot summer nights, mid July
When you and I were forever wild
The crazy days, city lights
The way you'd play with me like a child

Will you still love me
When I'm no longer young and beautiful?
Will you still love me
When I got nothing but my aching soul?
I know you will, I know you will
I know that you will
Will you still love me when I'm no longer beautiful?

I've seen the world, lit it up
As my stage now
Channeling angels in the new age now
Hot summer days, rock 'n' roll
The way you play for me at your show
And all the ways I got to know
Your pretty face and electric soul


Dear Lord, when I get to heaven
Please let me bring my man

When he comes tell me that you'll let him in
Father tell me if you can
Oh that grace, oh that body
Oh that face makes me wanna party
He's my sun, he makes me shine like diamonds


Will you still love me when I'm no longer beautiful?
Will you still love me when I'm not young and beautiful?

[1] The Format.
Inches And Falling by The Format on Grooveshark

Jun 14, 2013

Gasp! A guest post!

I did it! Someone thought I was good enough to write on their blog.

This is my response to some of the experiences I had at BYU's Women's Conference and thoughts on how vulnerabilities are what give us courage.

Check it out here.

Jun 13, 2013

SMASH, I miss you.

I'll admit it...I'm going through SMASH withdrawals. It was a perfect musical soap opera. A little self-indulgent but good at what being what it was. Amongst all the drama I also learned a lot about the world of musicals. I am sad that it got cancelled so I keep watching these highlights over and over and I will share them with you so you can know what you missed.

It started out about a group of people writing a musical about Marilyn Monroe but I loved it even more when they started working on a play Hit List. Here are some songs from that musical (roughly in the order they would be in in the actual play). If you're interested in the plot it is described here.


^Katherine McPhee's character sings this song in the actual musical, but I like this version.


Watching these makes me think, "I want to write a musical--oh wait."

We should petition for Hit List to be produced as an actual play! Some of this songs are brilliant.

*Special thanks to John McAvoy for uploading all these videos.

Jun 11, 2013

'Til Our Graduation Day!!

Once upon a time we decided to do a nice thing for the local highschoolers and we wrote some lyrics and filmed some stuff and Happy Graduation! to all you people who are graduating. It's true what they say, college is better.


Jun 1, 2013

wedding wedding wedding

sneak peek at the most beautiful wedding ever...i cannot wait to edit the video!

after she got married i gave her a big hug and said, "you beautiful tropical fish"
and of course she got that reference

they sang "hey ho" and i probably could've died from the magicalness of it all.