Tuesday, May 19, 2009

What Happens in Vegas…

…stays in Vegas. But I must admit, my recent trip to Las Vegas didn’t include a single scandalous or sordid event that would need to be locked away in a secret vault in Vegas. In fact…I think the population of Las Vegas was probably bored to tears by our mellow group.

I have been SO stressed out lately and I was in desperate need of a relaxing getaway. My friend Tom offered up the perfect excuse to escape town for a few days by suggesting we all meet in Vegas, and I was pretty quick to jump on the bandwagon.

Our weekend consisted of a few distinct elements:

We hung out by the pool…
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...tackled some roller coasters…
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...ate A LOT of food…
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...and were driven around all weekend by our chauffeur, Justin, who is from New York and is therefore accustomed to crazy driving conditions.
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Overall, our quick Vegas jaunt was incredibly low-key and restful, which was just what the doctor ordered. When the weekend came to an end and we began our drive back to Utah, I started to feel a little blue about the fact that I was heading straight back to all the stress and anxiety of daily life. We drove into a patch of gloomy rain, which added to my melancholy mood even more…until we emerged from the rainstorm into the bright sunshine and saw the most beautiful rainbow.

This definitely made me smile…
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I’d like to think that the rainbow was a little sign that life will work itself out and everything will be just fine. Or maybe it was just a kick in the butt to remind me that I am so unbelievably blessed and shouldn’t be complaining about the challenges that tend to stress me out. Or maybe it was none of those things at all, and I was just searching for some special meaning in a simple rainbow.

Either way, I hope I never stop being grateful for my amazing life. The world is wide open to me right now! How lucky am I?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


I have a few sincere words of wisdom I would like to share with all of you:

Chris Cornell is a Rock GOD.

That’s right, I said it. He rocks my world. And that’s exactly what he did at his mind-blowing concert a couple weeks ago!

Here we are waiting for the doors to open…Chris Cornell Concert 002

This picture was taken right after Chris Cornell stepped onstage!
That huge smile didn’t leave my face ALL night.
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We started the concert in the second row, but those of you who know me will understand that second row would never be adequate when Chris Cornell is involved. Once the music got going and everyone started pushing and shoving, I just kept my little hand in a deathgrip on the front rail and managed to squish all the way forward.

Let me paint you a picture. Chris Cornell was no more than a few measly feet in front of me, and I was in a position to see every miniscule detail. I was close enough to see that Chris had Calvin Klein underwear peeking out of his Chip and Pepper jeans. The jeans I speak of were being held up by a shoelace instead of a belt, and were tucked nonchalantly into Fluevog boots. He was wearing a simple bracelet made of little wooden beads, and among his multitude of necklaces was a thin leather cord bearing a tiny turquoise charm. That’s right folks, I could see all of this in perfect clarity.

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Now for the best part of the whole evening…Chris grabbed my hand TWICE during the concert. I almost fainted! And you can make fun of me all you want and say that I’m pathetic and fanatical, but I don’t care because I got to hold Chris Cornell’s hand and you didn’t.

Here are a few highlights from the show:

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About halfway through the concert, Chris Cornell threw a guitar pick into the crowd and Easton caught it in midair! He clearly has some very impressive hand-eye coordination.Chris Cornell Concert 093

I would like to take a second to point out that Easton is the BEST person to go to concerts with. Without him around to be my bodyguard, there is no way I would be able to withstand the front row of a rock concert without getting totally trampled. But when I have Easton placed strategically behind me, I just get to jump around and enjoy the concert while he acts as a very effective barrier from all the wild people around us. I suppose there are some very distinct advantages to dating such a big guy!

We ended up running into our friends Justin and Christine in the swarm of crazy fans, which meant that we were able to expand our team for even more efficient crowd control.

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By the end of the concert, I was running on pure adrenaline and continuing to scream myself hoarse. When Chris Cornell finally said good night and walked offstage, I felt a surge of disappointment…until the guitarist handed me the guitar pick he had been using and the drummer gave me one of his drumsticks! Oh what a night.

Here I am with my loot from the concert. Lucky lucky me.Chris Cornell Concert 139

Life can be so fun sometimes! Music has always had an amazing power to make me happy. I’ll never forget such an incredible concert…or the feeling of Chris Cornell’s beautiful hand in mine.

And Chris…if you happen to stumble upon my blog and are reading these words, I’d like you to know that I LOVE YOU!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother’s Day!

I have the best mom in the world.

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No, seriously. I know you’re sitting there thinking, “Come on now, don’t exaggerate.” But really…my mom is absolutely, positively, unquestionably, indubitably, assuredly, unconditionally the GREATEST mom in existence.

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One time I picked up my mom’s scriptures and a small scrap of paper fell to the floor. I hastily scooped the paper into my hand, intending to return it to the front pocket of the scripture case, and I glanced with mild interest at the words written on the little note. The paper had clearly been given to Mum at church, and one side was stamped with instructions for each person to write down their hopes and dreams.

I turned the paper over and discovered my mom’s answer to the question, written in her familiar handwriting: “I wish for the happiness and success of my children.”

I have no doubt that Mum is overflowing with hopes and dreams of her own…but I am certain that she would willingly sacrifice everything in this world to ensure the happiness of her children. My sisters and I are so, SO lucky to have a mother who loves us so much.

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One day I hope to repay my mom for her selflessness and generosity by purchasing her a luxury condo on the beach where she can eventually enjoy retirement. Sounds pretty plush, eh? Although I have no doubt that she would appreciate the gesture, even extravagant real estate seems to pale in comparison to everything my mom has done for me over the past 28 years of my life.

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I love you, Mum! You are my best friend and I don’t know what I would do without you. I love the way we can sit and talk for hours and hours, and I am constantly amazed that we somehow never manage to run out of things to say. No one else is capable of making me laugh until my cheeks hurt the way you do! You guide me through every twist and turn that life throws in my direction, and you offer infallible support whenever I struggle. I am so grateful for you, and I hope that I can always take care of you and enrich your life the same way you have always done for me. Happy Mother’s Day!

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