Wednesday, May 20, 2015

In real life

 …these pictures were taken at 6AM in 35 degree weather. I couldn't feel my fingers or toes, and at one point the photographer wiped snot as it ran down my numb face because I couldn't feel it to wipe it myself. So glamorous.

You'd never know just looking at these shots, though, would you?? There's something magical about beautiful lighting and professional make up and photography. I feel lucky to have been a part of this shoot. Can't wait to show you more when 'What Heaven Feels Like' releases this summer!


Monday, May 18, 2015

This kid.

For anyone wondering - YES…she still has reflux.

She still takes medicine everyday. She sometimes fights it, but nothing like before. She still makes a sour, 'this-is-disgusting!' face haha. Poor kid.

She still wakes up multiple times most nights.

She still struggles with food sensitivities. She gets rashes and belly aches if something has even a hint of dairy, is too spicy, is too greasy, or too yummy. Ok, not yummy. But I'm sure she'll start feeling like that the older she gets.

She spits up sometimes. Most of the time it's during the night…I find it in her crib in the morning. A few weeks ago she spit up during church, though, so…that was fun.

Even though it's been a difficult journey, I'm so grateful we're out of those first several months. The first year, actually, was nothing short of hellish. The older she's gotten, though, and the more she can communicate, the easier things have become. I'm so thankful for medicines, for pediatricians and friends and acquaintances who have been so supportive and kind.

I've met several women as I've traveled the country who's children still have GERD. Like, teenage and adult children!! It's nice to know we aren't alone in this strange, toddler-aged reflux world. It's nice to meet women who are normal and sweet and functional after years of waking up all night. It gives me hope haha (that someday I might be normal, too!). (probably not…)

Sick or not, isn't she so dang cute?!?? Frick I love this child.


And then I peed on myself.

Once upon a time, I was called as ward choir director and I cried sad, scared tears right there in the office with nice Brother Powell. Also I told him NO. Like, 236 times. But somehow I ended up walking out of that office as ward choir director. (more details one blog post back)

A few weeks later, my Bishop told me that our ward had been selected to sing at Stake Conference.

We had three weeks to prepare.

Don't worry - we had about 7 people who were showing up to choir practice at that point. So.

I was freaking out.

By some kind of miracle (and the Bishop guilt-tripping the ward like bananas) we ended up with like 50 people in choir.

Kristina helped me pick out some music, my choir was sounding fab, and all was well.

The morning of Stake Conference, I chose a cute, lacy high-low dress to wear. I felt all MikaRose and fancy. (way to come through for me, Target!)

Right before our second number, I ran to the bathroom real quick. (anyone who knows me knows that I pee at LEAST a million times the day of performances. at Time Out for Women it gets especially ridiculous because I'm on and off stage so many times. I swear I need my own personal port-a-potty. ok, now I'm just getting gross. anyways.)

As I jumped up after using the facilities and rearranged myself, I realized something wet and slimy was clinging to the back of my legs…and I looked down in HORROR to see my HIGH LOW DRESS WAS DRIPPING.


I had FORGOTTEN about the LOW part of the dress…and it had dunked itself…into the toilet…

Cue me gagging and freaking out and trying to not scream as I jumped back and forth trying to keep the skirt from touching me. (this is a moment I will request to watch again in heaven. i'm sure i looked completely insane.)

My mind was racing - I didn't have time to go home and change, we were about to perform again! BUT I COULD NOT get up in front of the Stake with a dripping wet dress!!!! What on earth was I supposed to do?!!

In the seconds I had to think about it, I decided that the only option I had was to dry off as best I could with a paper towel, hold my head high and waltz back into the meeting as though I didn't smell like urine and look like I had fallen into a wading pool.

I went to the door of the meeting and waited for the speaker to sit down. He did.

I took a breath…closed my eyes…took a step into the room…

And the next speaker stood.

I couldn't believe it!! They had skipped the choir completely and had moved on!! GLORIOUS DAY!! Because the speaker just got up and started speaking, I had a few more minutes to go back to the bathroom and rinse/dry off ALMOST to the point that you couldn't tell the back of my skirt was wet. I also found some peppermint essential oil in my bag (I always keep it with me in case I find myself congested before a performance and don't want to take a decongestant that will dry me out too much!) and poured 90% of it on my skirt.

For the record - I can't believe I'm blogging about this. It's kind of like a humiliating journal entry that you pray no one ever EVER reads. I guess I find it oddly freeing to just tell embarrassing stories that make me want to die a little bit.

The second number was beautiful because my choir rocks.

So…the next time you find yourself in a horribly embarrassing situation and you're scrambling and not sure what to do - just know that you're not alone. It happens. Maybe blog about it. You might feel better.

PS I just remembered that I hung that dress back up in my closet instead of putting it in the hamper. Hahaha eeeww!!!! Dude. I need more sleep.

That is all.



It's been a while since I've had a calling (for anyone reading this who isn't familiar with the LDS faith -  a 'calling' is a job your Bishop assigns you…a service, really, since no one gets paid). Between moving a few times and being in Utah where there are a million people in every ward and hardly ever making it to all three hours due to an extremely fussy child…it's just been a while.

When I was finally summoned to meet with a member of the bishopric, I was a little apprehensive. I knew the time had come and my days of no-calling laziness were over.

"We'd like to extend the call of ward choir director to you!" said Brother Powell enthusiastically.

::cue instantaneous tears and freaking out::

::from me, not him:::


I tried to explain to him that I'm not a professional musician. I sing. I love music and I write my own songs and I perform for lots of people and love it, but standing in front 20 people (many of whom have more formal training and education than I do in music) and teaching CHOIR music to them..?? THAT, my friends, is truly terrifying to me. What if I accidentally lead a whole note like a half note?? What if I confuse the C with the D or get lost and tell them the wrong measure or sound like an idiot because I'm pretty terrible at sight-reading?!? YOU GUYS. I was sweating and crying and generally being a crazy hot mess.

Somehow I left that meeting having agreed to be ward choir director. I'm not sure how that happened. I'm pretty sure I told him NO at least a dozen times.

((OK, Ok….I DO know how it happened. After crying for a minute, I remembered that callings aren't extended to the people who are the most talented or qualified; in fact, most of the time callings are given as opportunities to grow and learn and develop new skills. I needed a minute to remember to be humble, and to be thankful Heavenly Father was giving me a new way to stretch a gift He gave to me. Yes, it was still absolutely horrifying and I still get so nervous before choir practice that I feel like I might throw up - BUT! - I'm putting myself out there. I'm doing my best and giving it my all and I can at least feel good about that effort. God wants us to trust Him, to do things that might scare us in the name of growth, experience and development, and to let His approval be the approval we value most.))

They'll probably release me soon. Not kidding. Because I'm really not that good at it hahaha.

But I'll still be grateful for the opportunity, and I'm glad for the reminder that He is most important - more important than my pride, more important than my skill, more important than my fear.

The end.

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