Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Starting a Business

Some of you know that I'm starting a business. That's what we do in my entrepreneur class. What better way to learn after all. : ) I've posted this video on facebook so you may have seen it already, but these are the bamboo sunglasses we're selling.  I think they're great!  Here is your sneak peak at Exquis Eyewear.  We're going to officially launch later this week!  I'm so excited!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Keep Thou My Feet

Lately I've been thinking a lot about my life and where I want be a few years down the road.  As I thought about it, I began to worry about all the different possibilities.  I wondered how I could ever make the right decisions now if I didn't know exactly where I want to be in a few years.  And how could I possibly know where I was going to be?  The decisions in front of me looked daunting.  Then the words came to mind of one of my favorite songs, Lead Kindly Light.

Lead, kindly Light, amid th’encircling gloom;
Lead thou me on!
The night is dark, and I am far from home;
Lead thou me on!
Keep thou my feet; I do not ask to see
The distant scene—one step enough for me.

I was not ever thus, nor pray’d that thou
Shouldst lead me on.
I loved to choose and see my path; but now,
Lead thou me on!
I loved the garish day, and, spite of fears,
Pride ruled my will. Remember not past years.

So long thy pow’r hath blest me, sure it still
Will lead me on
O’er moor and fen, o’er crag and torrent, till
The night is gone.
And with the morn those angel faces smile,
Which I have loved long since, and lost awhile!

My very favorite words are the bolded ones -"Keep thou my feet; I do not ask to see the distant scene - one step enough for me."   I don't need to see an exact picture of where I will be in a few years in order to succeed.  In fact, that is not the Lord's way.  There is much more faith involved in His process.  And faith is very good for us.  I must be content with only seeing one step at a time.  I can trust the Lord will lead me well.  All He does is to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man, so I have nothing to fear.  All He does is for my good.  

The wonderful thing is that even though I may not have an exact goal for where I want to be in a few years, I do have a bigger goal - my goal to return to my Heavenly Father.  As I strive for this goal, all my other fuzzy goals scattered throughout my life will take care of themselves.  I will know how to act  each step of the way, since even my unknown life goals should align with that. My life has purpose, even if I can't see where exactly my actions will take me.  With this in mind, I truly have no need to fear.  The Lord will keep my feet, as long as I keep Him in my heart.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

My Happy Place

 Tonight and last Sunday I went to the mountains to see the changing leaves.  I'm so grateful I've been able to go twice already.  Usually I don't make time for it, but this year I simply had to.  I've been craving the mountains.  It's my happy place.  I wish I could go sit in the trees every night.

Isn't this a beautiful happy place?
I could stay there forever.

*These beautiful pictures were taken by my lovely little sister, Jessica.  Thanks Jess!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

My Design Blog

I started a new blog today.  Don't worry, this one will go on as my personal blog.  I decided that it was time to start one dedicated to my design and sewing work.  It will be a great place for people to go to quickly see my design work without having to read about my personal life.  If you like, take a look or even become a follower.  I've put a few new projects up already.

Monday, September 17, 2012

In the Heights and Graffiti

Friday night I went with some friends to see, "In the Heights" at Pioneer Theatre.  I had heard fantastic things about it through the rehearsal process and talking to the set and costume designer, Skip Mercier, yet I was still pleasantly surprised with how much I loved this show filled with rap and hip hop.

"In the Heights" cast
The story is so heartwarming and the design element was incredible too.  The set made you feel like you were actually in New York, where this takes place.  Absolutely stunning, in a run down New York neighborhood sort of way.

Now enter Saturday morning.  I wake up to a policeman at my door, songs from "In the Heights" still playing in my head.  My little sister came to get me, telling me it had to do with my car.  I wracked my brain trying to think what it could be.  And to be honest, it was better than I expected, though completely unexpected.  The policeman informed me that my car had been tagged during the night.  I went out to see a crude word spray painted on my black car.  So strange.  I felt a little like I should be in New York, not my cozy little Mormon town.  It was so strange to have that happen after seeing a play the night before with graffiti on the set and even a character named Graffiti Pete.  It was like the play jumped into my reality, in an unkind way.

Luckily, the paint came off fairly well with Goof Off.  There are some hints still in the scratches in my car, but it really isn't bad.  There are so many worse things that could have happened.  I'm grateful it wasn't anything worse and that it was resolved fairly quickly.  

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

I Believe in You!

Almost everyday I leave school and work feeling like I can do anything.  Why?  Because I have awesome professors and classmates who believe in me.  For example, my costume design mentor thinks I have what it takes to work at Shakespeare's Globe theatre in London this next summer.  I wouldn't have presumed myself good enough for such a prestigious theatre, yet thanks to a professor who believes in me, I'm going to apply.  Crazy!  Wouldn't it be fun to go work in London?

The Globe (from www.treehugger.com)
Another example happened today.  I am taking an entrepreneur class for my minor and I feel grossly inadequate most days.  I've taken so few business classes and this class has upper level business majors and MBA's... and me the theatre major.  Yikes!  It is a discussion based class and I've felt I have very little to contribute to the conversation given my background.  Well, today we broke into groups to start companies (yes, I'm going to start a real live business!) and this guy who always makes super intelligent comments came straight over to me and asked me to be in his group.  He told me he was impressed with my comments and wanted to work with me.  I was so flattered!  Perhaps my comments were a little better than I thought.  For the rest of class I sat a little straighter and commented more confidently.  

It's amazing what it does to you having someone believe in.  The results are so much better than trying to change someone through criticism.  I suppose you could say it's the power of love.  If you're trying to force someone to change, they will probably just resent you and you will get nowhere.  Yet, if you see the good in the other person they will want to rise up to your vision of them.  I know I have.  Would I want to let my professor or my classmate down after they've shown such confidence in me?  Heavens, no!  Their belief in me makes me want to give all I can to be better.

I've been lucky enough to have people believe in me.  Some people don't and that breaks my heart.  I know I must fall grossly short in loving and believing in people as much as I should, but I hope my efforts at least make a dent.  Everyone needs a cheerleader who sees their potential and tells them that they can succeed.  I hope I can do my part to spread the love and help people stretch towards their potential.  

Sunday, September 9, 2012

A Bit of Sabbath Love

After watching this tonight, I feel inspired and empowered.  I have a desire to live bolder and serve more.  That is what the word of God does.  It makes me think of the quote by Boyd K. Packer:

“True doctrine, understood, changes attitudes and behavior. The study of the doctrines of the gospel will improve behavior quicker than a study of behavior will improve behavior.”     

I love that.  I am so grateful we have the words of ancient and modern day prophets to lead us on our way.  I would be so lost without it.  

And for one last spiritual boost listen to the song in the video below.  It's one of my favorite Jenny Phillips songs.   It's called "Stay," and that is exactly how I feel.  I'd like the spirit I felt tonight to stay with me throughout this next week and all my days.
Happy Sunday.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

My Love Affair with Wool

Today I bought this scrumptious wool for a jacket I'm making in my tailoring class.  I am in love with it.  My little sister will surely attest to my obsession with it.  I think she heard me rave about this wool to one too many people this evening.  It is just so soft and not fuzzy and scratchy like the wool from JoAnn.  I love JoAnn for their coupons, but their quality of fabric is definitely lacking.  So tonight I ventured to this Yellow Bird Fabrics that I've been hearing about for the past year.

It's located in this cute blue house.  Perhaps the house itself isn't that cute (although I do love that color blue).  Inside is adorable and filled with fine fabrics.  The owner was there and she was delightful to talk to.

Anyway, I'm starting to sound like an advertisement for Yellow Bird.  I was just delighted to find somewhere that actually sold beautiful wool and not just nasty fuzzy stuff.  I'm sure I'll be back.

Here is what I'm going to make out of the wool:


I love the shape of this.  The body is going to be out of the red and then the collar will be out of the black.  I'm also adding double welt pockets (see example below) and they will be piped in black as well.

This except without the little loop.

It's going to have the look of a riding jacket, comme รงa.

I've been fancying a riding jacket for years now.

Perhaps I'll have to get a jaunty hat with a feather to go with it ; )

I'm so energized and excited about this project and really this whole school year.  It's going to be busy and a little crazy, but I have some great opportunities coming up!  I just love what I do!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Learning Does NOT Equal Perfection

Sometimes I forget that little tiny detail.  I love learning and for some silly reason often believe after one try (or simply on the first try) I should be perfect at what I do.  What a silly thing to think!

Today one of my professors/mentor shared a story that I loved.  She said that when she was in her grad program she was taking a pattern making class and trying to do something she'd never done before.  She was having a hard time figuring it out and ended up in tears in the hallway.  Her professor came out to talk to her and said, "Where you born knowing how to do it?  That's why you are in school, so you can learn how to do it."

So true.  We weren't born knowing all about venture capital or starting a business or tailoring a coat.  Sure, some have more of a natural inclination than others, but all in all we know so little.  I'm realizing this more and more.  It seems the more I learn, the more I realize how very little I know.

Today I forgot all this for a little while and wanted to be perfect in my classes - especially my entrepreneur class.  I was feeling hugely inadequate for the discussion we were having.  It is so different than the costuming classes I'm used to and I've only taken two other business classes.  Oh and there are MBA's in my class and a good chunk of our grade is based on how much we contribute to the class discussion.  I felt I had very little to offer as an undergrad Costume Design student... I started worrying about being perfect.

Now I can see how silly that is.  Do I go to class to be perfect and mingle with perfect people?  No, I don't think so.  I go to class so I can learn.  So it doesn't matter if I get an A, B or C in that class.  I'm in college to learn, so that is what I shall do.  I won't be perfect at that either, but I can do my best and that is enough.  Luckily, perfection isn't needed to learn.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Lessons from Les Mis

On Monday I headed back down to Cedar with my sister and a friend to see a few of the shows again. We saw Merry Wives of Windsor and Les Mis (of course).  Merry Wives was charming as ever, but Les Mis had grown leaps and bounds from when I last saw it at its dress rehearsals.

It was fun to see the costumes I made again (like Fantine's dress below), but I didn't care nearly as much about the costumes as I did the story.

When I was younger I loved Les Mis on a shallow level.  I thought the love triangle between Eponine, Cosette and Marius was so romantic.  Eponine was definitely a favorite romantic hero of mine.  I loved "On My Own."  Don't get me wrong, I still love Eponine and "On My Own," but I've come to love the show for different reasons than just it's great romantic characters.  I love it for it's message of love - not of the romantic kind - but a deep, kind and charitable love that can be extended to all.

I cried through a good chunk of the first act, and then at the end.  The show just hit me like it never had before.  I ached for Fantine and Jean Val Jean's misery, yet the tears were also for the love and forgiveness extended to them.  I love the story with the Bishop, for example.  Jean Val Jean steals silver from the Bishop and when the police bring him back to the Bishop, the Bishop gives him the candlesticks to, saying he is innocent and tells Jean Val Jean that he has "bought his soul for God."  This incident influences Jean Val Jean immensely and inspires him to change his life around and spend his life giving back.  

I was amazed by the Bishop's kindness.  What would I have done if a scraggly looking man just out of jail came to me asking for food?  Perhaps that's not the best modern day example, since there is an issue of safety, but nonetheless, the same principal applies.  I should not close off my heart to others because of their past or their looks.  Even if they wrong me as I try to help them, I need to love and uplift them as this Bishop did.  What if the Bishop condemned Jean Val Jean instead of loving him and giving him the candlesticks?  Would Jean Val Jean have had the desire and the courage to change and leave his sinful life behind him?  I don't know if he would have.  It is love that changes and inspires people, not harsh words and criticism.  That idea keeps reappearing in my life.  I feel its truth, but struggle to actually implement it.  Watching this loving exchange made me want to be better, which perhaps only proves this theory even more.  Even watching loving relationships can inspire better action.

"To love another person is to see the face of God."

Those words, sung by Fantine and Eponine, are some of my favorite in the show.  What brings us nearer to God than loving his beloved children?  And to love them despite their background, social standing, money, marital status, looks, or lack thereof.  We all have a past.  Sure, some have a harder past than others, yet as Presdient Uchtdorf said, "Don't judge me because my sin is different than yours."  It is so true.  We all have unspoken pain and shadows that haunt us.  I hope that I can be more like the Bishop and later Jean Val Jean and love others no matter what.  

Les Mis touched me and made me want to be better.  I'm so grateful I had this chance to go see Les Mis at this wonderful festival.

*Pictures from theUSF website.

Sunday, July 29, 2012


It seems the theme of "Arise and Shine Forth" keeps appearing in my life.  We had a lesson on it last week in Relief Society and tonight I sang in a Jenny Phillips' fireside centered around this.  Of course, it is the youth theme for this year, so naturally it is rather wide spread, but I've been pondering more about it than I ever have before.  In the past, when I heard that phrase, I mostly thought of being a good example and focused on the "shining" part.  But I've been realizing the importance of the very first word.  We are commanded to "arise."

Arise is a call to action.  It's not a passive thing.  Sister Elaine S. Dalton said, "Arise and shine forth is a call to each of you to lead the world in a mighty cause."  I love that.  It is too easy to live life passively (at least for me).  It is much easier for me to be an observer rather than a doer.  But "arise and shine forth" is a call to action.  I must not sit passively expecting people to come to me.  No, we are not agents to be acted upon.  I'm done waiting around and letting other people take the action.  I've decided that I'm going to get out of my shell more and "arise."  I'm going to leave behind the cares of the world and rise up, not just for myself, but for others.  I'm going to act and serve and befriend and lead, just as Sister Dalton asked us to do.

I love the scriptures.  And I love how there are always new things to learn from them.  I'm sure one day I'll be reading this same scripture and gain a whole new layer of understanding.  So wonderful.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Life in Provo

 So I'm back in Provo as you may have gathered from my last post and life is great!  I was worried about going to school during the summer and feeling burnt out, but so far I can't complain.  I suppose it helps that I am only going to school right and not working right now.  I've gotten used to going to school and working 20 hours a week, plus an hour commute each way and so life right now seems like a piece of cake!  Though it would have been nice if my job didn't fall through.  Oh well, this is a welcome reprieve.  And I will be teaching sewing lessons again and hopefully doing some babysitting soon to keep some money coming in.

But right now, life is a breeze.  I forgot what it's like to have large chunks of time to study and to be able to really delve into a subject.  I can actually get all my homework done, get enough sleep, and still have time to be social more than once a week.  Who'd have thought going to school could feel so much like a break?  It also helps that I'm only taking three classes (though since it's condensed it's fast and furious).  They are certainly challenging - especially accounting, but I'm enjoying them.  I also have found myself falling in love with acting and singing all over again in my acting and voice lesson classes.  (I probably will write a whole post about acting because I feel like I'm learning so much about life and myself in it.)

This weekend has been great.  Friday, my sister picked me up from school and we met our roommate, Kelsey, at the mall.  We tried on sunglasses and my sister almost convinced me to buy these crazy Edith Head (who Edna Mode from the Incredibles is based on) looking sunglasses.
The sunglasses looked a lot like this.  Don't worry, I didn't get them after all.

Then we went to the "red lipstick event" at Sephora and got our red lips on.  Oh how I love red lipstick!  (But that may be obvious to those of you who are around me much.) 

Saturday morning Jen and Kelsey and I went for a bike ride over to the Farmer's Market.  That may not sound like that big of a deal, but for me it was.  You see, I haven't ridden a bike in years.  The last bike I got was in third grade.  I think I actually last rode in junior high, but still, it's been a while.  It took me a bit, and it turned out to be a confidence issue more than anything else, but I did it! It's about time I conquered that fear. 

The Farmer's Market itself was wonderful.  More of a craft fair than fruits and vegetables, but it was still wonderful.  I love seeing the fruit of people's hard work and creativity.  I love talking to people at Farmer's Markets.  We met so many friendly, wonderful people. 

Just arrived at the Farmer's Market
The three of us after our lunch of El Salvadorian pupusas.  
And yes, we all wore hats.  Kels and I are always looking for occasions for wearing hats.  I think riding bikes over to the Farmer's Market on a Saturday morning is the perfect occasion for wearing a hat.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Fourth of July

Jen and I after running the Freedom Run 5k. Aren't the shirts really cool this year?

Jen attempting to take our picture on a timer. For some reason I really like this picture.
My fourth of July outfit. I believe holidays are for dressing up. I had people ask me all day if there was a reason I was dressed up, and I simply said, "for the holiday." Someone even said I looked like Snow White. Can't say I minded that : )
Family BBQ with the family, done inside with class.

Stadium of Fire, fireworks.  We had the perfect view of them and fireworks all along the valley at my friend's ward party.  This is how fireworks are supposed to be in my mind.  Big, beautiful, and with friends.

Yesterday was a fantastic Fourth of July.  Probably one of my favorites.  Good company, good run, good fireworks and good food... Except I don't even want to think about food because I've been in bed all morning sick.  Luckily yesterday was such a good day, it almost compensates for being sick.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Oh what are men to rocks and mountains?

Not really. 
I think men are pretty great, but whenever I'm in the mountains I think of that Jane Austen quote. 

Do you like my Mary Jane shoes that doubled as my hiking shoes when I first got here?  (My tennis shoes were coming down later with a friend)

Surprisingly, they did very well (even though they got very dirty, and my socks are stained orange from it). I've loved these Merrell shoes. Unfortunately they don't make them anymore and mine are starting to feel a little worn.

Here are some pictures from the hiking I've done while I've been in Cedar City:

Zions National Park
Most of these are at the upper Emerald Pools.  It was so beautiful.  I love the contrast of the red rock and the greenery.

Red Cliffs
At Red Cliffs there were Anasazi ruins and dinosaur prints as well as a fun hike.  It was a delight to go with people who had never seen dinosaur footprints or ancient ruins.  I take this sort of stuff for granted and it's nice to be reminded how some people may never see things like this.  I am a lucky girl indeed.  And the hike was awesome.  We followed a river up to this place where there were pools of water and a natural water slide in the red rock.  It was gorgeous.  People were swimming in it and have a grand ol' time (I wasn't adequately prepared to swim.)

Dinosaur Footprints

A glimpse of the pools
The water slide is in the back of this picture.  You could go over this little ledge to more procarious hiking, but I was a chicken with my little mary jane shoes and the ledge above water, so I stayed behind and watched people's stuff.  After my roommate Shelby came back she told me it was probably a good thing I didn't go, because she didn't know how someone with short legs could do it.  (She's 5' 11'' and has long legs to match).

 Anasazi Ruins

The hiking group

Back at Zions
Some of my Bountiful friends came to visit me, and we went to Zions and enjoyed the lovely rocks.
MaryAnn and I by the rock I affectionately called, "the ham rock"
The hike on Watchman's Trail.  Beautiful isn't it?  There were surprisingly few people on this trail, which I enjoyed.
This was taken on our scenic drive through Kolob, the northern part of Zions.  My it was beautiful.  I'd love to go back someday for some hiking.  But seriously, the view was breath taking.
This actually isn't from hiking.  This was just a beautiful trail we found on the outskirts of Cedar as we were letter boxing.  It was gorgeous.  If I had a car, I'd come here to go running.

So, I've done some great hiking while I've been here.  Nothing too crazy, like Angel's Landing, but I've enjoyed it none the less.  I love hiking and being in nature.  I love the red rock, but I'm ready to see a bit more green.  I have a soft spot in my heart for greenery and trees.  Perhaps it's my childhood in Washington coming out.  In a week I'll be back north again, perhaps there will be a bit more green there.