Monday, May 31, 2010


class again. homework again.
gosh this pattern is getting old!

but today was fun because our group went to Wigmore Hall to see the Vienna Piano Trio! lunch-time concerts are really common here in london, so it was really fun to see them perform. the violinist was amazing, and i LOVE listening to the cello. it was kind of different listening to a trio arrangement with a piano... they played some Schumann that i loved.

after dinner, katelin-jane and i went to meet up at emma's for a movie/homework/sweets night.
after missing our tube stop, having the tube break down, taking a bus... the wrong bus... tesco being closed for bank holiday, walking an hour in the wrong direction, buying sweets off the street from jihad, and flagging down a taxi, we FINALLY arrived at her home sweet home. and of course had the best night ever. we watched made of honor and i got to lay on a couch- i didn't even realize how much i missed that!

this picture isn't from today.. but looking at it made me smile. (a certain bunkmate of mine may have thought she wasn't in the photo?)

Sunday, May 30, 2010


i taught the entire wards youth sunday school again. today's lesson was so much better!! i'm starting to get all their names, and i honestly love them all. my favorite comment as we were talking about quick judgements was, "yeah, like sometimes when i see a guy walking down the street in a hoodie i'm like... he's a gangbanger for sure. but he could just be going to the gym" bahahah. i tried so hard to keep a straight face. these kids have had such different upbringings than me, and it is so fun to hear their insights into the gospel. we had a combined relief society and priesthood meeting and it was insane when the bishop asked whoever was born into the church to raise their hand it was me and aubrey (from byu) and the two missionaries! the ward is made up entirely of recent converts, and so its such a different experience from my wards back home. and as you can see from this picture, we are also the only white people.

emma was nice enough to be the greatest english host and have us over for an amazing sunday dinner! it was such a fresh and delicious meal i loved it!! i couldn't believe she knew how to cook so well. one more of her amazing talents...

not to mention this hoodie is my most recent purchase and probably the greatest thing that ever happened to me.

tonight we had a music devotional with everyone in the center. it was absolutely amazing, and it really made me feel at home. we had some great singers, and then people stood up and requested a hymn, telling why they like it so much. it was just such a comforting meeting and i am so glad we were able to do it!! the church is true.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

cinderella lost boys.

i know i always say things are amazing here, but in all honesty today was the best day of my life.
first we woke up way too early to get pictures on abbey road like the beatles album! it was funny because we got lost, and after walking for an hour we found out we had actually passed right by it! classic.

there is a wall right by the crosswalk that everyone signs! ours said, "all you need is love"

afterwards we went all around town looking for breakfast, but apparently london doesn't wake up till 9 on saturdays... not even starbucks? what?

did you think my day was over?? not even close.

in the afternoon, Katelin-Jane and I met up with Emma in Covent Garden. we went to the Royal Ballet's performance of Cinderella at the Royal Opera House. it was absolutely epic. i felt like i was in my own fairytale inside the disney castle. there was glitter EVERYWHERE, costumes to die for, unbelievable dancing, and the most amazing orchestra pit i've ever heard. and, thanks to ruperts amazing mom Anabel, we were on the third row!!! the two evil step daughters were played by men and it was absolutely hilarious.
i can't even put into words how beautiful this opera house is, and how much i loved sitting in it to watch the best ballet of my life.

we ate dinner right near the opera house at a french restaurant called Cafe Mes Amis. for the first time in my life i tried both halibut and mussels. as if the day couldn't be any more perfect, the food was just to die for.

i rushed over to barbican theater to meet up with some girls from the center to see the play Peter Pan. i loved it. it was a scottish interpretation of the story, and just having been to scotland it made it so much fun! the scenery was insane and tinkerbell was a ball of fire that they managed to trek all over the place. i honestly never figured it out the entire play. captain hook wore a kilt, peter pan had red hair, and bag pipes were involved.. it doesn't get much better than that!

today was perfect.

Friday, May 28, 2010

rocket summer

class... again...
difficult... again...
its just way too hard to try and stay inside studying when there is so much to do in the city!

after class for literature we visited keats house, where the poet lived before he died really young.

tonight a big group of us went to the rocket summer concert in camden. as we were waiting in line Kaitlyn said, "why are we the only normal ones here?" haha the crowd was definitely more emo than us, but we had SO much fun.
the concert was amazing, and i love the band so it was lots and lots of fun. after the show we were able to talk with the band who opened for them. after a good thirty minute conversation with the band i got two personally signed messages, and stories for a lifetime.

so much fun!

Thursday, May 27, 2010


today we went on a walk along the south bank of the thames.

the tower bridge has been around since 1894. the center of the bridge operates like a draw bridge and lets tall ships pass through the pool of london.

this is the london city hall. this is where the london assembly meets, and the office of the mayor is.

the HMS Belfast is from World War II and served throughout the entire war, including the normandy invasion!

the southwark cathedral is considered the best example of gothic architecture in London after Westminster Abbey.

the clink is the prison where the term being thrown into "jail" originated.

the golden hine is a replica of the boat Sir Francis Drake circumnavigated the globe with over four-hundred years ago.

we also passed by shakespeares globe, that dates back to Tudor times.

the millennial bridge was opened in 2000, but because of swaying it was closed and reopened again in 2002.

the tate modern is a museum that has only british paintings.

dear london.

i have twenty more days here in heaven...
how on earth am i going to leave you?


after class in the morning and our afternoon walk through the south thames, our whole group went to Macbeth at Shakespeare's Globe. it was the most ridiculous thing ever.. there was more fake blood than anything i have ever seen. everyone on stage was just coated in it, and had huge gashes all over them.. gross.

NOT to mention, we were 'groundlings' so we were standing right in front of the stage. they covered us all with a tarp so that we wouldn't get blood on ourselves. gross. it was a gigantic fabric pulled across the audience with holes for us to poke our heads through. ridiculous? yes. here are some pictures to show this fantastic setup. and as if that wasn't enough, the three witches from the play would come under the tarp and grab you with their blood coated hands. i may or may not have had 13 heart attacks.

*on a positive note there were tons of attractive actors and that's the only reason i didn't walk out.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


i just got back to london from a little excursion to scotland. i absolutely loved edinburgh. we stayed in a hostel right off the royal mile, so we pretty much wandered around that area the whole time.

we went to a 'writers museum' and edinburgh castle. the castle was so cool because it was literally built from the mountain.

apparently our london sunbathing was short-lived because it got really cold and wet in scotland!
luckily i was able to purchase an XL edinburgh hoodie from "jihad" to keep me warm. not to mention he threw in this LOVELY magnet. i couldn't have asked for anything more!

we would get back to the hostel by 10 because apparently scotland at night is a little sketchy, so the basement was our little hang out. we were able to meet tons of people from all over the place. the bartender even gave us these mustaches to put pictures on their website.
we kind of loved it.

my favorite part of the entire trip was our visit to the scottish parliament. we had one of the 129 members who is LDS give us a pretty thorough tour of the place and teach us a ton. i loved learning about their system, and comparing it to the things i learned while interning in DC.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

day of sun.

church is beyond hilarious. relief society is the most strange thing ever. now that everyone has callings, it's only me and aubrie who go to relief society.. and the entire time we sit there confused beyond belief.
but sunday school was good! i teach the class for all the youth in the ward between 12 and 18. they're pretty talkative and its a little intimidating since there is a 15 year old with a two-inch beard, but they're so nice and i love them all! i just hope i can get something across to them. (today the lesson was on the reign of judges... oh great..)
after church we went to hyde park again because the sun was shining even more than yesterday!! i think i might be the only one in the center without a sunburn!

this evening we had a fireside with President Bassett, the second counselor in the hyde park stake. he brought alex boye with him!! it was such an amazing fireside. i've never felt more committed to be the best i can be. i'm so grateful they came and we could listen to their message!
tonight the nice weather dragged us outside once again for a little walk and it was just perfect.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

drums and frisbee

everyones getting sunburned. that's how nice the weather is here today! after my walk through kensington gardens, a bunch of us got lunch and then Victoria and i went to hyde park and laid out by the pond. we did some reading for our literature class and both took a much needed nap. the park was jam packed with everyone in the city gathering to enjoy the weather. i woke up and realized i was in heaven.
i also got called as a sunday school teacher for my ward while i'm here! i'm really excited, i think it will be fun! they asked me to teach tomorrow in fact...

tonight a bunch of us went to a movie premiere with a question and answer by the directors and cast! it was a blast.

kensington gardens

today we spent the afternoon at kensington palace and its gardens. the weather was stunning!! it finally feels like summer!
kensington palace became famous for being a royal residence for William III and Mary II. it is so amazing that my flat is right next to it. every morning i get to go running through this beautiful place!
first we walked down embassy road and it made me think how cool it would be to work at the embassy!

this is the palace!

then we went along the "flower walk" (where i get to run everyday!) just gorgeous.

this is the Albert memorial, a representation of the high point of the british empire.

this statue called "physical energy" attempts to portray energy in a non-physical way.

this is the Long Water of the Serpentine. famous for many suicides- such as the poet Percy Shelley's first wife Harriet. today the bridge notes "Shallow water, do not jump from bridge!"

here is the Peter Pan statue, designed by Sir George Frampton in 1912

the italian gardens which were created by the Duke of Cambridge in 1880 were absolutely beautiful with lots of fountains!! i had so much fun doing this walk and it couldn't have been a more perfect day in London to soak up the sun strolling around a beautiful park!

Friday, May 21, 2010


today we went outside of london. our first stop was runnymede. this is where the magna carta was signed in 1215. it was in an absolutely stunning area!
the weather all day was beyond beautiful. the sun was shining and there wasn't a cloud in the sky! mind you, i was misinformed that it was going to be cold so i layered up and melted all day. joy.

windsor castle was our next stop, and it was great. but the entire time i couldn't stop thinking about my trip a few years ago with annie and kim! my favorite part next to the changing of the guards was the gigantic dollhouse made for all of Queen Mary's miniatures. it was so cool. it even has electricity and a plumbing system! my friend ryan looked at their backyard and said, "the only problem is you also have to mow the grass"... i honestly laughed so hard i cried.
after windsor we went to John Milton's home. he wrote paradise lost, and was a famous poet who we are studying in english. it was hilarious because within 3 minutes of getting there our entire center was asleep lying in the shade in the garden. i woke up completely confused as to where i was, but it was heaven.
our last stop of the day was at stoke poges. this is where the famous poet thomas gray was buried. it was my favorite cemetery i have ever been to.
for dinner i went with katelin-jane, natalie, and victoria. it was so much fun!! we had such good conversation and laughed all night long. i'm really loving it here, and i'm already not looking forward to leaving all these amazing people!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

all that. jazz.

noooo sleep again last night. its starting to get to me too. i can feel it!
well, we had class this morning, and took a midterm in politics
... THANK goodness that is over.
after class my politics professor took a group of us to the Imperial War Museum. i honestly loved it! i hate how little i know about history, so taking this class is fun because just about everything we learn is news to me. we mainly stayed in the WWI and WWII exhibits and i really want to try and go back there before i leave since i liked it so much!
after dinner a group of about 10 of us went to the play Chicago. it was phenomenal! the dancing and music was just beyond belief. we were front row, and only paid 27 pounds- we are SO lucky to get student tickets all the time!

*ps. if the final is between celtics and LA i refuse to participate. just ridiculous.

camera kidnap

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

ronald. weasley.

oooh. today was just lovely!
we went as a center to both stratford-upon-avon and oxford!
stratford is where shakespeare was born. we were able to take a tour of his house!

we also went to the cottage where shakespeare's wife anne hathaway grew up...there was a bench inside the house that is supposedly where shakespeare and anne sat, and it is believed that if you sit on the bench and it squeaks, you will have a great future love life. WELL ladies and gentlemen, the bench squeaked for me. [thats one for the christmas card mom]

with anticipation almost killing us, we finally arrived at OXFORD!! this might have been the best moment of my life. we had high tea at Christ Church, which is where they filmed the Harry Potter movies. i felt like a wizard. and loved every minute of it.

harry potter glasses anyone?