Sunday, November 9, 2014

10 things to be grateful for at home :)

Ok, well here's part 2 of gratitude... what I'm grateful for about my home in Bountiful with my wonderful family. You can read about my gratitude for school stuff here. I just think it's so important to realize the blessings we have in whatever situation or part of life we may be facing... there are things to be grateful for in every situation! :)

1. MY FAMILY. Obviously, this is a big one. How could I not be grateful for my family? They define my entire identity... they make me laugh and smile, cry and yell.. they make me sing (even if they typically wish I wouldn't... ;). My family members are the only people that I can get so upset with I want to scream, yet still love them forever and continue to be best friends. I can't really hold grudges with my family. I'm stuck with them forever... I might as well forgive them earlier on and make it altogether more pleasant ;) My family is so funny... I can sing in the loudest, most obnoxious voice possible, I can play my Christmas music all year (even if they turn it off :( ), I can get upset with them and they can get upset with me... but they still love me. Who else would do that? Not many... maybe no one else but my family. Yes, they're kind of forced to keep loving me ;) but... I'm so grateful that they do! They probably get really annoyed with me sometimes (just like I do them), but we just go on loving each other.

2. NOISE. I'll want to erase this one as soon as I go home again... but it's honestly one of the things I sometimes miss the most while here at school. Sometimes it is quiet, and that quiet sometimes gets lonely. When I'm home with my loud family I can do nothing yet still be entertained by everything else that's going on with everyone else. I realized my first day down here that being bored here wasn't like being bored at home. Here I discovered the true meaning of boredom... at home there is always something going on. Sometimes it's a pain... sometimes you wish you could get your siblings to all quiet down so you could finish your homework or a movie. But you start to miss it when it all disappears at once.

3. FOOD. I know I talked about cooking in my list of school things... but there are also many things I miss about the food at home. My mommy can't cook for me anymore :( And when your mother cooks as good as mine, it's definitely an adjustment learning for yourself how to match that excellence :) It's nice having independence and choosing what I want, but at the same time... leftovers get a little old. At home my family all eats so much that there are really leftovers... and if there are we often fight over who gets them. Here I might fight my siblings to get them to eat my leftovers... as good as a meal is it gets boring and significantly less enjoyable after a week ;) Also, when you go grocery shopping for a big family you can get lots of different things at the grocery store... all sorts of varieties of produce and other food. But for me at school I can only buy a couple different veggies at a time because if I get all the kinds I'd like they'll go bad before using them all ;/ . So yes, sometimes it's a blessing having siblings that eat all the food :)

4. BOUNTIFUL. I miss Bountiful in general... Ephraim is beautiful. I really mean it. I love the nature and the farmy-ness around here... but sometimes I really miss Bountiful. Ephraim is teeny tiny. Like REALLY teeny tiny... like 2 miles wide tiny... Sometimes I miss having access to the stores in Bountiful and those in Salt Lake and Centerville which are just minutes away. Ephraim really doesn't have a whole lot.. which is fine most of the time. It's just that sometimes I miss good ol' Bountiful :)

5. FRIENDS. I have the greatest friends. Everyone might say that... but really... my high school friends are probably the coolest people ever :) It's weird being here at Snow while my friends are scattered around... literally around the world. Some are on missions while others are scattered around to different colleges. Sometimes I miss the close proximity of these friends I've known forever. I'm grateful for the fun I can have with those friends still in Bountiful though when I come home. Quite a few are still living in Bountiful- going to school nearby or just working... and it's nice when I get to come home and see them. I honestly can't say how grateful I am for my friends... they are the greatest examples to me. In a way they're like an extension to my family... I love them so much :)

6. GIRLS NIGHTS. Girls nights are the greatest... and I'm reminded of this every time my mom tells me they're having one on a Friday night... without me. It's okay though... it makes me realize how much I should appreciate and enjoy those moments when I am home and get to take part in them. Girls nights used to be somewhat of a hindrance sometimes (like when I wanted to hang out with Carter instead ;). But now I realize how much I should value and be grateful for those times I get to spend with my mom and sisters. When I'm at school I realize how much fun it can be to make dinner and watch a chick flick with the girls :)

7. SLEEPOVERS. I mean with my siblings... Almost every night that I'm home for a weekend I'll do this... whether sleeping in Heidi's queen sized bed, or camping out on my floor with Hayden... I guess I realize that I want to spend as much time with them as I can while I'm home.. so I like sleepovers :)... (is that weird?) Thank heavens for roommates though! I really don't like sleeping in a room alone... :) I guess I'm afraid of the dark and monsters/evil spirits :)

8. FOREST. I'm so grateful for the beautiful forest that is my own backyard. I'm grateful for the hikes that are SO CLOSE. Like Elephant rock.. I could do that hike over and over again and still love it. I love the beauty that is so abundant at my house in Bountiful. IT IS AMAZING. Those trees are so beautiful... I mean, Ephraim has trees... but I don't have a beautiful mountain and forest in my own BACK YARD. That is unique to Bountiful and I absolutely LOVE it... so much :) And those hikes... I love the elephant rock hike so much as well... I wish I had time to do it every time I came home.

9. MOMMY. I am so grateful for my mother. I've already mentioned some of her wonderfulness... but really. She needs her own place on the list :) My mom is AMAZING. She is WONDERFUL. I don't know what I would do without her.. really. It's so nice when I can come home and just talk to her- even if all she can currently think or talk about is our trip to Europe ;) I love her so much though. She is the most selfless person... she does so much for me... and I realize this even more now that I'm at school. Life gets harder when you don't have your mommy to take care of you all the time.

10. EVERYTHING. There are too many things to just say one final thing. There is so much to be grateful for at home. I am grateful for a real fireplace.. (not a cardboard one.... but one that can have real fire in it! :). I'm grateful for my sisters' clothes... really though... it is so nice that I never have to pack to come home. I just live off of their things for a weekend :) I kind of miss the variety granted by their wardrobes :). I'm also grateful for the ability to drive a car... I don't have that at school. Although I'm just fine not driving... it's just nice being able to go places when I need to. The independence in that aspect is wonderful! I'm grateful for Carter... he'll either be embarrassed that I mentioned him or sad that he didn't get his own place on the list... so I guess my alternative is writing about him in this final point with other stuff :) but I have to recognize everything he does for me. He is AMAZING. Really :) He is so patient with all my craziness and occasional moodiness. He watches Frozen with me- way too much ;) , he gets me fishy crackers, wakes up early to make breakfast with me, and so much more. Really he does TONS. He is the person I cry with when I'm having a bad day and he's the person I laugh and be silly with. He is my best friend. I can't describe how patient he is with me and everything he sacrifices for me. Words can't tell all I wish I could say about that boy... :)

All in all, there are a lot of really great things about being in school. There are definitely the hard times when I miss my family, friends, and Bountiful in general... Sometimes it's hard for me because I don't totally know why I'm supposed to be at Snow- but for whatever reason that was I still feel strongly that I was prompted to come to Snow. I don't know why. There are some times when things at Snow frustrate me and I find myself comparing it to BYU where I would have gone... but there are definitely things that I do love about Snow, and reasons that I'm grateful to be here. In those hard times I just have to remember that I'm supposed to be here... for whatever reason that may be, and remember all the wonderful blessings I'm grateful to have here :)

10 things to be grateful for while here at Snow College :)

In this season of gratitude I thought it could be fitting to write about things both at school and at home which I am grateful for. It's interesting to me.... I'm usually counting down til the next weekend I can come home. At school I miss my crazy loud family and the fun (sometimes obnoxious) things they do, yet at the same time whenever I come home I almost immediately realize the things at my apartment that I've come to love and appreciate... I guess I just need to be grateful for both when I am there.... living in the moment of each. :) But anyways... here are just a few of the things I love about being at school, and some other things about being at home. I'll do them in two separate posts though since it will probably seem really long if they're paired together in one post... :)

1. COOKING. I love the experience I am getting with cooking meals and baking all sorts of lovely desserts. I feel like I'm learning so much about cooking, food, grocery shopping, budgeting... there's just lots to do and learn when it comes to taking care of my own stomach. Really though, sometimes it's really fun to make cooking creations all by myself. It's fun looking at all the amazing recipes on Pinterest (although sometimes I torture myself... like on fast Sundays ;) ) and then making them myself. It's fun to decide what is worth spending money on and what foods really aren't as necessary. I think I understand a lot better now why my mom says "no" when we want certain treats from the grocery store... It's not always about buying everything that sounds good... this is money we're talking about! Also, as I make my own meals here, I'm so so so grateful that my mom has taught me how to eat right. I mean not eating fast food, mac and cheese, or ramen noodle... instead she's taught us how to cook basically from the moment we could talk. (And she taught us to cook GOOD things too :)

2. ROOMMATES. Sometimes it can be really fun living with just a couple girls my age.... It's so different from living in my crazy loud family household... but that different can be very good. There are no smelly guys to clean up after, the apartment is pretty relaxed and peaceful- no bickering siblings :), and it smells so good here. Two of my roommates have Scentsy candle-y things, and they smell SO GOOD. Spicy pumpkin scent is probably the greatest thing I could ever come home through after a day of classes. That always makes me feel happy. We also get yummy smells coming from the kitchen quite often, too, so it's altogether quite lovely! I also love all the crafts we do together as roommates.... how many other roommates make cardboard fireplaces and Christmas trees during their spare time? Probably very few. We put spider webs up for, Halloween, pumpkins and leaves on the fireplace mantel for fall, and made beautiful fall wreaths to show our gratitude for each other :) We started listening to Christmas music in September together. This is WONDERFUL. It's very often that you don't have at least one scrooge who won't let you listen until December... one month is NOT enough time to celebrate Christmas... After all, we should celebrate Christ's birth all year long. So shouldn't we be able to listen to Christmas music all year long? Just a thought... :)

3. MUSIC. Talking about Christmas music made me think of this one. I can't say how nice it is that Andrew isn't always turning off my music. I love him to death, but sometimes when he does this it almost kills me to death... and he ALWAYS does this. We have very different taste in music... haha we have a "truce" playlist that has songs that we can both tolerate. But when I'm listening to a song that I really love that gets turned off for one of those "tolerable" songs, they get a lot less tolerable. So yes, it's sometimes REALLY nice to be able to listen to my own music whenever I want to. No one turns it off or turns it down (not that I play it loud anyway).. but yes, it's sooo nice :)

4. CLASSES. I love my classes! I love all that I am learning here at school. It really amazes me that I spend half the time in actual classes than I did in high school, yet my classes are so much more productive and I learn so much more. I feel like it's so much easier for me to internalize what I'm learning now than it ever was in high school. I'm actually remembering what I learn. I feel like much of the time in high school I only learned enough to do well on tests and assignments, but didn't really internalize much of it at all. But now I'm just soaking it all in really well. I feel like I'm actually learning for real.. which is very good! :)

5. WALKING. I'll probably want to erase this once it starts to snow... but for now I love walking around campus so much! I feel like I was able to appreciate so much more this year the beauty of the autumn leaves and the crisp yet still pleasant autumn air. Fall has moved way up on my list after the last few months here at Snow. It is usually very pleasant when I'm going to my classes, and sometimes I wish I had a hammock so I could just sit out there and enjoy :) (really though... when I come back to Snow, the most important thing is that I can hang a hammock wherever I live ;) Walking to my classes is giving me such a greater appreciation for the beauty of the season around me! In high school I only spent a few moments running from the building to my car... I rarely took the time to walk in paths between orange and yellow-leafed trees. I'm definitely grateful for the beauty that walking has brought to my eyes this semester :)

6. TIDINESS. I am so much more tidy here than I ever was at home. I just care more about my own space and making sure it's nice. Maybe it's just that I have a smaller amount of space to myself, so I want to ensure it's tidy, maybe it's because my mom isn't here to clean... but I always put my clothes away and make my bed. I do my dishes, clean counters, and sweep floors. Everything is cleaner. Sometimes my house gets a little CRAZY with all the naught, rambunctious children running around and making messes... Sometimes they do close to nothing to help out resulting in an overwhelming amount of work for my mom and those who do help. So, more often than not things are often quite messy.... (those naughty children!). Here it's nice though because everyone is expected to clean up after themselves. We do our own dishes, or help each other out equally :) One of us doesn't have to slave away to clean up after everyone else... and sometimes that can be VERY nice. This sort of drives me crazy when I go home on weekends ;) I can't wait til my siblings move out and learn to clean up after themselves... :)

7. PINTEREST. I'm not sure if I should be grateful for this or disgusted by it... but Pinterest has become a new best friend since I've been at school. Really. It's kind of sad, but it's also the truth. Yes I may spend a few hours more time here than might be healthy... but it's always to pin things for a good cause! I get the best recipes to cook... I think everything I've made here has been somewhat based on Pinterest. I've also gotten all sorts of ideas for my future home, crafts, gifts, and EVERYTHING else. I have an interesting relationship with Pinterest... part of me hates wasting so much time while the other says that I'm only finding ideas for all sorts of things in the future... futer planning is good, right? :) Besides, what else would I have to keep me sane when I'm bored after finishing homework if I didn't have Pinterest? Yes I may have tripled my pins since being here... but it's for a good cause? :) Think what you want. Pinterest is in some ways a blessing of being here at school (or a blessing for me here at school... not sure which).

8. CLOTHES. This one's a little ridiculous and maybe a little vain sounding... but I'm running out of things to say since I've kind of blended some things together. Basically, I just feel like being at school has encouraged and allowed me to develop my style and creativity and outfits more... I haven't bought any clothes here! But I've come up with quite a few outfits (which I find cute :) that I never thought of until now.. despite having these clothing items for a year or a few... I guess that's just something I'm proud of :) I'm getting more creative! So really I don't think it's that vain to be grateful for the way my clothing has improved since being at school... :)

9. INSTITUTE. First off, these really aren't in any order of how grateful I am for them... because Institute would probably be at the top of the list if that were the case. (I'm just writing them down as I think of them :) I am in Mission Prep.. and I LOVE IT. So much. It's interesting to me that I sometimes come out of that class feeling like I've had an intensely deep philosophical discussion... my mind is just bursting with thought... and it's after talking about the gospel. I guess that's kind of a testimony to me of the truth of these things.. because I think that feeling of intense and awesome knowledge could only come from studying truth.. :)

10. TEACHING. I can't believe I'm saying this, because I wanted to die when the bishop called me to teach the Preach My Gospel Sunday School class... because I felt so inadequate as a teacher (and still kind of do). Today was my first day teaching the class... I fasted in order to better have the spirit with me because I was TERRIFIED that it would go TERRIBLY. I was really so worried, because sometimes my voice gets really shaky and I turn really red.... and I hate it. But I taught and was really just fine! I felt calm and I think I was able to teach what the spirit wanted me to teach. I know I have lots of learning to come and I could definitely improve, but I think that as I continue to do my best and follow the spirit that will happen. I think this is really going to help me to prepare for my mission (teaching and familiarizing with PMG. It's a scary thing, and I feel inadequate being called to teach others... especially when some are RETURNED missionaries.. sometimes I feel like they should be the ones teaching. But I guess I just have faith that Heavenly Father knew this is what I needed... and I'm grateful for that for whatever reason it may be.

Read next: 10 things to be grateful for at home :)