Sunday, February 27, 2011

Day 26: Your Dream Wedding

Alrighty then.. My dream wedding.

I want the actual getting hitched part to be small, and quiet. Just family. Intimate and not so showy. Mind you, I'll have everybody coordinating and I'll have the flowers and day plans under control, and I'll for sure get me a wedding photographer. But I don't want my wedding to be a production, because it's not a production, it's a sacred ceremony. I'm really looking forward to that moment when I'm officially sealed to my husband forever. 

The partying afterwards is another story, however. I'm going to need to have a reception here and an open house, too, back home in Pennsylvania. I want the reception to be in the evening, and I want it candlelit and romantic. The color scheme is going to be black, white, with muted shades of red and pink, kind of like this blog thing I have going on. I don't want it in a church gym, no way. It needs to be in some kind of classy banquet hall or old famous residence that can be rented out for events. I'll have it catered and the lacy tablecloths will be sprinkled with rose petals. I want no dead noise in any part of the reception: live music by the tables and dance floor, old italian love songs in the background by the lobby and bathrooms and food. I'll invite everyone we know and it'll be the party of the year! I used to plan some killer birthday parties in my time, so my reception will have to definitely blow them all away. 

licking puppies and lyrical poetry

Day 25: Put your iPod on shuffle, first 10 songs

  1. Notion - Kings of Leon
  2. I'll Believe You When - Matchbox Twenty
  3. Breakdown - Jack Johnson
  4. Bottle It Up - Sara Bareilles
  5. Monkey Wrench - Foo Fighters
  6. Who Will Save Your Soul - Jewel
  7. Don't Let Me Get Me - Pink
  8. Parallel Universe - Red Hot Chili Peppers
  9. Cecilia - Simon & Garfunkel
  10. Little Miss Can't Be Wrong - Spin Doctors

Saturday, February 26, 2011


Day 24: Something you've learned.

I've learned...

... that people have the capacity to love me unconditionally. I never believed that was possible before now. I am so paranoid and I have this constant worry that my next screw up will be the cause of my friend or family member dropping our relationship, just like that. Mostly I think that way because that's how I grew up. Our family is still growing up. There's a lot of good about our family, but one thing that's always been a struggle was how horribly conditional we were with one another. We all seem to be very uncomfortable with each other, because we don't resolve a lot of fights, we just let them fester and pretend to move on. And then we let minor things affect our major opinions. We would get offended super easily and as a result, we were never really nice to each other. I didn't notice it was such a problem until my two younger sisters would openly criticize me in public. It was very startling and hurtful. Because I found out that in any setting, they don't like me - they wouldn't even pretend to get along. I didn't see hardly any positive feedback, except when by chance we happened to be getting along or agreeing at the time. Then, in that condition, would things be all right between us.

Growing up conditional, I never fully trusted my loved ones. And what is love without trust? It's a battle that I'm still fighting, winning over my siblings and father and cultivating a positive, affectionate relationship with each of them. Mom and I are pretty solid, and I'm so grateful for that. 

I kept that part of my roots in my system until recently, when I threw away the notion that I was doomed to conditions. Over the last several days, I've been extra clumsy and careless and I thought it was affecting all those I surround myself with, and I've been getting really worried that everyone is getting mad at me. I beat myself up pretty good psychologically, and I braced myself for disappointment. Turns out, I created these demons in my head for no good reason. My friends here are still just as tight with me as ever; Ben and I are amazing. I got embarrassed and scared over nothing. I can't say enough how much I appreciate this unconditional love stuff - even when I'm having a week where I'm far from perfect, I have people in my life that still think the world of me. I think I've always yearned to feel like a princess, tried to feel special and important, but never quite getting there. But now, after expecting doomsday and getting blanketed by love and security, I can tell you that I finally feel like a princess.

Friday, February 25, 2011

family matters

23. A picture that makes you smile.
well, how about four?


Thursday, February 24, 2011

she's a fluter

22. A picture of you last year, and a picture of you now.

February 2010:

February 2011:

not much has changed. except the hair, a little bit.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

forever, 21

21. Someone you love/Someone that means a lot to you.

this is my grandma. 
She's my favorite person in the whole world.

Grandma Helen is a short little Irish woman who was raised catholic and aspired to become a nun. She met my pop pop at a military ball they used to hold all the time, during some war, and they quick got married. (I wish I knew the story better.) She soon after got pregnant with her first child, Eleanor, who only lived for a short while after being born. Eleanor went straight to heaven, and later they had 4 more kids, the second oldest of them being my dad, George. After having my uncle, dad, and two aunts, she converted to the LDS gospel. She then was baptized, along with all of her children. 

My grandma is one of the most social people I have ever met! She networks through the relief society's address book like none other. She is a peacemaker and just like me, she cries very easily. For the majority of my childhood, she was my closest companion. Grandma lives with us, she has her own apartment style home in the first floor of the barn, as our family's house begins on the second floor. I would always run downstairs to run from trouble and chores, and confide in her: tell her everything about the going -ons of our crazy family upstairs. She knew about every boy I ever liked, ever since I was a toddler. She was my chauffeur and my therapist and the best, most loyal girlfriend a girl could only dream of.

I love my grandma, so so much. I think I miss her the most.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

they call me what!

20. Nicknames.

Moulin Rouge
Elena Bedayna
Truly Loolie

aand that's all I can think of, pretty much. That's all of them.
Having said that, I've decided that after this 30 day challenge is up, I'm going to take a blogging hiatus, so as to focus more on my book, and also just plain ol real life. 

Monday, February 21, 2011

the missing piece

beddy bye, and goodnight

Ok so for day 19, I have my choice of my favorite place, or something I miss. For me, it's easy to combine them. I miss my favorite place, which is


I used to have the best. bed. ever. I don't think I have any pictures of my bed at home in my parent's house in Bryn Mawr, but if I can find one, I'm sure I'll obsess over it. It was my sanctuary, and the most comfortable thing I've ever had contact with. Hm, actually now that I think about it, being close to Ben beats my old bed in comfort levels. But oh well, I'm still focusing on that bed. It was a simple Ikea mattress & bed frame, and it was low to the ground, and I had the most luxurious sheets and comforter. Haha, you could say I'm pretty emotionally attached to it.

Haha, just kidding. I still have 11 days left!

day "ate"- teen too late

Agh, sorry internet. I failed doing the 30 day challenge consistently for 30 days, because I didn't write anything yesterday. I'll still fill in day 18...

> favorite place to eat.

I don't have any one favorite.
This was my favorite place to make a quick run to for a hoagie and snacks back home:

But when it comes to food at home, dad's take-home from this place was the greatest:
it was a little corner shop downtown Philadelphia, in little Italy. I loved it.

Out here in Logan, my favorite place happens to be:
Nope, it's not Rancherito's. It's Beto's. Nobody calls it by its real name anymore. I got into the hype of mexican food out here, I guess because there's enough mexican people living in the west to sustain a chain restaurant like this one.

My favorite foods from these three places have gotta be chocolate ice cream, italian hoagies, pesto agnolotti, bruschetta, guacamole, and the carnitas burrito.

There you have it.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

hello out there?

17. Your fears.

I'm afraid of rejection. Of adversary that pulls the ones I care for most away from me. I mean, I'm afraid of other things, horror films get to me pretty easily, but those I just react physically and verbally loud to and afterwards have a good laugh at my hilarious, extreme behavior. But bombing a performance or getting nagged about some plan of mine gone awry or an unexplained breakup, I fear that stuff the most. I don't show it when I'm truly, deeply afraid as much as I do with the fleeting scares. When I'm truly afraid, I feel like the dementors have come down on me. As if all happiness is gone from the world. I allow things to get to me, because my personality is so surfaced. And I'm not saying I'm a wimp or baby entirely, because I know that I can be brave. I've gone through my share of rejection and solitude in my 19 years of living, and I think I'm doing ok so far. But those are my fears. I was going to say that bugs or the dark or heights or madmen with axes are some things that I'm afraid of, but that's not true. I react pretty crazy to all that stuff, but my reality goes deeper than that. My real fears are being rejected and uncared for. Unwanted. Alone.

Life is a challenge. My fears are brought to life, in small manifestations, every day. 

Friday, February 18, 2011

haha. hah. ha. h...

16. Something that makes you laugh.

screaming with fright and scaring myself more than the original scare
when dr. rohrer makes really cheesy band jokes during rehearsal
any movie with will ferrell and/or steve carell in it
using photobooth after 11pm with michelle, catherine, and leslie

...and really, just being myself makes me laugh. I'm pretty ridiculous.

when you wish upon a star...

15. Your Dreams and Aspirations
I don't want to write about my own dreams & aspirations, 
so I'll share some artwork and quotes instead.

At first, dreams seem impossible, then improbable, and eventually inevitable.

Be careful what you set your heart on, for it will surely be yours.

Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


(Something that makes you feel better.)
I find it ironic that I got a package from my mom today, and the day my girlfriend wrote post #14, she got a package, too. Packages really do just make your day - ahem, and make me feel better.

But there's other things make me feel better, things that are more important than anything material.
Such as...

Being called a princess and not as a joke. Good morning texts. Kisses on the forehead. Feeling loved every second of the day. Sincere compliments. Really long goodbyes. Amazing jokes, constant laughter. Warm, strong hands intertwined with my puny, cold ones. Silence that isn't awkward. Spending all of my time with the love of my life. 

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

the virtue lies in the struggle

13. Goals.
Before I go to sleep each night, I think about my morning the next day, and I make a goal for a specific wake-up time, because I have vastly different mornings on a daily basis. Some days I have to get up at 6:30 and other days I get to sleep in til 10. More times than not, though, I don't reach my morning goals. I'm pretty much bipolar when it comes to my hopeful attitude at night and my rebel grumpy self while waking up.

I have goals for my education: I want to definitely get my bachelor's and hopefully my master's degree in music, so I can potentially make bank down the road when I stay at home and teach flute in a home studio. I'm looking forward to going out into the community, wherever I end up, and being an entrepreneur, and participating in workshops and symphonies and creating a great outlet for kids who love music as much as I did when I was nine.

With family, my goal is the temple. I will get sealed in the temple, and I am going to have a big ol' family that gets raised in the church. 

None of these goals are easy. As I've already explained, I miserably fail at the first. School is hard and staying temple worthy is a challenge. This post's title says it all: the virtue lies in the struggle. And going to class and practicing flute and baritone and reading my textbooks and studying and focusing is really satisfying! Putting God first in my life makes a world of difference, in how perfectly my priorities fall into place. The principle of these matters mean the most, in the end.

Monday, February 14, 2011

and when the rest of the world walks out, I'll still be here

12. Something you don't leave the house without.

I tried thinking about this one, but then I remembered it's 2 in the morning and I'm not really in a good thinking mood :) so minimalist thoughts came to the conclusion that there isn't anything physical I don't leave the house (or dorm or apartment, rather) without. I've gone without my cell phone and wallet before. There's been times when I haven't worn an article of clothing, every kind of clothing you can think of, even underwear.  But no matter what the situation is, I never leave wherever I'm at without my love for Ben. Even when we were apart for a month, I couldn't think about anyone else. I couldn't even dream about anything else. The way I feel about him hasn't changed and won't ever change. He is my rock.

... Happy Valentines Day! I thought this topic was definitely appropriate.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

eleven in heaven

11. Your siblings.
this is Olivia...
...she's the youngest in our bunch. She's rowdy, spontaneous, and very theatrical. Olivia's in the sixth grade right now, and I'm pretty sure she's loving every second of it.

Camille's next on the list, being second youngest and all. Camille's 14 and just got her tonsils out. She is the only one of us that still has naturally light blonde hair, even though she still dyes it blonder. She's incredibly beautiful.

And then there's Kaleb.
Kaleb's a senior in high school, and he's the middle child. When we were little kids, Kaleb and I got really excited about the fact that we were the same age between our birthdays (his is late july and mine's beginning of october), but later on it turned out we're a little less than two years apart, and not one.

Finally, say hello to Mariel. My older sis. The oldest.
Mariel's married and has two kids. She's only 22 and she has a mortgage - and I'm pretty sure she just got her family a dog now, too. Mare and I have been there for each other through everything. 

I love my siblings.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

barnyard blues

10. A Moment.

I checked the time on my cell phone; it said 4:03 am. I was standing a few feet away from my home's front door, in the dark of January 6th, of this year. My big blue jansport backpack, red roller carry-on and oversized black suitcase were stacked upon the tile, all packed and ready to be shipped across the country with me. I was sickly and aggravated and emotional, and I looked around for the last time before heading out to the truck with my parents. The house was full of Christmas decorations and baby clothes and there were still snacks left out on the kitchen counter. No one else was awake, all of my siblings and nieces weren't too aware of how early I was actually leaving. I stood there in the doorway and I embraced the fact that this was the last time I would see home for at least another 12 months. I understood that it wouldn't be my home anymore. I gave the barn a once-over, winced, and walked out the door.

Friday, February 11, 2011

black nails & hospital trips

Day 9 is a free day. Sweet! I kind of love being able to ramble sometimes :) ...Yesterday I was supposed to write about what I believe in. I believe in a lot of specifics, religion-wise; I believe in mostly conservative political ideals; and I believe more generally in the good of the world. But that was very condensed, because that's not what today is about. 

I guess I want to talk about my day, and night last night. I didn't realize that last night our RA planned a girl's night for our floor. So along with the boxes of bleach and used gloves and directions showering the bar, Ashley put out face mask stuff and goodies and nail polish. Sherece and I provided the tunes, and the party pretty much came to us. We took turns finger-painting avocado gook on each other's faces, and played around with the silly hair cap that came with the highlighting kit. Earlier that day, I painted my nails black, and then at the party, all the girls were doing the same, and helped cut aluminum foil strips and compared everyone's shades of hair. It was an evening I'll never forget, regardless of its simplicity. The mood was very calm and loving and happy. And it followed a day of unhealthy ladies.

A lot of my friends have gotten really sick lately - my roommate's been throwing up, my favorite Polynesian girl has a terrible flu, and Sherece, the wonder woman, who did my hair so professionally, ended up in the hospital last night, with appendicitis. I didn't even find out where she went until this morning when I bumped into her roommate outside. I was sick with worry. So this afternoon, we got her some crayons, a coloring book, and some balloons that said "I'm Sorry" & "Happy Retirement!", hoping to cheer up her day. Even as our group was leaving the hospital premises, we saw a dozen more buddies walking in with more presents in tow. Driving away, I got some major goosebumps. I realized how grateful I am for these relationships I have, with these 40-some girls I live with. I would do anything for all of them, and I know they would help me in a time of need, too. Sherece spent half the day with me yesterday! With appendicitis! She's amazing, and I'm so lucky to have her in my life.

In your face, day 9! I got you covered. 
(does that even make sense? I think the bleach in my roots has fried some brain cells.)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

I believe!

8. Your beliefs.
I believe ... that we will win?
No. Crap. I spent the last six hours bleaching my roots, dyeing my whole head a certain shade of blonde, and then doing highlights, all at home with the help of my fabulous lady-friend, Sherece. And then I ran out the door to the music building, without thinking about this post I have to do before midnight! So here I am, on my iPod touch, without any settings to edit this or have any way to add pictures. This is really crappy - and I apologize. I'll fix this tomorrow. :/

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

7. let's not play that game

7. Your Best Friend.

I kind of don't believe in best friends.  Hear me out.
On monday, I was reading in my marriage textbook, and I stumbled across this sentence that says "Girls tend to play more in small groups or pairs, and their lives often revolve around best-friend relationships." The simplicity of this statement kind of blew my mind, thinking about how every girl I ever met really is drawn to one specific individual at all times.  The textbook also said boys are more competitive in their communication, but I disagree, I think girls are, just in a way more complicated fashion. Girls compete for a best friend, and most of the time, yes, we're drawn to one girl and/or guy moreso than the next naturally, but I always have been uncomfortable with the term "best friend"I hate playing favorites! Yes, I've been especially close with a certain several people as I grew older, but it's unfair to the rest of the people I cherish as well to make a little list of the higher-up besties. And think about it, once you establish a best-friend relationship, don't you hold expectations for that person? I can't help but do so. And then when life goes on and you both change, the expectations are broken, because the friendship has lost its luster. Relationships grow and shrink like the waves, even those you have with blood relatives. Even the one you may keep with a boyfriend, fiance, or husband. I am the closest with Benjamin, we love each other a lot, and I'm pretty darn confident that our relationship isn't going anywhere. But I believe that in order to maintain a constant close relationship, you both have to want it and work at it, indefinitely. Ben's technically my best friend, but he's so much more than that. With different girlfriends however, that isn't a forever goal for both people, at least not in my life. I hear a lot of this term being thrown around, mostly within the band crowd at school. And I think when people claim a best friend to another normal friend, it hurts their feelings, because they can't amount to the standard of BEST for them. I mean, life can be a game a lot of the time, certainly. But in this aspect, I don't want any part of the competitiveness. Rather, I work on showing as many people as I can manage how much I appreciate having them around. And I'll be nice to the rest.

Monday, February 7, 2011

day six confusion & resolution

I've been checking my friends' blogs for what the challenge is each day, and using whatever they went with. But I also saved this suggested list of 30 daily challenges, and I checked it just now, and it does not agree with what my friends have done. I'm so conflicted! (Not really, haha.) So, the sixth day indicates being either the meaning behind your blog name or your definition of love. I think because the two lists differ from this point forward, I'll choose the more exciting option. However, in this instance I wanna do both, and so I shall.

"my beautiful world"    

...It's not that difficult to decifer.
As is my nature, and choice, I see the world through rose-colored glasses. That's kind of a pun, as you can check out my blog's color scheme. But anyway... My personal version of the world is always beautiful, with its beauty forever multiplying. I've done a good deal of posts in the past that have been really negative, using this blog moreso as a diary, and you were right that I was wrong to do that, I do regret that. But now I remember my purpose for this blog originally, and that was to focus on the positive, to work through life's road blocks and share the beauty that comes out of it.

I really do like sharing my life, but I learned my lesson [with disclosing enough dirty details to satisfy a storm of drama throughout December] that putting it all out there is not worth it. I submit, you were right, and I'm seriously sorry for my pride.

Your definition of love.

Love is encouragement. Love is gentle, kind, patient. 
Love is looking into someone's eyes 
and seeing them for who they really are. 
Love is screaming the Happy Birthday song off key at the top of your lungs with fifty other band geeks.
Love is forgiving. Love is laughter. 
Love is staying up all night, crying out the pain on someones shoulders. 
Love is mixing the stuffing for Thanksgiving dinner. 
Love is giving your everything. 
Love is reckless
Love is $5 because that's all you could afford. 
Love is taking trips to temple square. 
Love is a secret handshake. 
Love is silent. Love is timeless. Love is bliss.

lucky duck

Day 5: A song to match your mood
To listen, go to the bottom of the page and pause that music, first.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

raindrops on roses

4. Your Pet Peeves...
When people don't say "bless you" after someone sneezes - pets peeing on the carpet - people trying to wake me up when I don't need to be awake - unnecessary dirty looks - adults swearing in front of children - chapped lips that won't cease to be chapped - judgmental questions - when people say "I don't care" all the time - old makeup encrusted under girls' eyes - when people have a complete disregard for other's feelings in a public setting - slow wifi on campus - my dysfunctional at&t phone - 8 am classes - walking up old main hill - asthma - when I lose my wallet every 5 minutes - forced conversations - bent headjoints - the smell of peoples breath after eating fritos - being blase about eating extremely artificial junk food - stained shirts - dirty bathrooms - icy sidewalks on a hill - honky tonk style country music - creeper mccreepersons - constant bad moods and "woe is me" attitudes.
... and Favorite Things.
Playing my flute - learning new instruments - being in ensembles - passionate professors - tan skin - nail polish - collecting art - holidays with the family - sleeping with lots of blankets - marching band performances - being a boss at basketball - lindt chocolate - curled hair - purple powerade - guacamole - homemade dinners - singing sacrament hymns extra loud - smiling - harry potter audio books - benjamin - sledding on pennsylvania hills - writing everything down everywhere I can possibly manage - sincere compliments - valley view 4th floor - miramatsu models - my heart ring from my grandmother - quotes - problem solving - money making - fat beats in my earbuds as I'm walking around campus - pure orange juice - messiah sing-alongs - marsha bobnak - mastering passages - my room clean - babies - ridiculously poor sentence structures that always comes out of my mouth - hope.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

un dia tres

3. Your Parents.

This is my mom, Tammy Jo, and my dad, George Glenn, with a baby, that's probably me. I love them very much.
They have a cool story of how they met/married/started their married life, but that takes a while to tell. All I'll say is that I know they love each other very much, and they're both extremely successful individuals. They have 5 kids and have been married for 25ish years now. 

There you go.

Friday, February 4, 2011

I'm in "lame" with you

2. Your first love.

Well, isn't that a funny question.
Oh wait - that wasn't a question at all :P

I honestly have never been in love before now. I've been in love with the idea of boys, of different boyfriends I've had over the years. I've been in love with the fantasy I tried living for a while, only to have reality kick me in the butt. But if we're talking about love love, then aren't I lucky to say that my first love is the amazing man I'm with right now. 

Thursday, February 3, 2011

day one!

1. Introduce yourself with pictures and words.

My name is Elena K Christiansen.
My friends call me Elena, strangers call me Elehhnuh.
Grandmom calls me Laney loolie belle.
I'm second oldest in my family and I'm 19 years old.

I was born and raised LDS with a Catholic father and a convert mother. I was baptized at 8, did 8 years of girls camp, went to efy 3 times, and got my Young Womanhood Recognition award at age 17.

I am a musician. 11 years ago, I picked up the flute, and haven't set it down ever since. To add to my fluting, I sing, play piano, tenor saxophone, euphonium, and tuba. I'm not much of a fan of what I call "idolatrous tunes", or the pop culture's obsession over music: having thousands of songs on your iPod and knowing every artist and album name. Actually, I can hardly even remember the names of the pieces I've played on my flute. I know that's bad. But I think music is more for appreciation and emotion.

(my first flute performance ever)
I have 5 grandparents, 14 aunts & uncles, and 40-some cousins. Every thanksgiving of my life I've spent with my extended family, save this past one, when I was in Wyoming instead. It was sad to break the tradition, but wonderful creating the new.

I'm definitely a talker, a romantic, a leader, and an independent. I like people, I like making friends, and I think I'm good at it, too.
I like sleeping. A lot. My insane schedule makes that a certainty. I keep busy with ensembles and an overload of academics, pretty much like the average college music major. Naturally, my favorite place in the world is my bed.

I believe I led a full life. Growing up, I danced jazz, ballet, modern, & irish, played t-ball, softball, field hockey, floor hockey, volleyball, cheerleading (which I know is not a sport), soccer, track, basketball, and swimming. I went to sleep-away camps and I started spending weeks apart from my family at age 14. I laugh every day, and cry every week. Most evenings my face hurts a whole lot, from smiling all day long... (Maybe, too, from playing all those instruments.) I want to succeed in life, and I believe I am on my way.

I'm a happy girl.


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