So my new favorite trend is the headband. I just love them! What I especially like about the wide headbands is that they don't squish my head and give me headaches--that was always my problem with headbands growing up and I hated them until recently when I borrow some of Emily's. When I discovered they didn't give me headaches I ran with it and seek to increase my collection whenever possible. Just recently I've bought about four more and I love them all. When Emily was here we went to Target and I got a way cute red patent leather one and I'm pretty much in love. Then about a week ago I realized that my Ann Taylor LOFT $25 savings card expired the next weekend and so of course I rush online to see what I can buy. With this particular promotion you had to spend $50 to get $25 off (which is never a problem with the LOFT) and so I indulged in some cyber shopping. The results were this:
  • a way cute denim jacket that was on sale
  • a red and tan plaid headband that was on sale
  • a camel corduroy headband with a gold embellishment that was on sale
  • a chocolate patent leather headband that was on sale
This is Katelyn and me at Riverwoods last night and that's my new denim jacket

Pretty much it was amazing and the package came on Friday. I'm wearing the chocolate patent leather one today and wore the camel corduroy one yesterday. I just love headbands--they make me feel happy and cute and trendy and I think they make my hair look cute. Here's a picture of my complete headband collection:

So I know it's blurry, but it's a closer shot than the previous

So on to a quick recap of my Saturday. I did homework all day and am still behind--it's so depressing when you work hard all day and don't feel like you've really accomplished anything because you're still behind. Anyway, our apartment went out to to dinner at Bajio's in the Riverwoods and then we headed over to the University Mall and shopped for a while. I didn't buy anything except for a cute hoodie sweater at Aeropostale (I've never bought anything there until now--they do have some cute sweaters). Then we went to DQ afterwards and got yummy twist cones. It was definitely a needed break because school has really been stressing me out and I have my second round of midterms this weekend. A night out was definitely what I needed.

So tonight our apartment is making spaghetti and then we have a ward fireside (I try to suppress a groan). I'm just not feeling it tonight--I just want to be a hermit and scrapbook.


pot roast!

So since I've been living in my own apartment and not having Dining Plus anymore, I've found myself cooking real things. Every week I have at least one conversation with my mom about a recipe I want to make for my dinner night. (I've made homemade mac and cheese, parmesean chicken, sweet and sour chicken, spaghetti with homemade sauce and meatballs, and grilled cheese among other dishes). This past week I was feeling ambitious and decided to try a pot roast. So once again I call my mom and get specific directions for the roast, the mashed potatoes, and the gravy. And Sunday I tried it.

I think it was a success. Because my cooking utensils are somewhat limited (meaning I had no giant meat-poking fork) I had to improvise a little and browning the roast was an adventure complete with meat stabbing with a couple of eating forks and a couple small hot oil splashes. But I successfully browned the roast and then went home in between Sacrament Meeting and Sunday School (I always feel bad when I'm not disappointed, but excited I don't have to go to Sunday School . . . ) and finished up the meal after church. I made mashed potatoes, gravy, carrots, and Mom's dinner rolls. The meat turned out a little tougher than when Mom makes it and I don't know if that's because of my own novice pot roast roasting skills or that's how the meat was or what, but it was still good anyway. It finally felt like a real Sunday dinner! I love our staple Sunday dinner and that's one of the things I miss the most. So even though I can't have the relaxed family conversations about funny Applewood Ward happenings or the teamwork cleanup or the being home part, at least I can feel a little more connected with the pot roast. Here is my final spread (sans the rolls--I forgot to put them into the picture):

I think I'd attempt the roast again and I do like being able to cook (at least my own food doesn't make me gag). Last night for my dinner night I made a Rachael Ray recipe we loved over the summer: Chicken with Scallion Lime Sauce and Sweet Carrot Sauce. I thought it was a huge success--definitely one of my more favorite things I've made. I'm going to try and continue to develop these burgeoning cooking skills and see how it all turns out. I want to make pumpkin bread this weekend. (Hmm . . . maybe I'll make pumpkin bread for FHE on Monday . . . just thinking out loud).

On another quick note, I sluffed British Lit today and I loved it. For a quick explanation, my professor told us she wanted us to skip class just once in the Renaissance unit because when you skip class (for non-slacker reasons, but the occasional impulse) you come back to the next class more refreshed and ready to go. My inner Hermione Granger has been screaming "but you can't skive off British Literature Charlotte--what if Dr. Siegfried says something really important that you need to know for the exam next week?!" and then my inner Ron replies "I'll just copy the notes from you." (Meaning I'll borrow the notes from a couple friends in class whom I informed of my planned absence and who will gladly lend me their notes as they're ditching on Thursday and they will borrow mine). It was amazing. I slept in about an hour than usual, got ready, ate breakfast, stayed in my pajama bottoms all morning, did a bit of reading, caught up on my ironing, did some more homework, and then took a walk in the afternoon. I haven't been as motivated this evening, but I don't have so much to do so I think I'll be okay tonight.

Ditching was amazing and I do feel refreshed. I needed a small break like that. Too bad I have to go back to the "go to class and pay attention" life but it's not so bad. I feel much more motivated for my week!



So yesterday morning when I woke up (and Tuesdays and Thursdays are always great because I don't have class until 9:30) I was so warm and so cozy in my bed that I just expected to have snowed outside. It felt like one of those weekend mornings in the winter when you wake up and it's either snowing really hard or really bright and cold outside and you spend all day drinking hot chocolate, wearing warm sweaters, and snacking on pumpkin bread. Much to my disappointment I soon realized that I had to get up and go to class. I'm not sure why yesterday morning in particular felt that way, but it was great. Maybe it had to do with the fact that I wore my winter pajamas for the first time this season because it was cold in my room so I was extra warm and cozy without being hot or maybe because I slept really deeply and well. Who knows? But regardless of why, I slept amazingly and felt so good in the morning--if only I really could have slept in and had hot chocolate and if only it really had snowed and I was home (that's where I dreamed I was--it was one of those super realistic dreams that resulted in significant confusion when I woke up) and it was Christmas break. Ah well, Christmas break will come soon enough! School is good and Dad just bought my ticket home for Christmas and I'll be home for Thanksgiving in less than a month! Maybe if I'm lucky I can have a morning like that when I go home :).


I'm not sure what to title this post . . .

So a quick note on the blog look change: I did like the dots better, however I needed a color change and the template editor for dummies feature on Blogger doesn't let me change the color of the dots. I had this whole vision of a black and white polka dotted blog. Alas . . . Anyway and I finally figured out how to post a profile picture. I took off the old one with the intentions of putting on a new one, but the link I kept pasting into the profile picture box never did anything. I went to the help screen and they recommended using the second of the two picture links and voila! I have a profile picture. (I would have been content with nothing for a while longer but your comment Jill pushed me to action!)

Anyway, the weekend was way fun. Emily came to visit me and we had a blast partying hard (well as hard as homework would allow). She flew in Thursday night and while she was here we watched movies, went out to dinner, browsed the bookstore, and just hung out. The night she flew in we both went over to Diana's for The Office which was so much fun because I haven't seen Diana and Lou since June and I haven't seen Robin and Mark since April--it was a fun Office reunion!

Apart from Emily being in town, my weekend was dominated with having to read "The Faerie Queen," for my British Lit class. It's kind of interesting but I just have no real idea what's going on. I work so hard just to get the gist of the plot that I can't really analyze it on any deeper level. I do love my British Lit class actually; it's really interesting, just really intense and I'm never sure what the tests are going to be like. Today was super cool--we talked all about Elizabeth Tudor and how she was a kick-butt monarch (not in those exact words . . . ) and that was super awesome. I have to read Hawthorne's "Blithedale Romance" for my American Lit class which isn't so bad, but a whole novel in one week is a little overwhelming. Fortunately though, the due date for our paper in that class was moved to next week! (I was pondering how I would be able to read an entire novel, write a paper, and do all my other readings and still sleep this week--now I don't have to worry about it!)

I can't really think of anything else of interest to post, but once I do I'll definitely post it.


What do you think??

New blog look?? Yes?? No??

I tried another one first and it seemed too stretched--like hard to read stretched--but now I'm wondering if this one is too narrow . . . give me feedback guys.

Not a Weirdo

So last Thursday I actually went to ice cream with the boy who asked me out via scribbled note and a bit surprisingly, he's not a weirdo! I think he was just shy when he gave me the note and over ice cream he wasn't really flirty at all which was nice; that said to me he really did just want to get to know me a bit. Here are a few quick facts about the boy:
  • His name is Trevor Bowen
  • He's an English major, Tourism minor
  • He plans to go into the family insurance business when he graduates in April
  • He travels a lot
  • His dad was a mission president in Barcelona for 3 years. That's where Trevor graduated high school
  • His dad is currently an area authority in Argentina
So ice cream was only about an hour which was nice and didn't leave too much room for awkward moments and when we were talking, Conference came up and I mentioned how I'd never been before. Trevor said he could get me tickets to any session I wanted and so (as in the former post) I went. The one weird thing about it though was that I met most of his family, which wouldn't normally be a big deal, but I've only met Trevor once and the family was kind of thinking "oo la la." His dad is Shayne Bowen and so I met him and Trevor's mom. We sat with his sister and brother-in-law and the one weird thing about that was that his sister is my age and married . . .

I met his parents after the morning session and then it took us all a while to make it out of the Conference Center because so many people were stopping Elder Bowen to talk to him. (He has quite the entourage with people hailing from both Spain and Argentina). Most of these encounters included whoever knew Elder Bowen wanting to be introduced to the family so those situations went something like this: "This is my daughter Brecca, her husband Chris, our son Trevor, and his . . . friend Charlotte." "Friend" was then interchangable with date and even girlfriend once. I don't think there would have been a way to make those introductions any less awkward so I just smiled and shook hands and tried to make conversation when I could. Another thing that was pretty funny was that they all spoke Spanish (the Bowens and the people who knew them). Probably 90 percent of the people Elder Bowen stopped to talk to were Spaniards or Argentines and so I just stood there totally lost as everyone spoke in rapid Spanish (this included Trevor, Brecca, and Chris). Good grief . . .

We got to eat lunch in the basement cafeteria of the Church Office Building--it was kind of cool. I felt like I had VIP access, plus we parked in the General Authority parking lot. After the last session we drove up to his parents' Salt Lake house where he picked up his car and drove me back to Provo, (which car ride wasn't awkward so that was good). So overall, it was fun and Conference was definitely a way cool experience. With Trevor's family and all, mostly it was fine, but I did feel the daughter-in-law radar on; however I think I can take that as a compliment. Overall consensus: He's really nice but I'm not really attracted right now. I would go out with Trevor again, but probably not super soon because right now I'm indifferent, but I am leaving the door open for maybe swinging the other way. We'll see. If anything, at least I have a new friend!

So that's my story of the boy who asked me out with a note and if there are any updates later, I will most certainly apprise you!

**Addendum: Sunday night I realized I gave a Relief Society lesson last year on the talk his dad gave in last October's Conference . . . weird! (His dad gave the talk about the Atonement and the landfill--"The Atonement Can Clean, Reclaim, and Sanctify Our Lives" Yeah--that's his dad . . . )


I love the Church!!!

I love the Church. All weekend long, all throughout Conference, that thought just kept running over and over in my mind: I LOVE the Gospel!! Conference, as always, was just amazing and I felt so uplifted and strengthened and grounded. Saturday was way fun with our apartment; we went to Kneader's for breakfast around 8 and until Conference started, we watched this movie we rented at the library called "Where the Boys Are," (made in 1960 . . . it's a winner!) I love it that our apartment likes to do things together and we all sat around the TV and watched Conference together and the weather was gloomy and cloudy and misty and cold and it was all just amazing! I especially loved the Saturday afternoon session with all the talks about what the Church is, what we believe, and how we need to live what we believe. SO GOOD! (I couldn't help but think of the Hate Messager . . . ) It was all just so good (and I cried when Elder Nelson help up Elder Wirthlin--talk about object lesson).

Besides the awesomeness of Conference in general, I actually got to go to both Sunday sessions!! I've never been to Conference before so that was such an amazing experience. The note-ask-outer (I'll do another post on the ice cream outing soon) got me tickets because his dad is an area authority in Argentina, so Trevor's parents were in town for Conference and he said he could get me a ticket to Conference; all I had to do was pick a session and get a ride up there! Then when I got there, he asked if I would want to stay for the afternoon session and seriously--who can turn down sweet seats at General Conference?? So I stayed.

Anyway, actually going to Conference was so amazing and we had super stellar seats--20 rows from the podium sweet--so I didn't really have to look at the screens at all. I could just look directly at the speaker!! One of the coolest moments for me was when I got to stand and sing "We Thank Thee O God For a Prophet" with President Hinckley in the room--it was indescribable. Just being to able go to Conference and feel the unity with people from all over the world, and to see our prophet with his counselors and apostles was incredible.

And I'm so excited about the new First Presidency! I love President Eyring!! I love Elder Cook and I was just so excited about everything all weekend. Mom and I texted throughout Conference (I love it that my parents text message me--it definitely gives them extra coolness points) and really wrote the same things over and over about how exciting the Gospel is and how much we love President Hinckley. I don't know if it was this conference in particular or I'm just getting older so I can appreciate it more or each conference session really is more exciting than the last, but I felt so much more excited this time and I really felt the testimonies of our authorities and the whole weekend I felt like the Spirit was testifying of its truthfulness. There's no other way to put it: I love General Conference!!

It was definitely a reality check when I realized I had to go to school this morning . . . At least though after Conference I feel more ready for life--I think "Hey I can do this!!"


Happily on the Treadmill

So the title of this post has a few applications to my life right now. Probably the obvious one is that yes, I do run on the treadmill. About a month ago Katelyn and I joined 24 Hour Fitness gym and we've been going diligently 3-4 times a week to work out. As a part of our initial sign up fees, we got 5 sessions with a trainer which is proving to actually be really helpful. We know what exercises to do to tone and such and we know how to use the machines. The training sessions can be a bit awkward, but if you can look past that and not be self conscious it's not so bad. So 3 times a week we head to the gym and lift weights, do ab work, and run. It feels really good actually to be getting into shape and going to the gym gives me an opportunity to cool down and relieve a bit of stress. It's like the sweat on my face and in my hair is the unnecessary stress finally leaving for a bit (okay, so gross analogy, but you get it). I stopped running a couple months into the summer and so I was pleasantly surprised that when I started it up again I was still able to run for extended amounts of time--I guess my body doesn't atrophy as quickly as I thought! Last night I even ran for 20 minutes straight which I've never done before! I think I owe that to the notes I was studying that covered the timer. I'm going to take notes with me to the gym all the time now I think--last night's run was one of the easiest I've had!

In the other sense of "on the treadmill," school is kicking my trash this semester. I'm always busy (and I always feel dumb saying that because seriously what college student isn't busy?? but there you have it) and especially these past couple of weeks I've felt like I'm on the treadmill and it's going so fast and I can hardly keep up but I have to, otherwise I'll fall off and possibly break a limb. I think after I make it through this week I'll have a slight respite for a week or two; I have three midterms this weekend, two of which are pretty big and I have to study like crazy. I have my bio midterm next week, but I'm not nearly as worried about that one as I am for the three coming up. One of them--my usage exam--is in class on Friday, so that will be nice to have that done and I'd like to take my British Lit midterm tomorrow, but I'm thinking I'll put it off until Friday evening because I just don't have time to study everything. AH! Anyway, enough complaining; the point I want to make with my post title is that I am on a constant treadmill, but life is good and I'm enjoying it!

Here are a few other funny bits about my life of late that you'll hopefully find a bit humorous:
  • The football jock in my biology group voiced the concern: "Wait--we have to go to lecture to do well??" and he was serious . . .
  • I was asked out by a random guy with a note. He waited for me to leave my study spot at the top of the JFSB and got into the elevator with me and as I was leaving, handed me a note with his number on it and a quickly jotted note. Out of curiosity I texted him later and I think we're having ice cream on campus sometime this week. We'll see . . . he could be a creeper, but it's a good story anyway.
  • On Monday at a physics birthday party, after the candles were blown out, one of the professors started talking about how it's magnesium that makes trick candles work and then another professor excitedly pipes up and exclaims "Magnesium?! That's my favorite metal!!" Only in the physics department . . .
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