Thursday, May 27, 2010

last day of school

Today was the last day of school. I wish I could show you all of the pictures we took today. By far, the cutest class ever.

but, here's to summer!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

year one comes to an end

Tomorrow is our last day of school and it's only a few hours long.

I can't even believe it. I have grown so much here at Brookside with my very special class. I have become a real teacher - a real special ed teacher, that is. I have had my hard days, but they have been FAR outnumbered by the days where I come home overjoyed with the career I have chosen. I have been squeezed, scratched, bit, pulled, jumped on, pushed, smelled the smelliest smells, yelled at, spit on, and the list goes on and on...

BUT I have been loved. I have been a shoulder to cry on, the lucky one to wipe away tears . I have been hugged and on occasion I have received a very sweet and innocent kiss on the cheek. I have been served, and even more, I have been given the opportunity to serve. I have been touched by the Spirit and I have looked into eyes that have instantly seen my heart. I got to be at the sweetest baptism I have ever seen. I have been laughed at and laughed with. I have been "HEY, HEY, HEY YOU!", "Bokilson", "Teacher. Teacher! TEACHER!!", "Teddy", "THHHHHHorkelson", and sometimes, Tati. I have made friends that I will have for all eternity, friends that I cannot wait to see once I am done here.

I have developed relationships with 5 amazing women who have shown me love and have taught me life lessons that I will never forget. I have seen them go through unthinkable trials, but remain strong. I have seen them love and forgive. They tucked me under their wings this year and accepted me as the 20 something intern who had to be their boss. They will never understand the impact they have had on me.

I have seen lives change, including mine. I have seen hearts grow, behaviors disappear, brains learning, goals being reached and even exceeded. Friendships have bloomed, and I have watched a classroom become a family. I have both seen and felt true Christlike love. I couldn't have asked for a better situation as an intern.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Utah weather

I just made my lovely drive from Draper to Springville for work. I really enjoy this 40 minute commute, but let me just tell you that today I drove through rain and snow!


It is May 24th. The high for today is 56. This has to be a little joke.

Oh and they say it will be 70 degrees and it gets better...

Tuesday will be in the low 80's! I think that's about when the weather will finally (it better...) become fit for regular spring/summer outings such as swimming, hiking, biking, and mostly being in the sun.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

I Know That My Redeemer Lives

Today was a particularly hard day - especially for a Sunday.

My mind has been anxious, worried, stressed, preoccupied, chaotic...any and all of the above. This has been such an amazing school year and it is coming to a close this Thursday. I have worked with ten of the very sweetest and most special students and five ladies who have changed my life forever.

These ladies though, have and continue to go through things that I could never imagine. Their strength, endurance and perseverance is amazing. Their love for the students is obvious and definitely felt. They have become five people I know I can always turn to for advice, support, help, and anytime I just need a good friend.

A lot is happening. I spent all of Sunday school trying to focus...and I just couldn't. Life can be so hard and it almost hurts me even more to see it be hard for those that I love. The worst is that sometimes you can't fix it, you can't make it go away or never happen.

Then the opening hymn in our sacrament meeting was "I Know That My Redeemer Lives." This happens to be my very favorite hymn. I love the third verse more than anything. Normally it is the first half of it that sticks with me, but today, the second half of the verse was what I needed.

"He lives, my kind, wise heav’nly Friend.
He lives and loves me to the end.
He lives, and while he lives, I’ll sing.
He lives, my Prophet, Priest, and King.
He lives and grants me daily breath.
He lives, and I shall conquer death.
He lives my mansion to prepare.
He lives to bring me safely there

I felt the peace I needed after singing this hymn. Its words are true and have become a strong part of my testimony of my Savior. He truly is my friend and through Him I can return to live with my Heavenly Father. He broke the bonds of death, not only for me, but for you too. He lived and died so that we could overcome death. I love that this verse ends saying, "He lives to bring me safely there." It makes death not as scary. He is able to guide us all through life and I am sure He is there to guide us after it as well.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

a car!?

That's right...

I bought a car.

It's beautiful...

and I love it.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

my wonderful aunt

Today is my aunt's birthday!

Michelle is my second mom. She is a huge part of my life. Michelle has been with me through all the stages of Tati, both pleasant and not so pleasant. She came with me to buy my first bra. She talked me into shaving my legs for the first time. MAJOR point in a young girl's life! Every summer, when I would head to Provo for EFY, I would always spend a weekend with Michelle - going to Lagoon and eating at P.F. Chang's.

Then I went to BYU and Michelle lived in Provo. We saw movies and ate sushi at least once a week. She let me borrow her car and wash laundry at her house. Until she moved to Draper and I would see her probably twice a month. Those two years were hard, especially once Kelsey moved in with Michelle and got to have all the fun with her!

During my freshman year at BYU, she took me to Argentina and Chile - a trip I will never forget. I was reunited with family that I either hadn't seen for over 10 years or had never even met before. I experienced a life that I had only dreamed about.

Now I live in Draper with her! Living with her has taught me so much, and it hasn't even been a month yet. Michelle is the most generous, selfless person I know. She is always giving, always serving, and always helping family and friends. She always encouraged me in my dreams and she still does. I love her.

Saturday, May 15, 2010


Baseball time! Which means...SUN! Our boys baseball team had their last 3 game homestand this weekend and of course we had to be there.

It has been a beautiful weekend in Provo. We went to BYU baseball games Friday evening and Saturday afternoon! So much fun. We played SDSU, I know, my favorites...we swept them good in all three games! Friday there were tons of crazy hits and one of them got the SDSU pitcher really good in the head. That was really scary...Oh and some kid decided to run across the field. That was pretty wild.

On Saturday there was a mother and son who came and sat behind us. They were both blonde and light eyed...and then they started speaking Spanish. I started listening to them talk and I heard some castellano. I just had to ask and guess what?! They were from Argentina, and not just anywhere in Argentina, but from Mar del Plata! She knows my family. What a wonderfully beautiful small world.

Right now, I would like to say how lucky I am to have such great friends. I have probably the greatest student ward ever. I have been there for 2 years now and I love it still. Over the last few weeks (ever since I moved to Draper, of course) I have made a lot of really fabulous friends. I have also been spending more time with old friends and roommates and I have been blessed to live with some really wonderful girls. The best thing is that these friends always doing something - which means I always have something to do (even if it's just working on my mario kart skills). Summer brings out the adventure in everyone and I just want to soak it all up.

Then we had a ward activity Saturday afternoon and I learned how to tackle! That's right, I was taught how to tackle by a man who knows his football. Head up, legs bent, back straight, arms back and as you charge, push them forward, just keep running, and take them down. I guess it really only makes sense with demonstration - maybe, someday, I will record it and show you my skill.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

true love.

Grandma went to the hospital on Monday. Don't worry, it was a little bit of a scare, but it is just an infection and she will be out before tomorrow. I stopped by to visit her after work yesterday and we were able to chat for about an hour, just the two of us.

For those of you who don't know, my grandparents have one of the sweetest love stories of all time, and they very obviously love and adore each other. Grandpa served his mission in Argentina. Grandma is from a beautiful city called Mar del Plata. Her and her family were some of the earliest converts in their area, so obviously, Grandpa got to know them fairly well on his mission. When he returned home, he stayed in touch with my grandma's family through snail mail. Grandma was the oldest girl and would respond on behalf of the family. Now, she was 7 years older and had a child, so no one ever suspected anything. But they fell in love and Grandpa decided he wanted to fly her to the United States and marry her.

Yesterday, Grandma told me that when Grandpa had asked her to marry him, she was not sure how to respond. She didn't know any English, her parents did not want her to leave, she had a son, and she had only known my grandpa as an elder. She said that she thought about it for weeks and one morning she woke up and just knew. She told me how she wrote him and accepted his proposal and her face lit up just talking about it.

They are always together. They have become one and when they have to leave each other, they take it hard, but the reunions are always so sweet. They are constantly holding hands and still speak so kindly and gently with one another. They have been married for 47 years. Someday, I hope to have a love so strong. It's truly adorable.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

change of heart

The school year is coming to end - we only have 11 days left! I am worn out, exahuasted and really looking forward to May 27, but at the same time, I wish it would never come. I love these kids more than I thought possible. I love them despite the paper work, spitting, stinky diapers, biting, and running away. I love them because of what they have taught me, but most of all I love them because they have caused me to have a change of heart. Because of them I am determined to be a better person and to love as purely as they do.
A few Sundays ago, someone mentioned 3 Nephi 17. Even now, as I read it, I am overwhelmed by the spirit. Jesus Christ asks the multitude to bring forth any among them who are "afflicted in any manner". Each of my sweet students would have been brought to him. I can only imagine that this is exactly would it will be like for them when they are reunited with Heavenly Father and made perfect. The image this paints in my mind is one that I will carry with me forever. I know he hasn't left them to make the hard journey of being physically and mentally handicapped on their own because I see Him in them everyday.
After Christ heals them, he then asks for the little children to be brought to him and the prayer that He then offered up to our Heavenly Father was so sweet and sacred that:
"16 ...The eye hath never seen, neither hath the ear heard, before, so great and marvelous things as we saw and heard Jesus speak unto the Father;
17 And no tongue can speak, neither can there be written by any man, neither can the hearts of men conceive so great and marvelous things as we both saw and heard Jesus speak; and no one can conceive of the joy which filled our souls at the time we heard him pray for us unto the Father. "
I think my students have felt that great and marvelous prayer. They know true charity and Christlike love and when you serve them, you feel it too.

****update: We went on a field trip today and I saw one of my very favorite students from when I worked at Dan Peterson. I was happy was definitely a tender mercy

Sunday, May 9, 2010

my mom

There's no one better than my mom. The older I get, the more I start to really understand all that she has done for me. And she has done a lot. She is my best friend and I counsel with her for EVERY little thing I do. She is my support, the one that stabilizes my life when I am almost positive that all walls are about the crumble.

She is beautiful. She is fun. She can dance. She is funny. She listens. She gives the greatest advice. She is an example. She is beautiful. She loves BYU sports as much as or more than I do.
She comes to my class and supports me and my career by loving my students as much as I do. She can jerk. She is beautiful.
She has the most amazing hair. She is the reason for my Latin flair. She talks to me everyday and if I don't call her, she calls me to make sure everything is alright.

She tries to protect me and my heart. She makes delicious food. She loves the gospel. She has a huge and kind heart. She thinks my friends are great. She thinks I am great.
She gives so that we can have. She lives her life for her family. She loves my dad. She is always right beside me. She loves me.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Cinco de Mayo!!!

Extraño Mexico
  • el sol
  • la natalia
  • yolanda y guillermo
  • futbol (atlas!)
  • la comida
  • la cosa
  • el baile - banda! haha
  • el centro de Guadalajara
  • telenovelas
  • la minerva
  • los mariachis
  • todo los estudiantes de BYU
  • la gente de Mexico
  • churros rellenos
  • teatro degollado
  • Chapala, Tonola, Guachimontones, y Puerto Vallarta
  • y mucho mucho mas
Nuestro primer día de la escuela en la Universidad de Autónoma de Guadalajara fue el quinto de mayo! Me adoré cada minuto en Guadalajara. Feliz cinco de mayo!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

kind words

I just want to thank everyone who has given me sweet and sincere compliments recently.
  • A friend from freshman year who just happens to be in my ward again (yes, he is meant to be in my life) gave the compliment to change my day. Love him.
  • A tech in the classroom next to me was talking to me and just stopped to tell me how beautiful I was. Really too nice of her.
  • I also got a very sweet congratulations card today from one of my favorite ladies in the entire world.
  • I was hired by a principal who really thinks I am going to be perfect and doesn't hesitate to say so.
  • All the sweet things my students tell me everyday.
  • A co-teacher who I have developed a very close relationship with and she never hesitates to tell me how great of a teacher I am.
I am very fortunate to have amazing people all around me.
New Goal: To let them know how amazing they are.

Monday, May 3, 2010

sister love

Last night I called mom...but it wasn't a normal phone call.

Mom was talking to the entire family and sort of trying to talk to me. Normally, this would bother me, but I was listening to everyone in the background - laughing, shouting and being crazy as always. I am so lucky to have such an awesome family.

Then today, Michelle was telling me stories about me and Kels when we were little. I love her. We have been best friends from the beginning. My car broke down...she came and sat with me and even drove me to work. She comes into my class and she is SO good with my kids. She comes with me to watch boys play football in the snow. She let's me bring Berto home with us. She has the greatest dance parties. I love driving home just the two of us more than anything. She is very protective of me and my heart (I think I love that most about her...she'd beat anyone up for me!) That's just a small amount of what she does for me. Plus - she's super cute. Yep, I love her.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

I'm Trying to Be Like Jesus

It all started a few months ago when one of my 7 year old students realized he could hold his breath under water. His mom told me the news and told me with teary eyes that he came home and said, "I can hold my breath under water! I can get baptized!" His mom talked to him and told him that he was perfect and didn't need to be baptized. To this he responded, "But mom, I am trying to be like Jesus."

So this morning he got baptized! And it was the sweetest thing I have ever seen.

He got into the water and was a little shocked at how cold it was. He clapped his hands and kept walking in with a gigantic smile on his face. His dad baptized him and when he came up out of the water, he turned towards all his family and friends and threw his arms in the air and squealed the most innocent, happy, blissful noise of pure joy. Not a single dry eye.

The confirmation was pretty special too. He is obviously a blessing to everyone who comes into contact with him. He knows the Holy Ghost, he knows my Savior, he knows what is happening in this life and the next. He is full of love, pure Christlike love, and I see that everyday.

After the baptism and confirmation, I got up to leave and sort of slipped by him, hoping to catch him as he came to the front, but he went back towards my seat to find me. He just started saying, "Where's my teacher?! Where's my teacher?" I called out his name and he ran right up to me and jumped into my arms. Bokelson he says. It melts my heart.

I don't know what I will do without him in my class next year. I sure love him.