Wednesday, December 28, 2011

In the End

I would begin this post with a catchy phrase akin to, "Well kids, it's that time of year again!" or "I know you've been waiting for this post all year long, so I am here to inform you that today is your lucky day!"

Except, I've never done one of these posts before. So I guess I'll just let you know that my day has been spent reviewing pictures of my life from January 2011 onward, and they have officially been organized in a manner that I feel is presentable to whoever in the internet world may stumble upon them.

You may now proceed to enjoy my year in review.


In January I made my first-ever skirt. It was among the most frustrating things I have ever done. Let's just say that my skills do not lie in gluing cotton balls and ribbon to felt.

I made many an excursion to Salt Lake City for various musical purposes, including performing Dona Nobis Pacem in the Salt Lake Tabernacle, performing in the state capitol building, and watching some friendies perform at All-State Band.

I went dumpster diving at Krispy Kreme well past midnight. Free donuts!

I successfully donated approximately one pint of my own blood to save up to three lives.

And, I apparently turned my little brother into a shopping, sunbathing gangsta.


It seems that much of February was either spent watching every showing of my school's production of Two Gentlemen of Verona or gallivanting around dressed as a cat with five friends, four of which were crazy enough to join me.

In other news, I began my lifelong goal of actually decorating my room. In hindsight I realize that I never did print off the pictures to go in those empty frames, and thus I have yet to complete the aforementioned lifelong goal.

I finally became someone's sweetheart, though it was only for a day.

Also, I received love-post-it-notes all over my car.


Apparently nothing happened in March but my first ever half marathon (Canyonlands Half, with a time of 1:53.30) and deciding to fit four teenagers and a two-year-old inside my little brother's tent.

But I'm sure the month was great, just the same.


Ah, April. The month of love. 

I'm not exactly sure why I said that, but it seemed fitting.

In April, I experienced the joys of attending a Morp dance with the theme of, "Ugly Prom."

I had a most wonderful reunion with my Fiji girls in which we remembered what a picky eater Anna is, but somehow still managed to satisfy everyone in our pizza choices.

I turned 18, which greatly benefited my ultimate frisbee skills, as you can clearly see in the photo above.

I discovered that Benjamin was born in the wrong decade, for he clearly is a flower child at heart.

I found peace and comfort in early morning hours spent at the temple.


In May I ran a half marathon on a whim. And when I say on a whim, I really mean on a whim. I was informed that a friend had an extra spot the night before--so I took it, won my age division, and ran 7 more miles to make it the 20-mile training run I needed that day.

I fought the most epic and raging Nerf gun battle that has ever graced this planet we call Earth.

And the day that I had been painfully longing for since January finally came--it was the day that I no longer needed "Pomp and Circumstance" as my ringtone to get me out of bed, it was the day of my graduation! Which, of course, includes our flash mob to "Don't Stop Believing" and the senior all-night party, followed by the symbolic hiking of the Y--moving on to bigger and better things.


Two significant things happened this month:

1. I ran my marathon! It was a bit of a family event--aunt, uncle, and mom ran the full; grandma and other aunt ran the half. If ever you are looking for a fantastic marathon, the Utah Valley Marathon is where it's at. Among the most enjoyable 3:59.18 of my 19th year.

2. I went hiking with Stephanie. We started a blog together, which neither of us have touched in months.

Also, I started working full time as depicted by the trash can overflowing with paper edges that I ripped off all day long.


I sent my family off to their new home in Connecticut in July.

I moved in with my aunt and uncle, and my life was composed of three main activities:

1. Work
2. Driving to and from places
3. Experiencing the great outdoors via running and hiking

Also, I attended the same rodeo twice--a decision I absolutely do not regret.


In August, I got to see my family's new home.

I ate some of the best ice cream known to mankind.

I traveled to New York City for the first time in my life, and saw The Lion King on Broadway. It was incredible.

I had a most wonderful visit from my most adorable and hilarious sister.

I started college.

I learned that putting an umbrella over the toilet may stop the ceiling from leaking on you, but it most certainly will not stop the floor from turning into one giant puddle.

In August, I fell in love with hearing "Come, Come Ye Saints" ringing from the bell tower every single hour.


September was my first full month of college. (For your benefit, I'd like to inform you that I almost spelled "first" with a "u"--"furst." College has done me well.)

I developed a very real obsession with all things chocolate. Especially if followed by the word "syrup."

I baked waffles outside until 6:00 AM.

I ran the Dirty Dash. Now THAT was a fun run.

I attended my first BYU football game as a BYU student.

I wholeheartedly participated in an activity entitled "Mess Fest." The term "food fight" has now acquired an entirely different meaning in my vocabulary.


In October, I tried out a little slacklining--with real, though limited, success.

I adored every moment of the chilly, blustery, colorful, and wet falltime season. I came home soaked from head to toe on many occasion due to the irresistible urge to splash through every puddle in sight.

I learned from Taco Bell that "big things come in big packages." Though, due to my remaining hunger after consuming the product pictured above, I determined a more accurate slogan would be "small things come in small packages" since neither the box nor the food were actually that big. But I imagine that wouldn't do much for the sales.


In November, I began the internship of my dreams at Humanitarian Experience for Youth.

I finally got around to decorating my room--there are real pictures up on my wall!

I went for a run at 4:00 in the morning.

My roommate and I built a fort and we spent the night inside it.

I enjoyed a most lovely sunset.

I traveled home for the first time since school started for Thanksgiving. It was a much needed booster to get me through the rest of the semester.


In December, I met Buddy the Elf. His favorite color is blue.

I studied my brains out for finals week, and learned that apparently no matter what you do, you will fail. (See above picture.)

I received some lovely gifts from caring people, including but not limited to the pictured flowers and butterscotch pull-aparts.

I went on a spontaneous trip with my dear friend Stephanie to see the Christmas lights on Temple Square.

I received letters from and wrote letters to some of my very best friends who are currently serving missions for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

I finished my first semester of college, pulled off some decent grades despite a desperate effort to learn how to balance everything, and found sweet relief in traveling home for the holidays.

I built a fire from nothing but a single leftover ember and some wadded up paper.


Thanks, 2011, for the memories, the growth, the experiences, and the life. I wouldn't trade you for anything.

And yes, I did just personify a year.

(Linking up to: Silver Lining)


  1. Dani I love this! This is awesome, and you are awesome. Sounds like a crazy and exciting year!

  2. Hi Dani - saw your link on Brooke's blog. What an exciting year! Carefree and lovely indeed. Good luck in 2012 :)

  3. the Buddy the Elf is in my ward :) awesome ha ha! I really like your blog!