Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Finally Set Free

I knew this day would come... sooner rather than later actually, so why am I so broken-hearted? Why am I so numb? Why did I still ask my mom, "Is Greg okay?" When I knew he had passed away.

My fear had come to life when my mom came in my room this morning at 7 am and just started crying. I knew that was all it would take... she wouldn't have to say a thing. My step-father finally lost his battle with ALS - yet he will always be the strongest man I'll ever know or hope to know. He battled this disease with such grace, that he is my true hero. But today has been an emotional roller coaster that you read about and see on the media. My grandma has now lost both her children, and I know her funeral will be soon as well... she has completely lost the will to live and you could see that when she draped herself over my father who was no longer there with us anymore. I didn't know if I wanted to see his body, but I would have regretted it if not. He looked so peaceful, but his eyes were open which really made me nervous. For some reason they couldn't shut them because of the muscle. After the nurse left she said he died peacefully in his sleep and I'm grateful for that fact because a lot of ALS patients don't die in that way. He died at home surrounded by people who have watched over him for two and a half years. Thank God for my Aunt Paula; she was by our side every step of the way today and helped me through some really dark moments I had to face. I was okay after a while because I accepted his death and I realized it was a blessing. My step-father was in so much pain and he was suffering so badly. If you don't know what ALS is, it is a deterioration of the muscles in your body. Yesterday my dad was to the point where he couldn't do anything anymore: couldn't move, couldn't talk, his eye sight was going, could barely breathe, couldn't eat, etc. But I still didn't think that was it. I graduate in a week and my birthday is May 12... and I kept praying to God that he wouldn't die on one of those days. I wonder why last night? But then I realize it was time. We were at peace with death and so was he. He didn't want to suffer anymore either.

Greg is no longer trapped within his own body - he is finally set free. Knowing that he is in heaven with other loved ones, makes me smile. I hope he RAN into a peaceful bliss because he could. Today I have felt his presence around me, and before that type of thing used to scare me, but not now.. not with him. I can't describe it but it's the soft-light feeling that surrounds me and I feel okay. This has been our life for so long that we don't know what normal is anymore... and I don't think we ever will. I'm sitting here in my room staring at the room he slept in for those two years and the door is wide open and I feel absolute agony. I know it's a bittersweet situation, but I have never felt this type of pain anymore. This man was everything to me. He was the rock of our family and I don't know what to do without him. I will always remember the good times, but sometimes that's not enough. Seeing my mom with him crushed me today - he was the love of her life. She never left his side and just cried, cried and cried some more. She wore his wedding ring on her thumb and she wouldn't let go of his arm. Watching the mortuary come and take his body away really truly hit me in a way I cannot explain. It became real. I don't even know what to type anymore but I can't cry anymore so thought writing something down would be better.

Thanks for all the support everyone has given me - it means everything.

God Bless you Greg. You are the strongest person I know and you truly saved me and mom. You will be in my heart forever and I know you are finally free and at peace; you aren't suffering anymore and I'm thankful for that. Thank God for you... you truly were the brightest star in the heavens and I know you'll always be with me. I love you.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Christos Anesti / Happy Easter

CHRISTOS ANESTI (Christ has risen) - ALITHOS ANESTI (Truly he has risen)

There is a little bit of Greek for Greek Easter, but it's also American Easter today as well, so: HAPPY EASTER EVERYONE!! I hope your day is filled with many blessings.

Cute Easter basket from my mommy :)

Friday, April 22, 2011

Lovely Pictures

Lovely pictures to share on this Friday afternoon. Have a wonderful Easter weekend!! xo.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Creek

So I'm so happy to report that my creek started!! That's one of the many things I love about my house: I have a huge long driveway and on the side is a little staircase that takes you down to a creek - a beautiful creek with tons of trees and a little deck, bench and a huge rock I used to sit on all the time when I was younger. I love when the blossoms start blooming and the flowers grow everywhere. It's the one area I get complete peace at and the simplicity of life once again. I also posted a video of my creek - sorry it's turned the wrong way, but least you can close your eyes and hear how wonderful it is!! I love water can you tell :) xo.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Palm Sunday, Hoots, Getting Into Shape, and More

Palm Sunday is a really big deal in my church, actually Easter in general is. It's one of the most historic and important. It's our holy week and "Palm Sunday is the commemoration of the entrance of our Lord into Jerusalem following his glorious miracle of raising Lazarus from the dead. Having anticipated his arrival and having heard the miracle, the people went out to meet the Lord and welcomed him with displays of honor and shouts of praise." They also through "palms" and that's why they call it Palm Sunday.I am proud of my Greek Orthodox faith and my Greek heritage. This next week is Holy Week and on Friday "Good Friday," signifies Jesus dying on the cross for our sins. The midnight service in my church is my favorite, because we yell at midnight "Christ has risen - truly he has risen." It's a beautiful service with lit candles and a huge Greek feast afterwords for those who gave up meat for Lent. I'm not sure if I'm going this year, but I will be sure to send a lot of prayers this week. I was happy when my Yiayia (Grandma) brought over Loukoumades from church today :) They are one of my favorite Greek pastries!!! Friday was my good friend Lexi's Birthday celebration. She is such a good friend, and I love hanging out with the Greek girls! We went to a restaurant called Epic. Pretty good if I might add, but not as good as her little Owl Chocolate Rice Crispy Treats! Her older sister Nicole made them (she loves owls), but how adorable are they? Delicious too. My cousin and our friend Katie did the SLC Marathon yesterday - 15 miles and they still managed to look so cute!! I need to start working out more, not just to look good, but to get healthily as well. I just realized I really don't like working out. I miss Greek Dancing because it kicked my butt into shape. And certain other things I like to do to work out as well, but running is not one of them. I cannot believe the semester ends in 3 weeks. Not too happy with the way math went.. especially because I think I need to retake it, oh well I'm actually "graduating" in the summer anyways and taking another class, but student teaching has gone fantastic!! I'm walking in three weeks, so that's the exciting part. I hope things start looking up in my life :) I'm trying so hard to be positive and it sucks I have to work at it and try to be happy... but that's how it's going to be for a while and I have accepted that. I am happy to report that I did buy Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 yesterday after a fabulous day out with my mom that we get to do so rarely. I haven't watched it yet, but after all my homework is done today, you can bet your bottom dollar I'm going to be spending the evening with Ronald Weasley!!! OH and a special shout out for my daddy- HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD! I know he is having a wonderful time... he's in Mexico with my family. Of course our Spring Breaks didn't match up. FML haha. Oh well he deserves this vacation as they all do. xo.

Friday, April 15, 2011

"I Will Always Choose You"

Is anyone a Vampire Diaries fan?? Because last night's episode reminded me of why I love this show so much and started watching it in the first place! Lately I have been all about Glee and somewhat forgot about VD, but omg! If you are a Delena fan, then I bet you died like I did. I know they are going to get together at some point, I just know it. Nina Dobrev is such a talented actress; I also loved when she slapped Damon and had her break down.. so emotional, she definitely had me in tears. I didn't think it was possible, but she actually got even more pretty in this episode! Holy crapola. I want a guy to say "I will always choose you Jess," I just think I want that type of love in general. Someone to love you no matter what and put your life before theirs. There is just something so romantic and poetic in that I think. I know my Mr. Right is out there somewhere, but sometimes I get lonely. I want something real, not just what I read about in books and watch from the media. Everything I have had up until now, has taught me a lot about life and relationships, but I swear every relationship I have had has ended up with me hurt and basically it was a disaster. I know you learn a lot from those types of barriers, but at the same time, a heart can only take so much. I like this quote that is in New Moon (The Twilight Series) and it states: "How many ways can one heart be mangled and still be expected to keep beating..." I find that so true and sadly, it's heartbreaking. I get nervous because I've never been in love, and if the pain from being hurt was that intense when I wasn't in love, then I can only imagine what it would be like to have your heart broken when you are truly in love. I don't want to be negative at all, just insecure about relationships and trust in general. I know you need to give everyone a clean slate, it's just I feel like my heart is really fragile, especially with my step-dad dying. I have been going through so much this past year and I feel like a lot of the time I'm drowning and trying to stay afloat, but things and situations keep knocking me off my feet so my head is totally submerged. Half the time I'm at a loss of how my life got this way... but I do try to keep strong. I just want good things to start happening; I need good things to start happening. I know my guy isn't in Utah, it's a weird feeling to have, but I just know it. Maybe when I move to Oregon I'll meet him :) I hope everyone has a fantastic weekend!! So excited, 3 weeks till graduation... ha even though I am going to summer school, that's okay though. Just the fact it's so close makes me so happy! Take care. xo.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

I'm Getting Older Too

So yesterday was my baby brother's 18th birthday aw. Okay, so he isn't the baby, my brother Justin who turned 16 in March is the baby, but Landon is my little buddy so it's so weird to think he's starting college next year!! Going to the University of Utah like his big sis :) I gave him all college stuff for his birthday!! Special that we can share that with one another. We went to Ruth's Chris (again) for his birthday dinner, and it was absolutely amazing!! Yum. Seriously the way they prepare their steak is like nothing I've seen before. Delicious! That's a picture of him and his girlfriend; adorable couple if I might add. Here are some other pictures of my cute brother back in the day. I love the ones of him and me when we were little. He's always been my little buddy - the sweetest guy in the world.

Happy 18th Birthday Landon :)

It's crazy to watch people get older; I get to do it every single day teaching. My students are adorable. Here is a picture of some of the boys playing with the Legos. Why do we insist on growing up so fast? Life as a child is way more fun!I've realized in this past year I have honestly gotten so much older as well; I've grown, even when I didn't want to. I think life's experiences does that to a person because it did it to me. I'm always stressed out and having such a hard time lately... but honestly life can still be magical the way it was when you are child. I gain so much from the students, and I'm the one teaching them!! They teach me that the world is so beautiful from their eyes, they get excited over the smallest things, and they laugh... like really laugh!! I realized the other day I don't laugh like I used to, smile like I once did, or even play. I need to take the time and share that with myself. Life is stressful, but it's also wonderful and if you hurry you can miss every experience and the simple things that life has to offer. Maybe that's why I want to move because I might find that spark that's lacking here.

I'm turning 24 in a month and to me that's getting old! I was always so excited about being 24 - thought it would be a monumental age to turn... I just don't want it to be like this year I have had. My 23rd year has been the toughest year to live in ever and I want a clean slate and happiness to follow when I turn 24. Not sure if that will happen or not, but it's almost like I need it to happen or I don't know what will be left of me. Funny that when I was younger, I thought 24 would be the perfect age to get married!! Ha, I'd better find a guy to go on a date with me before I think of marriage. I know now I'm too young for that. It works for some people and I'm so thrilled for them, but I still have some growing up to do myself before I can be married... that's the truth!! I want to be successful and get a wonderful job though. Live on my own (Portland) and get a dog! I know that's weird but I have never had a dog of my own. I have a beagle at my dad's house, but I don't see him very much. I didn't get to grow up with him in the ways I wanted to. So when I move out, I'm getting a dog. And this one is so cute:

It's called a Yorkie-poo :) My good friend Maddy just got a girl and named it Lola. I think they are so adorable, and I usually don't love small dogs... but I love Lola. I want one! But I also love Golden Retriever's - but I know they are a lot of work. I want to get a kitten and a puppy so they can grow up together, once again a lot of work, but oh so worth it!!! We'll see.

Have a wonderful day. xo.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Where I Want To Live Wednesday

So it used to be for me: What I love Wednesday, but I'm spicing it up a bit because I have really cracking down on where I want to move. Yes yes, I know that after Newport I was set in my ways; stupid of me. After Mary and I really looked... we realized Newport is too small. I was beyond disappointed. I fell in love with the coast after that trip and just want to be somewhere with all the trees as well. So after that I really looked into other places to live... outside of Oregon. Scary thought because I was so determined to live in my favorite state, but sometimes you have to look outside the box... and I started looking at the East Coast, which is really looking outside that box of mine!!The only states I've been to on the East Coast have been Florida and New York and both only once. I realized I haven't spent hardly anytime there. Mary used to live in Syracuse and loved the upstate New York. I had only been to NYC and while exciting, it wasn't for me in the slightest. Not a city kind of girl. Or so I thought..

I really love what I have seen with Maine, South Carolina and Rhode Island. They are all so cute and I love the beaches they offer. The Newport in Rhode Island was definitely stealing my heart yesterday but then I thought to myself... this is a big step, even greater than moving to Oregon. The East Coast is so far away from my family, so that makes things really scary. Mary also said that if she were to move to the East Coast, she would move back to New York to be closer to her family. We just weren't agreeing yesterday. So then I got really sad thinking I would go to the East Coast... but alone. I would still love to move to Oregon, but the coast towns are just too small :( However, as I was just doing research for the millionth time yesterday, I came across Lake Oswego in Oregon. It reminded me of why I liked Oregon in the first place: green everywhere, lakes, houses on the lakes, small but definitely not too small, etc. I also a long time ago posted this dream house of mine that was located somewhere in Oregon but I wasn't sure where... well I figured out that house, that same exact house, is located in Lake Oswego. It was kind of a sign. I really wanted to live somewhere on the coast, but the coast is a few hours away and it's cool just to have a coast in the state you live in. Utah doesn't have that... just beautiful mountains which I am grateful for even though I'm extremely sick of this state. The other really cool thing about Lake Oswego is that 9 miles away is Portland. Now I love Portland, it would be the one city I would consider moving to even though I'm not a city girl in the slightest. Mary and I realized that we can honestly have the best of both worlds. We can live away from the crazy city life and on the lake, but having the city that close opens up a lot of job opportunities, chances to meet people, etc. It just became really exciting and I felt like something clicked and I was back on track yesterday. I got excited also because Portland has a lot of colleges there and I can go to graduate school there and get my Master's Degree in a few years. How awesome is that?? Pretty awesome I might add. Here are some pictures of Portland and Lake Oswego:

Someday I would truly love to move to the East Coast, but maybe after I meet my Mr. Right we can go together. Moving in it self is a true eye opener and changes your life, I don't think I need to be that drastic about it right now.

I just love the thought of moving and starting over. No one knows you and you can be your own person, someone that might have disappeared over time.

Where I Want to Live is somewhere that will make me happy, somewhere beautiful and serene. A place that I can feel tranquility (something I'm in desperate need of) and still have that fun life that gives me a successful job and opportunities to meet people. Yes, that's what I want. And I will have it - sooner or later. Stay tuned. xo.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

ΠΒΦ Spring Formal 2011

My last sorority dance ever for Pi Phi - definitely bittersweet. A fabulous time, but I know this is the end for college. But then I got happy because I felt satisfied; I felt satisfied because I feel like I have taken every opportunity in college, especially by joining this sorority. I know now I am ready for the next chapter of my life and I have no regrets. What a wonderful night to remember with friends.