Sunday, December 03, 2006

Here are the exciting highlights of my cousin Amber's wedding.
My Cousin's Wedding

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More highlights!

Friday, November 24, 2006

Dear Santa,

It's not like I'm assuming that people want to buy Christmas gifts for me. However, I thought I would make it easier by posting an online list to make everyone's job easier. And isn't that what the holidays are all about?

1. the Sims complete collection for Mac $49.95

2. The real kicker: Black 30Gb iPod $249.95

3. Gift certificate to anywhere

4. Disney's Cars on widescreen $16

5. Freaks & Geeks: The Complete Series $45.99

6. How I Met Your Mother, Season 1 < $30

7. Undeclared $45

Briana and I spent a fun filled Labor Day weekend in Portland. We visited the Chinese Gardens, Portland Zoo, and the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, where we took a tour of a working submarine. I love Portland!

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving!

Well, another Thanksgiving has come and gone. Here's a fun filled video of how I celebrated with my first graders.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Wow, so I haven't posted in a really long time. Duh. Well, for those of you who are interested, this is how it 's gone down:

* (8/28) I started teaching 4th grade. Rock on.
* (9/1-4) visited Biggy B in Portland
* (9/22) Um, there weren't 4th graders to warrant having five 4th grade classes. So being the newest teacher, I got put in the surplus pool. This was on Friday. I had three hours to move out of my classroom and into a portable trailer.
* (9/23) The next day was B&K's wedding, in Utah.
* (9/25) I took a job teaching 1st grade at the same school. It started Monday. Shortly thereafter, I realized that most 1st graders don't know how to read.
* (10/9-25) Most stressful month EVER!!!

So I decided that taking 10 credits while simultaneously teaching a new grade level was not only over-ambitious, but also quite stupid. As a teacher, I was looking forward to stable work hours, free weekends, and leisurely evenings. So far, this has not been the case.

I've also learned a cruel, cruel fact of the real world: the more money you make, the more taxes they take out.

On a somber note...
I'm really angry with D.P. I think this is one of the stages of grief. I never really had a chance to grieve or mourn, because I didn't hear from his mom until almost two months after he died. She found my number and contact information in his journal. There is still some speculation over whether or not it was a suicide or an accident. I think it was a suicide. For awhile, I was totally in denial, and I secretly wished that he faked his own death. I still don't believe that he's really gone. I hate this. Well, I've been through denial, and I'm currently angry. The last remaining stages are bargaining, depression, and finally acceptance. So that's what I've got to look forward to.

Wow, this was depressing. So, um, anyway, I'll leave you with some photos of my fourth grade classroom before I had to pack it up and move into a portable.

Monday, September 04, 2006

You are a

Social Moderate
(43% permissive)

and an...

Economic Liberal
(18% permissive)

You are best described as a:


Link: The Politics Test on OkCupid Free Online Dating
Also: The OkCupid Dating Persona Test

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

So lack of readership aside, I've been neglecting my blog for quite awhile now. Well, I started my new job, and it's been all right. Toss in some air conditioning, and it'd be freaking euphoria. I'm still setting up my classroom, and I want it to be decent looking soon, because Friday is "meet & greet" day for parents and kids to come meet their teachers. I have this sneaking suspicion that I may be surplused because our enrollment numbers aren't as high as we'd anticipated. I'm supposed to have 27-32 kids, and instead, I only have 22. The other fourth grade teachers have about 20 kids. So unless 30 or so fourth graders register before October, then I'd better pack my stuff and sit in the surplus pool.

See, the school district in which I work makes a big production about surplusing teachers when the school's actual enrollment is not as high as their projected enrollment. Who loses in this? THE TEACHERS. We have to pack up our entire classroom, likely during our personal time when we are not contracted and not geting paid.

In any case, I'm grateful to at least have a job. We signed up for medical benefits and everything earlier this week. There's something comforting in that.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Air conditioning is soooo important. This is a photo of my air conditioning motor.

I know what it looks like because my 75-year-old grandfather and I had to climb on the roof several times to try to repair it. My air conditioner broke a couple weeks ago, and my house instantly turned into a sauna. The carpet actually got hot to walk on, and my toothpaste melted into a thin, runny liquid. After a week-long hotel stay, and several trips to the roof, we somehow managed to fix it.


Today, our temperature topped out at 114 degrees. Is there no end in sight?

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Memories of the Illinois Nauvoo Mission, 2003

Sunday, May 28, 2006

After the first day at student teaching, I kept hearing Michael Bluth's voice in my head saying, "I've made a terrible mistake."

That first day just dragged on and on. My cooperating teacher cheerfully introduced me to her students, saying, "The is Ms. R... she will be with us every day for the rest of the year!" When she said " every day," I think I blacked out for a split second, hearing the unmistakable screams of panic ring in my ears.

As the weeks have gone on, however, it's been better and even become somewhat enjoyable. My cooperating teacher is AWESOME.

So basically my summer plans include working every day from 8am until 4pm without recieving any monetary compensation. Also, I will be working 20 hours a week for UNLV. But don't worry. I'm already planning next summer's leisurely three-month vacation, as well as all of the government holidays I'll surely enjoy as a public school teacher.

What are your summer plans?

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

So I was standing in line in the graduate college today, and in walked a girl who was dressed like a stripper.

I'm not one to judge. But everyone else in the office was shocked. She was literally wearing stripper clothes-- just like the young lady pictured above, only the outfit was denim, not pleather. You could see things that no one was meant to see. The males in the office were especially oogling her.

When she walked out the door, all of the men present made suggestive comments basically to the tune of "I want a piece of that."

I don't know what's sadder... first, that the young lady chooses to dress like a street walker, or second, that the men (who were strangers ranging in age from mid-20's to grey-haired 50+ years) joined in a degrading and offensive conversation about what they would like to "do" to her.

I'm not passing judgment, but why would someone choose to dress like that? This young lady must be intelligent- she was picking up a course overload form from the graduate college, which indicates that she is pursuing a postgraduate degree of some sort. I can think of a few reasons. Maybe she feels that dressing like an exotic dancer is the only way men will give her attention (and they did, btw). Maybe she doesn't respect herself enough to not dress like a whore in public. Perhaps she really is an exotic dancer and she's just on her way to work- it's just a uniform. After all, I've run many an errand at UNLV while wearing an RC Willey shirt...Or maybe she's just a gal who likes to stir things up a bit.

In any case, the male reaction was disappointing, offensive, and disgusting. It's enough to make me want to invest in a wardrobe of cargo pants and flannel shirts and apply for a job at Home Depot.

Friday, April 14, 2006

This is the final semester of coursework for my M.Ed. degree. This means that I have about fifty billion huge projects that are due, deadlines are approaching, and I have to get my car detailed because someone threw up in it last week. SICK.

At this point in the semester, I'm pretty much a mess, living on diet coke & credit cards, and going crazy. I literally spend all day either in class, studying, or working. Social time pretty much is at zero.

I am becoming a sad, pathetic exuse for a human being. So this blog entry celebrates my crush on fictional character, Jim Halpert.

Sad, I know.

((by the way, I feel like I should clarify that I did not make the above video. Some kid on myspace posted it.))

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Vacations can be a wonderful thing. After a stressful and illness filled semester, Tyree came up for Spring Break. And albeit I wasn't the one who was actually on vacation, Ty's visit provided a vacation from the responsibilities of daily life.

Last Thursday, we rented a car and visited Disneyland. It was so much fun! I proved to be quite a screamer on the Matterhorn. A lot of the rides, like Matterhorn and Big Thunder Railroad, were really herky-jerky, kind of like a really bad car accident. Tyree's willing suspension of disbelief rates at a big fat zero, and mine wavered at about five or six.

I think the best vacations don't necessarily have to be extravagant and expensive. In fact, expensive vacations are sometimes quite stressful. In my experiences, the most relaxing vacations have provided an escape of some sort. For example, this morning, my boss called me while I was on my way out the door (late) to tell me that work was cancelled today. So I had a morning off. It helped that it was also my birthday. So I spent the morning going to the gym and taking my mom out to breakfast. Expensive? no. Vacation? yes.


Sunday, March 12, 2006

Another weekend spent in bed, in varying stages of conciousness.
I probably won't be nominated for new teacher of the year. Why? Because everytime I spend more than three hours in the presence of elementary school children, I become perilously ill. Headaches, dizziness, coughing, occasionally coughing blood, runny nose, sore throat... the whole nine yards. I wonder how I'm going to make it through my first year of teaching when I can't even make it through a week without being incredibly sick, spending the entire weekend in bed.

Tomorrow I'll be buying "Airborne."

Saturday, February 25, 2006

I saw this film today. Thanks, Netflix.

Why did I order it? Because one of the people I respect and admire most in the world, Tim Irwin, a BYU professor who made a huge and lasting impact on the way I see the world, worked on this film. In fact, he was working on it at the same time that he was teaching our documentary production class. He would come to class all drained and tired, telling us bits and pieces about working on this "gnarly" film.

This film is about a woman, Celesta Davis, who, with a camera crew, confronted the man who molested her as a child. In the actual film, Celesta comes across as a major attention-seeker, and her intentions for making the movie are unclear. After listening to the directors' commentary, however, it is clear that her primary intention was to find peace for herself; she was seeking closure to a painful childhood.

What kills me is that her parents knew that this man was molesting their children... and didn't do anything about it. He was a longtime friend of Celesta's parents. The film implied that their families were in the same ward, and the parents had gone to college together.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Sooo, I'll quote my friend and yours, Mr. Conor Oberst. This is the applicable-song-of-the moment, well, not right now, but it was applicable last weekend. And unless something dramatic and wonderful happens concerning Mr. "D," this will be the last mention of him. Ever.

Left by the lamp, right next to the bed
On a cartoon cat pad I scratched with pen
"Everything is as it's always been,
This never happened"

"Don't take it too bad, it's nothing you did
It is just once something dies, you can't make it live
You're a beautiful boy, you're a sweet little kid
But I am a woman"

So I laid back down, wrapped myself up in the sheet
And I must have looked like a ghost 'cause something frightened me
And since then I've been so good at vanishing.

Now I do as I please, and I lie through my teeth
Someone might get hurt, but it won't be me
I should probably feel cheap, but I just feel free
And a little bit empty

No, it isn't so hard to get close to me
There will be no arguments, we'll always agree
And I'll try and be kind when I ask you to leave
We'll both take it easy

But if you stay too long inside my memory
I will trap you in a song tied to a melody
And I'll keep you there so you can't bother me

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Phoenix was awesome. Seriously. Beth and I volunteered for the Special Olympics, watched "Waiting for Guffman," visited the Mesa Temple, and spent some quality time with the Ferrins. I also spent time with Tyree, doing the things that have historically been key ingredients in our friendship: looking at Apple computers and their affiliated products, shopping for bathing suits, having an unplanned slumber party, and browsing in Pier One. I also got to meet Tyree's beautiful mom & siblings, as well as Bethany's brother, sister-in-law and roomates. All in all, it was a great trip.

And it took my mind of the painful fact that the relationship, or even any friendship, with "D" is slowly withering away. I really needed a break, a vacation of sorts from life in Las Vegas, and I desperately needed to spend some time with people who I care about/who care about me.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Soooo in case anyone's following my (lack of) love life, here's the update... "D" hasn't called for awhile. It's partly a relief and it's partly torture. Maybe he found my blog.

I'm going to visit Bethany tomorrow. I'm excited. Yay Phoenix!

Thursday, January 26, 2006

The following is an excerpt from an email I wrote to "D."

I was watching Sherman's March today, and I noticed something that I never thought about before... Mr. Ross McElwee actually makes mistakes, like, he forgets to turn the audio recorder on a lot, or sometimes there's JUST audio and no picture at all... and he ran out of film when he was interviewing Charlene and the squiggly lines (I don't know their technical name) run across the screen because he was at the end of the film roll.

And I don't know about you, but when I make mistakes like that, I don't really know how to fix them, to make it work, you know? I ususally just end up reshooting or scrapping it all.

But Mr. M does... Like when he ran out of film while Charlene was still talking, it was kind of beautiful. Also, he seems to be a naturalist, like, he doesn't care if the audio picks up the camera noises and stuff. And when he forgets the audio, he even says stuff like, "I forgot to turn on the audio here," so you just get the haunting soundless pictures with his dry narration... and there's something beautiful about it.

Anyway, I was thinking about this today... and about how life is natural and beautiful without all of the prescribed notions and pressures about what everything should mean and how we should behave/act/feel...

PS: Here are some favorite quotes from the movie:

“I spent the next few days with Cam and his friends. They seem to spend a lot of time collecting and trading plastic animals, like the kind you used get in cereal boxes, except larger. I never really understood what it was all about.”

“I’ve come to the end of my journey with no car, no money, and only one roll of film. What’s worse is that I don’t seem to have a real life anymore. My real life has fallen into the crack between myself and my film. I begin to feel paralyzed by these speculations, when suddenly, a news item on the radio snaps me out of my stupor: my old nemesis, Burt Reynolds, is back in
town... and I decided that this time, I have to find him and film him.”

“For a long time I’ve had this notion that love was possible, I mean, romantic love. You know, two people falling deeply in love with each other and somehow managing to stay together for more than two weeks.”

“Having two large empty beds is twice as depressing as having one large empty bed.”

I think I may have said some hurtful things to him recently, which I now realize were huge mistakes. But mistakes aren't meant to be erased from life. Mistakes are an essential and beautiful part of life. I just wish he would understand that.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Well, it appears that there is nothing wrong with "DP." We spoke on the phone last night while I was at Colleen's house. He is a great guy, but I just don't think I can do this any longer. He is so far away, and I can't get seriously involved because I feel like I still have a lot of living to do. Maybe that makes me a heartless person, or worse, maybe it makes me the one thing that Mormons fear and loathe the most: a woman with goals and aspirations outside of the home.

I'm not going to sit at home watching Oprah and baking cookies waiting for someone to knock on my door.

Does that make me a bad person? It's not like I didn't put forth effort to fulfill Mormon obligations... I went to freaking BYU for four years, I served a mission... I'm prepared. And it's not like I haven't dated... but the guys who are drawn to me usually have some major flaw, like homosexuality/child molesting/living-in-the-tundra that prevents anything romantically permanent.

The LDS church has addressed this, in short, by saying that women who are single should pursue an education and career in order to be self-sufficient. That's exactly what I'm doing. I have a B.F.A. with Honors from BYU. In August, I will have a M.Ed. And now I am studying for the LSAT. So why do I feel so bad?

I am partially frustrated because the majority of my friends are married and have children, and whether intentionally or unintentionally, they treat me like I'm somehow inferior, and that my plans mean nothing. "W" is a prime example.

The situation with "A" is more upsetting because I believe it was unintentional. I haven't seen her in several years and she invited me to her family's temple sealing. She is still one of my best friends from BYU and we talk almost daily. She asked me to be her temple escort.

So even though I am almost living completely off of student loans, I bought a round-trip plane ticket to Orlando, a non-refundable ticket, because that was all I could afford. I planned my trip with her on the phone while I purchased the ticket online. She was involved in every step of the planning. I had to replan my entire semester of graduate classes so I could get the time off.

And today she called to pretty much tell me not to come because her husband made plans with his friend and there wasn't room for me. I am upset because I feel like that was incredibly inconsiderate, especially considering my financial situation. Now I have a bizillion dollar credit on Southwest Air that I really don't think I'll be able to use. This is yet another example of me bending over backwards for someone and them not appreciating it.

And I'm just supposed to grin and bear it, and be understanding and even sympathetic (while completely screwed over) because, well golly, she is married and has more important committments to her husband and family.

I love how all of my married friends expect me to be completely flexible and understanding. Either intentionally or unintentionally, they don't respect me at all under the presumption that single people's lives and plans are somehow inferior and less important.

What gives?

Saturday, January 21, 2006

I am uncharacteristically lonely and depressed in Las Vegas right now. This sucks. I like "DP." I also realize that nothing lasting can ever come of this because he is five states away. And I sure as heck will never permanently go to the frozen tundra where he lives unless he makes some kind of committment. I am just so depressed about this, because you meet someone and totally click and have that magic connection, enjoying each other's company and conversation. But nothing ever comes of it. Ever. Why are these things so easy for other people?

I am a quality person: intelligent, educated, healthy, motivated. But it seems that LDS males seem to be primarily after blonde & tan girls under the age 21. And I am not one of those. I am so sick and tired of the shallow, callous nature of men.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

"W" is upset because she says I put her in an awkward situation. This is the situation:
1) She got pregnant.
2) I said I would throw a baby shower.
3) Her friend from church also threw her a baby shower. "W" did not invite us to the other baby shower.
4) I chose a date for our baby shower.
5) All of our friends bickered senselessly about the date for our baby shower, and sugested we have a "lunch" instead.
6) I planned a date for the "lunch."
7) Our friends decided that they didn't want to have ANY baby-related get-together, and instead would prefer to attend the other baby shower, essentially inviting themselves to a baby shower thrown by a complete stranger.
8) "W" is blaming me, and sent me a snippy email.
I see it this way: I went out of my way, and was willing to donate my time and my money. Our friends are crappy and refuse to commit to any kind of social engagement. So screw them. I'm done. I don't need any more shizzy friends.

It's funny how, almost ten years after high school, my friends from high school are still acting like... high school. I'm sure we are all mature adults in our real lives, but whenever we interact, all of those painful high school feelings come running back, as well as our archetypal high school roles. And in all reality, I have zero connection with these people.

Also, it frustrates me when people act all rude and condescending just because they are married and/or have children. And they often act like the lives of their single friends should revolve around their blissful married lives, you know, because they're married and that makes them so much more important.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

At church today, the bishop said, "Nice to see you back." And I thought to myself, "what the heck? I've been here every week." I realize that there are fifty billion people in that ward, half of which being transient, but that comment still struck me as kind of odd. Did he confuse me with someone else? Is he going to think I'm inactive when I go to my recommend renewal interview on Tuesday night? Nevermind that I have three callings. Never mind that there are at least fifteen other girls in the ward who look just like me.

Another question I have is this... if you are living almost entirely off of student loans, what exactly are you supposed to pay tithing on?

Also, on Wednesday night, a representative of the bishop's wife asked me if I wanted to fill in at ward "date night," because someone else cancelled and they needed another girl. I've been in that ward for over a year and have yet to be asked on a date by a ward member. I think that is directly related to A.) my lack of blondness, and B.) my being over the age of 21. Why waste my Thursday night with guys who don't want to date me/who I would never want do date? Hmmm... maybe I have a bad attitude.

Or maybe it's dignity. Or maybe pride. Or maybe because I really like "D." Geography sucks. So how do you go from "people who independently like eachother" to being a "couple"? Hmm??? I think one person has to go out on a ledge, take a risk, etc... And that person will never be me.

Here are the relationships I've screwed up because I never said anything:
1) S.H.
2) N.C.
3) K.L.
4) S.R.
5) K.G.
6) Br.Dl.

Speaking of dignity, I've noticed that a long-time friend constantly embarasses herself in front of guys. Seriously, she throws herself shamelessly at anyone wearing a suitcoat. She's a lot better than that, ie: she's beautiful, smart, motivated, etc... I just don't understand.

Friday, January 13, 2006

So I'm going to do some travelling while I'm young and able.

January 19-22: SLC/Provo... Sundance Film Festival w/ Ryan and Kev, visit BrD

Feb 2-5: Phoenix... visit with Bethany, Ty, and the Ferrins

Feb. 9-13: Orlando... Amie's sealing, DisneyWorld!!!

Feb. 16-19: SLC/Layton... Aunt D's missionary farewell, visit with Dean

March 13-19: New York City & Boston... w/ travel buddy Bethany, visit N.S., Sarah, my brother Kenny, and Joel

March 23-26: Ty is visiting from Arizona... we're going to see AvenueQ

And that's as far in advance as I've planned. I hope no one's stalking me.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

I know this is old and probably cliche, and not from a band that I particularly care for... but I think it deserves repeating.
"Please don't put your life in the hands
Of a rock & roll band
who'll throw it all away..."

That's all.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Ahem. I would like to thank the following people:

* Minda: I signed up on facebook. Now we can share our rockstar photos. =) I love you.
* Blair: for the support with the you-know-what online activities, as well as your anti-drum-sharing advice.
* Nolan: for having a rad bday party that I sadly could not attend
* Nathan: for going yarn shopping with me the other night
* Josh: for going out with my fam the other night
* Abby: just for being you. =)


I miss playing music with you guys. I watched one of our old videos the other day. It was from the Christmas Party at neighbor-Dave's house. We played all those Weezer covers and DaveyDaverson sang some high harmonies because Briana was at the Tori Amos concert. We also played "Sunshine Pig," "Vegeta," "Starfox," and "Smoke" (?). It was good to hear Minda's songs. This was also the show where we wore matching floral shirts from D.I., even Dave.

It was pretty funny because there was a definite time when you could tell we ran out of songs, and we just started pulling stuff out of who-knows-where, because they asked us to keep playing. We even played "LaBamba." =)

Sunday, January 01, 2006

A 2005 Retrospective:

Places of Employment:
* R.C. Willey (no longer employed there)
* Clark County School District
* University of Nevada, Las Vegas

* Irvine, CA (got a really expensive and much-needed haircut

* Provo/SLC/Syracuse, UT (a few times)
* Mission Viejo, CA

Concerts I attended:
* Bright Eyes
* Violent Femmes
* The Killers
* Chris Isaak
* Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons
* O.A.R.
* Howie Day
* Drew Danburry (twice)
* KC and the Sunshine Band

Dudes I dated and why we broke up:
* "B.R." : discovered he was the producer of homemade pornography which he would post online, AND that he was talking to underage girls online and meeting them for sexual encounters
* "P.L." : differences in values, i.e. different preferences regarding alcohol consumption & drug abuse
* "A.N." : major religious differences

Friends Who Got Married:
* Kelli
* DaveyDaverson
* Tiffany U.
* TerriAnne
* Vanessa
* Dana & T.F. (to each other, nonetheless!)
* Chris
* several mission sisters

Friends Who Visited Vegas:
* Ty & Mark (and others)
* Megan & Huns (twice!)
* Kevin & Ryan
* Kristine & Carrie
* Blair
* Dean
* Stephanie

Favorite Films that I Saw This Year:
* Saved!
* Elizabethtowne
* Supersize Me

Schools Where I Worked:
* Shadow Ridge HS (Art)+
* Cheyenne HS (English, Math, Library, Photography)+
* Las Vegas HS (English)
* Durango HS (Math)
* Spring Valley HS (Computers, Business)+
* Desert Pines HS (AP Biology)
* Johnson Middle School (Orchestra & Band)+
* Hayes Elementary (4th grade)
* Piggot Elementary (4th grade)
* Ruby Thomas (2nd grade)
* J.T. McWilliams (4th grade)+
+ multiple times