somebody bring this girl some ham

Here's the thing:

No one, not even you and I, have been able to pin point what happened to make us so close.
We've always been the "Missy's" 
& to me, there is a sacredness to that word. I honestly think our closeness is a huge contributor to the reason our family has gotten closer, stronger over the past few years.

You were the only person for those 8 months in NY I told that I had thoughts about serving mission. And when I told you there was "no way in hell" I wanted to go on a mission, you didn't judge me for saying that, or for the swearing part. And when you told me over the phone while I was sitting in the San Fransisco airport that you thought I should finally give in and listen to the feelings, I took that opinion to heart more than anyone elses.

You were the first one I called when I had done things that mother would not approve of with a boy for the first time, and you let me cry about to you. You empathized with me.

You let me cry about the stress of dating multiple guys at a time and didn't say "well at least you have boys to date" like so many said. 

You wholeheartedly understand my love for 30 rock, parks and rec, and just Tina Fey & Amy Poehler in general. It's almost too much love to handle just myself and I am relieved I have someone to share that burden with.

The past year and a half have changed you and I. You changed spiritually just as much as I did while on my mission and I am so grateful for that. You could literally understand the feelings I was having about my love for the gospel. I knew when I was doing morning study, you were too. And you experienced those indescribable feelings of falling in love with this gospel at the same time I did.

And even though our life experiences were at the complete opposite ends of the spectrum, you could somehow always pull from something you had gone through to help me. Like when I came to you and said "Having to leave NY feels like there will be a hole in me that can never be filled" and you could pull from your own experiences and explain that things will get better. Even though you've never had that same NY experience. It amazes me still to this day how you can do that. And it's a quality I want in myself someday.

Your love for your husband & babies.
Your love for our family.
Your testimony.
Your strength - THAT STRENGTH DANI. It's inspired not only me but many many people around you. I cant tell you how many times i've had people say to me "Dani is one of the strongest people I know" and every time I fervently nod my head in agreeance .

I am overwhelmed with gratitude towards Heavenly Father that he let me have you as my sister and even more grateful because the plan all along, since before we were even together in this wonderful family here in this life, was for you to become my best friend.

Happy Birthday Pants.
26 may just be the best year yet. 

*cue celine dion's inspirational "my heart will go on"*

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Not in the plans, totally planned Christmas

Is it just me or has that Christmas tree gotten smaller? 
The fake Christmas tree that we've used every year since I can remember. Is that even possible?

I've grown since my last Christmas home. No, Literally. At least half an inch. I think that makes me really 5'11 now, not 5'10 and a half claiming to be 5'11. Being away has made an honest woman out of me. 

Its been three years by the way. Three years since being able to spend this holiday that so supports family, surrounded by exactly that. One Christmas spent in NYC, The next in Murrieta. & this years wasn't even supposed to be spent here. But all of the good that has come out of being home shows me it was in the plans all along. Maybe not my plans but definitely in someones. Had I stayed on my mission, I would have missed out on becoming this person. And I'm happy with how its turned out, with all of this

8 months ago there was no way out. I saw no end. Even the little glimpses of light graciously sent my way couldn't change the whole perspective. And now thinking back, I am there again. Sitting in that darkness. Seeing how it all played out and how I got here- sitting in my parents recliner on Christmas eve at 3:13 am listening to the best effing christmas playlist of all time - I am overwhelmed. But the best kind of overwhelmed. The opposite kind of overwhelmed that I felt a year ago. The kind of overwhelmed you feel when you realize that all of it's in remembering the birth and the atonement of Christ. 

Tears. I mean you could totally chalk it up to hormones. But these are the the good kind of tears that seem to well up in your heart way before they even make it out of your eyes.

Holidays lately have been the shit. Mostly because my family is the shit.
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helping, fixing, or serving

"Dont say that" you said.
"How can you say that?" you said.

"Helping, fixing and serving represent three different ways of seeing life. When you help, you see life as weak. When you fix, you see life as broken. When you serve, you see life as whole. Fixing and helping may be the work of the ego, and service the work of the soul. When we help, we become aware of our own strength. But when we serve, we don’t serve with our strength; we serve with ourselves, and we draw from all of our experiences. Our limitations serve; our wounds serve; even our darkness can serve. My pain is the source of my compassion; my woundedness is the key to my empathy." 

-Helping, Fixing or Serving? 
By Rachel Naomi Remen
Shambhala Sun, September 1999

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Please explain to me why golfing is a thing.

They put me in a room. 
Green walls.
Pictures of golf courses plastered all over.
The choice of green makes sense now.
Isn't that a little tacky?
Don't they know that golf is the worst sport in the history of all the sports?
Why do they think this would calm anyone down? 

Is this the foreshadowing of things to come?
Is this golf coursed plastered room going to become my life?
Because its scary how many parallels I could make.

Driving, preparing myself for this hour, I was going over in my head what they would ask me.

I've been asked these questions so many times before that I could literally write my own survey.
But how am I supposed to try and explain the weight of this last year in a 10 minute visit?
And how are they supposed to make an educated decision on what direction I should take in these 10 minutes, when it took me 7 months searching for an answer to finally get a hint at a direction.

Again, I trust the guidance that I've been given. 
But that doesn't stop my mind from racing a thousand miles an hour coming up with every possible outcome so as to make sure i am not blindsided.

I've definitely decided that the choice of green is extremely tacky.
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7 years

Whether it's because she suddenly remembered the warnings so many had given her lately or 
because the "i'ts 430 am why the hell are you awake" stomach ache had kicked in. She rolled down her window, the negative two degree air spilling frantically into her car, and spit out her gum.

7 years? Really? I highly doubt that.
But if it ends up being true, my stomach is literally half full of swallowed gum. Not only mine, but others who couldn't find a place to throw the gum away so I kindly took it and swallowed it for them. A service really. Maybe that's why I cant eat a lot of food all at once? The capacity of food holding room has been decreased greatly by the gum.

What is this "scold madi for swallowing gum" month? At least 4 different people have given me their warnings and looks of disgust as I swallow the gum that's flavor has long since left. 

I find nothing wrong.
And on the rare occasion you see me spitting out my gum, know that its the result of peer pressure.
So much friggin pressure.  

It has come to my attention that people thought this post was some sort of metaphor & were thrown off when they found out the truth. I want to be very clear when I say this is a literal post. I really swallow my gum, sometimes others as well. Although if you take this post as a metaphor, it makes me seem really deep. So go right ahead and take it how you will. In the mean time, I will keep on swallowing all of the gum.
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