beehive bazaar...

the bazaar starts tonight with a sneak peek from 9pm-12am. bespoke's accessory frames {great from home use or retail merchandising} will be featured at the motley handmade table this weekend. come check us out!

spent my morning making *brilliant* tags and pricing product.

Lesson #11

I've been thinking a lot about another lesson I'm trying to learn right now. I've realized it's been really easy for me to give in to the "chatter" that all marriages suck and that all men are selfish jerks. I've actually really been struggling internally with this. Debating with myself the question, "Do I even want to get married, ever? Why would I willingly submit myself to such misery?" Then, of course, those thoughts have been followed by guilt because my knowledge of the gospel and God have taught me to hope for a better world.

I had an awesome session with my therapist today and received a powerful witness that I indeed chose to be a part of this family. Maybe it was one of those last minute how my mission president made a last minute change to the transfer list. I was friends with the assistants and one of them let it slip that I was scheduled for what would have been an ideal companionship and area for my last six weeks. Instead P. Haight called me into his office and shooed the elders away, put his hand on my shoulder and told me he was sorry, but he was throwing me a curve ball. I accepted that assignment, just like I accepted the call to come to this family--using my own free will. It's all part of the plan.

And no, I don't really think all marriages suck and all men are selfish jerks.

Lessons from the cocoon

I like the title of this entry, for I am writing from my bed with the covers tucked in around me, subconsciously trying to protect myself from the pains of the world, hoping that after this season of intense growth (aka: mortality) I may one day emerge with bright and beautiful wings.

In my real life, I am fairly open about the struggles my family has faced—at least when talking with interested parties. Because of that, I have been asked a handful of times how I will do things differently in my life and future family. My academic background has provoked many thoughtful moments regarding this question as well. One of the principles of Narrative Therapy that I have loved is the notion that much of our lives are taken for granted—not given any conscious thought. As easy as it can be to float about, I desperately want to learn how to live my life as an active participant.

Each of these lessons could honestly be a book on their own, but for the sake of the blog (and I know I can be long-winded) I am presenting the reader’s digest version.

1. Don’t leave the choice about marriage up to chance. I want a celestial marriage (For he who is not able to abide the law of a celestial kingdom cannot abide a celestial glory. D&C 88:22). Celestial marriage isn’t just any kind of union. It isn’t even any temple marriage, but one that is ratified by the Holy Spirit of Promise. This kind of marriage cannot come to be per chance or happenstance. It is thoughtful and purposeful, initiated with intelligence and faith, grown with love and commitment, founded on principles of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

What I am doing now: I’ve already written about how I have a very descriptive “list” for the kind of relationship I want to have, the kind of qualities I am looking for. I am very conscientious about this—what makes me feel important, loved, protected. I have found that the more specific I am, the easier it is to recognize the qualities I am looking for. If you don’t know what you want, how will you know when you’ve found it?

Nine more to go...

Dancing through the storm

We crashed the 80s prom. It was like Natalie's debutant party from girls just wanna have fun all over again. It was rad. The best thing is, ever item you see came from our closets. Honest. From swimwear to sweater sleeves turned leg warmers.

How it is that I am becoming a statistic

I wasn't going to write about this, at least not for a while, but I just got home from "17 Again" with my mom (which I really enjoyed--the cougar in me thinks Zack E. is adorable). Walking out to the car, I asked how it was for her. "It was great up to the last part..." she responded. I put my arm around her and said, "There are enough people who live that story that Hollywood is able to make a movie about it." Minus the old, white-haired man and the whirlpool in the river leading to a fountain of youth and the happy ending, it's relate-able. The kicker was the line, "I've been in a bad mood for the last 20 years and blamed you for all my failures." It probably didn't help that the husband in the movie played high school basketball. A little close to home I guess.

Maybe I should include a little disclaimer. For you who are regular readers, you may have noticed that I don't really hold a whole lot back on here. Le'me esplane. There's something about the possibility of having witnesses to my life that is comforting...maybe even a little empowering. I don't know, maybe I'm really weird. The other day when I was talking to my grandma, she asked me what I do with anger. When she suggested journaling, I hesitated. Assuming I'm like most people, she asked if it was hard to write because I'm afraid that someone will read it. Actually, for me it's just the opposite. I don't like journaling because no one will read it. At least not really while I'm alive. I have a hard time journaling because when I write, it takes so much effort to make sure that it will be publishable some day. haha. I'm so strange! Not because I think my life is more interesting than the life of anyone else or even worthy of becoming a book, but because having witnesses to it somehow makes it more worth living. It's like if somehow, some experience I've had or lesson I've learned could help someone else in some small way, any heartache or trauma or embarrassment or laughter would be so much more meaningful. I've even tried the anonymous route, but it's just not the same. Real people live real lives and real life can get pretty messy. I've never been a fan of sweeping it under any rugs. That's just gross.

I'm usually the first to question any statistic published, so I don't know why this one makes me feel better. Not true. I actually think it's a little low and I do know why it makes me feel better. 25% of Americans age 18-35 have survived the divorce of their parents (Elizabeth Marquardt, Between Two Worlds: The Inner Lives of Children of Divorce, 2005). I know, I know, that citation is SO not following APA guidelines.

I couldn't find any statistics about surviving it twice. Yes, three years ago, almost to the day, my parents sat the kids down (I was living in California and--fortunately--missed that family council) to tell them the "news." Three months later, they were back together and happier than ever. Ah, let me tell you, the roller coaster has been a nightmare, except I'm awake. A little like having a limb amputated without anesthesia. I'm being dramatic. Ignore it.

Just so you all know, I'm NOT announcing this because I want sympathy or anything, just getting it out there. This is one of my "healthy coping strategies." I feel like I've been living in a fantasy the last few weeks and I guess the more people who know, the more grounded I feel. I'm just ready for it to be done so everyone can get on with living. whew.



Remember when I took Independence Day to the extreme and chopped off my hair as a symbol for my independence from vanity? You get what you pay for in the hair styling world and as a missionary, I went the cheap route. That was by far the worst hair cut I have ever had or ever intend to have again. It's only taken me, what, 7 years to grow it out.

All this talk about missions has brought up some good memories. Like why I cut my hair. I was serving with Sister Richards (now Kathryn Kimball). When I first got that transfer call, I was a little scared because she had a reputation of being a very bold work horse. Not that I wasn't a hard working missionary, I was. I'm just not the most bold person in the world. I never thought I'd have the opportunity to serve with her, but I will be forever grateful that I did. It changed my life. It was through a conversation with her about boys--she was getting ready to go home to her cute beau, Daniel--that I decided to cut my hair. I was so tired of attracting guys with what I have recently heard called the "shiny" things. I told her that I had always wanted to cut my hair short but hadn't because boys like long hair. I realized just how vain I had become. And so, as a token of saying screw you to all those boys whose crap I had put up with (please excuse the language), I gleefully snipped away my luscious locks.

10 reasons to...

date the man cubs!

I have recently been introduced to the Man Cub phenomenon--expanding the dating pool to include the 21 to 25-year-olds. Many a lady in my circle is getting tired of dating dudes our own age and older, because they seem to be getting more and more boring, unresponsive, spiritually lazy, and just stuck in their ways. They are more interested in hanging with their "boys" and furthering their careers, than having good, clean fun with the opposite sex.

I have never, before now, even been open to the idea of dating younger men. I even had a "decade rule" (I wouldn't date anyone who hadn't been born in the same decade as me. Since I was born in 1979, that meant the youngest I could go was 6 months younger). I have recently been smudging that line a little by going on dates with 27 and 28-year-olds--kind of a big deal for me. But, the other night...morning...while I was driving home from a super fun evening with one such man cub whose age will remain undisclosed, thinking to myself, "Really Charity? Twenty-freaking-two????" ;) with a huge smile on my face, I decided that I just might enjoy this man cub phenomenon.

My over-analytical mind requires me to come up with reasons for erasing the decade rule in favor of the blessed 1980s (still not okay with dating those born in the 60s and probably never will be). So here are a few that I've come up with.
This is a test. It is only a test.

New favorite...

Since eating sugar for me means instant headache, fatigue, stiff & achy joints, muscle pain, acid reflux, etc. -- I'm always on the lookout for yummy treats that I can eat without sleeping through the next day. This book is going to revolutionize my treats. Most of the recipes are vegan, all are made with agave instead of sugar, which I can eat.

I made the lemon-mango sponge cake for my mom's birthday. The custard filling didn't set (sad) but it tasted good anyway!

Looking forward to actually getting to enjoy all the zucchini bread this summer! this for real??

Obama Youth Brigade: Church Attendance Forbidden
By Jonas Clark

Is this the change you really voted for? President Obama has only been in office for two months. Now we have HR 1388. The Bill was sponsored by Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) with 37 others. The Bill was introduced to the floor of the House of Representatives where both Republicans and Democrats voted 321-105 in favor. Next it goes to the Senate for a vote and then on to President Obama.

This bill’s title is called “Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education” (GIVE). It forms what some are calling “Obama’s Youth Brigade.” Obama’s plan is require anyone receiving school loans and others to serve at least three months as part of the brigade .. His goal is one million youth! This has serious Nazi Germany overtones to it.

The Bill would forbid any student in the brigade to participate in “engaging in religious instruction, conducting worship services, providing instruction as part of a program that includes mandatory religious instruction or worship, constructing or operating facilities devoted to religious instruction or worship, maintaining facilities primarily or inherently devoted to religious instruction or worship, or engaging in any form of religious proselytization.”

Again, is this what America voted for? Here is part of the HR1388 Bill’s wording:


Section 125 (42 U.S.C. 12575) is amended to read as follows:


(a) Prohibited Activities- A participant in an approved national service position under this subtitle may not engage in the following activities:

(1) Attempting to influence legislation.
(2) Organizing or engaging in protests, petitions, boycotts, or strikes.

(7) Engaging in religious instruction, conducting worship services, providing instruction as part of a program that includes mandatory religious instruction or worship, constructing or operating facilities devoted to religious instruction or worship, maintaining facilities primarily or inherently devoted to religious instruction or worship, or engaging in any form of religious proselytization.


Come What May & Love It!

I loved Elder Wirthlin's talk from last October. His words are particularly poignant to me right now. I think one of life's lessons is learning how to let go and let God work His wonders. I don't need to know the whys or the hows or the whens, just that the Lord knoweth all things from the beginning; wherefore, he prepareth a way to accomplish all his works among the children of men; for behold, he hath all power...

My testimony of timing and how intimately God knows where and when we are has recently experienced exponential growth. The last couple weeks have been an interesting time, to say the least. I went into this past General Conference for our church with specific questions and for the first time I actually wrote them down. One of the themes I noticed that wove through several of the talks was temples, specifically the protection and power we can receive through temple ordinances and regular temple attendance. During one of these talks, I had the thought to call my Grandma who lives in town and ask if I could go to the temple with her and her husband that week. They go every Thursday. I wrote it down in my notes, set apart by [ ] like I do for all my personal insights or instructions. As I wrote it, I found myself overcome with emotion. I had no idea how much I would really need that time with her in the house of the Lord.

She ended up calling me the next day and I was able to make arrangements with her for Thursday. I got emotional again on the phone and sensing there was some pain, she also set up a time when I could come talk with her on Tuesday. This grandma is a family therapist and has some amazing skills and tools. I have been grateful for her time on many occasions. Because it is not my story to tell, I will not be revealing the cause of the pain here. Not yet at least.

Day Three



The laundry room is functional again!

Day One

Shhh!!! Don't tell my mom!



Charity in charge

my parents are a.w.o.l. in the mediterranean and left me in charge with a stack of lincolns and a freezer full of costco food..

...and a list of projects to complete should i choose to do so.

are you kidding? if it includes home improvement, paint rollers, and an american express not in my name, count me in!

some before and after photos are coming your way. mom, you said you trust me! :)