Monday, September 30, 2013

Red Kites and Blueberry Pop-tarts

If you haven't watched We Bought a Zoo I highly HIGHLY recommend you do.  It is one of my very favorite movies of all time.  And coming from a movie junkie obviously that means it must be really quite amazing.  It is one of those movies that just makes you feel good.  Really good.  Meaning... it made me cry.  It also has the most phenomenal soundtrack.  So really what more can you ask for?

One of my very favorite parts of the movie is one that is probably not memorable for most people.  And the quote I love most isn't one of the quotes you will find floating around Pinterest.    

"She loved red kites and blueberry pop-tarts." -Benjamin Mee       

It seems like a completely pointless line until you put it into context.  This quote comes from the part where Benjamin Mee, the main character, is describing his wife who recently passed away...  "I thought if I came out here it would stop.  Back home everything reminded me of her... the air in August and May because those were the months that her favorite bushes grew flowers all over our neighborhood... And seriously I am avoiding half the isles.  Condiments.  Pastries, forget about it.  She loved red kites and blueberry pop-tarts.  I mean, who doesn't, right?"  

I love the details in life.  I am all about the details in fact.  The details just make life so much richer.  So much better.  And when you notice the details in life it just gives you that many more things to fall in love with.  

Ever since I was a little girl I have noticed the details.  Sometimes I will buy an article of clothing just because of the maroon stitching or a really intricate zipper.  I love a certain word in a certain sentence in a book.  I love the little things about people.  I love their habits.  The things that just make them tick.  I love their funny little obsessions.  The way the eyelashes curve or the way their eyes look when they are concentrating.  I love those kind of little things.  And ever since I was a little girl I have wanted someone to love those things about me.  To notice the red kites and blueberry pop-tarts about me.  

That is why I love that quote.  With one sentence Benjamin Mee describes the incredible amount of love he has for his wife.  He knew her.  He knew the little things that made her her.  He knew her details.  And he loved them.  

I am, as I am sure you will find out, a hopeless-romantic.  I mean who isn't???  (Note:  For all you people who claim you are not hopeless-romantics I really do promise this blog won't be totally sappy all the time.) But in all honesty we all want a crazy deep love.  And the detailed kind of love... that is what I've always wanted.  And somehow I've gotten lucky and scored. 

People seem to ask me constantly... What is your favorite thing about Andrew?  Or what do you love most about Andrew?  A completely ridiculous question because I love about a million things.  But as of late one of my favorite things about him is... the way he loves me for my details.  

He loves the way I LOATHE waking up early.  He loves how small my fingers seem to be compared to his.  He loves how excited I get to decorate for Halloween.  He loves the details I don't even notice about myself.  The details and habits he points out and somehow finds fabulous.

And I find myself feeling like the luckiest girl in the world because I somehow stumbled upon everything I've ever wanted... The red kites and blueberry pop-tart kind of love.            

Monday, September 23, 2013

Confessions of a Planner

I am a planner.  I would like to think I am spontaneous.  Or spur of the moment.  But in all honesty I am a planner.  And like any planner does... I make plans.  Lots of them.  Plans for this blog.  Plans for the day.  Plans for the week.  Plans for my life...  The funny thing is you would think I would be good at making plans seeing as I make so many of them.  But that's where you are absolutely wrong.  Because when it comes down to life plans I seem to... well... fail.  

Let's take a minute to review my last "failed" life plan...  

I had this brilliant plan of going on a mission.  A perfectly great and righteous plan right?  Right.  And it became even more of a brilliant plan when I got called to serve in none other than Wellington, New Zealand.  Say hello to the DREAM MISSION.

Leaving August 27th.  I WAS STOKED.  Stoked was probably an understatement.  I was ecstatic. Initially I was actually a little disappointed with the date.  I received my call March 27th.  Giving me five whole months to wait.  And when I wanted to do nothing else but serve, five months seemed like an e t e r n i t y.  But as time went on five months began to fit perfectly into my plans.  

A whole summer to play.  A whole summer to NOT work because for once I didn't need money for school.  No job. No school.  No homework.  No worries.  A whole summer to do just about anything I had ever wanted to do.  Sky-diving included.  But sky-diving was about the time when my life plan really started going south.

Cue Andrew Menlove.  Exactly one month after I received my call, April 27th, this boy asked me on our first date.  And after our four-wheeling-double-date-gone-wrong I came home just a tad worried.  But as a determined planner I knew nothing could ruin my plan.  

June 7th we went sky-diving.  And a few hours later I heard the fatal words "I love you."  I don't know which was a bigger adrenaline rush, jumping out of a plane or hearing those words.

We dated.  Went to Powell a few times.  And around mid-July, after much prayer, fasting, and countless temple trips, I decided New Zealand was going to have to wait.   

And I have never been 
h a p p i e r. 

Don't get me wrong.  I am still my usual stress case.  Back in school.  Broker than broke.  With no real job.  But through all of this I have learned something very important...  Plans, really rigid life plans are no good.  Because we can never really see the whole picture.  There's only one person who can actually see that.  But in order for Him to guide us in that direction we have to be willing.  Really willing.  

I thought I was willing.  I mean I had a mission call.  In my mind I was as willing as they come.  But I wasn't really willing.  It was all about what I wanted.  Luckily the Lord is super smart and knows what we need.  Not what we want.  What we need.  A mission call.  Perhaps not a mission.  But instead just a mission call.  A chance to prepare.  An eye opener.  And one of the most humbling experiences I have yet encountered.  

“The submission of one's will is really the only uniquely personal thing we have to place on God's altar. The many other things we 'give' are actually the things He has already given or loaned to us.” -Neal Maxwell

I thought I was about to give so much.  Eighteen months.  What I didn't realize was those eighteen months were never mine to give.  The only thing that has ever really been mine to give is my will.  And finally I think I am starting to do that.  Finally.  But the craziest part is I am still in debt to him... because by giving him my will I have been blessed immensely. 

And I have never been
h a p p i e r.