Friday, December 31, 2010

All Good Things Must Come To An End....

2010 has reached its close and with bittersweet feelings that I say goodbye. It has been an amazing year with many ups and downs. Definitely one of the best though.

School has been one of my saving graces this year. When I look back on all that I accomplished and everything that I was able to be a part of, I am overwhelmed. This past year has honestly changed my life.
I'm a nerd and found this picture today. It makes me somewhat happy though!

I spent the summer in Virginia and it was phenomenal! Spending time with Kyle and Jess and their family was such a highlight. I don't know what I would do without Jess in my life. She was my rock over the summer. When I got a little crazy and my mind wouldn't cooperate--she was there! And I loved everything about Virginia. Heck, I even loved my job! Who and bugs! But to be honest, it was really just all about being able to work with Kyle and spend more time with him.

I love Christmas. And this Christmas was extra special! We travelled up to Hinton to spend the holidays with Kennedy and Eric and their little ones! A day with the Holts is always one to remember. But we got an extra surprise this Christmas! Shayla went into labor 5 1/2 weeks early and it was a Christmas miracle! There was one bed available in all of Alberta. So at one in the morning on the 23rd, they ambulanced KJ and Shayla to Edmonton and baby Jonah James Wood was born that night. He weighed 5 pounds 10 ounces, which is a really good size for being a premie baby. Jonah was transferred down to Lethbridge on Sunday and is still in NICU but doing really well. And he is honestly just the cutest little baby anyone ever did see!

Christmas is always a special time. I have many fond memories with my family around the holiday season. But each year, right around 10:00pm on December 24th, my dad and brothers approach me with this wildly desperate and pleading look in their eyes....and I just know. I know that I will be spending the next 2-3 hours wrapping their Christmas presents for them. My dad actually came to me earlier in the month this year but decided to dispense with the theatrics because he knew I would just do it. I've recently come across this blog about 1000 awesome things and thought this was so true. Don't you just love wrapping presents and how it is the best thing when the wrapping paper lines up perfectly!

This is un-awesome.

This is awesome!!

I want to be better at noticing those little things that make life awesome!

Do you want to know how I spent all last Christmas...???

Yup! That is what I did. And this Christmas hasn't been a whole lot different! It's been amazing and relaxing and just what I needed.

So this year has been amazing! But I am going to make 2011 even better!!!

PS- Happy Birthday Noah!!!!!!
I can't believe how big you are!!!!!

What a stud muffin!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Suddenly I See

I woke up this morning and could see the twinkle in the angel's eye on the Christmas tree. Big deal? Yes! Normally I just see some blur of a color blob. Miracle? Practically. I had laser eye surgery on Friday. Now, I'm sure I know what you are thinking. "Really Katie?! You?? You are such a wimp when it comes to anything like that." And it is so true. But it honestly was one of the best decisions I've ever made.

And really, it wasn't that bad. The appointment was about 4 hours long but the actual operation takes about 1 minute per eye. Just before I went under the knife, I found out that my parents helped pay for the surgery. I have the best parents in the entire world. When they put the numbing drops in my eyes, they couldn't tell what were tears and what were drops.

Merry Christmas everyone!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Baby, It's Cold Outside...

Well actually it's not really that cold outside but I am definitely not complaining! I've decided that I wouldn't even mind if we don't have a white christmas! But knock on wood!

School ended with a bang. I didn't have any finals so I've basically been done for a week, and then plus some extra tutoring here and there. I realized more about how much of a wimp I am though. The last week of school I practically lived in the IB Commons lab working on a project for my Computerized Accounting class. It was a group project but I have issues 'letting go' so I kind of just did the whole 40 hour ordeal on my own (for some odd strange reason my partner didn't mind in the slightest)! I was helping another group set up their company and the guy, Ron, called me Stevie. I didn't correct him and so it went on...and on and on. "Look at the numbers that Stevie calculated for depreciation." "Check to see if Stevie has the same invoices." "Stevie, how did you set up your payroll?" After a couple hours I was getting ready to leave when one of the guys I tutored came over and asked, "Katie, could you come and look at our accounting case? Our numbers aren't working." Ron asked what my name was and then apologized profusely because he said he had been calling me 'Stevie' for the past few hours. I laughed and said, "Oh really! I hadn't even noticed!" There was a girl named Stevie in my last ward so I wonder if Ron had ever met her. Ok so dumb story but...well that's as good as it gets.

I came across this video and thought it was the most clever thing I've seen in a long time!

Merry Merry Christmas!

PS- After Friday, I'll be able to wake up in the morning and be able to see!!!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

I'm Still Alive!

School is coming to a close pretty quick here! I have absolutely loved this semester! It hasn't been too stressful and I have filled my time with a lot of tutoring...a lot!! For the most part it has been a great experience. But my inability to say no has gotten me into trouble once again!

My roommate, Jen, asked if I could tutor some of her friends in their University Stats class. I wasn't sure how their class would differ from the class I took, but I said I would meet up with them and take a look with what they cover. I looked through the front of their notes and the content looked somewhat I thought, "hmm, why not". That weekend I took a hard look into their text book and realized this wasn't just any old University Stats class. No, it was a Psychology University Stats class. Oh great! I spent 8 hours that weekend studying their class! What had I gotten myself into!?! But so far so good. I just have to spend more time going over their material than I do all of my own classes combined!

The formulas are absolutely crazy!

And they have gotten progressively worse since these ones.

But really, school has gone well so far. I am excited for the next few years.
I just want to brag about one of my students for a minute. Her first exam didn't go so well when she got a 63% on it. She really wanted to do better so she signed up for tutoring. We worked really hard together. Her next exam she aced with a 97%! I was so proud of her.

Wouldn't you love to come home from church to this?!?

Some guys thought it would be funny to put crayfish in our sinks and tub. We decided to thank them and cooked the creepy crawly little guys for their supper. Crayfish turn a bright orange color when cooked...gross.

I just took a picture with my phone so quality is poor but this one was really big and disgusting....take my word for it!

Melanie, my good friend from England, called me last week! I miss that girl so much. Anyways, she randomly got a phone call from this guy who said, "You don't know me but I recognized you at church today with a picture I have of you sticking your tongue out." Needless to say she was a little creeped out! But the guy went on to explain that he was a friend of mine and his name was John (well actually he would have said Elder Spencer). John is on a mission right now in the same area where I was when I was over seas nannying. He is serving in my old ward and has gotten to meet all of my dear dear friends over there!

This is the picture he recognized her from....she wasn't impressed!

But isn't she gorgeous! I miss her like this dickens and think she needs to come over here to visit!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

A Weekend of Firsts

Finally! Something to report! Although I will admit it's kind of bitter sweet. For obvious reasons I can't post everything but some of you know what I am talking about. So I have moved into good ol' Lethbridge on the West Side and it has been great! You all know my goal has been to be more outgoing and try and get out more. Well, I think I have been doing a pretty bang up job with that. This past weekend, there was a YSA activity "Battle of the Airbands". And no, I didn't dress up and dance around like a crazy person pretending to play an air guitar...but I did take part in a skit in between the acts while people set up. That is me taking leaps and bounds I must say!

Here is the skit that we did. Haha. It went really well.

I was girl number 1...not BonQuiQui. Ha that was my roommate, Jen. She fit the part perfectly!!

Then on Saturday, I went to my first hockey game ever! Yup, ever! I feel like I am officially a Canadian now. But before that excitement began, I was taken to the Calgary Tower for dinner. It was amazing! We had Calamari as an appetizer. I had never had it before and I didn't even gag. Impressed!? It's chewy, like everyone says, but not too bad. And the view, outside the window, was amazing.

He had timed things perfectly with the Sunset and everything...

But a date isn't a date without it's awkward moments. When we were first seated at our table, my date excused himself to use the restroom. The waiter came over and asked what our plans were for the rest of the evening. I told him we were going to the hockey game and it was my first game ever! We chatted for a bit and then my date returned to the table. The waiter looked over at him and said, "So, you're out with a Virgin tonight!" That didn't make things weird at all...The waiter then clarified that he meant I was a Hockey Virgin. I am positive there were better words that could have been used.

The game was amazing though! It was the Flames vs. Oilers face-off. I have always had friends say that Hockey Players are hot and sexy but I never saw the appeal. I always imagined black eyes, missing teeth--you know, the beat up look. But I must admit there was some definite eye candy on that ice as the game was getting ready to start. And our seats were 10 rows from the ice! I couldn't believe how close we were. I have never been much of a hockey fan but there was a moment or two when my eyes welled a tear.

There were so many people!

And we were so ridiculously close!

So I was somewhat disappointed that there weren't any fights but one of the goals went in off of someone's face and there was blood all over the ice. I could have gone with a not as great view of that...but pretty intense huh!

Wahoo! And the flames won!!!

So it was definitely a weekend of firsts. Now, I know there are several details missing from this post so if you want the rest of the details you will have to give me a call...

And I found this song and now I love it (obvious reasons)! Really you just have to listen to the first minute and a half.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Dream A Little Dream...

It has been quite some time since I have made a new post. It's sad to think that right around the time I decided to start a life got a heck of a lot less exciting. Even Kody comments on it. Kody has always been one to appreciate a good drama story. He loves it. Not so much the lack of it lately.

Now just wait. When I say that, don't let the image of me being a drama queen come to mind. I'm not. The exact opposite to be sure! Even my dreams don't have drama. Typical people have crazy dreams. Like the 'being lost in a jungle held hostage by an African tribe that wants to sacrifice you to their tiki god but suddenly saved by blue aliens' sort of dreams. But I'm not typical. No sir. My dreams involve me waking up and getting dressed, going to school and taking notes, driving home and working on homework, and then getting ready for bed...(if I'm real lucky their will be a little down time for pleasure reading). Honest to goodness! Those are my dreams! I wish I could say that my dreams were as such in order to compensate for my real life being fun-filled with crazy adventures and excitement...but I'm trying to be good and not lie. My dreams can get somewhat exciting at times though. Like this one night, in my dream I was taking notes in my Management Accounting class and I distinctly remember drawing a picture of a red truck to help me remember a concept. Then the following night, (now this is where it gets REALLY exciting!!), in my dream I got home from school and was reviewing the notes from class, when I saw the picture of the red truck I had drawn the night before!!! Amazing isn't it! My dreams connected from one night to the next!

Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "Dare to live the life you have dreamed for yourself. Go forward and make your dreams come true." Oh dear. Is anyone else a little concerned for me?

So now that you are reading this and feeling sorry for the sad and studious life I lead, maybe next time you will stop and forgive me for waiting so long in between posts!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

New York, New York

So my time in Virginia was coming to a close and it made my heart want to break. I decided to do something on my last full weekend in with New York being only 4 hours away, how could I NOT go!! I booked a bus ticket on the Washington Deluxe and was on my way to the Big myself! Not sure if that was brave or just plumb crazy. But talk about adventure in and of itself.

I got off the bus and had no idea where I was, or where I was going, or even how to get there. But there was no wiping the crazy grin off my face as I grabbed 15 different maps, twisting them this way and that, in a lame attempt to get my bearings. I found a subway and was in the process of trying to figure out which platform I needed to be on....and what with my back pack on, my maps in hand, and the deer-caught-in-the-headlight look in my eyes, I just screamed easy target! Ha I had several people come and offer to help me find my way...and then wouldn't it be so great if I were to 'donate a substantial amount to get them a bus ticket so that they could care for their sick aunt's brother's long lost step child'. Yes, twas an adventure. But I found my way to the Broadway Hostel where I was able to get settled in and drop my stuff off so I could go out to explore. I grabbed my maps and was off once again!

There is just so much to see in New York and I knew I wouldn't be able to fit everything in--so how does one decide what to see and what to leave for another time? I took a very logical approach. I hopped on the Subway, picked a random person, and would get off wherever they did. Then it was just a matter of finding where I was on my handy dandy map and squeezing in the many sights....well at least until my feet went numb and I would have to hop on the nearest subway to do it all over again! I was able to see Times Square, Central Park, the Brooklyn Bridge, Lady Liberty, and much much more. But the absolute highlight of the vacation...WICKED!

I have wanted to see Wicked for as long as I can remember. So check another one off my list of things that I want to see and do before I die! It was fantabulous! I can still feel the goosebumps on my arms.

So I did it. I went to the Big Apple by myself--the only city where people make radio requests like "This is for Tina-I'm sorry I stabbed you" (ok so I saw that on a tshirt and thought it was funny-i doubt my mom will see the same humor--but don't worry! I was safe!)

Here is a picture of Central Park. It is just taken on my phone so not the greatest quality but it'll do!

Yes, Times Square really is as bright and busy as people say!

And it is impossible to go to New York without taking a picture of the Statue Of Liberty!

I haven't blogged in a long time so it is a little overwhelming to try and get caught up. Yes this was kind of pitsy but I am hoping to stay on top of things now...We'll see how that goes!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

What Do You Call A Healthy Butterfly?...A Margarinefly!

HaHa! I know! I am so funny! Look at what has happened to me....kinda turning into a bug nerd down here. My life lately has been consumed by pests and healthy eating/living. It has been a weird past few days as I have only worked a regular 8-9 hour shift as opposed to my regular 13-14 hour days. I like it both ways so Life Is Good!! I had the chance to go to DC the other weekend and it was fantabulous. There are so many people!! One thing that I love about big cities is the random busking in the streets. Spot the guys playing the garbage buckets/shopping cart? Spot me with the ridiculously long hair that I am loving!?

We are the ones sitting on the sidewalk.
So I wish I had more adventures to tell. I think Kody is kinda sad about the lack of crazy drama in my life...Hope all is going amazingly well with everyone at home! Love you all!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Life Gave Me Lemonade...

Wow it has been awhile!! Life has been crazy crazy crazy but so good! I love it down here.

So to make a long story short, the night time office person that worked for Kyle had to be let go-she came to work a little tipsy- so I jumped at the chance to work in the office! It is what I have always wanted to do and what I had planned on doing when I came down here to work in the first place. I knew I still needed to grow me a little backbone so I was going to knock from 11-4 and then work in the office from 5-10. But then the day time person decided to move on to something else so I took over full time. It couldn't have gone more perfect. How could I have such great luck?...It most definitely had something to do with my amazing mother who fasted for me more times than I even know. But yes, I love my job. Kyle and I make a dynamic duo! And each day I learn more and more how much of a nerd I really am. The other day I answered the phone "GreenStar Pest Control, this is Katie", and talked to this lady for a bit before transferring her over to Kyle. Kyle answered the call and the lady exclaimed, "Wow, I feel like I am talking to Ken and Barbie!" Nope. Just Katie and Kyle!

And I am excited to welcome a new niece or nephew into my family! KJ and Shayla are expecting. They will be amazing parents. I can just picture KJ now getting crazily excited to go pick out a car seat and stroller.

So ya, life is good.

PS- Can I just say I miss this girl like the dickens!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Virginia Is For Lovers!

What a whirlwind of a month! It seems like just yesterday I was pulling all-nighters to study for finals and trying to find ways to squeeze more tutoring appointments in. School ended with a bang though. It was a busy but fun-filled few weeks. Even though I didn't graduate, I was ahead in my program so the faculty said I should be involved in the Grad Dinner because these students were the ones I went to school with. It was so great! These two teachers have been the most influential throughout my school years. I learned so incredibly much from them.

So school finished and I was off onto my next crazy adventure. GreenStar Summer Sales! It was a long 36 hour drive from Alberta to Virginia. It is so amazingly great to be here with Kyle and Jess and their little family! Partly because Kaden isn't here! Now don't get me wrong, I love my little brother, but whenever he is around---the rest of us are chop liver when it comes to the nieces and nephews! I just love that Grace and Noah are excited to see me and are always asking if 'Aunt Katie' is coming over. Most of the time it is all about Kaden, so it is nice to have the spot light for once.

Summer Sales has been an experience in and of itself!!! It is definitely a lot harder than I thought it would be! But I will forever remember the name of my first lady I sold. Kizzy Shoaf. I can't say I absolutely love what I do but I do think it is good for me. I'm gonna grow me a little backbone!!

So yes, summer sales has been interesting so far. The rest of the office we have here are absolutely awesome though. Everyone is so much fun! I love it! It is so great to be here for the summer. It is gorgeous down here and so green!

I had a crazy experience this past week though!!! My windshield wipers randomly stopped working one day. It wasn't supposed to rain but around 4 o'clock, we were all caught in a terrible downpour. I made it back to my car and was gonna go pick up the other girls so that they could get somewhat dry, but without my wipers I couldn't see a thing! It was crazy and I was in a pickle. So I put my farm-girl upbringing (ha) to good use and decided to improvise. Watch video below for the DIY windshield wiper demo!

So that is all for now! It is kinda a long post but it has been a muchly-needed update!
Hope you enjoyed!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Sweater, n.: garment worn by child when its mother is feeling chilly

Mothers! Is there really anything more wonderful? I know it has been forever since I posted and I will do an update soon, but right now I just want to talk about my mother. I can't even begin to express all my thoughts on what my mother has done and means to me.

I haven't been the easiest daughter these past few years, traipsing across the world from one country to the next. You just never know what I am going to do or where I am going to end up. But whether I am at school in Idaho, nannying in England, slaving in Waterton, studying in Lethbridge, or working in Virginia, I love calling home and just talking to my mother. She has always been a support for me in whatever I am doing. I can be having the roughest day, and my mom just somehow makes it all better.

Whenever we get together, it's always a gong show. Mom, remember our travels down to Rexburg to pick up my school stuff. Or when we went down to Echo with our TV dinners! Even a trip to Lethbridge turns into a crazy event. I will always remember our "clubbing" together in Utah and helping the lady find her way to the hotel with our GPS.

She is an amazing mother and grandma. If evolution really works, how come mothers only have two hands? My mom is the epitome of serving others. She does so much for other people. I will always remember my mom working so hard to fulfill her callings. It is impossible for this post to do justice to all my mom has done for me and others. I love her like the dickens! Heavenly Father knew I needed her for my mom.

I love you mom!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

First Shall Be Last and the Last Shall be FIRST!!

So in my Management Accounting class we had to partake in a Business Strategy Game online. We were put into groups and each week we would make decisions for our company. Our company was Elite and we were in the industry of selling shoes. It's business and shoes....can it get any better than that!!

Well we started the game towards the middle of January and I didn't have a clue in a bucket of what I was doing. Asher's whole goal for the game was just to be ahead of me. He didn't care about coming in first-he just wanted to beat me. There were so many factors that came into play. You had to look at exchange rates, employee incentives, charitable contributions, bank loans, stock sales/purchases, advertising, retail support, plant capacity and upgrades---the list goes on and on!

Does it not just scream complicated?! There were 9 other pages looking just like this one that had to be played with.

But I just didn't have a whole lot of time to sit down and figure out how everything worked. The time came for us to make our first year's decision (year 11) and, well, we absolutely blew it!! We ended up with a negative earnings per share and return on equity!! That shouldn't have even been possible!

Everyone started at 100 overall---we dropped to 25! Ouch!! (And Dash, the team in first, ya that was Asher's!)
So my competitive nature (that I got from my mom) kicked in! I figured there was no way we could bounce back from being down so low, but I was determined to not come in last! That is just not the Wood way of things! So each night before going to bed, I would get on and play with numbers and more numbers-trying to do anything that would increase our standings. By the last year, we were in 4th place with one more decision to go before the game was over. Tensions were building. Stress ran high. Groups would sit secluded in corners, wary of people trying to listen in on their trade secrets. And at 3 o'clock the results were in. It was time to see who came out on top. And obviously if I am blogging about can probably guess!

Yes, the first shall be last and the last shall be first! My professor said he has never seen anyone who was in last place for so long, do such a comeback and take it all!!

So once again, I am kind of a nerd-blogging about accounting and share prices. But please bare with me. Now let's just all hope I can come up on top throughout the next 2 weeks with finals!
I also get to do the Accounting 170 and 175 Open Tutorials this week! Already I have had over 20 students sign up for each! I love doing these!

Monday, March 29, 2010

When All Is Said and Done

What a weekend! It was a great, although altogether disappointing, weekend.
Pictures are kind of ridiculous! One, I HATE pictures. And Two, the other girls in the group were all shorter than 5' 3", so I kind stuck out like a giant... I made them wear heals, while I went barefooted for pictures!

So March 25-27 was the Alberta Deans of Business Case Competition. We left Thursday afternoon and travelled up to Calgary. We settled into the hotel with about 40 minutes to get ready for the Opening Banquet. It was quite the affair, let me tell you. We mingled about and met the other teams. There really were some amazing people involved in this event, the brightest of their schools all around. I felt incredibly inadequate to be counted among them.

But the fun was yet to come...
So Friday we were up at 6:00 -- well that was when my alarm went off. Normally, once my head hits the pillow, I am soo gone! But that night I tossed and turned, waking up every 45 min to an hour, until about 4 o'clock, at which time I just gave up. I pulled out my scriptures, but they were incredibly difficult to read by light of my cell phone so as not to wake my roommate. Finally morning arrived and we left for SAIT. At 8:00am, we were fed and being locked away with the 20 page case. And I literally mean locked away! We were escorted to our team's room which could only be opened from the outside with a key. The case was about a small company in Nova Scotia called Just Us! coffee. They were involved in both retailing and wholesaling and did a lot with Fair Trade. The case gives us the background of the company and kind of where they are at now. We go through and find the problem, and then fix it! Within the first hour we had some camera people come in who wanted to take action shots while we worked through the case. I have never felt so awkward in my life! There was one lady with a huge honking video camera, who would zoom up and around our faces while we were trying to 'act natural'! Another guy was taking still shots and would come well within our personal space bubbles while we were discussing our vision for this company. I was glad when they left!
So till 6 o'clock that evening we were stuck in that little room pouring over this case, trying to come up with a solution and put it to power point. Thank goodness we were able to have scheduled potty breaks. It is almost frightening how much we looked forward to going to the bathroom for a change of scenery....!
At 6 o'clock, we submit the power point and nothing can be added or changed. We had the car ride back to the hotel to unwind, and then the next 8 hours (so till about 2:30 in the morning!) were spent getting ready for the presentation the next day. It had been an exhaustive and draining 20 hour day.
This picture was taken after collapsing onto my bed after being locked in a room all day! Still had the 8 hours to go at this point....I looked worse at the end of that.
Saturday was the presentations. On Thursday, we had picked a number out of the hat to see the order in which groups would present...and we were dead last. Which meant that we couldn't watch any of the other presentations, as you can only watch those after you have presented.

We heard from other people that our group took a very unique and creative approach compared to what other schools had done. We presented a campaign for the company. Here, Just Us! was doing great things in all parts of the world and really wanted to educate people on what was going on globally. Our campaign was called, "It Just Takes One"--stemming from the whole 'power of one' concept. (And Just Us! the company---Just One---get it!!) So this is the concept: (I wish I could show you the presentation-it's just not going to sound as great on this thing)
We would send people a single coffee bean in the mail, with a coupon for a free coffee, inviting them to come in and learn more about what this company was all about. The coffee bean representing the great and miraculous things that can stem from a single seed. They would bring the coffee bean into the cafe and put it in a jar. Then, filling out the back of the coupon, the customer would write down a good deed that Just Us! could feasibly do for the community. For every 100th bean, Just Us! would select a good deed and carry it out. At the end of the campaign, they could do a final donation to a charity of their choice. The idea was, yes, we all want to make the world a better place, but often that starts within the walls of our own homes and communities.

Our presentation and power point and everything went perfectly!! At the end of the presentation, the judges then question us on our strategies and what not. The first judge said we did an amazing job, he loved the idea and really felt like we understood what the company was all about. He didn't have any questions for us and just said he loved everything we did. The second judge reiterated what the first judge had said and asked what we would do after the campaign. We were ready for that question and had an answer prepared. The third judge was actually the owner of Just Us! He also said that he loved the idea and concept of where we were taking this. He said we truly caught the vision of what his company was trying to accomplish in the world. He also didn't have any questions, and just said he loved the approach we had taken things. We left that room on such a high!

We had Deans from other schools come up and say that our group had the best concept and presentation out of any of the groups. We had other students come and say that they loved our presentation and thought it was the best out of all they had seen. Even the cameraman and IT guy came and repeated what others had said and also mentioned that our power point was the best they had seen throughout the past 5 years of being involved in this competition!

But...then we ended up not was really bizarre. We must not have touched on a key point that the judges were looking for. But the great thing is that we had such an amazing time and we felt great about what we had done. If we were to do it all over again, we wouldn't change a thing, Dave and John, our faculty advisors were amazing and helped so much.

The other girls on the team were Chelsa Larson, Kelly Thompson, and Courtney Quenneville, with John Russell on the left, and Dave Kennedy on the right.

I loved the ending quote we used by Edward Hale:

"I am one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I know I can do."

It was so powerful. So that was my weekend. It was great and I am so grateful to have been a part of that group. Now....I just need to survive these next few weeks!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Be Good Girls and Boys

So it has been an amazing weekend. I skipped class and went down to Echo with my family...generally nothing gets better than that! But on Saturday, Elder Bednar was in Lethbridge and did a fireside for the YSA. I am in the institute choir so I got to sit right behind him. It was amazing. And his hair really is as perfect as it looks on TV!

Instead of talking to us for 2 hours, he opened up the whole time for questions. If you could ask an apostle of the Lord anything, what would it be? There was a plethora of thoughts running through my mind but everything was too personal to actually put forth in front of the entire YSA from Southern Alberta. When people asked him questions, he didn't just give them the answer and move on; rather, he put them in the right direction and gave just enough to get started. Then it was up us to find the answer for ourselves and come to our own conclusion. We must be agents unto ourselves. I know what I can do to get my own answers. We need to act and not be acted upon. He talked about being good boys and girls. And that is what I want. I want to be a good girl! There is so much more that I can do.

We simply claim and boldly testify that God speaks. I know that He is mindful of me and knows me personally. Elder Bednar spoke on the differences between objects and agents. He really put the concept of agency into perspective for me. We have already accepted Christ and have made covenants with Him. We can no longer do whatever we want. When we choose to not follow in His ways, we are violating our covenants, not 'exercising our agency'. Elder Bednar put it much more eloquently than I can.

We live in the greatest season in the history of the world! What tremendous blessings and opportunities are before us!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

So Im just a little bit of a nerd...

A couple weeks ago, I was approached by one of my professors and asked to compete in the Alberta Deans of Business Challenge. They take 4 students from our school and we go up to compete against other schools in Alberta, some from BC, and some from Saskatchewan. My professor said it was such an honor for me to be chosen! Here is the link that talks about the competition.

So it's not like High School Musical where they have the little dinger bell thing and we race to see who can solve the equation the fastest, or make a substance turn green and bubbly...
Basically, they lock each team in a War Room (sounds ominous, doesn't it!!) for 10 hours with a 20 page case that we study and prepare. Then the next day we give a presentation before a panel of judges, after which they question us on strategies and how and why we would do certain things. Crazy, yes!

I am super excited to be involved in something like this, but also way stressed. We have meetings each week with the 3 other students, as well as with 2 faculty members that help in getting us prepared. Apparently some schools have been meeting for months already....I guess it's kind of a big deal!

So I have just over 3 weeks to be ready! No pressure. In previous years, the cases have been on anything from the Apple iPod to Lululemon attire. I have no idea what to expect...!