Tuesday, July 17, 2012


So lately I have been thinking, why is it so bad that I'm white? 
What I mean is today it feels like the norm is, your not beautiful if your not tan. I mean I know I'm a little paler than normal. But seriously. 
It's like today everyone is obsessed with being skinny and tan. 
Then when you happen to be skinny everyone gets mad at you. And when your too pale, they tell you to go to a tanning booth. 
I don't mean to say that tanning makes you ugly. Because if done right, you can look great. Like my friend Natalya, she tans and it looks good on her. But my theory is that if I tanned as much as others would have me do, it wouldn't look natural on me. 
This is why I think being pale is beautiful. It's natural. 
Of course I'm also not saying to avoid going outside and getting some color. But for some of us, its hard to just get tan from going outside. I really do think my legs are albino because I could spend all summer outside and my legs would stay the same shade of neon white. 

So I guess the point I'm trying to make is that I can be beautiful whether I tan or stay super pale. 
And I actually prefer being pale. 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Learning About the Money

In my classes this semester I feel that I have learned a lot. I learned a lot about the brain and how it works in my Behavioral Neurobiology class. I learned a lot about parenting through the eyes of research and church leaders. I gained a greater testimony of the gospel and the temple from my Pearl of Great Price class. I learned more about memory in my Cognition class. And I learned about money in my Money Management class.

For my minor, Marriage and Family Studies, we are required to take Money Management because today the number one reason for a divorce has something to do with money, mostly because people don't know how to manage their money. And 70% of Americans live pay check to paycheck. For these reasons, I was required to take the class, to learn for myself and family, and to help others. 

In this class we covered so many aspects of money. Because of all I have learned I feel that I have truly changed. I feel I can better manage my money, because I know how to budget my money. Much of it was from our textbook, but I feel a greater source is the all-knowing Dave Ramsey. In my opinion, he has the best advice on everything concerning money. I think part of that is that he to was once broke, but he figured it out and is now a millionaire.  So here are a few things I have learned about money this semester:

1) The idea of buying on credit and having debt is entirely an American idea. It's ridiculous. 100 years ago Americans didn't borrow money to buy things, they saved up if they wanted a car or whatever else people buy with credit these days. We don't have to borrow money to be happy, we just need to save. Life is cheaper that way too. Plus then you don't end up paying more then is needed without the interest. 

1) Every dollar counts. When making a budget, plan for every dollar before the month starts and before the paycheck comes. This way I always know where my money is going.

2) There are only three times in my life I will allow for our family to have debt: a) Home ownership, since buying a home is kinda a lot of money getting a mortgage is an exception to getting debt, but only if it's a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage. I don't want to spend half my life paying for my home. b) Education, school is expensive and JT and I have learned how hard it is to pay for school and pay the bills while also staying as full-time students. Although federal grants do pay our tuition and books, only working a combined 40 hours while in school isn't enough to pay the bills and survive. So taking out loans that can wait to be paid until after graduation are acceptable to me. c) Medical bills, when we have babies it's going to be too hard to pay all the costs of the hospital and doctor appointments at once. And sometimes things come up unexpected. But hopefully insurance will help. 

3) I will never want us to own a credit card. They might be safer for online shopping, but it's not worth it. It's a temptation to buy things that aren't needed. This is why we have a budget, to spend the money we have. If an emergency comes up, we use our savings. 

4) It's always smart to have an emergency fund, of at least $1000, for just in-case. This fund isn't for vacations or random things we want, its for a case where our car needs repairs or whatever. It's also our goal to figure out our cost of living for 3-months, then save up for it. This is for in case we go for a time without working but can still pay the bills without gaining any debt. 

5) I don't ever want to buy a car through financing. Like I said, I only have 3 times debt is acceptable to me, and a car loan isn't one of them. It's much easier and cheaper to just wait a year or two and save for a car. It might not be the best car, but it's sure better than paying thousands more than its worth in interest. And fun note: When you buy a new car, and drive it out of the dealership, it loses thousands of dollars in value once its out of the dealership, so gaining debt on a car thats losing value just doesn't seem worth it to me. 

Overall, I feel I have learned a lot about money and how I want us to manage our money. I want to be strong, and I want to be able to someday do fun things with our money. This will only be possible if we start spending wisely now. 

Here are some YouTube videos about money management from Dave Ramsey:

Monday, July 9, 2012

Only in Idaho

So at work there are two of us students who work on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. I work from 7:20-1pm and the girl after me works 1-5pm, and her name is Kirsty. The interesting thing about Kirsty is her accent, because she's from England. Awesome right?! I like to talk to her just to hear it, but also because its funny to get her perspective on American things. For example, a few weeks ago her and her husband went down to Utah for the weekend, and while they were there they went to a rodeo. She had never heard of a rodeo before that weekend. Literally. She thought it was the funniest thing because they have no cowboys or rednecks in England. Lucky her! 

This leads me to our most recent adventure, this past Saturday we went to the Demolition Derby. right? I don't ever remember an event like this in Washington. But it was fun. People fix up engines and paint old cars and run them into each other. The cause is to raise money for the Family Crisis Center in Rexburg. And its totally safe because theres police and fireman everywhere. I actually went to this two years ago, my freshman year, with my roommate Elysha. It was fun both times. 

I also learned that what I call 'elephant ears' at Washington fairs, people here call scones? WHY? Scones are totally different. People need to get educated. ha. 

Heres some pictures from the demolition, it was totally worth $5. 

Sara Barnard. Soon to be Sara Hill. 

The Batman car was pretty cool. 

This one sort of fell apart. 

Jack & Chelsea.

I caught JT trying to creep on my while I was in line for food.

Haha. I think he was mad..

Saturday we also had the chance to go to JT's 5-year reunion, from Madison High School, which is the high school in Rexburg. It was at the newly built high school in Rexburg which was interesting to go through. The most interesting part about this event wasn't meeting JT's old peers, but realizing that there were in fact more kids then adults. I'm dead serious. One girl had 3 kids. Can you say she got busy? dang. The funny part was me comparing the amount of kids and married couples to what my 5-year will look like in 2-years. Maybe 5 people from my class will have 1 kid. I can think of 4 of us that are married right now. Crazy the differences between Washington and Idaho. 

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Red White & Blue

To celebrate the fourth of July we participated in various activities. We started our morning with sleeping in and eating french toast. Then we called my dad to say Happy Birthday! Dad turned 49! Then JT and I spent the day with Cooper and Kylie Dunn. First was the school fair, on the upper fields of campus. It was actually fun, there was a BBQ, snow cones, cotton candy, a rock climbing wall, slip and slide, and many more activities. That night we also got the chance to go to the fireworks show in Idaho Falls, put on my Melaleuca. Which is known as the best fireworks show west of the Mississippi, and I agree. 

Overall it was a great day! Here are some pictures from the day:

Climbing the Rock Wall

JT reached the top!

Kylie Dunn

Snow cone. Only 25 cents. Pre-melting. 

Cooper Dunn

The lighting in this picture is perfect. The only problem with the picture is Kylie's arm covering her face. 

With sparklers. 

With iphone! Worked much better than sparklers.

The fireworks were awesome! But we were really far away...