Friday, December 30, 2011

favorite music of 2011. none of which came from the radio.

Those of you who know me, I mean really know me, know that I am pretty puffed up about my taste in music. Yes, I will admit to that. I have met very few people who have the same (awesome) taste in music that I do. Here, I'll prove it to you. I will give you a sampling of my favorite songs which I discovered this year. If you like just one of them, I will arrest my case.

Shadowland-Youth Group
this song came from a mix which a friend of mine made, someone who happens to have near-identical music as I do. p.s. that was a very strangely worded sentence. my bad.

Calgary-Bon Iver
I don't even care that I have already posted this song on every possible social network site. LISTEN TO IT.

Mykonos-Fleet Foxes
Cool name? Check. Bearded men who also wear plaid? Check check.
Hipster music at its finest.

Little Secrets (Passion Pit Cover)-Chamberlin
The original of this song is good, but duuude. DUDE. Just listen to this version.

Wide Eyes-Local Natives
Once you start listening to Local Natives, you literally cannot stop.

The Girl-City and the Colour
Yeah, this song speaks for itself.

Shiny on the Inside-Leona Naess
As soon as I heard this song, I thought to myself, "Where have you been on my life?"

In the Mirror-Nada Surf
Before this song, I always associated Nada Surf with American Eagle because they used to always blare it from their speakers. But it's been awhile since I regularly shopped there. So I can now listen to Nada Surf with a clear conscience. Ha.

Kim and Jessie-M83
This song sounds like it came straight from the 1980's. Oh well, it's still good.

Oh No, I Tried-Right Away, Great Captain!
I can't help it if a lot of these bands have men with really beardy-beards. And kind of weird, kind of awesome band names.

The High Road-Broken Bells
Oh man, I just love this song so much. It's like a mix of The Shins and Sea Wolf. Or something. It's ok if you don't know what I'm talking about.

Helena Beat-Foster the People
Yeah, I know. Everybody knows who FTP are because of "Pumped Up Kicks," but their other songs are pretty good too. P.S this is the weirdest music video I have ever laid eyes on. And I have seen some of MGMT's. That's saying something.

No Sunlight-Death Cab for Cutie
It takes me awhile to get around to some of my favorite bands' newer stuff. It's just because their older albums are so good, I can't break away. Well it's a good thing I did, because I really love this song. And album. Word.

Good Morning-Rogue Wave
I've been listening to this here band since I was in braces. So...awhile. Anyway. I like to air-drum to this song regularly.

Hold On to What You Believe-Mumford and Sons
For some reason I cannot find this song on Amazon or iTunes. Sniffle. I'm not going to go on about how much I love Mumford & Sons. Just do your ears a favor and turn it up.

Angel in the Snow-Elliot Smith
I wouldn't mind if Elliot Smith lullabyed me to sleep every night.

Storm-Jose Gonzalez
If songs could be onomatopoeias, then this song would be one. Ya dig?

Cover of Night-Steve Reynolds
Every time this comes onto my Pandora, I go to "like" it but I've already done so about fifty times.

Cosmic Love-Florence and the Machine
For once, a song that deserves to be on the radio a jillion times a day!

Heart it Races-Dr. Dog
I might love this song just because the name of it sounds like something Yoda would say. Yeah....moving on.

First of all...a band named Seabear? Get on my iPod. Riiiigh now.

Santogold-L.E.S. Artistes
I'm still not sure if her name is Santigold or Santogold.

Rude to Rile-Horse Feathers
After Nickel Creek broke up, I didn't think I'd ever find another guy-guy-girl band that would live up to them. But luckily I was wrong!

Opie's Funeral Song-Sufjan Song
Apparently this song is "rare," meaning hard to find. But to me, it is also rare in that there are few songs as good as this one. Sha-bam.

Train Song-Feist and Benjamin Gibbard
This song makes me want to be snuggled up by a fireplace on a rainy day. But that's just me.

Two Weeks-Grizzly Bear
This music video scares me so bad. Mostly because their eyes are hugemongus. And I thought they were real the first time I saw it. So freaky...and yet I couldn't look away.

Papercuts-Future Primitive
I find myself head-bobbing to this song without even realizing it.

Weight of Lies-The Avett Brothers
I would very much like to learn this song on my new geetar.

Because of Phoenix, I got through the last 4 miles of my leg of the Ragnar.

Light Year-Gregory Alan Isakov
There's not one of his songs that I don't love. Plus, this song is how I got the name for my tumblr. Nifty, eh?

Our Swords-Band of Horses
Once again with the bearded individuals. Sorry.

I think I've given you enough music to make yourself a CD.
Happy New Year!
may you find plenty of stupendous music in 2012.

Friday, December 23, 2011

where i'm going, where i've been

We're coming up on that time of year...the one where I start making long lists of things ter-do. Today I was telling a friend that I may or may not be at a very important event in her life sometime in 2012. But it's hard to tell because my life takes me to very unexpected places. And she said "that's incredibly true." Yeah. See for yourself.


tehuacan, mexico.

an oft-used storage closet (for once the name "sardines" is appropriate for this game)

trees in the jungle. barefoot.

six flags...mexico...rollercoasters. psyche.

very slanted alleyways in taxco, mexico. it's like italy (ish).

on top of very famous, very old pyramids. obviously enthralled.


inside of very scary, very ghetto "hotel rooms," underground, on the outskirts of mexico city.

inside of classrooms, teaching hooligans like this.

the zocalo.

in front of interesting foods, like mole.

this little house for 3 months.

behind the church, playing futbol every thursday.

in a boat, by the beach somewhere in mexico, with some crocodiles nearby.

the rigby idaho tv museum. what? we paid for this?

the very last Harry Potter premiere. sniffle.

the ragnar.

still can't believe i did that.

the taco bus, some five jillion times. (ok, this isn't that surprising)

some lovely summery bike rides.

and other pretty places in Utah which are kind of hidden.

Do you remember how I had a feeling that 2011 was going to be really awesome? Well, it was. And I know the same thing about 2012. I'm already seeing some interesting stuff in my crystal ball...
  • florence+the machine. I'm late to this party, but I came nonetheless.
  • graduate school, huh?
  • EFY counselor, perhaps, perhaps
  • many weddings, many weddings
  • south america por la primera vez. ohhh yeah.
  • graduation-station!
  • new music! aha! this will never change
  • a concert. dang right
  • an adventure to Zion's
  • missionaries coming home (a.k.a. Chelsea Ann Bedke and Courtney Gopp)
  • mucho happiness
thanks for all who read this blog, stumble upon it by googling very weird things, and those who comment. I love all of you. Except for the creepstaches.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

something like exhaustion...


So I finished my last final today of 2011...I would cry tears of joy, but I think my tear ducts have had about enough this semester.

It's been a good, hard race. Kind of like the Ragnar. Yeah...that's the perfect analogy for this semester. During the race you keep thinking, "Why the heeeeck am I doing this? I would rather pluck all of my arm hairs off." And then it's over and you find yourself thinking, "Yeah, I could do that again. Why not? Here's a hundred bucks!"

I can only imagine what next semester will be like. Probably Ragnar, ultra-team style. Gulp.

This semester, I learned how much God is aware of me. Meaning that I really don't have anything to worry about. Seriously, nothing. And the peaceful feeling that comes with that has been hard to get used to, but very nice. I enjoy it. And it usually ends well!

For instance, yesterday morning I got up before most woodland creatures do to study for my huge-mongo Spanish final. When I walked into class to take said final, most of the boys looked like they were on the verge of pukedom. One of my friends said, "McKenzie...can you give me a blessing? I'm going to puke..." I laughed and said, "Nope...I can't. But it's going to be okay." Seriously, though. Even the redheads looked pale(r). It was going to be an epic final.

I tried to be positive (and yes, unrealistic, but that's not the point!): "Maybe he'll walk in and say, 'Merry Christmas! No final!'" We laughed nervously, and then, Hermano Rock himself walked in. He asked us about our essays that we'd turned in, made playful banter, etc. I kept thinking, "Why doesn't he get it over with and give us the final?!" It's like waiting for the nurse to give you your shot. You know, she says "Ok, here we go!" and you squeeze your eyes and try to take deep breaths and the needle is coming towards your arm but it's hurtling in slow-motion... "Thiiiiiiiiiiiiiiis wooooooooooon't huuuuuuuuuuuuurt." Anyways. I was pretty sure the Spanish test was going to feel like a peanut butter shot. So I closed my eyes and hoped for the best.

Then. Then. Hermano Rock said, "Well, if you don't have anything else you want to discuss for the next hour and a half, you're excused." He said this in Spanish of course, so I had to check and make sure I wasn't lost in translation. I turned to the boys behind me and said, "Wait...serious?" One of them said, "Hurry, pack your stuff up before he changes his mind!" Hermano Rock will forever go down as the best Spanish professor in my book. Evah. No contest.

After that I had English. Our "final" was just submitting something we'd written onto the school's online blackboard and then the other class would judge, pick winners, etc. There were winners in Fiction, Non-Fiction, and Poetry. Apparently they also won $25 bucks at the bookstore, cha-ching. Well I sat back and relaxed and ate some cucumber slices provided by the school's catering bidnez. Until Brotha B. said, "And our winner for poetry is Ponyboy Curtis..." Yeah, that's my pen name. Deal wit it. Everyone looked around while he said, "Ponyboy?" Yes, I felt foolish at that moment for choosing such a name. But honestly, I couldn't believe nobody else picked that pen name! Some guy in the class had simply used the pound sign as his pen name. Fo'real. Ok, I'm getting off-topic now. Sooo then I had to get up in front of the class and read my poem with a shaky voice because I'm kind of bad at reading poems out loud. The end.

Now all I want to do is eat a frosty (finals week=no grocery shopping=all that's in my fridge is milk and apples and flaxseed and peanut butter). And take a really long nap. I'm talkin 12 hours. And if I could, I would get in my car (that doesn't exist) right now and drive to grandma bonnie's and upon arriving there I would collapse onto any soft surface (that includes her front yard) and then in the morning I would drive to my house while having a dance party to "Man in the Mirror" in the front seat. And I wouldn't think about school. Not one bit.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

the brace-face chronicles...


So you know how I sometimes post little excerpts from my journals? Well, I decided to show you guys a little somethin-somethin special. Call it an early Christmas present, from me to you. But if you are prone to laughter, please use the bathroom first. Thank you.

And now, we go back in the year of Y2K, Xenon Girl of the 21st Century, and braces. That's right. 2000. And some 2001, too. I decided not to edit anything, because, well, it wouldn't be near as funny if I did. However, I did add some commentary in the little brackets. Oh, and sorry for all the exclamation points and big letters. Can't blame a 10-year old girl for being a little enthusiastic about life.

January 1st, 2000
"Happy Birthday to me! Now, I am 10 years old! Mom and Dad keep telling me to STOP growing up. I know they are just joking. Ha ha! But kids can't stay like Peter Pan forever! At least not me! I got a lot of neat stuff. A fairy doll, a doll playset, a book, bracelets, a necklace, a cd headphone player [what the junk was I talking about?!], a doll that looks JUST like me, pants, a dress, WAIT! That's all I can remember. [What, did I just experience sudden head trauma?] Crazy huh? [You're telling me.] But the Chronicles of Narnia is only 1 more I can remember. Bye!"

January 26!
One more day 'til the talent show! [just fyi, almost this entire journal revolves around the talent show. I'm not sure why now.] Sorry, I haven't written for a long time. Today I play my violin concert at 7:00pm tonight! We (my class) are singing two songs in the Talent Show called Dr. King & Lewy Lewy [back then I was a phonetic speller, okay?].

February 13!
Oh man! I haven't written Forever! Oh well. Tomorrow is actually Valentine's Day. We have gotten 3 new kids + the 21 we had before. This means I"ll be full on candy tomorrow! Today we had a substitute teacher at church. Brother Stanley. We had a lesson on the Tree of Life. I call the Tree of Life...Cauliflower! Just kidding. Well, my hand writing might be sloppy tomorrow because I'll be sick from candy.

April 14, 2001
I know. I haven't written forever. Well here is a little time machine! I was taking a writing class with my good friend Amy Mathews. We both agree to NEVER go back again. The teacher was nutty and the kids were...well let's just say scary! Abel, was definitely not able. Every time the teacher asked him to read his work, he'd say "PASS!" [Forgive me for my harshness...little kids can be real meanies.]

April 16, 2001
Nothing really happened today. Ha-Ha. Just kidding. As usual I went to violin class but a new thing: she (my mom) was the first to pick me up. Mom is usually the last to pick up--that's right--ME. Mom was on the RADIO! That is not exciting. Ha Ha again. Eh huh again. Ok I will stop being weird. I got cool writing scores. 5, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, and 4, 4, 4, 4 [*facepalm*]. You have to at least get a 4. AWESOME! I was listening to Shania Twain on the radio 3 halfs of a second ago. What's 3 halfs of a second? Shania Twain reminds me of my best friend Liz. She listens to Shania. The best thing about journals are: 1)they don't get graded. 2)They are SECRET [not on this blog...]. 3)they are like historical fiction books, which I love. 4) they do or do not tell lies [huh?].

April 17, 2001
Today was really radical! After school I went ot my BF's house [Lizzy]. 1st we went to Subway. On the way to SUB, I had too many choco-eggs and they made my mouth dry. Afterwards we helped her mom Cheryl clean the dental office by Grandma's house. Eww! I helped w/ the trash. It was dark out, so when I dumped the trash, well...DQ is right over the fence. The food pick-up is right over the fence. I swung the trash a little too far right over to where the DQ customers pick up their food. HA HA! Oops!

April 18, 2001
TALENT SHOW AUDITIONS! The auditions were great! I think I'm in. There is a lot happening at the Talent Show. Some stuff kids did was a little, well, INAPPROPRIATE. Not that I care they move their bodies in weird motions. In math, we got assigned seats! I had to sit by Chris Hardisty. YUCK! [yeah, I totally had a crush on him, fyi.]

April 26, 2001
Today we dissected owl pellets! It turns out the owl had 2 3/4 rodent dinner. We STILL haven't gotten all of the bones out of the "rotten cotton candy"!

April 28, 2001
Today Amy and I went to the movie SPY kids. Weird!!!! It has too much...high tech stuff in it [little did I know...] Afterwards off went went to Orange Julius after her MOM picked us up. It was POURING DOWN HAIL AND RAIN. Then we got back to her house and watched PRINCE OF EGYPT and ate popcorn and cookies. Amy is my other BF. Sometimes I bring extra underwear to her house because she makes me laugh SOOO hard! [I am so ashamed of this...but I had to share. I just had to.]

May 2nd, 2001
Spent the night at Amy's. I am writing this in gel pen because my ink ran out. First of all, Nichelle cheated at track again! I was ahead again, and she pushed me on the corner. She brags terribly! All the time. "My brother is the fastest on his team" "I've never gotten any checkmarks" [in 5th grade, checkmarks were akin to demerits, ok?]. OK, so Amy and I had fun. Ate pizza. She's a blast!

May 10, 2001
Leslie's play was great. On the way to WA, I read and finished the LANDRY NEWS. I've been wearing my hat all day [nothing new here] and so it feels like I have lice. Itch, scratch, itch, scratch! After the play we got Domino's & Cinnastix w/ icing. Leslie and I had to pick up pop from Subway. Michael finished 2 of the Cinnastix and opened the frosting while we left him in the car. No wonder some were missing!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

finals are for wimps

Today in the midst of a zombie-eyed stupor, I thought of a brilliant, anti-finals-week post. The idea came from Sunday before you all go running to a different blog, listen up. Our teacher had us raise our hands and tell her talents of others in the room. My roommate Caitlyn spoke up and told everyone that my talent was laughing. Huh? At first I was like, "Hey now, that's not exactly a talent...sometimes it gets me into trouble." Ok, I didn't say that. I didn't say anything, actually. I just laughed. JK, JK. But it got me thinking...yeah...I do laugh a lot. I fact, I probably laugh a little too much. And yet, what exactly is the "quota" of laughter for a 21-year old girl? I think it's limitless. And now, the proof.

that entire night was spent laughing. my abs looked gooood in the mornin'.

exhibit b: someone tried to take a regular photograph and I could not hold in my laughter about something. And, as you can see, when I laugh, Caitlyn laughs.

my face! I mean really.

from my younger years. I haven't changed much.

caitlyn+me=inevitable laughter.

courtney was behind the camera, and I know, I just know she said something to make me laugh. She does that!

Ahh, Sister Bedke. How can you not laugh when you're with her?

"Look, I'm manhandling a gun and I don't know how! I'll just show off all my chins instead! Ha-ha-ha!"

do I really have to explain myself here?

So maybe it's not that I laugh too much...I just surround myself with really funny people.
Yep. That's it.

pssst...all of you lurkers are wimps too for not commenting. yes, I said it.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

curveballs can be fun.

eye candy.

This year has been the year of near-misses, of big fat surprises, of curveballs. My stake president once said that God loves "at-the-buzzer" moments. He loves giving us those curveballs to see what we will do--will we go back and get the plates again, even though we've tried a whole bunch of times before? Will we take that leap of faith because we know "the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth"? That has been my big challenge lately (and when I say "lately," I mean the last few years that I can remember), and man has it been exciting.

We had a devotional on Tuesday which I would highly recommend reading. It was all about patience; how sometimes the Lord asks us to step away from something for awhile because it's not time for that yet--and He will reward us with it later (or something better). She also said that there will be times in our lives when we will feel like nothing is happening--but we have to keep being obedient, anyway. How many times did Nephi have to go back for the plates? Well, more than once. Just because God asked you to do it, that doesn't guarantee it will be easy. In fact, it usually means the opposite.

Remember that post I wrote at the beginning of the semester about surprises? They haven't stopped since day one. Thank goodness! Otherwise my life would be pretty dull, and I wouldn't really have anything to blog about, except for maybe peanut butter and you tube videos. Bo-ring.

Here's an itty-bitty list, to give you an idea of how good I have had to get at playing catch with God:
  • deciding on a career pretty much at the last minute
  • deciding on grad school, also at the last minute
  • deciding on grad school at BYU, say what?! I don't know whose idea that was. Actually, I do. Not mine.
  • realizing now why a lot of things in the past 3 years happened. this. is. cool. and also why you should keep a journal, yo.
The main point is, God is aware of every little detail in our lives, and whether you want to believe it or not, He's behind a lot all of the awesomeness happening to you right now. Sha-bam. Thus I conclude my slightly longwinded post and return to the land of finals week. I hope I come out of this alive.