Sunday, October 7, 2007

It's the Good Life

Hello everyone!

As I tried to figure out what to write in the subject line, that song got stuck in my head, so that's the subject. :)

So life after graduation is indeed life. I miss being on campus, going to the library, listening to my intelligent professors, and being a part of BYU, but I definitely do not miss homework. I have enjoyed the extra time I have in the evenings now as well.

I am really enjoying my new job. I work at Heritage Web Solutions. (You can see their website at heritagewebsolutions.com or heritagewebdesign.com ) I am a staff writer and editor for them. A company will hire HWS to design them a website. If the company can write, then I will go through and edit their copytext. If they cannot write, then I will interview them, research their field, and then write the copytext for them. I should go back and check to see if any of the earlier websites I have done are online yet. That would be exciting! I really enjoy it. My cubicle next-door neighbor also graduated from BYU this year. She was an English Language major (I was an English major), and we were both editing minors. Her name is Holly Kelly, so we both married into last names that could be our first names! Also, her husband is in the facilities management program, and he (Sam) and Jeff have a class together this semester. It has been really nice to have them to talk to during the program and work socials.

All of my coworkers are really nice, and I have loved working at Heritage. The only sad part is getting my vacation denied. I had wanted to go visit my parents over Thanksgiving and go to my cousin Mikey's wedding in October in Houston. But since I am asking for two weeks in Christmas to go on a cruise with the Colletts, they denied my other requests. I guess that is a dose of the real life though.

One of my favorite things about my job is that I am never bored, because each company does such a different thing from the other. There are some repeats. I have done three websites for companies that do custom work on concrete. I am officially going to get my driveway stamped or stained when I have a house. It is so cool! I am also convinced that 3M Window Films are one of the best investments anyone can make. I am very easily persuaded by all of these commercial websites. I have also done one website for a man who is starting a new political party—the Middle Party. His sign is the buffalo. Look out for him! His main beliefs have to do with "boarder patrol," "leagle issues," "aboration," and so on. (His spelling was a highlight for me.) An exciting, but expensive sounding, website was Top Gun Flight Dog. You go with a group and are paired off with an ex-Air Force pilot. You are briefed and then put in a plane. You fly around and shoot laser bullets at the other planes playing the game. It sounds really, really cool.

In my spare time I have joined a choir. A friend of my family's, Ranelle O'Dell, is in a chorale. She invited me to join. At 22, I am the youngest soprano. The next youngest is 28, and the oldest is possibly in her sixties. It is a really talented group. It is called the Mapleton Chorale. We have four performances in December and then three or four in the Spring. I am really excited about. It meets every Thursday in Mapleton, about twenty minutes away. One of our December concerts will be on Temple Square in Salt Lake City. It is a huge tourist attraction for all over the world, so it will be a great experience to sing to so many different people. I love being in a choir again and singing again. Now I just wish that I had a house, so I could sing whenever I wanted without fear of the neighbors, whose walls connect to mine, being disturbed by my singing!

I am also in the process of becoming a hospice volunteer. I have made it through all the training. I think I will get paired off this week. I will either go to someone's house and read to them or I might end up at a nursing home where a hospice patient lives. I would be in charge of creating a book club for her and her friends there. Either one would be fun. The book club might be difficult; everyone would remember different amounts and I don't know how I would get enough copies of every book for everyone, but I would figure something out I am sure. I have wanted to help with hospice for a few years now. In one of my freshman classes, a lady came and gave a presentation about hospice. I was doing different volunteer work then and I didn't have a car, so I couldn't do it. I always remembered it though. Now I can do it, and I'm going to! I am really impressed with the service they provide. I am sure it will have its very sad moments, but I don't foresee it being depressing. That will make all the difference.

Jeff is still in school and will be until April of 2009. He is doing an internship this semester with BYU's Physical Plant. Every week he is working in a new department (heating and cooling, electric, custodial, landscaping, event control, etc.). This keeps it interesting for him and gives him a broad experience. Every day he is with a different supervisor, so he is really learning all aspects. He is also discovering that there isn't much to do for a lot of time and then when there is an emergency there is way too much to do! He has had the opportunity to clean the inside of BYU's air conditioning ducts, climb on top of the boilers and bang pipes, and test the water in all of the athlete's special pools, just to name a few of his activities. He comes home pretty dirty some days. :)

He is also taking a full class load, so he has a lot of homework. That is kind of boring for me, but I find things to do. :) He is in the habit of waking up at 6 in the morning and doing homework before school starts. By the time he gets home in the evenings, he is usually too tired of school to do school work then. Since he is waking up that early, I have been attempting to wake up early as well and go running. I've been told that being pregnant is pretty physically challenging, and any extra amount of healthiness helps. I have made it at least once every week and one week I made it four times!

Also on the athletic side, Jeff is teaching me how to play tennis. My father and countless gym teachers have tried, and I was able to impress Jeff by knowing the correct terms for the scoring system, so I got something out of it! The first go was incredibly painful, but Jeff kept telling me it shouldn't be. We figured out that it was because my hands are so small and my brother Danny's old racket that I was using was just too big for me. We almost purchased me a junior's racket (haha my softball glove is for pre-teens!), but we ended up finding a women's racket that was almost small enough. My exact grip size should be something and 1/8 and I ended up with that same something and 1/4. I love my racket though! It is the Wilson breast cancer awareness racket. It says "hope" on it, and it reminds me that if thousands of people can fight cancer, then surely I can learn to play tennis. Sometimes it is a sad reminder of people that I have loved that have been lost due to cancer, but it has only made me cry once. It is the perfect racket. I'll keep you posted if I am ever able to return one of Jeff's serves.

Jeff is on an intramural flag football team this semester. He played defense until he got to play quarterback. He has stayed as quarterback and twice now has thrown zero interceptions. :)

We are going to Las Vegas next weekend for the first time with Jeff's two brothers (Jason and Ryan) that are here at BYU now and their friend Chris from Cincinnati. BYU is playing UNLV, so we are making the trip mostly for the game and also because Jeff promised he would take me to Las Vegas someday. (I have never been there before.) There won't be a whole lot of spare time, but I hope to see a few things. (He has also promised California—also never been there—we'll see when that happens!)

We are looking at internship possibilities for over the summer. We are the most excited about Zion Ponderosa Ranch and Aspen Grove. Aspen Grove is a resort just north of us near Sundance. Zion Ponderosa is on the edge of Zion National park. Both are resorts, so we are kind of excited about that. Summer is still a ways off though, so who knows where we will end up. He's also toying with the idea of interning at the Salt Lake airport or with the Church. He isn't sure yet what kind of facilities management he is interested in. Hopefully these internships will help.

Wow, this email is really long and I'm about all done. I have heard that five of my cousins are pregnant right now, as well as my sister. I am so excited for all of them! I am not pregnant though. We would like Jeff to be a little bit closer to graduating before a blessing like that enters our lives. We do, of course, want children and are very excited for the day when we get to have some. I have (haha) named our first nine children. (We are not actually planning on having nine, but I love names!) If you are curious about those, please let me know. I would love to share!

Well, I love you all. Please let me know how you are doing if you haven't already.
Love, Mimi