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It’s a Weird Feeling

It’s a weird feeling when…

  • Everyone starts a new semester of school and you spend every day shopping, writing letters and thank you cards, and packing.
  • You buy a gallon of milk and notice that it will expire after you’ve been in the MTC for over a week.
  • The week before you leave, you go out to eat for every meal so that you can spend some quality time with friends before saying goodbye. (I went to Angie’s three times yesterday. Yes, every meal.)
  • You stop caring whether or not guys ask you out.
  • Your mom is experiencing more anxiety than you are about leaving on a mission.
  • Your friends are making plans for next weekend and you realize you won’t be around to join in or even hear about it the next day.
  • You have only three days until you report to the MTC!
  • You can’t attend Aggie basketball games because your student ID is now invalid.
  • Most of your guy friends are finally home from their missions and you’re just leaving.
  • All your missionary shopping is FINALLY done!

Thus has been my life for about the past month. It has actually been an incredible month—full of so much love, peace, excitement, and just a bit of sadness. I have been extremely blessed.

And good news! It’s almost time!

So basically I have the most talented sister ever. If you know her, I’m sure you’d agree. She is wonderful at sewing and cooking and anything artistic. In the past couple of years she has been really interested in graphic design. She has made many, many fun invitations, announcements, wallpapers, pictures, etc. She even made my blog design! In early-mid December I was talking to her on the phone and she mentioned that for her family Christmas card she was making a design of her cute little family to put on the card. I thought that was such a cute idea!

A few days later I called her and told her I had an idea for something she could get me for Christmas. I asked her to make a design of me as a missionary and then print them on some cards that I could take on my mission and send out to people while I’m gone.

So on Christmas day, this is what I got:

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I think this one is my favorite. 🙂

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All four designs

She completely exceeded my expectations! She made four different designs that are all darling! And the name tag even says:

Sister Morgan
The Church of
Jesus Christ
of Latter-day Saints

I absolutely love these cards! I’m so lucky to have such a talented, sweet sister who can do such fun things for me. I’m so excited to be able to use them while I’m on my mission!

Goodbye 2012!

2012 was quite a year! It was a year full of surprise (good and bad) and also a lot of growth. I can easily say I have learned a lot and I’m grateful for that.

Now, this is kind of a long post so I won’t be offended if you don’t make it through the whole thing. It’s really just a nice, easy way for me to keep a record of my life.

So, here’s just a quick overview of my year:

Number of places I lived: 2

Number of visits to the doctor: 4

Broadway musicals I saw: Wicked (for the third time!), Phantom of the Opera

Places I visited: New York, Washington D.C., Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland

Jobs I had: Assistant Preschool teacher at Morningside School, Manager at Jamba Juice, Receptionist at Valhalla Salon and Spa, Counselor at Retreat for Girls

Books I read (besides educational/scriptural texts): The Hunger Games Trilogy, Tuesdays with Morrie, Les Misérables, The Uglies

Movies I loved: The Vow (I know…but I just really love Channing Tatum), The Hunger Games, Brave, Here Comes the Boom, Les Misérables

Bonus highlights of 2012:

I’m the only sibling who made it onto Richard’s Christmas card this year! (Anyone who knows Richard will know this is a HUGE deal.)

I had my blood drawn for the first time EVER.

I decided to go on a mission!

Many of my high school guy friends came home from their missions!

Pictures of 2012:

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I celebrated my 20th birthday and wore this pin on my backpack all day. 🙂

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Proudly displaying my bandage after having my blood drawn

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Directing the Spring Program at preschool. Love those kids.

Last day with Teacher Amber

Me and Teacher Amber

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My sweet parents. My mom was diagnosed with Colon Cancer, had a tumor removed, and started chemotherapy and my dad had his gall bladder removed all within just a couple of months in the summer.

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Mom’s surgery

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Retreat for Girls!

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Wicked! Happy birthday to us!

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Brigham City Temple Open House

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Performing at the annual neighborhood party

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Proud of my Aggie basketball star!

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Aggie football!!!

girl's night oct. 2012

Girl’s Night Out at the Bluebird during Priesthood session of General Conference

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“I’m going on a mission!”

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Polyga-date with Branden!

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My mom made both mine and my sister’s temple dresses from her vintage prom dress patterns. And she made mine under the influence of what we like to call “Chemo-brain”, which was quite an adventure.

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My first time through the temple.

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“Otter hands!” We are so hilarious.

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Love my kiddies. Okay, well they’re my sister’s kiddies but I still love them like my own.

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I could squish this little one all day long. So sweet.

Temple Square!

Temple Square trip with some friends

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Phantom of the Opera

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Times Square!

Trip to the East Coast

As mentioned in my last post, after finals week my roommates and I paid a little visit to the east coast!

I’ll let the pictures do most of the storytelling. It’s more fun that way. Also, please know I really did wear different clothes every day. You just can’t tell because I’m always wearing my orange coat. Also, you’ll notice that many pictures are the three of our heads very close to the camera because there wasn’t anyone around to take our picture. My apologies to Liz for not being in as many of the pictures as well. She was often the one with the camera. That is all.

First we have Washington D.C.

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World War II Memorial

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Washington Monument

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This was our beautiful rainy walk to the Lincoln Memorial

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Lincoln Memorial

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Jordan and I laughed forever when we came across this picture. What a gem.

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View of the Washington Monument from the Lincoln Memorial. Also, take a look at that beautiful sky! Isn’t that amazing??

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On the metro

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A foggy, chilly day at Arlington National Cemetary. Every single grave had a wreath.

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Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

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Watching the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

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Not sure which museum is behind us…

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The eye-catching view as we came around the bend on the freeway. The Washington D.C. Temple!

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Ran into my cute missionary friend, Hailey, at the Washington D.C. Temple Visitor’s Center!

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Next we have our adventures in New York City

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My favorite thing in New York was seeing Phantom of the Opera on Broadway.

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The fallen chandelier

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So excited for the show to begin!

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Radio City Music Hall

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The giant Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree!

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This is my favorite picture. A funny Palestinian man took this picture of us and kept telling us to “Strike a pose!”.

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A view from the top of the Empire State Building

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Our freezing faces on the top of the Empire State Building.

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Another subway ride

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Taking the Staten Island Ferry so we could get a better glance at the Statue of Liberty

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Staten Island Ferry

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The Statue of Liberty

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This picture was taken through a very dirty window. I sat inside because it was just too cold outside.

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We saw some pretty hilarious street performers. “Because it’s not a real show until there’s an…ASIAN GUY!”

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Central Park. All of the trees are dead.

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I was cold pretty much all the time.

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As you can see, I am pretty hilarious. At least to Jordan.

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The Brooklyn Bridge

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Just a quick glance at the lobby of the Waldorf Astoria Hotel. It was so fun to stay there!

I don’t have near as many pictures of things in Pennsylvania but it was very beautiful and green. We mostly did a lot of shopping in Pennsylvania and I was able to buy some cute clothes for my mission.

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We did manage to get ourselves to Hershey where we took a tour of the chocolate factory.

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Cutest cupcake shop in downtown York

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The beautiful, historic Wilson home

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My favorite room at Liz’s house. I took several naps on that couch.

Lots of money was spent, lots of driving/walking/flying was done, and lots of fun was had. Liz’s parents were the most gracious and kind hosts and we had an amazing time. I’m so happy we were able to have this fun adventure before I leave on my mission.

Oh, and I report to the MTC in 41 days.

Finally…A VACATION!

This is how I’m getting through the last three weeks of the semester. The fact that on the Friday of finals week I’ll be on an airplane heading to a week of fun on the east coast. That is, if it’s not completely underwater still.

Three weeks from now I will be wandering through the streets of New York City, the museums of Washington DC, and the Hershey Chocolate Factory of Pennsylvania!

This trip to the east coast is something I’ve been wanting to do quite some time now so when the opportunity presented itself, I convinced Jordan to do it with me.

I went to New York when I was 15 and absolutely loved it but Jordan has never been. Liz, having grown up in Pennsylvania, has been several times and knows all about the city and the best things to do. We have some good things planned and I am so excited that the three of us get to go together!

So basically these are my thoughts………

 

P.S. I report to the MTC in 71 days!!!

I went through the temple for the first time today.

Source: google.com via Ashleigh on Pinterest

I have been preparing myself for this moment in my life since I was just itty bitty. The temple is a place I’ve been taught to look to as a source of strength and peace. I knew that if I kept myself clean, I would eventually be able to attend and that meant so much to me.

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Making a visit to the temple. Age 12 or 13.

The long awaited day (TODAY!) finally came and it was so, so good. I experienced such inexpressible feelings of peace, happiness, wonderment, and awe. It was everything I imagined and more. It truly is a holy place.

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It was a completely amazing and beautiful experience and I loved it. I can’t wait to return soon. 🙂

California Girls

Well as most of you already know, I received my mission call last week! That day was easily one of the best days of my life. I had my family gathered around (Thank goodness for cell phones and Skype!) and it was wonderful to be able to share such a sweet moment together.

I think this video is funny because most of it is just us trying to figure out where San Bernardino is located in California.

A couple of days after I received my mission call, I had the best conversation with my sweet little 6 year old niece. We’ll call her Peanut.

Peanut: “Tina, you’re going on your mission to California!”

Tina: “That’s right! Isn’t that exciting??”

P: “Did you know I was born in California?”

T: “I did know that. You are a California Girl!”

P: “Yeah. I’m the only one in my family who was born in California! Everyone else was born here.”

T: “That’s true. And now I’m going to be living in California for a year and a half! We can both be California Girls!”

P: “Yeah! We are California Girls!”

And can I just say…I LOVE THAT I’M GOING TO BE A CALIFORNIA GIRL! 🙂