Wednesday, June 17, 2015


"Military Veterans Bring High Self-Efficacy to MBA Programs
Ryan McDermott, a second-year student at Darden [the University of Virginia's School of Business], led a combat mission down the most dangerous road in Baghdad, fought four battles, and wrote a plan for training and deploying 3,600 soldiers, all by the age of 26. Summer Jones, a former naval officer, by 26 had launched Tomahawk missiles off a ship in the Persian Gulf, commanded 200 sailors, and delivered the news of September 11 Pentagon casualties to their families. When her Georgetown University evening MBA classmates wonder how the 32-year-old maintains a full-time job, raises two children, supports her husband in law school, and earns her MBA at the same time, she tells them: “When you've been in a wartime environment, you step back and say, ‘This is easy.'” As if to prove it, she gave birth to her second son just after the first week of the MBA program without missing a day of class." --Organizational Behavior by Kreitner, 10e

I feel I have high self-efficacy, in that, I believe, at my core I will succeed.  I know when I set my mind to something, I will succeed.  Do I get scared of failure?  Of course!  But I know I have a will to accomplish things...and though I may not know how I will accomplish something, I know I can and will.  I pound my goals with sheer will power.  I related, in a sense, to this excerpt from my textbook.  People ask me how I do some of the things I do, particularly with school- but really, I feel like going to school is my reward.  It's my reward from escaping abusive homes and family situations.  It's my reward for living through my teen years.  It's my reward for my goals of unlocking success in my future.  School has long been my rock, my stabilizer.  I love it.  
I like taking my willpower with me in life to accomplish my goals.  With some of the tough experiences I have been through, I know that regardless of what life throws at me, I've been through worse.  I've overcome harder things.  I've made tougher things into positives.  

Sunday, June 14, 2015

What I want for my life

Just a few quick thoughts as I'm doing my homework.  We're talking about ethics in business right now... and as I try to compare it how I will use it in my future, I'm thinking... I want to work for a company that takes social responsibility seriously.  I want to work for a company that is interested in creating profits, but that's not all they care about.  I want to work for a company making a positive impact on the world... on our earth, on our people, on our downtrodden, on our hungry.  I want to work to better the world through innovation and exploration; while still realizing that we as humans have a responsibility to better the world around us.  That responsibility only rises as we become more successful. 

Tuesday, December 23, 2014


My Year:


  • Recovered from getting Lasik.  Best health decision of my life.  Worth every single penny.
  • I took an impromptu trip with my friend Kaila to New York City.  It was my first real experience with the city and it was amazing.  I was able to see Sir Patrick Stewart and Sir Ian McKellen in Waiting for Godot and No Man's Land.  That is an experience I will never forget.  Those two are incredible craftsmen.  I was also able to see Pippin and Chicago.  Another amazing moment was being able to get to tour the United Nations.  It revived my love for foreign affairs.

  • Able to celebrate with loved ones as Equal marriage was legal in Utah for a matter of days.
  • My sweet cousin Jeni passed away.  I was happy I was able to help get help and information out to our family in the months before she passed through making a family website.
  • Saw Next to Normal at UVU.  It touched my soul deep on so many levels.  It is now my go-to show to listen to and to comfort myself when dealing with mental illness in my family.  I was able to see it twice.  The first, with my husband and mother-in-law, and the second with my sister Veronica, best friend Kelton, and my mother.  The sorrow and pain catharsis helped heal my soul a bit and helped prepare me for the coming year.
  • Started to really get close to my Grandma Charlotte and Aunt Leta.  Those are friendships that I treasure so deeply.  Their advice and love means the world to me.


    • Got to really enjoy some fun nights out with people from Fox 13 celebrating Kelton, Darcy, Marie and my birthdays.  It was great and helped create some of my treasured friendships.

    • Threw a fabulous High Tea Bridal Shower for my best friend Brooke.  It was an amazing event in which I got to create a beautiful party and honor my dear friend.
    • Quit Fox 13 after learning a million things about the business, writing and myself.  I made some really great friends there.  I'm so lucky to have been able to work with my best friend, Kelton for months.  It's a time I will always remember fondly. 

    • My best friend Brooke got married.  It was an amazing event full of love, laughter and gorgeous decor.  It went swimmingly and was one of the best events I've ever planned.  I'm so glad I was able to be there and help her plan the start to her happily ever after.

    • I was able to help my best friend, Trish, through one of the hardest things in her life.  I'm so glad I had the opportunity to go to school and learn about the law, and then intern in a practical setting so I can have the skills I do.  I love when I am able to help those I love with the knowledge I have. 
    • My brother, Leo moved in with me.  It has been a wild, crazy, educating ride that I will forever remember.  I'm so glad I have him in my life and that I'm able to get to know what an amazing kid he is.  Being a parent of a 16 year old is not what I had in mind for my life right now at all, but with all of it's insane ups and downs, I know he is beyond worth it.
    • Got bangs.  They're flirty and fun and great.
    • Celebrated our three year anniversary of being married to Alex.  He's been by my side for 7 years through thick and thin.  I married an amazing man that teaches me how to roll with the punches, lets me know I'm always loved and supported, and has a cute butt on top of all that.
    • Took a completely spontaneous trip to Orlando to join Alex on a trip.  We went to Sea World and enjoyed our time together.  It reminded us how much we enjoy and love spending time together.
    • Packed up our house when we thought we were moving into a new house-- only to be living out of boxes for nearly 3 months.
    • 40's Photo-shoot with husband and bestie (and phenomenal photographer) Megan, followed by my surprise anniversary present to Alex of a private dinner in the woods with our own private chef, and then the night spent at Hines Mansion (where we spent our wedding night) in the gorgeous Library room.
    • Trip to Santa Cruz to visit Alex's grandparents.  This trip was momentous because I discovered my brother-in-law Wes is actually super cool and we have a lot in common.  I'm so glad I got to get to know him better, because we have fun times together now.  I also got my first ticket on this trip :(
    • Went to a Rendezvous with my grandparents at Fort Bridger.  It was an awesome time for Leo to get to know my grandparents more, and for me to get to spend awesome times with them.  Grandma gave me an amazing bag that she used to use as a purse, it's modeled after a 14th century shotgun bag.  It's amazing.  I'm so glad Leo and I got to experience the Rendezvous and the culture that comes with it. 
    • Alex got run over by a gator/4wheeler with a bunch of heavy gear on it.  He ended up with a blood clot in his arm, gruesome bruising and a lot of pain.  We were just glad he was okay.

    • Finally closed, renovated, and moved into our new house.  We needed a bigger place after Leo was living in the front room on a couch for 4 months.  We bought a duplex in North Orem.  The inside still needs work, which is fun and rewarding.  The yard in the home is gorgeous, and we are so happy to be landlords instead of tenants.  We're also only a mile or two away from most of our immediate family, which is so amazing and fun.

    • I was able to plan with my Aunt Leta a 50th anniversary celebration for my grandparents.  The love they have for each other and the positive attitude they tackle life with is truly inspiring.  I am so glad I was able to celebrate with them and their friends.  I was also able to make a quilt with all of their children and grandchildren surrounding an image I feel represents their life.  It was a very special experience for me.
    • Living less than a mile from my dad means he shows up and helps me with projects around my house.  I owe a lot of my surviving my first month in this place to him.  He helped me make my house safer by cutting off dangerous branches on our big pine as well as several other projects.  It was nice spending so much time with him.

    • Celebrated 15 years of being adopted.  Adoption Day is a time we all get to remember and celebrate the way we became a family.  I'm so grateful for all my different, wonderful families and the joy they bring to my life.
    • Was accepted into the Master's of Business Administration program at Utah Valley University.  I am so excited to take this journey and cannot wait to start.  
    • Started a journey of self-exploration that is making me feel more validated, loved and happy.  I'm seeing my life and childhood in a new light, and it's illuminating.  
    • Enjoyed the Christmas season for the first time in my life.  I've spent a lot of time this year creating Christmas for Leo, and it's really helped me get over my baggage and just enjoy the joy.

    I'm excited for the challenges and joys that I know the next year will bring.  It's been an eye-opening year full of growth through joy and sadness.  That's life to the fullest, the highs and the lows-- and I'm grateful for both.

    Tuesday, November 18, 2014

    Family Relations

    Family.  I'm both cursed and lucky enough to have more than the average person.  I have multiple sets of parents, siblings, cousins, aunts and uncles.
    I've been building more into these relationships that I value... and sometimes it's so easy and effortless.  I get so much joy from talking to my newly (relatively) discovered aunt and grandma.  They compliment my life and bring me such joy.
    Other relationships are so hard.  When things are good, they are so good.  When they are bad, they seem to rob me of all my energy and attention for anything else.
    In my head I know what I want these relationships to look like, and I work my ass off to make them what I want-- what I need them to be.  But there are other people in the equation.  Sometimes they don't want to play the role I want for them, sometimes they want to but are unable.
    Some families seem so effortless- they just love each other and that's the bottom line.  No resentful competitions.  No mental illness.  No crazy.  No dysfunction.  Or maybe I just don't see it because I'm not there, in their family.

    I feel one of the most important things in this world are the people who are your family and who you choose to make your family.  I sometimes feel those who fill that role in my life, don't want me in that role in their life-- except when convenient.

    Sometimes I wish family relations came simpler- tied up and delivered in a sweet package with a bow.  I guess I've been watching too much TV if I expect that.

    Friday, April 26, 2013

    Religious discrimination

    It's not a very great feeling when you are discriminated against based on your religion (or lack thereof).  I feel many religious people from where I am from feel that they are the are discriminated against often, and it would be nice if they realized it happens all too often to the non-religious class as well.
    Alex and I are moving to Provo when we come back from Greece.  We found an apartment, had a family member go check it out, called the landlord on the phone and he offered us the place to rent.  The landlord said that if we wanted the apartment, he needed a deposit and first month that day, so we wired him the money.  Because he wanted the retainer so quickly, both parties decided that he would send us the contract the next day to look over.
    A few days later, he sent us the contract, and as Alex and I were in the middle of finals, I asked him if I could look it over and call him about it the next week (this week).  That was fine with him.  Today, I looked it over, and I had several issues- but the main one was that the contract stated that tenants must follow BYU standards, and specifically stated no drinking and a few other things (like no opposite sex sleeping over).  Before this point, in the many phone calls with this man, nor in the ad for the property was it stated that tenants must follow the BYU standards.  When the landlord received the deposit, he had never made known this rule to us.
    I called our landlord, and told him that I had an issue with the contract- that Alex and I are not LDS, and we do not follow BYU standards e.g. we drink coffee and we don't go to regular worship sessions.  I told him as well that while we are not the partying type, we do drink.  He very grumpily told me that I should have told him this the day that we got the contract.  I reminded him that I was in the middle of finals at the point and did not have readily available internet to read the contract.  He told me that if I had told 10 days ago (which is a lot longer than we really have had the contract) that we were not LDS, he would have told us that we should look elsewhere, because he wouldn't do business with us.  Now, since the renting date is so close, he said I had "forced him" because of the time, and that he or the other tenants were never to see us drinking, or to see beer cans in our garbage or us ever outside in the yard drinking.  He told me that we had to appear to follow BYU standards, so we wouldn't "create trouble."
    I told him that if the tenants found issue with the way we were, we would talk to them about it.
    At that point, we said our goodbyes and ended the call.
    What I really wanted to say to him was that if he refused housing to us, he would be breaking the Utah Fair Housing Act- Utah Code Title 57 Chapter 21 Section 5, which states it is illegal to discriminate in renting to someone "because of a person's race, color, religion, sex, national origin, familial status, source of income, or disability."  In the precedence cases for this Act, it is very clearly stated that "religion" includes philosophies or the lack of belief.  In this circumstance, the landlord was willing to rent to us, even to take our deposit, when he thought we were a certain religion, following certain standards.  When he found out we were not of that religion, he was unwilling to rent to us, and only by a fluke we were still able to reside in the property.
    I wish I could say all of this to this man, because I want him to know that it's not right.  Just because I don't follow his religion does not mean I am a immoral, bad, corrupt or unfit to rent his property.
    This experience was just one example of outright discrimination that I feel I face being a non-religious person in my state.
    It hurts.  It doesn't feel good.  I don't think it's right, and I know it's not legal.

    Tuesday, January 1, 2013

    The semester from hell is over.  
    We leave for Greece in one week.  You can read about it here.
    Christmas was nice.
    Our cat is being cared for by my awesome cousin, but we miss Maimou very much.
    Our to do list is getting shorter, but still seems impossible to complete.
    We are landlords for the first time, and our tenants seem pretty cool.

     Feedback:  should I post the posts from the semester abroad blog here?

    Sunday, November 11, 2012

    Halloween, Cat fixin's, and service project

    Hi there!
    Life continues as usual.

    This month, stuff was pretty much the same with Alex.  He travels like a crazy person, and basically only sees the inside of ballrooms, which sucks for him.  He got to fly to New York, Seattle, Toronto and a few other places this month.  He was supposed to be flying into Boston for a show during Sandy; thankfully as they were boarding, they got a call from the boss that they didn't have to go.  I was really happy about that.
    Maimou, our darling cat, got fixed a few weeks ago.  I was really freaked out, because I love her and don't want her to be in pain.  She tore some stitches a few days in (it looked really scary), and so she had to get a cone and go on anti-biotics.  I was a mess, she was so pathetic looking and seemed so sad.  I have no idea what it will be like if I ever have kids and they get hurt, because I realize Maimou is just an animal, and I was really upset.  I felt really alone, since it happened to be in a time that Alex couldn't visit and Alycia (my Cedar City best friend) was out of town.  I didn't want Maimou jumping on the bed and ripping anymore stitches, and I didn't want to make her sleep alone and close the bedroom door; so I decided it would be best if we both slept in the front room for the 2 weeks.  My couch is super comfy, as far as couches go, for sleeping on one night, 2 weeks, not so much.  Also, Maimou seemed to think she got to wake me up a lot more in the night because I was on the couch.  She would come shove her cone in my face and wake me about 5 times a night.  Needless to say, I wasn't getting much sleep.
    I had midterms right around that same time, and I did the worst I have ever done on midterms.  I'm not sure if it was a lack of sleep, interest, studying, or just senioritis.  I still will pass all my classes in the B to A range, but my midterm scores have been pretty dismal this year, which makes me disappointed in myself.
    I am taking a horsemanship class this semester.  I thought I was taking it as a fun class, but it turns out it is a lot of hard work.  I apparently was terrified of horses.  I am getting better, but in the first month of class, I cried 3 or 4 times on the back of the horse.  I was pretty scared, especially when I felt out of control.  I usually am in control of all things, and it was hard when the horse was like "hey, I'm bigger than you and I'm going to just go over here now and you can't do anything about it, so ha!"  I've gotten so much better, and even enjoy it.  I have been able to mount by myself and have learned to trot.  Last class period we even loped! It was super awesome.  Loping feels like what I imagine a unicorn jumping around on a rainbow looks like.
    For Halloween, I made a really awesome Steampunk costume.  I had a lot of the fabric in my stock, so it wasn't super pricey either.  For my jewelry I took apart a few clocks and glued the gears to old handles from dressers to make a broach and a pendant.  I also made an earring from a gear, and a hair piece from the hands on a few clocks.  I went to an antique store and bought old keys and made earrings and a necklace.  On my costume I added a couple of gears, and hanging my skirt I had a jingly thing made from odd and end gears, keys and hands.
    My skirt was reminiscent of Victorian styling, with a bustle, but I made it shorter and pulled up the outer skirt to show a red skirt underneath.  I didn't have a dress form, and since I wasn't using a pattern for the skirts, I used my bar stool to help me shape the dress bustle.  For the top, I made a peasant blouse (which I have been wanting to do FOREVER).  I added to the top more than was needed for the costume, so I can use it for other costumes if I want.  I also made a corset, and I used cheap clasps and boning, which I now regret.  Oops.  I looked pretty dang cool.  I wish Alex had gotten to see me in my costume.
    Maimou was an alien for Halloween.  She had her cone on, so I added tinfoil antenna, and she looked adorable.
    Alex sent me a picture of him in his work clothes and said that he was a lumberjack.  I sure do love my lumberjack.
    Obama won. I was happy for that.  On election day, I volunteered to do the exit poll surveys.  It was a VERY long day, but a great experience.
    At school, I am the VP for the Legal Studies Student Association- part of my duties is to organize the service project.  The club voted to take on a project that I was working on for an Experiential project for another class.  I was working on duffel bags for kids in foster care.  A couple other clubs on campus heard what we are doing, and wanted to join in, so now I'm in charge of this project for 3 clubs.  It's pretty stressful, as I don't have very many people to delegate to, but it is a worthy cause.  Not everyone in the clubs sew, so we are typing blankets as well.  My goal (which I have bought all the materials for) is to make 50 bags and 20 blankets.  I like giving back.