Friday, September 23, 2011

Autumn Love

I have to admit, I'm a total sucker for the fall. I love the change in the air, the rain, the leaves, and the yummy food. I remember the anticipation and excitement I felt as a kid at the beginning of the school year. There was just something about the new clothes, the new school supplies, and the start of a new year. Maybe my affinity for autumn comes from the fact that I was a September baby, so I have tree sap for blood (I am from Oregon after all). I am greatly anticipating my first east coast autumn- the first of many. I am so excited to watch the fall colors burst from the green of summer.

I am a week away from my birthday. I will be 24 and I can hardly believe it. I know that this year's birthday will be so different from last year. I spent my last birthday working on projects on campus all day long, and came home for about 20 minutes that evening since my roommates had made me a cake. After which I went back up to the school. Yeah, it was pretty thrilling. If someone had told me last year on that day that a year from now I would be celebrating my birthday with a husband (and his parents) I don't think I would have believed them. As it is, I'm so grateful I would have been wrong. There could be no better gift than celebrating with the love of my life. Not only will it be my birthday that day, but also the 5-month anniversary of our wedding. I love being married, but more than that I love being married to Matt. It never seems possible, but I love him more every day. He is so sweet and thoughtful, it's hard to believe he would want anything to do with me.

Matt has been busy with school, but he always makes sure that he takes time to spend with me. Despite his busy schedule, I will still discover the dishwasher unloaded in the morning after getting home from taking him to school. I hope he knows how much it means to me than he so willingly does the little things to help me out. And so often without me even asking or mentioning that he do it. It's still hard for me to believe that I'm so incredibly blessed.

Serving in Junior Primary has been a pleasure so far. There are times when I wonder if anything I'm doing is getting through, but I think the kids like me and I sure think they're cute so it's a pretty good fit. They seem to enjoy the activities we have been doing to review the songs for the primary program and I'm hoping some of it is sticking in their little sponge brains. One of which was a game called "Sing Like a..." in which a kid is called to the front and chooses a circle that on the other side has a picture and what they are to sing like. For example, a robot, a baby, a girl, an old man, etc.

I made them with the help of my printer and new handy-dandy laminator. Oh, and scissors. Sorry the picture isn't that great. But you get the idea. My camera is not that great and so I use the camera on my phone which is better than my regular camera but still leaves much to be desired. Maybe someday I will remedy that situation and then learn how to properly use it. Someday.

I will send you off with a beautiful autumn scene. Sigh-worthy, no?


Monday, September 5, 2011

Earthquakes, Hurricanes, and Callings

Obviously it has been a little while since I have posted, so I'm sorry about that. Things got pretty exciting around here geologically speaking. Two weeks ago today we had an earthquake, it was strong enough that much of the east coast felt it. I had never been awake during an earthquake before, so I didn't know what was going on the first couple of seconds. I was standing in Wal-Mart doing some grocery shopping and looking at produce when the shaking started. A few seconds later it stopped and I was about to go back to  my business when the employees started yelling at us, telling us that we had to leave everything there and get out of the store. So some people just got in their cars and left while others of  us were shooed away from the building. Nobody seemed to have any clue as to what the heck was going on so we all kind of loitered around, hoping we would get some info. The employees were clueless, too. Anyone surprised? I wasn't either. One lady who had been gettin' her nails did at the classy nail salon inside Wal-Mart said she was sure that it had to be a sinkhole because Virginia doesn't have fault lines (all this was said with a southern Virginia black people accent). I took her information with a grain of salt because there was no way it was a sinkhole causing that quaking. Later, after she had been informed that it had, in fact, been an earthquake, she came back over to me to let me know that it had been. Um, thank you stranger lady waving your wet nails around talking like you know everything about Virginia's geology. 

So I waited around for about an hour before I got sick of it and was tired of sweating my life out and then I took off. Forget the fact that I had stuff in my cart, I was done standing around wasting my time. So I drove back down the main drag to my apartment and pulled into the more expensive than Wal-Mart grocery store which was open and functioning. Not to mention the produce was significantly better. 

Next natural disaster? Irene. Yes, we were in the hurricane zone. That occurred that weekend following the earthquake. Yeah, two in one week, it was great. So we bunkered down that weekend. It was pouring like crazy outside and the wind was all over the place. Our lights flickered a few times but never went completely out. We were extremely fortunate considering the fact that like 75% of Richmond was without power. Not only that, but some people spent the better part of that next week without power. Thankfully, the casualty count wasn't nearly as high as Katrina's was. Not that our hearts don't go out to those who lost loved ones or possessions, we are just grateful there weren't more. 

I was given a calling a few weeks as well. So, I haven't been to Primary since I was in primary. I never substituted or anything. Matt and I did serve in the nursery this summer but that is the extent of my work in that capacity. So when I was called to be the assistant Primary Chorister, I was a little (okay, a lot) overwhelmed. I remember loving Singing Time when I was in Primary and I want so much for these kids to love it as I did. I also remember how elaborate it seemed to be. I was assigned to do Singing Time for the Junior Primary, and I was honestly petrified. I've served as a Gospel Doctrine teacher, Relief Society teacher, 1st and 2nd councilors in the Relief Society, as well as Relief Society President, and this still caused me to stagger a bit. But I'm not one to turn down a calling or do a crappy job of it so I put my nose to the grind to try and learn as much as I could and find as many resources as possible for the task. Luckily with technology the way it is, it's so easy to share what's worked as well as visuals. I don't know how they did it back in the day before it was so easy. I have a lot of respect for those women who put forth so much time and energy. Anyway, after much printing and organizing and stressing, I had my first Sunday of working with the kids. Thankfully, the Junior Primary consists of kids who are still young enough to be fascinated by simple things like Musical Chairs and visual aids. They also have no clue if things didn't exactly go according to plan. And the adults are just glad somebody else is entertaining them for 20 minutes. All in all, I felt really good about it and I think I will end up really enjoying it. I'm sure it's really a blessing in disguise, or as Gloria from Modern Family would say, "a blessing in the skies." 

Anyway, I'm off to feed my hungry husband who has been studying hard. Thanks for all of your comments and kind words. They are much appreciated!