Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Shaved Snow.

An Ode to Snow Cones that (yes, really) I wrote:
it took me about 30 seconds, so don't expect too much...

Snow cones, snow cones, soft and sweet,
I love you so much I could tweet,
like a bird tall in the sky,
or like a nerd using wifi.

-alyssa tolman

I hope everyone understands a few things:

a) my 20 days of gratefulness are not in order of importance;
otherwise shaved ice probably wouldn't have made the cut.

b) if my list was based on the things most dear to me, the gospel, my family,
and several other really really important things would've had lengthy posts
thoughtfully composed and beautifully dedicated already. Topics of such
importance take pondering, and time that I don't have alot of right now.

c) I really love shaved ice.

I'm grateful for shaved ice.We went to Rexburg last weekend. I was going to make a post with a huge list of all of the things that I miss and love about rexburg, but since I've been procrastinating, I've decided to write about the thing in rexburg I miss most right now.

For the record- I'm not crazy. When I lived in Rexburg I couldn't wait to get out. I had to get out of town at least once every few weeks. When we moved to Boise however, I missed Rexburg like it was my puppy that had died.

Yes, Rexburg is small. Yes, there are limited things to do, and Yes, most of us would probably never would have lived in Rexburg if it wasn't the home of the fabulous Brigham Young University-Idaho. Yes.


Rexburg is the beloved home of this sweet memory:

The One. The Only. THE Sno Shack.

Delightful. Happy. Goodness.

Every summer during college.
(Probably every week.)

In Texas,
I would always go to a wonderful gourmet shaved ice place called BAHAMA BUCKS.
It's basically heaven.
When I moved to rexburg, I thought I might die without my beloved texas shaved ice goodness, but then I was introduced to the sweet little sno shack. It's less expensive than bahama bucks. Because bahama bucks' ice is so heavenly soft, so succulently sweet, and melts in your mouth, not in your cup. The cups are sturdy, and you always are given a spoon, a straw, a little unique umbrella, and a napkin. Like I said; it's heaven.

Sno Shack on the other hand is cheap ice that crumbles the minute the cheap syrup touches it. The cups often leak, and most times you get a straw, but you have to ask at least twice to get a spoon or napkins. But hey- it's less expensive.

my most recent sno shack experience

The last time I was in Texas, I made a trip out to the heavenly gourmet snow shop. As I ordered my small shaved ice, I felt sick at the price I was expected to pay for my

wonderful wonderful wonderful

treat. But I paid it anyway. The Bahama Bucks goodness was wonderful and just as heavenly as I remembered. But I missed my dear sweet rexburgian cheap-o sno shack.

All I could think about all during work today was my favorite flavors that I miss, and this is what I came up with...

Favorite Flavor Combos:

french vanilla + coconut + kiwi

french vanilla + coconut + pomegranete

french vanilla + coconut + blue cocunut

french vanilla + coconut + watermelon

I like french vanilla and coconut, ok?

Ok. That's all for now.
What a wonderful life!

...oh. How I love sno cones!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Today I'm grateful for...


[dreem] Show IPA noun, verb, dreamed ordreamt, dream·ing, adjective

-an aspiration; goal
-an object seen in a dream.
-a wild or vain fancy

I've noticed I have a problem. I have a horrible tendency to want what I don't have. I could be defined as a dreamer. I love to use the magical words,

'what if'?

"Gideon, What if we moved to a nicer apartment with a loft??"

"Gideon, what if we adopted a kitten?"

(I don't even like cats...)

"What if."

Two dangerous words.

Anytime I see an airplane floating up higher and higher in the air, I have a terrible ache to be on it.

Nevermind the fact that the plane is probably going to Albuquerque (my least favorite place on the planet), or some other location that I wouldn't want to go to. Nevermind the fact that I don't necessarily like to fly. A few months after I start a new job, I start to itch to try something else out, even if my job is great, and there is no reason to leave. Sometimes, I just want what I don't have, or to be where I'm not.

What an unhappy way to choose to live.

This is not to say by any means that dreaming must lead to inevitable misery, it just means that always wanting the next best thing, and never being satisfied with the now is sad.

I remember when I started dancing. I was quite bad, and what was worse, was I felt bad. The kind of bad that couldn't get better. But one day, my ballet professor told me I was a 'dream' to watch. Then, another compliment came. Then another. After a few more compliments, I began to dream:

what if I get good at this?

Anyone who knows me now knows that I love to dance.

I spent 4 years on a dance company. I've grown sentimental when I enter theaters, always thinking to myself, "I really should be backstage preparing to perform, instead of sitting in the audience with normal clothing on.

(as opposed to my beloved tights, leotards, and bare feet)
How I miss that wonderful thrill of dancing on stage!

I miss the sensational butterflys that would tickle me the moment before and after I felt the stage lights on my powdered skin. Each show, and I mean that with all sincerity, was magic. There is nothing, nothing in the world, like the feeling of performing something that you love with all of your essence. How I miss it.

While I was still in school, I was accepted into a masters program studying dance. I was trying to decide whether I would serve a mission (which would have been an absolute dream) or pursue my education in dance (another fantastic prospect) when- my gideon proposed that we spend every day together for the rest of forever.

This made my decision easy: instead of going to masters school, or serving a mission, I would marry a boy who I loved very much.
There are days though; days that I hate when I sometimes wonder- where would I be if I wasn't married? Would I be in graduate school in Utah? Or perhaps auditioning in New York City? Traveling abroad? On a mission speaking a different language? The possibilities are endless (for the good and the bad) when you use the dreamy words 'what if'.

Last night I had a dream.

The details are kind of foggy, but I know this: I wasn't married. I don't know what city I was in, but it was big. It was nighttime, and I was standing looking outside my window. The lights went on forever, and the traffic was jammed, even though it was late. It reminded me of a night I spent in St. Petersburg while I was on tour dancing.

It could have been the exact window.

But in my dream, I was alone.

And there was a distict sadness in my loneliness.

I could tell I had just finished a performance, as my hair had just been released from a tight bun, and I could feel fake eyelashes and the heaviness of stage makeup on my face. Being a performer in a big city has been a dream of mine ever since I started dancing. But this actual 'dream' wasn't what I thought it would be like. I was sad. I had no one to kiss goodnight.

No one to hold my hand.

Looking out the window, I saw an ambulence drive past my building.

And then I awoke.

I wonder. I wonder if I wasn't married, if I would be still 'what if'ing. If I was single, living my dream of being a dancer in a big city, I wonder if I would stay up at night looking out windows wishing so badly that I had someone to snuggle up to. I wonder if more than anything, I would want a companion who I could laugh with. I wonder if I would be willing to give up everything I had for what I have now. I wonder. But I think I actually know.

There are some days (I think you know the type I'm talking about) that are worse than others when it comes to living my life happily without haunting 'what if's. On those days when I'm already tired and grouchy, and supposed to go to work for 10 hours (smiling), then come home, make dinner (smiling), catch up on laundry, clean up (smiling), and then get a call asking me if I've done my visiting teaching (which of course I forgot about)- on those days- I just want to burst into tears, find a black hole, and jump into it.

Those are few and far between, hard, sad days.
But most days, I'm more than happy to drive to a job where I work for fun, nice people who treat me well, and pay me weller (I get free massages. Talk about dream.). Once I'm done at work, I'm really more than happy to go home to my sweet gideon who showers me with hugs and kisses the minute I walk in the door. I'm happy to make and eat dinner with my hubby, and wrap up the day with discussions on life (and on occasion, with ice cream). If I had to choose right now between taking the last year of my life away, and going down a different path that led to my 'dreams', and keeping my life the way it is right now, (as mundane as somedays it seems)

I would choose the latter.

...because this is the real dream.

I have someone to love, who loves me, and we're going to be together today, tomorrow, and all the days after that.

What if I already have everything I'll ever really need? I think I do.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Today I'm grateful for...

There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle.
The other is as though everything is a miracle.
-Albert Einstein

Today has been simply delicious! I started my delicious day with a delicious glass of strawberry milk. It was especially strawberry-y, for I put about 2 tablespoons more nesquik than what is required. Delightful. I recommend it to all. After I got ready for the glorious day, I put a flower in my hair, and drove to work.

A terrific miracle then took place:

The light that always takes 10 years to turn green changed so quickly that I didn't even have to slow down. It was as though the light saw me coming, and decided that today, since it's so beautiful, I don't need to wait like usual. Sublime.

As I was driving down broadway, a song came on the 70s radio station that I happened to be listening to. One song that came on, I recognized, but I couldn't put my finger on where I knew it from. All I really knew was that it reminded me of my lovely mother. Miracle.
I love it when I'm reminded of my mother.

For just a moment, I had a brief case of road rage on the freeway. A moron in a huge truck cut me off like c-r-a-z-y, and almost caused a three car accident because of it. But he didn't. Miracle.

In that brief moment, I missed Rexburg so much. I missed speed limits no higher than 45, and the small town friendliness of a community that has more stop signs than stop lights. Here, on a smoky freeway packed full of speedy cars and semis, I felt so lost in the crowd. Then common realization hit me: boise is not big. In fact, there isn't a single city in Idaho that could really be considered 'big'. A city of a million people is big. A city with a metro is big. A city with a downtown the size of a 'city' is big. Boise isn't big. And I should appreciate the beauty of this gorgeous place as long as I'm here. The road rage disappeared, which was a miracle. Especially after the song 'dancing in the moonlight' came on the radio. Miracle.

Work happened. I successfully checked 40 patients in and out keeping a smile on my face. That's a miracle. And a victory. As I was getting ready to leave, I remembered I left a packet of gushers in the freezer.

Oh happy day. Blessing. (And miracle- because lets face it- Gushers are miracles.)

On my way home I saw a baby bird giving herself a bath in a small puddle of water.
It looked like such a refreshing idea, it made me want to take a nice bubble bath myself. It also made me grateful for my nice shower inside my nice apartment with nice clean water and body wash that smells like lavender. As opposed to a dirty puddle with small rocks at the bottom, and bubbles that smell of dirtiness, instead of lavender. How blessed I am to have lavender smelling body wash.

My brother and his wife are just lovely.
Even lovelier, is the fact that Nicki is pregnant.

From the moment I found out she was expecting, I was sure it was a girl. It was just one of those gut feelings. All of a sudden, I felt the need to invest in girly baby clothes in hopes of being the future favorite aunt of my beautiful little niece who would be coming into the world within the year. I bought a swimsuit. In fact, I bought this swimsuit:
I know. It's simply adorable. brother called me yesterday to tell me that they're expecting a baby boy.

So now I'm in the market for a pair of these:
A boy. Rock on.

So. Now I have an adorable pink swimsuit floating around my house for the next baby girl that is born. That got me to thinking. What if I never have a baby girl? Who is going to wear that fabulously fantastic swimsuit?? The only logical conclusion I can think of is this: someone simply must have a baby girl. And soon.

Anyway, the day has been full of miracles.

- After working in this clinic for over 2 months, I am still alive.
- I get to go home to my wonderful wonderful husband.
- I think there is still ice cream in our freezer.
But even if there isn't any left, it's still a miracle, because I do not need to be eating ice cream.
But if there is some left, I will. And it will be a miracle.

Isn't it a wonderful life?

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Today I'm grateful for...

Today I'm grateful for how individual we were all made. I think most kids go through a phase where all they want in the whole world is to just fit in. I definitely did.

For instance- in elementary school, I remember being mortified that I was the only one in my class who had a lunch packed from home. Everyone else in my class was on the school meal plan with PIZZA FRIDAY! Almost every day I would try to switch my gorgeously delicious home packed lunches (complete with a love note written on the napkin from my amazing mother) with the sludge everyone else got from the cafeteria. Once I had made the switch, a wave of relief would sweep over me, and I wouldn't worry about being the one person with a lunch box. I remember one day, a quieter boy in class asked me why I always traded my lunches. I told him in what I know must have been an obnoxious voice that I liked the cafeteria lunches better. After a little pause, he quietly said that he wished that his mom would pack him a lunch as nice as mine.

So many times I think that people see their differences they way that I saw my sac lunch. They think because something is different about them, that they must stick out in a bad way. I used to hate my nose because I thought that it was a weird shape. One day when I was complaining about it, my dad told me that he loved my nose, because it was the same shape as my mother's. All of a sudden, my nose wasn't a weird shape, it was something that connected me to my favorite woman in the history of EVER. Sometimes I still think it's a little weird, but I wouldn't trade it for any other nose in the whole wide world.

I love that some people have freckles,
and some people have gaps in their teeth.

I think that the most beautiful people in the world are those who stand out and embrace their individual characteristics.

I've noticed that the things I love most about people are usually their least favorite qualities about themselves. So- I'm going to make a conscious effort to appreciate and love my individual unique characteristics.

- Jackie Chan is my favorite actor in the world (who else can say that??)
- When I'm alone in the house I totally dance in the kitchen and karate kick the microwave close after making a hi-yah sound.
- I've never been to a tanning salon, or seen the movie Titanic.
- When I get really nervous I get really really bad hiccups.
- I have really pointy wrist bones.
- When I'm concentrating I bite my lip, and squint a teeny bit.
- I'm maybe the best ever at playing hide and go seek. One time I broke someone's nose.
- I talk in my sleep all. the. time.
- I love foreign films.
- I have a weird freckle inside my ear, and another on my middle finger that always gets mistaken for some kind of pen mark.
- I have a face like my mother's and my father's artisan hands. Good for playing musical instruments and winning thumb wrestling.
- I have a dimple on one side when I smile reealy hard.

Monday, June 14, 2010

It's Back!

I've decided to start posts on my blog that I'm going to call 20 days of thanks. I want to write a post on different things that we're thankful for in our lives. Summer is one of the best times for me to find things to be grateful for, so I decided to start my 20 days of thanks with a post dedicated to SUMMER!

Summer is usually not one of my favorite seasons, I've always loved fall the best. Something about the leaves falling, and the crispness in the air around Thanksgiving is so refreshing. It's like the start of something new. Makes me want to buy school supplies. The last several summers of my life I've been incredibly busy. I think I associate Summer with hotness (and not in a good way), and with busy craziness. Last summer I was booked with wedding photography, and the insane stress of planning my own wedding by myself. The three summers before that, I was busy going to school full time and trying to balance being on a dance company and keeping up with my photography work.

This summer is totally different. Gid and I are both working full time, but we've been able to plan several weekend getaways that have been super fun. This is the first summer in a while that I'm really looking forward to. I miss school like crazy. Working a 9-10 hour day five days a week gets old really fast, and I often find myself missing homework which is the weirdest thing in the world. When I was in school, I couldn't afford to take off a week from school without it affecting my grades. This summer we're going to be able to take several trips, and all I have to do is find someone to cover me at work. I wish I could've found someone to cover me at class when I was in college. Summer in Texas is hot and miserable; I have these flashbacks of gymnastics practice during the summers, and driving with the ac on high. Summer in Boise is still hot, but I wouldn't go as far as miserable. It's actually been pretty chilly the last few weeks, and just started to warm up. This last weekend was just gorgeous. And the cool thing about boise is that when the weather is nice- the city becomes alive. Everyone is out on the greenbelt running or biking. Tons of people are fishing in little lakes, and rivers. It's the most active place I've ever lived. Nice.

Summer is wonderful for many reasons. These are only a few:

1. the sun is out and feels wonderful on my skin!
2. going running isn't miserable (not that I actually run- but I'm going to start)
3. the days are longer, and the breezy air is refreshing
4. it's swimsuit shopping season
5. family finds eachother during the summer season


Saturday, June 12, 2010

In honor of SUMMER,

Gideon and I went out to eat at a fabulous hawaiian place tonight. We're really excited about our trip coming up in AUGUST! Even MORE exciting is the fact that my parents are coming to visit in July for my birthday! We don't know quite what we're going to do, but I'm sure it'll be so fun with them there. Did I mention my parents are the best?
My Mom's birthday was yesterday. I don't know how old she really is, because she'll always be 45 to me. She's smart, skinny, active and the most CHRISTLIKE person I know. And I know some insanely good people. I'm crazy about my mom. If I grow up to be (or look) 1/2 as good as her, I'll die a happy happy girl. My dad is undeniably the most adorable man on the face of the planet, and is one of the best physicians in the world. He saves lives every day, and goes hiking and boogie boarding when he gets a chance to vacation. He also loves Calvin & Hobbes, and cheezy kung fu jackie chan movies (a trait that I picked up). I made Gideon watch Jackie Chan's masterpiece 'WHO AM I' last night, and he kept laughing during parts that were not meant to be funny. Obviously he doesn't know how to appreciate an 80s Jackie Chan movie. Um. By the way. The Karate Kid came out yesterday. I can NOT wait to see it. Remember how The Karate Kid is a classic, and no one could EVER replace Mr. Miyagi? Me too. Unless the replacement was Jackie Chan. (Or maybe Jackie Price.) The end.

I cut my hair

almost two weeks ago. I had about 80% of the people I talked to before hand warn me that I would regret it, and cry myself to sleep, or go some kinda crazy. But I cut it. And it feels amazing. The talented Ivy Walker from my ward chopped it all off, and I happily held the limp 14 inch ponytail in my lap while she finished the rest of the haircut. I think for the most part people like it. Gideon likes it, (which is really the most important thing) but I'm pretty sure there are alot of other people who secretly think I look like a 16 year old. A sixteen year old boy. One girl at work told me that, and she was just trying to be honest. Honesty sometimes is kind of offensive. But hey- at least it only takes me about 5 minutes to get ready every day! Woot.

I'm pretty sure this won't last.

I'm talking about blogging. I have a difficult time committing to anything, and I have a feeling something like this is going to be very difficult for me to keep up, but I'm going to try. Why? Because.
I've been wanting to do a blog for a long time, but all the people who I know are super cool (ahem kala and chris) and have lots of really fancy stuff and update their blog on a regular basis. It's intimidating. I'll be surprised if I figure out how to do much more than a post here and there. Who knows? Maybe I'll like it. Probably not. But hey- I just finished my first post, so I'm feelin pretty good.
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