Roommates and the Art of Love Bursting

Teaching is the hardest thing I’ve ever done.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s also the most wonderful thing I’ve ever done. There are some days I come skipping out of school because my day has been so wonderful and I feel like I’ve truly found my calling in life. There are other days when I come skipping out of school because–Hallelujah the day is done and I am OUT of there.

Today was one of the latter days. (haha–latter days.) I was trying to get my 8th graders working on their 5 paragraph essays with a peer review worksheet and the computers weren’t working and kids weren’t following directions and some were just wandering around aimlessly even though they had specific directions about what they were supposed to be doing. I’m just coming off a cold on top of all that, so needless to say, I was NOT in the mood.

As I was sitting at my desk during my prep period, contemplating the best spot to use as a head-banging post, I pulled my phone out of my drawer to see if anyone would miss me if I jumped out of the second floor window.

And lo and behold, I had a text from my wonderful roommate Maddie.

I thought back to last night when Maddie asked me if she could use me for a project. Ever the helper, I willingly agreed. She said she didn’t need me for anything right then, but she’d let me know tomorrow what her project was.

Fast forward to lunch time with thoughts of self-maiming. I pulled out my phone to find three texts from my Maddie.

I adore how passionate you are about becoming a teacher. You are going to change lives through your love of learning!

Needless to say, this caused a great Love Burst to swell through my bosom. I was so touched at her kind words, and at such a fortuitous moment, too. I read the next one:

Hot dang girl, those sexy curls of yours bring the boys to the yard You are beautiful! I may have to censor this for my assignment, but, eh, I’ll just do what I want. I’ll just add that your witty humor never fails to make me giggle. hehe.

It was then that I remembered that her project was to give specific notes of praise to people throughout the day. How lucky that she chose me on this day of 8th grade horrors and fantasies of duct tape.

She had one more lovey dovey text for me that morning, and as my prep period ended, I squared my shoulders and knew that I could face those nasty preteens and their inability to follow the simplest of directions. More than that, I was grateful to have someone like Maddie, who every day impresses me with her kindness and generosity, especially when I need it most. Way to pull through for me again, Maddie Bo-Baddie 🙂

My First Love

For those of you just joining this Love-Burst-o-phere, you should know that I love music. I’ve spent my whole life running from private lessons to dance recitals to choir rehearsals and orchestra concerts. I spend my free time practicing the organ and, more often than not, can be found rocking out to Strauss’s Die Flaedermaus rather than whatever cool, new music that was just released. People who know me fairly well often compliment my voice or my piano and organ skills, but tonight I had the opportunity to show off my first love–the violin.

My earliest memory find a four-year-old Rylee watching prodigy Vanessa-Mae on Disney Channel as she performed her unconventional electric violin program. From that moment, sitting on my parents’ bed as they persuaded me to put on my yellow-ducky pajamas, I realized I had to play the violin. My young mind tried to explain thatImage my desire didn’t come from a passing fancy, but from a divine calling, that I, at four, had found my niche and was ready to become the next violin virtuoso. After relentless pestering and a realization that I was as serious as a young child could be, my dreams were granted. A tiny 1/8 size violin was purchased and so began my musical journey.

Through the years I’ve added to my instrument collection. I adore the piano and play any chance I get. I joined choir and realized that I can’t live without singing. As a junior in high school, I was called to be the ward organist and taught myself to play one of the coolest instruments ever. Heck, I even picked up the ukulele after high school and enjoy jamming out with others from time to time. But I keep coming back to the violin.

My ward has been having a mini talent display every Sunday evening to give members of the ward the chance to show off their skills. When I was asked to perform tonight, they told me I could do whatever I wanted–I could play the piano, I could sing, I could touch my tongue to my nose (a severely underrated talent). But it made me sad to realize they didn’t list playing the violin because no one knew I played.

How could they not know? How could these people who I’ve come to know so well not know this intregal part of my life? How could they not know that in my heart of hearts is a crazy-haired girl rocking out on her violin with everything she has? So I brought that wild-haired girl out tonight and played my little heart out. 

Sometimes I’m sad that I don’t have the opportunity to play the violin much anymore. I don’t regret my decision to pursue Women’s Chorus, but I miss the feeling of being one instrument in an ensemble. But I know that no matter what happens, even if (Heaven Forbid) I never touch music again, the violin will always be my first love.Image

 

Confessions of an Ambivert

At work, all of my coworkers started taking the Meyer Briggs personality test and comparing answers. You may have heard of this test. They split you into 16 personality types based on sensation, intuition, feeling, and thinking and how you see the world according to these factors.
Today everyone was talking about how they were dogs or dolphins or other crazy things like that, so I decided I, too, wanted to be a part of this crazy personality circus. So I went online to take a free mini-test to figure out what personality type I am.
I ended up with an extrovert, sensing, feeling, and judging personality, which means I am:
An Elephant!
This apparently means I am loyal to people I love, I stick to my beliefs, and if I have some sort of internal conflict or am uncertain about something, I feel like doing this:
Most questions were fairly easy to answer, but I always got stuck about the introvert/extrovert questions. I’ve always considered myself an extrovert since I love being around people, but the fact I blew off all other obligations to stay at home and read one night last week will show you that I really appreciate my alone time. But the tonight when I was at home by myself for 4 hours without seeing a single living soul, I almost went crazy and attacked my roommate with hugs and questions about her day.
So what does this mean for me? I thought. Am I just some anomaly doomed to walk through the purgatory between extrovert and introvert for all of my days? 
 
Some tried to console me by classifying me as an ambivert–someone with characteristics of both extroverts and introverts, someone who needs their alone time but also feeds off the energy of others. Thinking about this for a while made a lot of sense, but as I kept thinking about it, I realized something.
Why am I trying to classify myself anyway?
The last year, I’ve loved delving into different aspects of my personality to learn more about myself. I did the Color Personality Test (Blue!) and I learned all about my Love Languages (quality time and words of affirmation). But after thinking about this one, I started wondering why I felt this need to stick myself in one of sixteen boxes. Sure, it helped me become more conscious of why I do certain things and what I can do to keep myself happy, but maybe it’s ok to not define myself as just one thing. Maybe I’m more complicated than a simple color or personality type. And maybe it’s ok that I’m perfectly content staying at home sometimes and ready to go out and socialize the heck out of my ward other nights. It’s all a part of the great experience of being Rylee Carling.
But if it’s ok with you, I’m probably going to keep the elephant thing.

Bastille Day

My roommate Desiree and I were up pretty late talking Sunday night, and by the time we went to bed it was already past midnight and into the next day–July 14th.

Happy Bastille Day! I exclaimed.

In honor of the day, we listened to Le Marseillaise while marching about patriotically and getting ready for bed.

French Flag
French Monument
French Fries

Fast forward a few hours. The air conditioning in our apartment decided to call it quits while it was 90+ degrees outside, and we were all laying around lazily, trying to find motivation to move our do something other than wallow in the heat.

Let’s celebrate Bastille Day and liberate some people!

So we ran across the street to where the boys in our ward live and stormed several apartments, Desiree shouting to the inhabitants of the apartment that they were free while I sang Le Marseillaise in incomprehensible syllables of gibberish.

Why yes, we did look this epic.

After returning home, I looked up the information for Bastille Day on Wikipedia and found out the raid on the French prison in July of 1789 only released 7 people.

7 people. How anticlimactic.

After being disappointed for a while about France’s inability to pick a proper day to celebrate their country (calm down, I’m just kidding), Desiree gave me a little boost.

Think about when we went to apartment #1, and only Kyle was there. Did we falter because there was only one prisoner? Of course not! We freed him just like we did the others, and think about how much he appreciated it!

(Note: Kyle tried to ignore us and kept writing to his missionary brother. But I’m sure somewhere deep…deep…really deep down he appreciated it.)

And so we sang Le Marseillaise one last time before we started planning our next celebration:

July 31st.
Harry Potter’s birthday.
Wingardium Leviosa.

11 Signs You Watch Too Much Doctor Who

It is more than likely most of you will not understand the references I make in this post.

Up until a few weeks ago, I had never seen Doctor Who either.

And under the circumstances, I really can’t recommend it to you.

Unless you like TV shows that take over your life and reduce you to a puddle of tears at the mention of a pond. *uncontrollable sobs*

11. You have dreams in which you and the Doctor go on fantastical adventures in outer space and/or a different time period. And preferably meet someone like Shakespeare.

10. As you prepare for cleaning checks, you pull your vacuum around as though it were a Dalek and tell all the crumbs under the couch you are going to exterminate them.

9. When your roommate sees a folder on your computer desktop labeled AMY IS MY FAVORITE, she assumes it’s a collection of Doctor Who-slash-Amy Pond related items when in reality it belongs to your roommate Amy. (I would never leave something like that so easily accessible.)

8. Sometimes you listen to the Doctor Who soundtrack and begin to weep uncontrollably.

7. When you see the girls above you have turned their blue door into a TARDIS, you have no qualms in going up, introducing yourself, and asking if you can be best friends.

6. Sometimes people are surprised when my little two-door car is roomier than they assume it would be. I assure them it’s bigger on the inside.

5. You see people wearing cool bowties and assume that they are channeling their inner Eleven rather than wearing ironically.

4. That one time you looked in the mirror and swear for a minute your hair was as big as River Song’s.

3. You don’t even feel bad for the girls who waited 2 years for their boyfriends to return from missions. Try being the Girl Who Waited or the Last Centurion sometime and then see how you feel.

2. Your roommate makes a face at you during the hymn “Lead Kindly, Light” during the line about angels smiling and now hymn #97 is completely ruined forever. Probably.

1. You know you’ve watched way too many episodes and should probably just go play outside or something, but somehow you accidentally click the “Next” button. Ok, this is the last episode–I promise.

In Which my Family Prints Out my Face

Remember that time I told you all about our porch swing and how much we love it and how on major holidays we enjoy taking pictures in front of said swing? Well, this last Mother’s Day, I got on Facebook after my Sunday nap to find this.

Isn’t it just terrible??

This is quite possibly the best family picture that has ever been taken, and guess what??

THEY ARE MISSING THEIR TOTALLY ROCKIN’ OLDEST SISTER.

Words could not express my disappointment at the fact I was left out of the greatest photo of the Carling family in the world. But that didn’t stop me from trying:

Notice my family’s unsuccessful attempts to relieve my suffering.
And so for a month I did nothing but lay in my bed, languishing at the thought that I was unable to be in this perfect family photo. That I had been cast to the side like the crust of a PB&J. And I swore I would take my revenge on the people who called themselves my family.
Or I just went on as usual. Same thing.
I had almost forgotten the event when Haley texted me about a month later and told me look on Facebook. Now, I had remembered it was Father’s Day (having sent my Dad an especially personalized gift, thankyouverymuch) but I was completely surprised to see this on my Facebook wall.

My beautiful family with my beautiful face included!

After laughing for about 5 minutes and showing everybody within 5 miles, I texted Haley back, thanking her for being considerate enough to include me in family pictures this time. And especially for choosing the picture where I have the best hair ever.

I love my family 🙂

Life Lately

I know I made a brief list for my last post, but there are so many things on my mind that I couldn’t possibly write about each one without boring you out of your mind. So here’s the Reader’s Digest version:

  • Did you ever read the jokes in the back of Reader’s Digest? I did. To this day I consider those cheesy jokes the source of my sparkling wit. Those and my dad’s lame ones, of course.
  • Pändo is basically my favorite band, and I got to sing with them. Twice. Booyah.
  • I find great fulfillment in what I consider to be intellectual conversations. I’m sure most of the things I say make me seem dumber than a fence post, but talking out my thoughts and ideas with someone who is willing to talk with me is a great feeling. Also, what is the IQ of a fence post?
  • Life is short.
  • Sometimes your best friends get married. But even if and when they do, you’ll still be best friends and take ridiculous pictures by the duck pond to relive the good ole days.
  • You may not be taking classes, but life is still busy. So busy the only time you have to write a blog post about our thoughts is 1:20 in the morning.
  • Great hair days.
  • John Williams is the man. I had a dream the other night that I was being chased by a dinosaur in Jurassic Park, but John Williams’ music started playing and the dinosaur was so mesmerized by the beautiful music, I was able to domesticate him and ride him around without him eating me.
  •  Music, huh? And literature. And history. And art. And just…life. Excuse me for love bursting all over the place here.
  • Heritage. From both your ancestors and even the people who have had a big influence on your life. I am surrounded by so many wonderful people. Love burst again.
  • Sometimes you take really good pictures with your really good friends. But then you make it your profile picture on Facebook and all of a sudden everyone thinks you’re dating. Oops. But just to demonstrate:
Like I was just supposed to NOT make this my profile picture??
  • Being a responsible adult is hard work. But if you go to Wendy’s late at night to get dinner in the form of your favorite fries because you forgot to eat, it can be fun, too.
  • Commuting to work.
  • Reading the General Conference issue of the Ensign is amazing. This is my most recent favorite, and even though it’s to the priesthood holders, I think we can learn a lot from our roles in our Father’s kingdom.
  • Why do the British spell it favourite? Or colour? Don’t their spellings make them seem even more pretentious?
  • America!
  • Parallel structure and this post’s complete lack of anything resembling it.
  • We never had a season they like to call Spring in Arizona, and I have just been loving the beautiful weather and green mountains. Mmm.
  • Gilbert Blythe and the rule that bosom friends can hold hands whether their husbands are out of town or not.
I’ll take one to go, please.

I already have a bosom friend, though, but thanks for asking.

  • Piles of laundry
  • How much I love education. I recently sat through a teacher training for a private school. Like, on my own. And, like, I kind of wanted to be there. Voluntarily. And I thought it was really interesting. I think I must be in the right major–yay!
  • This post was supposed to be short.
  • Sometimes life doesn’t go as planned. But sometimes that’s ok, and life is even better than you could have imagined it. Thanks Heaven for that. And I do.