Saturday, March 21, 2009

My Pensieve

This post has been years in the making (even before I started my blog)...

As my good friend Babs sings it, "Memories light the corner of my mind".

Just the other day, I came across two cd's I bought quite awhile ago (although, I like to think it wasn't too long ago). I decided to rip them on my computer and put them on my "relaxing" playlist on my ipod. Then, I started listening to the songs and it was like a dam of memories breaking in my mind!

The cd's were the two soundtracks released for the movie Titanic. Now, before anybody stops reading the post due to the word "Titanic" (as I would do myself), please let me explain. Of all the movies I have seen, there has never been one that I have become so overly annoyed with or one that I have truly regretted seeing (ok, just kidding, there have been many other movies I have regretted seeing). But I cringe every time I hear Titanic (mind you, I still really enjoy My Heart Will Go On for one obvious reason!) That being said, I must confess that I really enjoy a good love story, and Titanic portrayed an amazing love story (but I recognize it could have done with some changes and deletions).

Now, by this point (if you are still reading), you may be asking what in the &@*# does this have to do with memories? Titanic came out while I was in high school (1997). It is also connected with three memories (oh, what I would give for a pensieve)! Anyway, here are the memories:
  1. My first date (yes, yes, my first date)
  2. My sister
  3. Celine Dion

My first date was with a friend I had grown up with. We lived in the same neighborhood and went to elementary, junior high, and high school together. My first memory of her was fifth grade. She was always a great friend. So, obviously, by bringing back my memory of this friend, it opened up even more memories about school (elementary, jr high, and high school) and other friends that my friend and I had in common. Even though the movie was a disaster, the date was a lot of fun. We did go have ice cream afterwards and had a great conversation. A great regret I have is that I have not stayed in contact with her and I do not know what she is up to now.

My sister was willing enough to go with me on my first date (she and her boyfriend, me and my date). Once again, a memory of my sister opens up many thousands of memories dealing with school, friends, and family! (Needless to say, I have been swimming in an ocean of memories for quite some time!) Anyway, I love my sister and I remember I was very glad she was there with me. I tried to act completely independent but having my sister there made me feel more comfortable and, hopefully, it prevented me form acting as socially awkward as I was at that time in my life. Moving on...

Memory number three...Celine Dion. Ok, it is common knowledge now that I really enjoy Celine Dion's voice (as does anybody who recognizes and appreciates good music). What most of you probably don't know is that my first experience with Celine Dion (placing her name with the song she sang) was "Because You Loved Me" and I LOATHED that song! Everytime it came on the radio, the station quickly changed (unless my mom or sister were in the car, then I was forced to endure). However (and you can all thank my sister for my quick education in recognizing and enjoying good music), the tables quickly turned. My sister mentioned that she wanted Celine's Falling Into You album. One day, I was at the store with my mom and, there it was. I pointed it out to my mom saying "that's the cd [my sister] wanted." I knew I was condemning myself to torture because my sister would then have that dreaded song!

Anyway, my mom gave the cd to my sister and, as I expected, my sister loved it and listened to it a lot. While she was cleaning the bathroom one day, she put it in the stereo in the front room and turned it up. The song I heard was amazing! I had to find out what it was (I did not know it was the Celine album my mom got my sister). So I ran upstairs and asked what was playing. To my surprise, it was the album (the song was "It's All Coming Back to me Now"). Since that time, I have been hooked! And yes (I know you're asking...) I do enjoy "Because You Loved Me", very much!

It's funny how one soundtrack had this huge effect (and yes, the soundtrack is still very nostalgic--every time I listen to it! And it's almost addictive...I keep having to listen to it!)

Anyway, I have only given you a "stream" of the memories that I have been entertaining. Some have been happy, others not so much. The overall sentiments have been bittersweet. I miss the days of growing up and having all of my family under the same roof. However, the new additions that have been added to my family little by little are people that I am greatful to have in my life and I would never trade them for anything. Also, the experiences I have had since my growing-up years have been priceless. I miss the care-free days of elementary, jr high, and high school--days hanging out with friends, worrying about what's for dinner, buying whatever you want because money from your job never had to go towards rent, groceries, utilities, or car payments. I even miss the care-free days of college (undergraduate) when I went to class, went to work (both on campus) and hung out with friends. All those arguments I had with my parents; the nights lying in bed (when my parents were able to stay up), wishing I could be a grown-up so I could stay up until I wanted to go to bed. Now, I wish I could be the little kid who had to go to bed by 8:30 and sleep until 7 on weekdays! (Side Note: if kids really knew what was ahead of them in life, I don't think they'd throw such fits when it was time to take a nap or go to bed...I wish I could take a nap or go to bed early!!!!!)

Ok, anyway, this "stream" is slowly forming a small "river". I have left one official side note and about a million unofficial side notes. If you have read with me until the very end, thank you! If this post seems like a jumble of words, you nailed it on the pretty much is. But then again, isn't that what memories are?! A blessing? A curse? I wondered for a bit, thinking they were curses some times and blessings at other times. Now, I like to recognize them as blessings...even blessings can be painful, but they always have a special meaning or purpose. Memories can only be a curse if we dwell on them too long without moving forward.

I could go on, but it is late and my eyes and body are screaming at me to go to bed. Thank you for reading as I ruminated. It has been fun!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

What would I do with $1,000,, really!

So how many times have you heard the question "What would you do with a million dollars?" Well, I have 500 times too many, so I am now answering that question so the next time I hear it, I can actually give a real answer. I know, I'm so responsible :). Don't be jealous of me for too long.
  1. First, as always, tithing! That would be $100,000.
  2. Second, I would invest (in the bank...absolutely NO stock market for this money!) That would be $150,000
  3. Next would be the best car in the world! That would be $16,640
  4. $50,000 to the LDS Church's Humanitarian Program
  5. $5,000 for clothes
  6. $400,000 for a small home (4 bedrooms, three bathrooms, dining room, kitchen, front room, family room, study/office, sun room, front and backyard).
  7. $10,000 to landscape/fix landscaping in the front and back yards
  8. $50,000 for a grand piano that looks something like this
  9. $160,000 for a tour of Jerusalem, Egypt, Turkey, Greece, Eastern Europe, Germany, Italy, France, Spain, Portugal, Scandinavia, and the UK
  10. $20,000 to pay off student loans
  11. $5,000 to pay off my car
  12. The rest ($33,360) to travel to see my siblings and their families

Well, there you have it, how I would spend $1,000,000 if I had it. Now the question is...what about you?!?!?!?!


"[Confucius] taught that the country which develops the finest music, the grandest poetry, and the noblest moral ideals--that is, the country with the most exalted culture--will always yield the greatest power in the world."

-Letters from the Jade Dragon Box by Gale Sears

"Who is such a reprobate as I! And yet it seems that even I am in Somebody's hand!'

-Mr. Henchard in The Mayor of Casterbridge

"...[T]he magnitude of [life] is not as to [one's] external displacements, but as to [one's] subjective experiences."

-Thomas Hardy in Tess of the d'Urbervilles

"...I have a new love for that glittering instrument, the human soul. It is a lovely and unique thing in the universe. It is always attacked and never destroyed--because 'Thou mayest.'"

-Lee in East of Eden