Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Olive Press

Before you proceed to read, please pause the music at the bottom of my blog, if you haven't already. You can then push play on the video at the end of this post, or wait til the end, or disregard it all together.

My roommate Kate brought me back an olive seed from Israel. Both she and Neisah asked Kara and I if we had any souvineer requests. Kara's was sand from the Dead Sea, mine was an olive seed.

Years ago I remember a special fireside held for, I think the youth in my ward. The part I most clearly remember was the telling of how olive oil was extracted back in ancient Israel. How the olives are placed in baskets, and then a huge weight applies so much pressure to the olives until finally the seed is extracted from the olives themselves and oil leaks out of the olives. The imagery here was then likened to the suffering of our Savior in the Garden of Gethsemane.

An article by Truman G. Madsen written in 1982 talks about this imagery,

"The garden on the mount is called Gethsemane. Geth or gat in Hebrew means “press.” Shemen means “oil.” This was the Garden of the olive press. Remnants of ancient olive presses near cisterns that preserved the costly oil can still be seen in upper Galilee and in Bethany.

As one stands in this Garden of the olive press—the setting for the Atonement—it is sobering to visualize the purgation of the olive and the intense, seemingly unending pressure which caused the precious oil to flow. Indeed, the symbolism of the place is inescapable."

I am grateful for the small token of the olive seed. I am so humbled by Christ's sacrafice, not just for all of mankind, but for me, individually. That my sins, my pains, my sicknesses, my heartaches, caused "even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit—and would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink—Nevertheless, glory be to the Father, and I partook and finished my preparations unto the children of men" (See D&C 19:18-19).

We all know that sometimes, oft times, this life is hard, the paths to follow unclear, the trials long, and sometimes we don't feel worthy, or good enough. We feel like we've failed so many times in so many ways. But then we must remember that at least one felt we were worth it, we were "bought with a price" (See 1 Cor. 6:19-20) as it were.

We are trusted to be on earth at this time, flaws and all. He love us, He gave Himself for us. If He and the Father felt we are worth it, then who are we to disagree? To live to beneath our potential? To give up? We are God's children, Jesus Christ is our brother, our Savior, our friend.

One of my all time favorite scriptures sums up what I'm trying to say,

"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me." (Galatians 2:20)

I love this song in any season.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Toot My Horn

I was just reading an article from Time Magazine about former Biggest Loser contestants gaining back weight.

One thing mentioned was that according to some study somewhere, "only a fifth of dieters with a history of obesity sustain a loss of 10% of their body weight for a year or more."

I lost roughly 29-30 percent of my body weight, an have kept it off for a year and a half now.

Huzzah for me!
August '05

December '08

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A Love Sabbatical

I quit.

They say "love" comes when you least expect it.

So I'm quitting.

I'm going to focus on other things, like the spiritual, the physical, school.

I was sick for a week and a half and didn't make it to the gym. But, I've been back a few times now, and even if I don't really see a difference in the mirror or on the scale, I feel different. I feel better and proactve.

Sometimes I feel so fat here in Provo, the land of skinny rail-thin women. It's hard to feel good about being sixty pounds lighter when you're still 20 pounds heavier than everyone around you. So, I watch The Biggest Loser. Those people are, shall we say, bigger than me! And when I see numbers like 347 pounds on their scale I feel a lot better about 144.8 pounds on my scale.

Anyway, so I quit love and the pursuit of it for awhile. Maybe I'll call it a sabbatical.

Oh, one funny quote from the Biggest Loser. Jillian was of course yelling at someone during a workout. This girl was on the treadmill saying she couldn't breathe or something, and this was Jillian's response, "When your lips turn blue, you pass out. But you're not gonna die." Oh, Jillian.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

President O

I'm going to try and give the man a chance. He's got a lot on his plate...but from his campaign, you'd think it was no sweat. Time will tell. Listened to his speech. I've heard him speek time and time again. I remember listening to his nomination speech in the car as I drove back to school in August. If I wasn't for the other guy I would've thought his speech was fine and dandy.

His inaugural speech left me wanting.... Besides the empty rhetoric, I thought his delivery was off. Kind of an anti-climatic moment after years of hyped campaigning. You should read the text...he says some very interesting things. But, one thing I did appreciate in the whole speech was this:

"We will not apologize for our way of life, nor will we waver in its defense, and for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you."

I'm watching and waiting Mr. O, watching and waiting....

Lunch with the Ladies

I had been sick for a few days, but finally, Monday, I felt markedly better. It was MLK Day, so none of us had school. Kate's sister, Anna, took this picture of my blonde the Olive Garden restroom. We are laughing because right at that moment three women walked in and must of thought we were very strange. It was good food, but way too much after 4 days of little eating.... Love my roommates, my friends!

Friday, January 16, 2009

My Favorite Things of the Week

Guess I'm in the mood to blog this evening. Anyway, I figure Oprah get's to have a show about her favorite things, the least I can do is post a blog. These nouns are some of my favorite all the time, but especially this week.

#5 Elvis....A girl in the apartment started singing "Love Me Tender" Thursday night ( she was in her bedroom, I was in our living room ). Now I can't stop listening to the King.
#4 I watched the breathtaking conclusion to the miniature killer....about 3 hours of CSI while sick on the couch. It was almost like a scary movie at times! My roommate Neisah had to leave once because she couldn't take the suspense.
#3 favorite herbal tea. Good for relaxing after a long day, good for breakfast, and good for a sore throat. "Sweet dreams" is my favorite. It blends mint and charmoille.

#2 I love Kate. We've clicked from the start. I really appreciate that she'll listen when I need her to. She's also very caring, and is quick to draw a bath, or offer her massage skills. Gotta love 'er!

#1 Finally, the steak that changed my life. The Outback's Teriyaki Marinated Sirloin. I got it done medium with steamed veggies and a sweet potatoe. Sooooooo goooood. Highly recommend it. I hadn't been to Outback since Grandpa took us there when Cam and Gaylinn got married. Only wish I could've afforded a bloomin' onion! Actually, this steak was under 15 bucks. It is 8 oz. and worth every penny! While I do love Kate, I had to put this at the top because it is new AND sensational. Kate's just old ;-)

Stressed, Sick, and Nervous

Hmmm....Here is my week recap.

Monday: Class and errands, plus HE (that's home evening, our stake doesn't want us to call it FHE anymore....not sure why). Only stayed for a song, prayer, thought and introductions. Went to the gym, got in a good workout, which has turned out to be my only one.

Tuesday: Full day of classes, plus Elder Holland came and spoke for Devotional. It was a really powerful talk. He talked about Lot's wife, and how when she looked back at Sodom she was disolved into a pillar of salt. He then went on to talk about not living in the past, forgiving others, and forgiving ourselves. I also was working frantically on magnets for the College Republicans social the next night. Then I met up with a bunch of people for dinner at the Outback Steakhouse. My old roommate Michelle was having a 23rd birthday gathering. It was good food (expensive little splurge though!), and good company. I then stayed up til 1am working on putting the magnets together. Kara was nice enough to help out.

The girls of North Downs #3, Michelle, Erin, and Me!

Wednesday: I had class in the morning. Then I went skiing up at Sundance for a few hours. Came back and had to get ready for the Winter Semester Opening Social for the CR's. We had 75 Little Ceasar's pizzas, t-shirt sales, music and mingling. It was a good gathering. I then came home and worked on my program application to get into the Print Journalism emphasis.

Thursday: Went to my morning class, came back feeling sicklish. I drank some herbal tea, did some homework and then went to my first afternoon class. I felt so sick I came home afterward. It got progressively worse from there. I had a fever, my head hurt, I was cold/hot, runny nose, sneezing, earaches, nausea. I couldn't really function, so I watched about 3 hours of CSI, Gilmore Girls, and Grey's anatomy. I took four advil and at around 10pm my fever finally broke. I then worked on my application with Kara for about 2 hours.

Friday: Slept til after nine. Didn't go to my morning class. Put finishing touches on my application. Ate a few a tortilla, and vanilla ice cream. Took a shower, and thought I was feeling pretty good. I went up to the school to print off my application and turn it it. I felt so terrible! I made it home and decided that I was never allowed to go outside again. I've just been achey all day. Don't really have a fever. Don't really have an appetite. Sneezy, runny nose. Headache. Luckily I'm not really nauseated, but I would never eat meat at this point in my illness. Now I've just been sitting/lying around. My dear roommate Kate is in massage therapy school and practice some foot relexes basically I got a foot massage. Thanks Kathryn! I have reading to do, but other than that, I think I will just settle in and watch What Not to Wear. Kara went down to southern Utah for the weekend to visit family, so I have my room to myself for a few days.

Anyway, there's the recap. I should know if I get in the Print App program by February 13th. Hopefully this little flu thing goes away soon so I can get back to the gym and to skiing.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

More Holiday Recap

This is at our "Cousin's Party." Michelle came with her beau; it was great to see her after so many years. Mom took these two together because she thought they looked like twins.
Me and the Gramps.

The fam

We (Me, Zoey, and Zoey's friend Hannah) went up to Anthony Lakes one day. This is Zoey "conquering the mountain."

It was a great day for skiing/snowboarding. Cold, tired girls.

Christmas in Retrospect

Good news! My computer is allowing me to move about some what normally, and upload pics! That means treats for you all!

Some pictures from our "roommate Christmas," before we all departed to our seperate ends of the earth.

Kate, sporting the scarf I gave her (courtesy of my mother's knitting skills), wearing on her hand the sock Kara gave her, and reading the book of Hebrew words that Neisah gave her

All of us (looking so good) with all our little treats

Morgan and I after wrapping presents for my fam

All my highschool gal pals (plus our friend Will) at a gathering I held. Some are getting married, some are graduating, some are going to exotic lands....I love 'em! This is the most people we've had together in a long time. It was great. Oops, I seemed to have forgotten to get Christmas Day pictures from off of Zoey's camera. My bad. Moving right along....

Morgan, Jordan, and I, the Sunday after he got back from his mission.

Friday, January 9, 2009

For all you complainers out there.

Okay, so, for everyone's information my computer is sick. It has a virus or something and it makes downloading/uploading pictures very difficult. Also, I'm having to work from the other account on my computer, not my own account. Thus, I have no access to already imported photos and music. I figured none of you would want to read a post without any pictures.

For whatever reason, when I push the "add image" button on blogger dashboard, it doesn't appear. So I can't give you any photos. I am sorry. Hopefully that'll change soon.

Had a delayed start of school this week, missing both Monday and Tuesday classes because of snow and road treachery. Wednesday I went to my first class "Family Finances" and had an hour orientation for my skiing class. Yesterday was a long day with three classes. I am taking "Writings of Isaiah" for my last religion course of college (at least the last one required to graduate), I also have "Marriage Prep" that day and Politcal Science 202: History of Western Political Philosphy. I am excited about that class because four members (including me) of the BYU College Republicans board are in that class. I also have an online .5 health course. I am only taking 12 credits, which makes for a more relaxed semester.

Currently I am working on my application to get into the Communications: Print Journalism emphasis. It is due next Friday, the 16th, and could use all the prayers I can get (that means you should pray for me). I also am going to be working on applications for internships this summer, and looking for a flexible job to help subsidize life.

I might have a date tonight, if boy gets off work at a decent hour. Just a late movie or something. Met him through Kara's friend Dan, who is also my friend.

Um, it's been sunny and beautiful here these last few days.

Oh, went to a matinee of "Bride Wars" with my roomies Kara and Kate today. Funny, cute, a girly movie, but I think one that guys could get a chuckle out of.

Okay, that's my update, now lay off me! ;-)