Aug 29, 2011

First Day on the Job--Again

Today was the third first day I have had this year, in concern with jobs. Today I started at the Joseph Smith Papers Project.

I rode the train up to Salt Lake. Just after it left the station, it made the sound that it makes when a train breaks down . . . maybe it's not so much a sound as the absence of sound. Anyway, the train starts up again and immediately breaks down again.

Start and stop again.

About three or four times this happens. I'm starting to calculate the amount of mud outside and the ability of me to walk back to the station in my heels. I decided that ability was about zero.

So I went through the HR process again, and then made it over to the Church History Library, where we did some more of that first day stuff.

Anyway, I'm still a little unsure about what the next 9 months are going to bring, but I can see some definite good points.

Aug 24, 2011

Habits from Living Alone

Before you get on me, I don't live alone in the way that my parents do live upstairs and may occasionally make their way downstairs. But my basement is an apartment and it is my space, just as another apartment would be.

My brother will be moving in with me in about two months, and as I have started considering this, I have noticed that I have fallen in some habits that I'll probably have to change once I am sharing my space with someone.

Like doors.

When you live alone, doors kind of lose their meaning. I mean, I still close certain doors (ahem, bathroom) out of habit, but for the most part, there is no meaning to doors. Obviously, this will have to change.

Also, stuff. I just set my stuff down anywhere. I take my shoes off and leave them in the middle of the floor where anyone (including myself) can trip over them. Papers, work stuff, books, empty snack packages; all of these are strewn all over my living room and kitchen. What is that about? Who knew that I was such a slob? That's going to have to change.

Dishes. After living in an apartment without a dishwasher for four years, you'd think I'd be better at this, especially now that I have a dishwasher. I take forever to unload the dishes out of it, and then my dirty dishes pile up in my sink, and I don't hand wash them, and it's just a mess.

Ah. It's amazing how fast bad habits can build up when you aren't trying to keep anyone on your good side.

Well, I'ma gonna try to be a better housekeeper-a. I'm going to put my shoes in the basket by the door (or even in my ::gasp!:: closet) where they belong. I'll file or throw away papers. I'll unload the dishwasher and load it back up again. I'll close doors. So when my brother moves in with me, we will live together in comfort and peace.

Here's to trying!

Aug 20, 2011

Second Internship in Review

Yesterday was my last day at Deseret Book. It was really hard to leave!

To correctly review this internship I have to go back to the last day of my internship at the Church magazines. That was the day I went to take the in-house editing test at Deseret Book. I was pretty nervous about this because I had never taken an editing test like this before and I really wanted this internship.

In the middle of the test I just got this feeling; God knew what I needed, and I needed to trust in that. After that I felt calm.

I heard back from them about two weeks later, and set up an interview for the next week. Walking into the interview, I was still nervous, but I felt like this was where I needed to be. Sitting with Suzanne and Lisa, it wasn't so much like an interview as a conversation. Yes, they asked me the usual interview questions, but I didn't feel like I was floundering for answers or to get my meaning across. I didn't feel as if they were really judging me, like you feel in some interviews. I left wanting the internship even more.

I got called back later that same day and was told that I was one of three people chosen for the internship! And I would start the next day!

There never was the same anxiety that I felt at the start of my first internship (I think part of that was because there just simply wasn't the time to get myself worked up, but mostly I just really wanted to be there).

This internship was so great because I was actually doing what I want to do as my career--working on books! I worked on fiction, nonfiction, reference, cookbooks, and even a songbook. I think they said that I worked on 42 projects in some form or another. In 16 weeks. Some of that was just prepress checks, or bluelines, or corrections checks which don't take that long. But I also did proofreads, pre-edits, and source checking which take a lot longer. I got to read some really great stuff (and some not so great . . . ).

It's good to know that the profession I chose for myself at 16 is what I actually enjoy doing. I loved my work these past few months. I loved the pace of it all, and I loved seeing the projects change and grow. And I really learned a lot, even from just seeing how other proofreader's marked a manuscript. I became a little more confident in my editing.

Now, on to another internship in a week. (I think I'm just going to be a professional intern.)

Aug 15, 2011

Homemade Rice Pudding

When I went to London on my study abroad I fell in love with rice pudding. You just can't get good rice pudding in Utah. So I decided to find a recipe. I found a lot, but this was one of the easiest looking--and it has raspberries. Enjoy!

Rice Pudding with Raspberry topping (from Shirley Privratsky)


  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup long grain rice (I used arborio, which is actually a short grain rice that is used in risotto because it is known to make a creamier mixture)
  • 3 cups milk
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 (8 ounce) carton frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 2 (10 ounce) packages frozen raspberries, thawed
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch


  1. In a large saucepan, bring water to a boil. Stir in rice. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in milk and sugar. Cook 20-30 minutes longer or until rice is tender and mixture is thick and creamy. (I had to cook it about 35 minutes, probably because I changed the kind of rice. Also, do this part with the lid off.) Remove from the heat; cool. Fold in whipped topping. Refrigerate.
  2. Drain raspberries, reserving juice. In a small saucepan, combine the cornstarch and reserved juice until smooth. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in raspberries. Remove from the heat; cool. (I totally did this part wrong, haha. I had forgotten to get the raspberries out of the freezer the night before to thaw, so when I went to make this, I had to resort to crushing up all the raspberries in order to get enough juice. Then I just decided to put the crushed raspberries in so it ended up being more like jam than a raspberry syrup.)
  3. Spoon the rice pudding into individual dishes; top with the raspberry mixture. Cover and refrigerate until serving.

Aug 14, 2011

A Love Affair

At fourteen I fell in love.

It was early 2002. The world was gathering in Salt Lake City, and he came with it. He was 21, with unruly curls, expressive eyes, and the voice of an angel. It was love at first listen.

From that time on, I was hooked. Our moments together were short and far between, but sweet and special. His name?

Josh Groban.

I loved him in a time and place where “Mormon housewives” were considered his fanbase. But they just didn’t know him like I did.

His first tour to Utah was in 2004, and the tickets sold out in 10 minutes—leaving me without. I was determined the next time he came, I would have tickets to his show.

That was in 2007, during his Awake tour. I dragged my brother to Salt Lake with me. It was amazing. The voice, the energy.

Fast forward to yesterday. Probably one of the best days of my life so far! My mom offered to go with me to the concert this time. I was a little anxious, hoping that she would enjoy it.

We got up to Salt Lake at about 7:15, and waited in line to get in. There was some confusion because ESA did something really different with tickets. They have these things called “Flash Seats.” Basically, you buy the tickets online with a credit card, and when you get there, the ushers swipe your card and print off your seat information. Well, we weren’t sure at first if you were supposed to go to Will Call or what, but after asking about 4 different people, we (and the people in line behind us) figured it out and got in.

Because I was willing (and able) to spend a little more money this year, we had much better seats. Last time Josh came, we sat up high in the nosebleeds, but this year we were on the right side of the stage about 21 rows up. Someday, I will make it onto the floor seats. I don’t know how much they cost or how you get them, but someday, I will be there.

The opening act was a pianist named Elew. Amazing!! He didn’t use a bench, just spread his legs to support himself. He would put his hand inside the piano and pluck strings, or whatever. There was one song that sounded like there were drums being played because of how he was playing. I can’t even tell you how amazing this guy was. I don’t even think listening to his CD would really give you the full affect.

Elew played for 30 minutes, then we waited for another 30 minutes as the roadies set up the stage and all that.

Then his band came out. The only thing I can compare this to is an overture, like in a musical. We were all watching the main stage, and almost missed Josh coming out near the back to the floor stage. The first song he played was one that I’m pretty sure I had never heard before.

Then he played another and then he talked. The thing that I don’t think people know about Josh Groban is how funny he is. He sings these beautiful, classical-like songs in different language, but he’s actually really funny. And he has so much energy. It’s just a good show that he puts on.

The band (Josh called them his “Groband”) played “Live or Let Die,” which was awesome, and then Josh came out and played the drums. What can I say, he’s a multitalented guy. Then he did something else that was a little different. Before the show they gave out this number that you could text to ask Josh a question, then they picked a few and he answered them. They put a light on the section and had the person stand up. He only answered three, but they were pretty funny. The last one asked Josh if he could play some of Kanye West’s Tweets (I guess he did this on one of those late night talk shows I don’t watch). That was pretty entertaining.

I just loved being at the concert. Feeling the music vibrate in your chest, and seeing the songs you love performed live. There is something about it. Especially when songs mean something to you. When Josh performed “Higher Window,” I almost cried, because I was really paying attention to what the words meant to me.

He ended with inviting four people onto the stage with him. He wanted a couple that had been together for a long time, a single girl, and then Ethan, this little boy that Josh had talked to earlier in the show. Ethan was so cute! The bodyguard lifted him onto the stage and he ran straight back to the band and high fived every single one of them. Then Josh got these blow up couches for his guests to sit on, brought some water and milk. (Seriously. They brought out an entire gallon of milk.) The couple had been together for 39 years and it was the girl’s birthday. Josh sang happy birthday to her!

Then he sang a song about cheating. Haha. But it was “Broken Vow” which is beautiful.

He sang two encore songs, one by Neil Diamond called “Play Me,” and then “You Raise Me Up.”

Then I bought a t-shirt and Mom and I got on the train to go home. The train was packed! I was pressed up against this random old guy. The first stop after we get on, the train stopped really fast and everyone was thrown forward with a unison “whoa!”

We finally got home at one in the morning, tired, but even more in love than I already was.

Thanks Mom for going with me! I loved being able to share something I love with you. I'm glad you enjoyed it!

(I was going to put videos up, but I’m still trying to figure that out. I will do it later, I guess.)

Aug 10, 2011

Review: Gary D. Schmidt

About two or three years ago I read a book called The Wednesday Wars. It is an amazing book by author Gary D. Schmidt.

Set during the Vietnam War, it tells the story of Holling Hoodhood and how his teacher tortures him with Shakespeare.

This summer, I read the companion to this book, Okay for Now. Doug Swieteck, one of Holling's friends, has to move away from Long Island to a small town for his dad's job. There are several different strains of Doug's story, from the girl Lil, to Principal Peattie (who always refers to himself in the third person), to the playwright, to his brother Lucas who comes home from the war different, to Audubon's birds.

What I like so much about these two books is how sweet they are, how innocent but not the main characters are. Schmidt has you laughing out loud, then you turn the page and you're crying, then you're laughing again. Then you are crying and laughing at the same time. The emotions are real.

Read these books. They are fantastic.