What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you will do with your evenings, how you will spend your weekends, what you read, who you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in love, stay in love and it will decide everything.

-Pedro Arrupe, SJ

Sunday, November 8, 2009

this one time, i got engaged.

can't wait to spend together forever :)

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Si Dios quiere.

There's a phrase they use in the Dominican Republic, si Dios quiere. It translates to mean something like, "If God wants it," "If God wills it." (When I was there last summer, the locals used it so often that it almost became comedic. Pase buen dia, they'd say, ...si Dios quiere. "Have a good day...if God wants you to").

But regardless, I knew what they meant. Deep down, it was an expression of their faith in something -- someone -- bigger than themselves to get them through the day, whatever that day might bring. Maybe here and now, we know this thought better as the idea that everything happens for a reason. We spent our fair share of time using the phrase jokingly, but in my quiet time alone, I remember thinking how special it really was.

The faith of the people there will forever surprise me, confuse me, and most of all, inspire me. Many of them have never even heard of half the things I'm sure I couldn't bear to live a day without. There's no indoor plumbing, electricity (if you're lucky) for just a few hours each day, a shortage of healthy food and sanitary water, and diseases that most Americans won't ever have to encounter.

I'm applying to be a coordinator for the program again next summer, and hoping that I'll be able to work it into my Internship for my master's program that I have to do. Lately I've be
been really struggling to find that same purpose and faith and inspiration that I had during my first time there, and that I was so excited to bring back with me. And so, I'm just trying to remind myself of my experience as much as possible, and keep it alive in my life everyday.

Some of my favorite pictures from the DR:

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


it's finally october, my favorite month. no matter where i've lived, october has always been my favorite, but tucson october might be my favorite-est (at least these first 7 days).

this october is a busy month, with lots of fun things planned:

-tomorrow i leave for the acui- region 13 conference for the next three days. i wasn't particularly excited about it in the beginning, but there are some fun people from work going, and there's a pool, and we're close to good shopping, and so, it might not be so bad.
-i'm doing the 10k for AIDSWalk next Sunday! yay!
-kevin and i are going here for pumpkins and apples!
-we're celebrating our 18-month anniversary at the melting pot in a couple weeks :)
-"the laramie project: 10 years later" is coming to UofA, and the read-through is on the 12th

yours, mine and ours.

sometimes i have such a hard time with the fact that this was kevin's city first, and sometimes it still feels like i'm just tagging along, or just on vacation, and that i don't really live here. but i've been trying lately to focus on all the things about tucson that we've made ours:

-a certain spot on mt. lemmon where we alway
s sit and reflect on how beautiful life really is
-the new self-serve frozen yogurt place on speedway that we often go to after dinner
-saturday morning brunch after my long run and kevin's bike ride
-adding movies to our netflix queue
-the random weekday where neither of us have meetings and we can sleep in :)
-stopping by starbuck's or canyon cafe on the
way to work
-the saturday early-bird movie for $5
-having a beer at kevin's apartment after a lon
g day at work and class
-mass on sunday afternoons (currently we're church shopping), and a dinner out afterwards where we can relax before our busy lives begin again the next morning

new favorite picture: kevin, a weiner, and i at the tucson beer festival a few weeks ago.

Thursday, October 1, 2009


sometimes i think i'm not motivated enough or focused enough, and that i don't work hard enough, especially at school.

but then i remind myself that life is so much bigger than not doing well on a test, and that in less than two years, finally, nobody will ever care again what any of my grades were.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

song for you.

i don't think i've ever heard a song that i feel like is speaking right to me quite like this one.

alexi murdoch - song for you

So today I wrote a song for you
Cause a day can get so long
And I know its hard to make it through
When you say theres something wrong

So Im trying to put it right
Cause I want to love you with my heart
All this trying has made me tight
And I dont know even where to start

Maybe thats a start

Cause you know its a simple game
That you play filling up your head with rain
And you know you are hiding from your pain
In the way, in the way you say your name

And I see you
Hiding your face in your hands
Flying so you wont land
You think no one understands
No one understands

So you hunch your shoulders and you shake your head
And your throat is aching but you swear
No one hurts you, nothing could be sad
Anyway youre not here enough to care

And youre so tired you dont sleep at night
As your heart is trying to mend
You keep it quiet but you think you might
Disappear before the end

And its strange that you cannot find
Any strength to even try
To find a voice to speak your mind
When you do, all you wanna do is cry

Well maybe you should cry

And I see you hiding your face in your hands
Talking bout far-away lands
You think no one understands
Listen to my hands

And all of this life
Moves around you
For all that you claim
Youre standing still
You are moving too
You are moving too
You are moving too
I will move you

Monday, September 14, 2009

new recipes

I've recently become re-obsessed with Real Simple, especially some of their amaaaaazing-looking recipes. Here are a couple that I am planning to try out this week:

[image 1]: spaghetti with sweet potatoes and ricotta
[image 2]: ravioli with apples and walnuts

Stay tuned for how they taste, which is more likely to be a reflection of how well I cook them than how good of a recipe it actually is.


I never, let me repeat - NEVER - thought there would be a time when i'd actually want a cat, but I do believe the day has come. Here are a few that we are looking at adopting from the local Humane Society:


and my personal favorite: theo!

No matter which (and if) kitten we end up getting, we're renaming him or her Zapatos, after my grandparents' cat Shoes, who just died this year :(

(more) learning.

I'm adding fragile to the list of adjectives that describe me in the previous post.

I'm also reiterating the importance of picking your trains.

Sunday, September 13, 2009


things i've learned since in the last three months since moving to arizona:

1. i am a much more selfish and needy and jealous person than i ever thought, and than i'd ever want to admit.

2. my dad was right: you really do have to pick your trains.

3. if you don't drink enough water, you will literally go crazy. luckily, the mountains are here to bring you back to reality and center you.

4. fairy tale love can't last forever, but the love that comes after it is better because it's real and lasting and resilient.

5. that despite how much i've learned, there's really only one thing i know for certain: no matter how purposeless many things seem
to feel, everything happens for a reason.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

one day you will.

i find that now, more than almost any other time in my life, i am connecting with lyrics much more than even my own thoughts sometimes.

lady antebellum - one day you will

You feel like you’re falling backwards
Like you’re slippin’ through the cracks
Like no one would even notice
If you left this town and never came back
You walk outside and all you see is rain
You look inside and all you feel is pain
And you can’t see it now

But down the road the sun is shining
In every cloud there’s a silver lining
Just keep holding on (just keep holding on)
And every heartache makes you stronger
But it won’t be much longer
You’ll find love, you’ll find peace
And the you you’re meant to be
I know right now that’s not the way you feel
But one day you will

You wake up every morning and ask yourself
What am I doing here anyway
With the weight of all those disappointments
Whispering in your ear
You’re just barely hanging by a thread
You wanna scream but you’re down to your last breath
And you don’t know it yet

Repeat Chorus

Find the strength to rise above
You will
Find just what you’re made of, you’re made of

Repeat Chorus

One day you will
Oh one day you will 

Sunday, August 30, 2009

steady my heart.

this song is kind of changing my life right now.

Mat Kearney - Never Be Ready

We got our feet on the wire
Talking 'bout flying
Maybe we're diving in over our heads
Scared of what I'm feeling
Staring at the ceiling
Here tonight

Come on and lay down these arms
All our best defenses
We're taking our chances here on the run
The fear is an anchor
Time is a stranger
Love isn't borrowed
We aren't promised tomorrow

We'll never be ready if we keep waiting
For the perfect time to come
Hold me steady, we'll never be ready
When we don't know, though we can't see
Just walk on down this road with me

Hold me steady, we'll never be ready

You're OK here with me
Here in the silence
With all of the violence crashing around
Saying we can't go
Saying we don't know
This road that is narrow is the one we should follow

We'll never be ready if we keep waiting
For the perfect time to come
Hold me steady, we'll never be ready
When we don't know, though we can't see
Just walk on down this road with me
Hold me steady, we'll never be ready

Steady my hands this one could turn around
Steady my heart, it's beating faster
Steady my hands this one could turn around
Steady my heart, it's beating faster
Beating faster now

We'll never be ready if we keep waiting
For the perfect time to come
Hold me steady, we'll never be ready
When we don't know, though we can't see
Just walk on down this road with me
Hold me steady, never be ready

Hold me steady, we'll never be ready
Hold me steady, we'll never be ready
Hold me steady, we'll never be ready 

Thursday, August 6, 2009


I realized today that I'm not getting less scared, I'm getting more scared. Every day. Of so many things. Of being in love, and of not being loved anymore. Of not making any friends, and of losing friends that I already have. Of being happy, and of being sad. Of succeeding, and of failing. Of not having enough faith, and of not having enough realism. Of not having enough love, and of having way too much.

I just wish I had a sign to tell me that I've made the right decisions.

Monday, July 27, 2009


It's funny how soon things can start to feel normal, or at least the alternatives to feel weird. I like routine - sometimes I wish I didn't, at least not so much - but I can't really get away from it. It's been good to finally have one after these last few months of non-spontaneous unpredictability (if that even makes any sense). It's so good to wake up and go to work, knowing that I'll see Kevin in a few hours for lunch at the Union, and that at right about 5 he'll call me once he's off work and come over. The evenings - well - I just let them take care of themselves. There's no rush to do anything because we have all year to do it, which is such a different feeling than this whole last year where I felt like it had to be so go-go-go in order to accomplish everything we wanted to within the designated monthly weekend.

It's kind of neat, to be falling in love all over again with the same person, but in a different way. In the "I-can't-wait-to-wake-up-next-to-you-again-tomorrow" kind of way, rather than the "I'm-going-to-miss-you-so-much-when-we're-not-together" kind of way.

Being long-distance for so long has taught me how to not take anything for granted. Having lunch together on a random weekday doesn't seem like a big deal until I realize we never got to do it before. I just feel so blessed to be able to do all the little things together. It's beautiful, really.

1.25 years later and I still feel like the luckiest girl in the world.

Friday, July 17, 2009


I've had a lot of moments lately where I stop and think about a part of my life and say to myself, "It's too good to be true." The awful reality of it is, we all have so many things in our lives that have happened and hardened us so that once a good thing finally does happen, we're almost forced by some weird law of nautre to question it.

Needless to say, I hate this reality. I wish I could be one of those people that just appreciates things for how they are in the moment, doesn't overanalyze, and deals with the [potential] consequences of that later. But I'm just not that girl. And so, when good things happen to me, I'll wonder why. Overall, I consider myself to be incredibly blessed, but I never have that kind of immediate reaction where I think, "Gosh I'm lucky." Naturally, when bad things happen to other people, I start questioning all the existing good parts of my life, wondering when they, too, will crumble before my very eyes.

But maybe it doesn't have to be like that. Maybe a more accurate way to say it is that I'm learning that it truly doesn't have to be like that. I've never been one of those intrinsically happy kinds of people - I guess introspection and overanalyzing have their downfalls - but I'm trying and learning how to take happiness at face value.

A small part of me has always succumed to all the stigmas out there about getting married young - that you can't possibly know what you want yet, that you aren't established enough in your career to settle down, that you're too immature, and the list goes on forever. Maybe I've only bought into them because it's easier than admitting I'm scared. But really, fear is just part of the whole formula, because when I think about all the times in my life I've been really, genuinely happy, I was always afraid of [fill in the blank] leading up to that happiness.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, maybe believing in your "happily ever after" doesn't also have to mean that you're naive. Maybe it can mean just that - that life brought you something so good that you can't help but celebrate in it forever.

Monday, June 8, 2009


Everytime I come back to California, it feels less and less like "home." There are fewer and fewer of my old things lying about the house, and fewer and fewer people I know that still live here, too. Fewer connections, to things and people alike.
For as comfortable as I eventually did get with Omaha, it never really did felt like home. In fact, nothing really ever has. But I've always had this sense that once I'm in the right place, I'll just know, and it'll feel like home.

Driving into Tucson on I-1o last week on Ashly and I's cross-country road trip, I didn't know what to expect, and so, like I do so often, I set myself free from having any expectations at all. I find that when I do this, I'm oftentimes pleasantly surprised by the result. Amazingly enough (or maybe not so much), this time was no different, and I couldn't help but tear up as I began to turn the corners that displayed the beautiful mountains just outside of Tucson that Kevin took me to for the first time last fall. It was one of those times where, even just for a few moments, everything seems exactly how it is supposed to be. Usually I have these moments with people, but to have this kind of experience with a place - a tangible and physical location - was liberating and yet calming all at once. I can't wait to move "home."