I'm an animal lover. From the moment I was able to cognitively form an opinion until my Junior year of high school, all I wanted to be was a veternarian. Even though my career goals have shifted, my love for animals is still in tact. 

Growing up my sister and I both had rodents: a guinea pig, rabbit, hamsters, and mice. Needless to say, seeing a rat in the NYC subway station hardly phases me (if I saw a spider though, I would have a mild heart attack).

Recently while I was laying on my bed, talking to my Mom on the phone, I saw something moving out of the corner of my eye. 
"Hold on Mom... there's something in my room"
"There's someone in your room!?!?"
"No Mom, I saw something move and I think...yup... I just saw him again. I have a mouse in my house."
"Aww a mouse! You can name it Tom!"
And this is how Tom entered my life. I now see him several times a day and I'd be lying if I said I was grossed out. I know it's unsanitary (and the thought of not minding a little mouse makes people look at me like i'm some kind of a freak) but he's harmless and cute and i'm a little lazy. However, once the roomates found out they freaked out.  

Katie suggested a sticky trap- I denied. Those traps are completely inhumane! They make the mouse suffer and starve to death. Lauren suggested poison. The last thing I wanted was the mouse eating poision and dying somewhere not to be found. 

So alas, I went to the hardware store today and looked at the options. We could either catch and release him, or use a snap trap. The clerk at the store said if I release Tom into the wild (and by wild I mean Central Park) he will find his way back to his family, and inevitably back into my apartment. I don't know if I believe this guy- he hardly looked like a rodent expert, but his guess was better than mine. 

I have no idea what I was thinking a snap trap looked like- but I was not expecting my life to suddenly become a Ben and Jerry cartoon. I guess with our technology constantly improving, I  am always shocked to find things that have stayed the same. Did you know that snap traps literally still look like this?
I bought a couple packs of them, and made my way home, suddenly feeling very sad. I know Tom shouldn't be in my apartment but is killing him really the answer? Lauren helped me set the trap up in my room, on a piece of newspaper, with some blue cheese seductively crumbled in the prime spot. Lauren could see I was a little distraught.

"I've been thinking. Instead of Tom why don't we call the mouse Bin Laden."

"Bin Laden?" I replied.

"Yea- that way you won't feel so bad about killing him. We're just gonna kill Bin Laden."

So here it is: Bin Laden (the mouse) just like Bin Laden (the terrorist) is being hunted by Americans and is nowhere to be found.


My future husband.

Lately i've been thinking about my future. It will hopefully encompass a lot of things like a mission, marriage, career, kids, grand kids.... I could go on and on (don't worry, I won't).

Let's face it: we are constantly bombarded with 'Carpe Diem-like quotes' such as:
'Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind of the present moment'. -Buddah

I understand and embrace the idea of living in the present (one of my last blog posts was about it).  However, I don't think it's harmful every once and awhile to get excited about the future. I find it a useful way to remain motivated through the journey. 

One night during this 'day-dreaming' I began thinking about my future husband. What will he look like? What will his passions be? Will he love me as much as I know i'll love him? Questions flooded my mind as I began the descent into sleep; but before I entered the realm of dreams, I remember thinking one distinct thought. 

It's going to be so wonderful falling asleep with your arms around me.

I can't spend my life yearning and crying over what I don't have. It's pointless and destructive. That doesn't mean however, that I have to be thrilled going to bed alone every night. There are some things in life that will inevitably be better when he's around, and I think it's healthy to acknowledge that.

So wherever you are, future husband, I can't wait for you to come into my life. I know that having you will not solve all of my problems. It will, however, make a lot of things abundantly sweeter :)



This is what Mormons believe... love.


Mormon Mafia

Every Mormon knows the phrase "Mormon Mafia". And if you're a Mormon and you've never heard it... shame on you.

The last time I used the phrase was to explain why 12 men in shirts, ties, and name tags showed up to help me and my roomates move into our new apartment. 

My friend Sam was excited that he almost had enough people for a baseball team called 'The Elders', until I explained to him that missionaries couldn't just go play baseball whenever they wanted. We all had a lot of laughs about the Mormon's always having other Mormon's backs etc etc. 

This didn't become a truly touching phrase until tonight.

I was cut early at work and could have easily left at 11pm. However, I saw my friend Andre get slammed with several tables and decided to go help out and take an order for him. I approached a table of 6 women and cheerfully asked if they were ready to order. Before anyone could speak, one of the girls said "are you wearing a CTR ring?" (For all you non Mormon's out there, these initials stand for Choose The Right- it's kind of the Mormon version of What Would Jesus Do.)

"Yes!" I replied.
"Are you Mormon?"
"I am!" I said enthusiastically. "Are y'all?"
"We are!"

They were from New Mexico on their 10th annual girls weekend, visiting one of their friends who lives here in New York City. They were so excited to hear about my life in the city and were even more thrilled at the news that I am currently preparing to serve a mission.(Surprise for those of you who don't know yet!)

When Andre approached the table, they gushed about how much they loved me and at the end of the evening, after they had paid, they left me an extra $10 and wrote "Good Luck!" on the check. The eldest of the ladies came right up and gave me a huge hug, kindly whispering "good luck with everything!" in my ear. 

It almost made me cry. I felt so incredibly loved at that moment. Loved by 6 women I had just met and probably will never see again.

I love my Mormon Mafia.


"They don't understand, do they?"

I was talking with my wonderful sister on the phone today about living life.

Her explanation is to pack as many things into your life as possible. To see it all rather than miss anything. She said "This life is full of so many amazing things that I won't be able to experience once mortality is over. I want to experience it all!"

I used to feel this way too. In some ways, I agree. We have only one chance at life, shouldn't we make the most out of it? However, this is where I feel a line needs to be drawn. You see, life isn't only about the big moments. If we define living by the 'finish lines' we cross, then we are missing the point. We are missing the journey.

In the play "Our Town" by Thornton Wilder, a woman who is taken well before her time, pleads for one chance to go back to her life. Although the narrator warns her of the consequences she chooses to return anyway. It's her birthday (no monumental day in the scheme of her life) and she is slowly distraught by how we living beings brush over the minute details in our lives. Here is an excerpt from the play when she becomes so frustrated by how non-challant her mother is acting towards her, she decides to leave:

"Emily: I can't! I can't go on! (sobs a moment) It goes so fast. We don't have time to look at one another. I didn't realize. So all that was going on and we never noticed?
 Take me back- up the hill- to my grave. 
But first: Wait! One more look! 
Goodbye world! Goodbye Mama and Papa- Goodbye to clocks ticking- and my butternut tree! and Mama's sun flowers- and food and coffee- and new ironed dresses and hot baths- and sleeping and waking up! Oh earth, you're too wonderful for anyone to realize you! Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it- every, every minute?

Stage Manager: (Quietly) No- Saints and poets maybe- they do some.
Emily: They don't understand- do they?
Mrs. Gibbs: No dear. They don't understand."

My point is, how easy is it to let our lives be defined by the big accomplishments? How often do we let them overshadow the true meaning of living? The sun flowers, the food and coffee- and new ironed dresses and hot baths and sleeping and waking! 

Please do not misunderstand; of course our Bucket Lists, goals, dreams and aspirations should be worked for and sought after. These accomplishments should be cherished and acknowledged. However, next time you wake up and take a deep breath, or smell bacon cooking on the stove, or feel the raindrops on your face; take a moment to pay homage to what you are experiencing. You, in that moment, are living.