High Five for SEPTEMBER!

It's crazy how fast September has gone by - tomorrow is the first day of October!


My TOP FIVE from September have been:
#1) Running! I've gotten to run in a couple races. Unfortunately, I missed the Color Me Rad run when it came into town, but I've enjoyed the ones I did get to run!
#2) I love pregnant people...especially when they're related to me!
#3) Heavenly Father has been able to help me make some changes in my life that were definitely necessary.
#4) We got all the way down to the 90s - that's sweater weather in these parts! It's supposed to get back into the 100s this week, but I'm ignoring that...
#5) I have really awesome friends, and they make me happy. This is true all of the time, but I've been feeling it a lot lately.

As much as I have loved September, I've also spent pretty much the whole month looking forward to October. I've got something big coming tomorrow...something that's been a long time in the making, and I'm way super excited about it! You'll get to hear all about it tomorrow...and for a long time after that, too, I imagine.

I'm grateful for an amazing September, and I can't wait for an even better October to start!


Fall Wears Wish-List


If my closet really looked like this...I'm pretty sure I would die of bliss.
I'm 96%  sure I can thrift/refashion about half of the list, but I'd better start saving for the rest. I can't wait until it's actually cold enough to wear this stuff!

What are your fall staples/wants?


Je N'aime Pas ....


I took Latin my Freshman and Sophomore years of high school. That was the extent of my experience in foreign languages (besides dabbling in Gaelic), and I thought it was easy. Besides all of the ridiculous conjugations and declensions there were to memorize, it really wasn't that bad. I got this impression that I was really good at languages, and that I loved learning them. 

Now I'm taking French. 

Oh, dearie me. 

I'd really like to blame how hard this is for me on my professor. 
I'd like to say that I can't pronounce anything because he's got a Russian accent...but really, he speaks French pretty flawlessly.
I'd like to say that he's not preparing us to speak French, or to pass the tests...but honestly, I should be reading the text book more.
I'd like to blame it on the fact that the class meets at 7:45 am...but that's not actually that early. I've taken earlier classes and been just fine.
I'd like to blame it on the fact that none of the times for the University tutors are convenient for me...but they're not that inconvenient. I could make it if I tried hard enough.

Bottom line is, I need to step it up a bit. Right now is probably not the best time for me to be deciding this, considering the fact that the test is only a day away, but better late than never, right?

A tout a l'heure!





I am so excited for fall, guys! Have you seen my fall Pinterest board? Yesterday was the first official day, and even though we won't actually be getting fall-like weather for at least another month, it's a start. And I think we've been out of the triple digits for an entire week! I'm working on a Autumn Bucket List, which should be - there's so much I want to do this year.

Oh- I have a quote!

That's my goal for this week - to work on controlling my thoughts, to get more joy out of life!
Here's to an amazing week!


High Five for FRIDAY!

#1) New shooooes! I had my new running shoes just sitting out in my room after I bought them, just so they could make me happy all over again when I saw them!

#2) I'm running another race today! Hopefully it'll be better than last week...

#3) I was sick , but now I'm not!

#4) I'm thankful for people who push me even when I don't.

#5) It was Stake Conference last Sunday - the speakers were great!

*sorry - pictures are coming soon, I promise!!


Dear Boys,

Dear Boys in General,

Last time, I was sick of you guys. Now I'm just sick.


Dear Duck,

You make me smile. You can keep doing that for as long as you want:)


Dear Tom,

Please go away. It's not that there's anything wrong with you, it's just...you're...you.


My dearest Spaniard,

You're getting replaced...how many times do I have to tell you to move here already?

La Senorita

Dear Hobbit,

You're cute. In, like, the sweet little kid kind of way. Which is definitely still a compliment!


Dear Cool Guy,

I'm not that young! At least you're trying to make up for somehow never noticing me before.

Not a Frosh


ME, MYSELF & I ... numero deux

1) When you're feeling down, what do you do to pick yourself up?
I clean. If I feel stressed or down in the dumps, the first thing I do is make, or remake, my bed, then I move on to the rest of my room. Once I refolded everything in the linen closet. It's kind of symbolic...cleaning up my space cleans out my mind.
A good book always helps, too. I usually turn to The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.

2)  If you had to live in a different time period which would you prefer?
The 40s! To be honest, I don't know much about that decade, but seeing pictures from then make me love it! I know I love the style, the music, the dancing...it's like a dream!

3)  What is the most creative Halloween costume you've ever worn?
One year, I was my dad for Halloween. I dressed up in his work uniform. Really, I haven't been too creative in the past. But his year, I have plans to be Rosie the Riveter!
{NOTE: I swear I hadn't read Shane's post before I wrote that! It's just a crazy coincidence!}

4)  Five weird things about you we wouldn't know without being told?
Let's see...
1. I am afraid of dogs. Like, deathly afraid. It's pretty ridiculous, actually.
2. The smell of citrus cleaner makes me nauseous. I can't even walk in the bathrooms at my Target anymore!
3.  I've been a Polynesian dancer
4. I'm painfully shy...until you get to know me. Then you wonder who that girl you first met was.
5. Every time I drink soda, I have insane burping fits. I guess my body can't handle carbonation. It's kind of embarrassing:)

5)  What would you tell your 16-year-old self?
Heavenly Father is the only one you need to impress - not any boy, or girl, or teacher, or college, or leader, or any one else. And you know all those things you didn't do because you didn't want to go out of your comfort zone? DO THEM. I promise you, you won't regret it.


You Know Those Super-Crazy Life-Changing Moments?


Those moments where you know you are totally okay with Heavenly Father taking you and turning you into whatever person He always intended you to be, no matter how far out of your comfort zone it is and how hard you have to work to get there?

Those moments when you forgive everyone who you've been holding things against because you realize how little any of it matters in the eternal scheme of things?

Those moments when you're willing to do anything it takes to have the light of Christ with you so strong that it pretty much lights up whatever room you're in?

Those moments when you love the entire world and everything and everyone in it?

I wish those could last forever. I had one of those last Sunday, and is was warm and fuzzy and soft and sweet and I wanted to cry and sing and never be the same!

The feeling only lasted a few days, but I've been able to make changes in myself since then, and I've gone out of my comfort zone for the better so many times this week! This is just another example of what I'm constantly being reminded of lately - the power of me. If I make a choice and have Heavenly Father backing me up on it, I can really accomplish anything.

This Autumn is definitely going to be a season of many changes, and I can't wait!

Have a fabulous weekend!

Covered in Grace


Keep On Running, Running, Running...


Today was my first race of the season! I didn't do particularly well (just as well as I had prepared to do...), but now I've got something to base my goals off of.


I now know that I really need to start running with someone who will motivate me to push myself harder. I'm not too good at doing that on my own.

I also know that I've gotten better at being positive! I usually get down on myself really easily, but today I just enjoyed myself for most of the race.

Now that I know what I need to improve on, I think I can expect to do much better at the race next Friday - just as long as I work to earn it!


There Are No Words


To be honest, I don't remember much. The one thing I really remember is that there was this song by Enya that they played during montages of the tragedy, and that song ("Only Time") made me cry every time I heard it for years afterward.

I may not remember, but I can never forget, and I will never stop being grateful for this country.


I Chose...and It Happened!


So I woke up today, and I was like, "Hey - I'm going to have a great day today!"

And guess what?

I did! Choosing joy has such a huge impact on everything - and letting Christ light up my life makes that possible.



On a side note, I'm on this "spiritual detox" right now, and it's doing wonders for me. It goes like this:

+ pretty much no popular music. Not that all popular music's bad or anything, it's just that I know that the Spirit is much better able to communicate with me when I don't have lyrics of popular songs running through my head all day. I do still listen to music, it's just more church-y stuff.

+every morning, right when I wake up, I do a Vinyasa. Yoga is really soothing for me, and a great way to start off my day.

+after that, I read from the New Testament.

+right when I get home from classes, I read from the Book of Mormon.

I've been doing this ever since this post last week. I guess it's my version of that vacation in the middle of nowhere that I wanted. 

Have you ever realized that you just really need to get back to basics? How did you do it?


Beware of Pride...

I printed this talk by Ezra Taft Benson off a while ago, and it's just been sitting in my room . I finally picked it up and read it the other day, and what a slap in the face! I hadn't ever really thought of myself as prideful, but it turns out I was crazy wrong ... especially in light of a certain issue that has come up.

[A] major portion of this very prevalent sin of pride is enmity toward our fellowmen. We are tempted daily to elevate ourselves above others and diminish them.
The proud make every man their adversary by pitting their intellects, opinions, works, wealth, talents, or any other worldly measuring device against others. In the words of C. S. Lewis: 'Pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man. ...It is the comparison that makes you proud: the pleasure of being above the rest. Once the element of competition has gone, pride has gone.'
Pride is a sin that can readily be seen in others but is rarely admitted in ourselves. Most of us consider pride to be a sin of those on the top, such as the rich and the learned, looking down at the rest of us. There is, however, a far more common ailment among us - and that is pride from the bottom looking up. It is manifest in so many ways, such as faultfinding, gossiping, backbiting, murmuring, living beyond our means, envying, coveting, withholding gratitude and praise that might lift another, and being unforgiving and jealous.

The proud depend upon the world to tell them whether they have value or not. Their self-esteem is determined by where they are judges to be on the ladders of worldly success. They feel worthwhile as individuals if the numbers beneath them in achievement, talent, beauty, or intellect are large enough. Pride is ugly. It says, 'If you succeed, I am a failure.'
If we love God, do His will, and fear his judgment more than men's, we will have self-esteem.

Pride is a damning sin in the truest sense of that word. It limits or stops progression. The proud are not easily taught. They won't change their minds to accept truths, because to do so implies they have been wrong.


I'm going to have to work hard to change this attitude of mine. Lately, I've been discovering new imperfections every day ... which is a good thing, I guess. It is something I prayed for, I just didn't realize how well it would work!

Let's make this a wonderful week!

Read the rest of the talk here.


Two Truths and A Lie Reveal

Question #9 from this post was two truths and a lie...and now I'll tell you which was which!

1. I've only visited two other states - TRUE
I'm not a big traveler - I'm still discovering most of my own state! When I was 18 months old, I visited Oregon. Then when I was in seventh grade, my family got to go to Maryland/D.C. to participate in a government health study because my little sister has this rare disease. That, folks, is the extent of my traveling outside of California - and really, Oregon hardly counts since I have no memories from it!

2. I've never tasted coffee - FALSE
It's against my religion to drink coffee, but I swear it was an accident! In middle school, I went with two of my friends to a little coffee shop to get something to drink. I ordered a vanilla bean frappuccino (you know, the one without caffeine) and one of my friends (also a Mormon) ordered a chocolate frappuccino. She took a couple sips, and said "Hey, Niamh, this tastes funny. Try it!" I did, and I'd never tasted coffee before then, but the taste is close enough to the smell that I could tell what it was. And, to be honest, I was not impressed. I have no intention of ever trying coffee again! {sorry, Em:)}

3. I'm deathly allergic to rabbits - TRUE
So "deathly" is probably a bit of an over-exaggeration, but you should have seen me the last time I came in contact with a rabbit! Everything was itchy and bumpy and red...and I didn't think about how I should probably wash my hands before touching my eyes, so I was rubbing them, and I kid you not, my eyeballs were swollen. Like, not the skin around them, but the eyeballs themselves. They had actually swollen around the edges of my contact lenses, and when I took the lenses out, they left a dent. In my eyeball. It was nasty.

Now that you know more about me than you ever wanted to...have a great weekend!

linking up with covered in grace!


Dear Boys,

Dear Boys in General,

I'm sick of you all.


Dear Duck,

We all know you're totally leading me on. And, regardless of how happy it makes me (how you do it, not the leading on part), it's not cool!


Dear D,

I don't like you anymore. Or approve.


Dear Spaniard,

There's a house in my neighborhood for sale. Move here and be wonderful.

La Senorita

My dearest Stripling Warrior,

Can we just get married now?

All my love and then some,
Your Virtuous Woman ... in training


I Don't Even Know...

....and that's why I need to learn to just turn things over to God. Some things, I can't control, and that's okay. What's not okay is holding on to them and letting it eat me up. I do that a lot - constantly wondering If I had done such-and-such differently, would it have turned out better? Could I have done anything? Why is this happening???!


 I'm kinda just feeling guilty about life in general right now. And to make things even better, I started my homework without reading my scriptures. Blech. I'm going to go do it right now, so I won't just be half-reading it while I'm pretty much asleep, but still.

I need a vacation. Like, one of those spiritual ones, where you go to some cabin in the wilderness with nothing but food, your scriptures, and a yoga mat. That seriously sounds fabulous right now.


Look at that picture...If God can make something as magnificent as that, He can help me through anything and everything, if I let him. I've just got to let him!

This week is going to be great, guys. It's a wonderful world, and we have a wonderful Father. 

Hello, Fall!


Technically, fall starts this month! In my neck of the woods, it won't actually get fall-y outside until mid-October, but here's my "Good-bye Summer, Hello Fall!" post anyway!


I'm missing...

+ my John Frieda shampoo. This doesn't have anything in particular to do with summer, but my poor hairs weep!
+ swimming
+ when I had time to read books for fun
+ when I had more free time than I knew what to do with
+ sleeping in until 7 a.m.
+ day trips

I'm not missing...

+ that 100+ degree weather we were having...even though it's supposed to come back this week
+ sweating through every outfit the second I stepped out the door
+ wasting my free time


I can't wait for...

+ the leaves to change color!
+ wearing boots and long socks
+ breaking out my pea coat
+ rain! thunderstorms!
+ hot chocolate on chilly mornings
+ curling up with a book and a blanket (I will make time!)

Fall can't get here soon enough!




Excuse the messed up blog. I was messing around...and now I'm too lazy to fix it. I'll take care of it later.

My apologies,




I've only been in school for a couple weeks now, but I feel like I've already got my priorities mixed up.
Last year, I would come home and have scripture study before I did anything else. This year, I barely get a chapter in before I collapse in bed.
That's not how it's supposed to be, guys, and I'm already feeling the side-effects.
Everything really is easier when I put God first. So starting Tuesday (because we have Labor Day off!!!!!!), I will get back in the habit of reading my scriptures as soon as I get home, and reap the rewards!

Have an amazing week - and have an awesome holiday tomorrow!

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