Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The lessons I learned at BYU

Sorry my blogging has been so sporadic this semester. It was my last, and it was not the easiest. Never have I had a more stressful, incredibly busy semester (and yeah, it's been pretty emotional too...whatever).

This week I graduate from BYU and today is my final day at The Universe. I've spent the better part of the last 2 years in this newsroom. I was a sports reporter, the campus desk editor, the sports desk editor and I've finished up as the opinion editor.

There are many things I look back on my time here that make me smile. And there are quite a few that I look back on that make me cry. That's life for ya. But I'm glad I stuck it out when I was freshman and wanted nothing more for several months than to transfer to a different school. BYU is a home for me now.

The newsroom is one of my favorite places on campus (we all know South Field, cheering on the soccer team, is my absolute favorite place at BYU). I've made the best friends in my classes and at work. I'm going to miss the newsroom so very much.

My last editorial as opinion editor is also one of my favorites:

The lessons I learned at BYU

It’s hard to say which semester or year was my best at BYU as my college career comes to an end this week. I’ve stopped trying to classify a certain year in my life as good or bad. Like most everything else, it’s not black and white, but many shades of grey.

BYU students and members of the LDS Church often give off this appearance of perfection and the attitude of “if you just have a little more faith, you’ll be fine and happy.” While it’s important to have faith, the fact remains that at times life is just plain hard, and sometimes it’s OK that things aren’t OK. The truth is that we’ve all faced similar struggles at one point or another.
Through the highs and lows of life during my time at BYU, I’ve learned many lessons. Coming into work every day as the Opinion Editor and reading through your letters—hearing about your struggles, complaints, losses and gains—I’ve learned from the lessons you’ve had to learn...
Read the rest here!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Cougar fans, it's time to step up

Oh, I never blogged my latest op-ed from The Universe

It’s a good thing we beat Boise State on Friday; let’s just say the Broncos aren’t my favorite. Also, I was not looking forward to my social media blowing up from fans calling for the players’ heads.

What happened to our “loyal, strong and true” Cougar fans? I’ve found myself disappointed in our fan base for years. Sure we come out in huge numbers in Provo and across the country. We get loud. We praise our athletes and coaches on a job well done.

Heaven forbid we lose a game though.

Read the rest here!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

United we stand, divided we shut down

This week my Op-Ed for The Universe got a bit political. How could I not with this government shutdown? Really.
I don't care what your political beliefs are, and you probably don't care about mine. This isn't about which side is right. This isn't about the issues on the table. That's a whole other discussion. This is about the laziness across our government and the way in which issues are dealt.  
We elected these people into office. We voted to keep them in office in the last elections. And now they have allowed a government shutdown. This mentality of Congress dragging every bill or decision out, this mentality of each party fighting the others about everything, has been rampant on Capitol Hill for far too long.

 Read the rest here.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Severing the digital cord

Another Tuesday, another Op-Ed for The Universe.

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Tumblr. That's just six different ways online you can be connected with a single person. Then we can Facetime, text, call and email; we read each other's blogs and send each other Snapchats.
Have you ever really thought about all the ways you can reach one person? You can keep tabs on many of your friends without even talking to them. You can keep tabs on people without them even knowing you are keeping tabs on them.
Social media and all the forms of digital communication we have help us keep connected to our friends and family, but what about when, for whatever reason, we need to sever ties with someone?
Read the rest HERE


Sunday, September 22, 2013

Post Secret revisited

Remember when I used to post about Post Secret all the time? Wasn't that grand? I've still been reading them every single Sunday and saving my favorites; I've talk about how I feel about Post Secret. However, I haven't shared any.

Welllllll, it's been much to long.

Some brand new, some recent, some I-don't-even-know-how old.
Enjoy :)

Since I don't even speak French. It says (according to 
Frank—so probably Google Translate): "I am never as 
happy as in my armchair with a book in my arms." 
Goodness, I love reading.

How much does this resonate with me? A lot.

My RA has been there for me since she was my RA 
when I was a freshman. She's one of  my closest 
friends, and I miss her dearly! Even though we don't, 
and never will again, see each other/talk every day like 
we did four years ago, we've stayed in contact & I'm so 
glad we have :) So this just reminded me of 
her and how awesome she is.

Friday, September 13, 2013

I came in like a Wrecking Ball

You know what, I'm just going to say it:

I watched the heck out of Hannah Montana with my younger sister. Who WOULDN'T want the best of both worlds? I have a handful of Miley Cyrus songs on my iPod. If "We Can't Be Tamed" comes on, it's a jam fest. It's catchy and makes me feel a little awesome; so what? And don't act like you never sang your heart out in the car to The Climb.

We Can't Stop. *sigh* I like to hear the chorus every once in a while on the radio and that's it. It's so dumb, and I'm concerned what else I would find on that album.

So, I like some things Miley does; I don't like some things. Therefore, I feel like I'm being pretty objective.

The VMA performance was a debacle. It would have been a debacle if ANY artist performed that way.

VMA, Disney, "She's supposed to be an idol to young girls", blah blah blah controversies aside, Miley Cyrus's Wrecking Ball is a really good song, but people are losing their minds about it. Probably because the VMAs has put Miley in the center of Hollyweird for the time being.

But give it the chance it deserves. Its lyrics are powerful and are delivered fairly powerfully. The writers turned out a great song that many people could easily connect with. It brings the emotion without holding back. And the video, albeit a bit too much, has a fantastic concept.

Perhaps if in the video she was a bit more clothed... Actually, really, I don't even care about that. It's all very symbolic/metaphorical, and I kinda like it. It's very stripped down, which last time I read the lyrics (five minutes ago) that's what the song is all about. Sometimes after trauma in your personal life you do feel like you are left with absolutely nothing.

If it was another artist who started out as an "adult" and had a mature approach and audience since becoming famous, no one would have batted an eye.

Honestly, just keep that dang tongue in your mouth Miley, it's *shudders* blegh. The problem is the forced sensuality she's portraying. She's forcing it and it's awkward and a bit trashy. That's all there is to it. It's that simple. That's what makes us uncomfortable.

The video's director took the approach of stripped down and sensual. When he should have taken the stripped down and broken/sharp approach. Contrasting the white to a more broken-rocker side. It would have been golden. The song isn't about sex appeal. But the video is. That's its issue.

The Disney stars only have a few options:

They can stay with Disney and "Disney appropriate" things their whole lives. But frankly, Disney is a stepping stone for the most part, and if they don't move on their careers dissipate. Disney is their start and we have to allow them to grow up and live their lives. It doesn't take away from those days. It doesn't somehow turn Hannah Montana into a bad show. Let your kids watch and look up to Hannah Montana. I'll say it again. HANNAH MONTANA (which, again, the whole point of that show was looking up to the star, not the girl underneath the wig and sunglasses)

They can understand their standing as "good Disney kid" and their role model status, remember what Disney did for them and appreciate those days. Then they can mature into who they want to be and take their careers where they want. If it isn't harmonious with Disney, they don't throw it in our faces. They take responsibility. Thank you Demi Lovato (especially Demi) and Selena Gomez. They aren't without scandal, but they've navigated the Hollywood limelight better than most and have left the Disney personas in good shape.

Last, they can flip a 180ยบ and throw it Disney's face that they aren't Disney stars anymore. They are their own person who is grown up and can do whatever they want. We'd prefer they just keep it classy, but that's not the case all the time. I would prefer everyone, regardless if they were on Disney or not, to keep it classy. But pigs can't fly so....

Thursday, September 12, 2013

9/11: Never forget

My editorial this week for The Universe is on 9/11. It was a bit emotional to write, but I'm very grateful to have the opportunity to talk about it in a more formal setting.

It is emotionally difficult to remember the events of 9/11. Planes slammed into buildings; smoke and flames billowed over skylines. People jumped to their deaths rather than slowly succumb to smoke and fire. First responders fought to save victims and became victims themselves. Towers fell, and walls crumbled. But on that day we came together as a nation, and we can't forget that we must stand together as a nation always. I remember firefighters raising an American flag over the remnants of the World Trade Center. I remember the American flag being draped over the wall of the Pentagon by firefighters and military personnel.

[Read the rest here]

United we stand.
Never forget.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The stakes are higher

I took a blogging hiatus. It was a thing.

After going to NYC for an internship, I'm back at BYU for my last semester. I'm also back at The Universe as the Opinion Editor. Here's my latest Op-ed.

Now, I realize I’m a little extreme. Or a lot extreme. But most students feel those nervous “butterflies” now and again at the beginning of new semesters. It’s because the stakes are higher here, and they get higher each semester. The choices we make the farther we go through college will have a greater influence on our five- and 10-year plans. Many of the choices we are making now will impact us for our entire lives. No wonder the thought of making these decisions makes me ill.
...That’s the most important thing at stake now that we are solely responsible for our choices. What will make up our character? How will we define our lives? You’re deciding how you’re going to live your life.

Read the rest here.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The love we know they deserve

I wrote another opinion editorial for The Universe.

We accept the love we think we deserve

...Others' treatment of us often affects what we think we deserve. I'm not necessarily pointing this out because I think we should all go take a hard look in the mirror and to expect better of ourselves and set higher standards — we do know that. I'm saying we need to use that knowledge to better serve others. We need to be the confidant, the friend that tells our loved ones they deserve so much more than the mediocrity they are grasping at. ...

Read the rest here!!

I really enjoy writing op-eds and I hope you enjoy reading them

Saturday, January 12, 2013

The one and only, Grumpy Cat

Along with Fabulous Bear, "You had one job," and "Well, that escalated quickly" memes, Grumpy Cat memes are my favorite.  Need a good laugh?

Here are a few.


Sometimes Bev and I get a tad carried away with Grumpy Cat.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Time does not heal all wounds

Don't scoff now. It's not even true in a literal sense. When we are physically injured we don't just allow time to heal our wounds. We apply pressure and stop the bleeding; we clean the wound. We stitch or bandage it up, then we change the bandages. We apply antibiotics and ointments. We gingerly protect our wounds and injuries from further damage. We check on it every day to ensure we are progressing and not getting an infection. We apply creams for weeks to diminish scars and lessen their visibility. Yes this all takes time, but we actively work on healing our injuries quickly and aid in keeping them healthy. 

The same is true for our emotional wounds and scars.

Time allows us to get over the shock. It allows us to get used to what we've been through. Time allows our emotions to reduce from a boil to a simmer, allowing us to garner control of our emotions. It allows us to think, to process. Time allows us to be humbled and allows us to get stronger. Time allows the wounds to merely stop bleeding, waiting to be easily ripped open again.

All this can happen, but we will never heal until we heal ourselves. Time allows us to hunker down and weather the storm. But you can't stay ducked down forever; you have to get back up. 

Once we are over the shock and truama, we can really look at what happened to us. Once we can control our emotions we can deal with them and change how we feel. Once we've swallowed our large helping of humility, we can ask for help. Once we have the strength, we can sew up our wounds.

Time doesn't heal the wounds, it prepares us to be able to heal the wounds. We have to remove what is hurting us. We have to protect ourselves against further damage. We have to work on our progress everyday. We reduce the visibility of emotional scars by surrounding ourselves with laughter, love, and service. 

Just as a large and deep gash, if left unattended, could cause us to bleed to death or succumb to infection that will worsen our physical state, emotional wounds left unattended will fester and harden our hearts against the world. 

And even small cuts cause us discomfort and can become infected.