Saturday, January 31, 2009

Links

I decided to post a few links on my sidebar, most of them to pictures of my life over the past couple years.  So if you haven't had the chance yet, feel free to check out our engagement, wedding and bridal albums.  I also included links to our picasa pages which will be periodically updated.  

First Sight

I clearly remember the first time I saw him. I had switched apartment complexes over Christmas break at BYU, so I had a fresh start for 2007 in a new place where everyone already knew each other. It was my first or second week at church in my new singles' ward, and like any other warm-blooded female, I let my eyes wander before the meeting started. They didn't get far.

He was seated on the stand in a sharp-looking suit. Sandy blond hair, prominent cheekbones, lean physique, and blue eyes that were out of this world. He was beautiful. And since he was speaking in church, I knew I'd have the excuse to unabashedly stare at him for at least fifteen minutes. When the Bishop announced the names of the speakers, I tried to match his face with one of the names. I decided he was Eric, the first counselor in the Sunday School Presidency. I was wrong. He was Jay, the Sunday School President. I vaguely remember that he talked about (what else?) Sunday School, but I don't remember any of the particulars; I was too busy watching him smile.

If my life were a chick flick, after the meeting we would have walked toward each other in slow motion in the 4/4 time of the violin music that suddenly blocked out every other sound, and he would have put his hand on my cheek as I gazed into his eyes, and we would have said profound things like:
Jay: "I'm Jay."
me: "Hi."
Jay: "Hi."
me: "You're beautiful."
Jay: "That's my line."
me: "Oh."
Jay: "Let's get married."
me: "Tonight."
Jay: "What was your name?"

But of course, my life isn't quite that easy (or sappy), and the reality is that he didn't even really talk to me or ask me out for three. whole. months. Okay, so it wasn't entirely his fault that he's classy and refused to ask a girl out who had a boyfriend (though not at the time he gave that talk, mind you), but it is entirely his fault that he's sensitive and wanted to give her a whole month to get over him when she was finally single again.

And that, my friends, was the beginning of the rest of my life.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Confessions of a Compulsive Reader

compulsive: adj. The type of behavior a person exhibits that is overpowering, repeated, and often irrational. – from the Addictionary

When Jay and I were on our honeymoon, we had a lot of fun being lazy. One of my favorite memories is of the two of us lounging on hammocks by the ocean reading a novel together. In fact, to this day (7.90 months later), I cannot listen to Jay read without being reminded of Ender's Shadow by Orson Scott Card. At the time, I remember thinking to myself, "What a fun tradition this will be!" I made tentative mental lists of all the books we would read aloud to each other. I envisioned the two of us, fifty years down the road, cuddled up on the couch in front of a fire as we read together, my plans filmed in the rosy tints of honeymoon bliss.

I generally pride myself on being fairly self-aware. I've muddled through girly and adolescent inferiority complexes along with a fair bit of localized arrogance, but I think I now reside in a usually happy medium where I'm pretty conscious of my strengths, weaknesses, and limitations. I typically have a good idea of what constitutes an achievable reality for me. That said, I now realize how truly addled I was by the so-called "honeymoon phase." Allow me to explain.

I have always loved books. Before I was literate, my parents would tirelessly read me stacks upon stacks of books (Benefit of Being the Oldest Child #8: Parents may be inexperienced, but they are not yet burned out). When I could string letters together into words on my own, I began to devour books (in a figurative sense, unlike my younger sister, Sara, who has always been more of a literalist). I was the second grader who would check out 10 Nancy Drew books from the library and be finished with them all less than a week later. This had less to do with being a somewhat advanced reader or a fairly fast reader than it was to do with the simple fact that I could not pry my nose out of a book to save my life (or get my chores done, or play with friends, or do my homework...).

I wish I could say that time has mellowed me and I can now ration out an interesting book over a week or two, but alas, such is not the case. Once I get sucked in, I tend to neglect my responsibilities, my husband, eating, school, a reasonable bedtime, and personal hygiene. I am just not a responsible reader. I'll camp on the couch in my pajamas for the 3 to 8+ hours it takes me to finish a book, growling at anyone who dares interrupt me.

Unfortunately, this aspect of my character does not generally apply to "good" books (i.e. non-fiction, self-improvement, educational, or most "classic" literature), the Brussels sprouts and Metamucil of the book family. No, my literary diet consists of the written equivalent of chocolate cake and bon bons—mass amounts of sugar and refined carbohydrates—with an occasional dose of printed heroin (Dan Brown comes to mind).

Jay and I have finished one or two books together since our honeymoon. Jay and I have also started over ten books together since our honeymoon. I wish I could say that we didn’t finish the books together because we just got too busy or because Jay was a stinker and would read with a flashlight under the covers after I fell asleep. I wish I could say that.

My name is Lindsay, and I am a compulsive reader.

And now if you'll excuse me, I have a book to finish.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Skills

Back in my single days (I love the slightly condescending tone that introduction conveys, especially since my entire life minus the past 7.67 months has consisted of "single days"), I was determined to develop a retinue of impressive skills that would knock the socks off of any potentially marriageable partner. The list was rather lengthy and included entries that were practical (be proficient at cooking more things than brownies and quesadillas), common (learn to knit), and (yes, I admit it) ridiculous (practice different techniques while brushing teeth in front of a mirror to minimize looking like a choking, spitting, rabid woman). (In case you're wondering, I think I accomplished the first two rather admirably; alas, I've given up on the third as a lost cause.)

Really, though, the one thing I most wanted to develop (on my "practical" list, though others might allocate it elsewhere) was prodigious parallel parking skill. I thought nothing could be more impressive than a woman who could zip right into a cramped spot without her date having to back her up or (worse) trade her places and park the car himself. To accomplish this goal, I avoided buying parking passes where possible at BYU and did most of my parking on the streets. I gave myself double points for parallel parking in snow; triple points if I had to park on uneven piles of hardened snow and ice (gas it...a little more gas...burst of speed--SLAM ON THE BRAKES as you clear that ice mound so you don't hit the car behind you). Yes, I was pretty hard core. And, if I do say so myself, I got pretty good at it. Especially considering that during my first year of attempts I had to pull in and out of a parallel spot at least ten times before I got in at the right angle.

So why am I writing about this? In the year I've lived in Texas, I haven't had much opportunity to park along curbs (which I really am grateful for), and I'm sad to say my parallel parking skills are not what they used to be. Who can tell whether that's from lack of practice or simply because now that I've landed my man (who was floored by my skills, by the way) I don't really need them anymore? At any rate, today at school I executed a perfect parallel parking job in a relatively tight space (maybe two feet of wiggle room? It's tighter than it sounds!) in a matter of ten seconds or less. I was so pumped. I even took pictures of it with my phone.

If my parents ever read this, particularly my dad, they will not be impressed (though Mom will be charitably happy for me, as is her style), for they are parallel parking demons. I kid you not. I think it's a result of living in San Francisco for four years where congestion was awful and parking was worse--so give 'em two centimeters of "wiggle room" and they were in that spot. On hills that were 91 degrees steep. In a manual car. Demons.

In conclusion, for those of you looking for something impressive to add to your resume to help you attract that special someone, give parallel parking a try.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Garden


Jay has had this bee in his bonnet for the past few months that he wants to start a "garden."  I love fresh fruit and veggies, so I was all for it, except for four things:
1. we live in an apartment
2. we picked this particular apartment specifically because it didn't get much sun 
3. San Antonio has a lot of plant predators, from weird little grasshoppers to fungus
4. I kill things

My doubts notwithstanding, tonight for family home evening Jay, the eternal optimist, and me, his eternal wife, went to a nursery to buy some strawberry starts.  The employees made me feel about the same as when I take my car into the shop (only not quite as dumb), but we picked out a few cute berry plants (pictured below).  We also made an impulse buy: a few bell pepper starts (pictured above).  We lugged home way too much potting soil and a couple plastic planters, then got our hands dirty while potting the plants.  

Yes, I'm skeptical, but it would be thrilling enough to eat home grown peppers and berries this spring that I will happily eat my words if I'm wrong.  

Reason to move into a house #24: yard space for an actual garden.   

My Life in Tune

Naming a blog is hard.  When it comes to email addresses, I generally pick one that's as close to my name as possible.  Though tempted, I chose not to do that with my blog.  Partly for partial privacy, partly for something new.   But what to name it?  

I settled on "my life in tune" for several reasons.  Music has long been a driving force in my life--I love listening to it and making my own.  I've always had a sensitive ear, and I can hear the beats between notes when one tone is just a little off from another.  I do not have "perfect pitch," but for me the concept of being in tune is a vivid one.  In music, definitely, but also in life.  I am constantly striving to keep myself in tune with the Spirit, with my family, friends and others' needs, with my responsibilities, belief system and education, and with my goals and what I want to become.  

I also must add that the thought of my life in literal tune, or my life as a song, appeals to me.  I've always secretly wished to live in a musical; it would have been so much more healthy after a breakup to belt out a female-rage song on a street corner complete with angry dance moves than to cry for days and eat half my body weight in Ben and Jerry's.  

Though my personal pitch sometimes vacillates, thanks to all of you who add harmony to my life.  

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Firsts

I am a person who works best in the middle of things.  I'm not such a good starter or a good finisher, but I know how to live it up in the middle.  I think that is why creating a blog has been such an ordeal: in order to have a blog, I had to start a blog.  And that meant not only picking a name for it, but also (oh horrors) writing a first post.  (Not to mention creating a somewhat aesthetically pleasing layout, but owing to my severely crippled "scrapbooking-crafting-etc." gene, I imagine that this aspect will be a chronic work-in-progress.)  I'm also ridiculously (and selectively) perfectionistic, so publishing these first few posts without re-reading them thousands of times is going to take an act of enormous will.  My hope is that after "these first few" posts, I will have reached the beginning of the middle (or at least the end of the beginning) and loosened up a bit.