January 29, 2012

It's A Major Award!!!!

This is apparently what the ol Mac thinks I look like with fish eyes.  I don't know if I agree with their interpretation.  I've spent far too long this morning laughing-so-hard-I-bawl at the pics I've been taking of myself and just how ug I can be. Kind of a sad sort of morning even amidst all the laughter, when ya think about it.

It's Sunday. I get most homesick on Sundays because I was raised by a Goddess of a mother who prepared phenomenal meals and I got to play with all the tiny little punks and send them home after they got too annoying. ah....such a good day Sundays at the Ballard home are. I miss them. 

I GOT A TEACHING JOB!!! I now teach two yoga classes at the field house on campus. Neat, yeah?

My friend Tyler Andrews, his sister emi and her lover Mckay started a band called Children of the North and we went to their gig Friday night and it was amazing. I recommend a listen to their stuff http://childrenofthenorth.bandcamp.com/track/im-a-pilgrim-im-a-stranger

Another night, we did this:

The Night We Contributed to the World of Science and Discovery

It was a night like any other when we decided to take this

And see how many balloons it would take to make this happen
(see Judy's tiny little specs in there?)

 It began with a simple question, hypothesis, experiment.....I can't really remember the rest of the process, but as the scientific method teaches us, there is an order to the answering of life's biggest mysteries through scientific means.
Different tactics and avenues were explored to find success. I feel like Thomas Edison would have not only appreciated our task but our persistance in trying many different things. 

Finally, they gently lifted off her face like sweet little angels going back to their heavenly home

Creepy bystander. They're necessary to keep the study unbiased  

The proud researchers and their final product. Publishers will be peer reviewing and putting the study up for debate soon.

There was a contest as to how many balloons it would take. Did I maybe create this post just to brag that I guessed the exact amount and stole some jam out of the party host's house as a my major award? Psh.....no. 
But yes, it did take exactly 23 balloons. I guessed 23. Hogwarts doesn't know what they missed. 

January 9, 2012

Gettin Big n All That Jazz

I feel like I can say stuff like, "all that jazz" when I'm wearing a hat like the one in my Van Gough inspired self portrait, (I chose to chop off both of my ears...I refuse to be one-upped).  So, as per tradition I am keeping things very current by giving you a portrait of myself in this very instant, this very fleeting but happening moment. Very real. Very Kardashian/Real World/Jersey Shore/All-other sad-and-embarrassing-reality-television of me.

So, here we are again folks, another couple months and another picture/word vomit from yours truly.  I wish I was in more of a bloggerish mood, but I am not. Maybe you will benefit and my refined and eloquent jokes that I am finding out more and more are only funny to me will be minimal.


I literally have days, that's right, days left of yoga training. I can't way talk/write about it cause I begin to bawl and then things get dicey in an already sketch basemen apartment filled with nicotine soaked walls. These are pics from one of our special cooking nights. We made a full Ayurvedic meal, full of fresh, amazing goodness with a ton of added health benefits for each one of us in particular.

As you can see the mulled wine was in no shortage for the little cuties. 
Camille, Caylee, Missy, Greg and Natalie in front
Greg is our gay friend who just couldn't say no to a night out with the ladies. He is pretty darn hilarious. He showed up driving a vintage, BEAUTIFUL caddie with a boa scarf. I nearly bawled it made me so happy. 

Seriously love these girls so much it hurts somewhere deep in my gizzards...I've heard it called a heart. I  don't really know how to respond to not going to the same place with these same girls most days of the week. Literally since May 2010 I have spent hundreds and hundreds of hours with these ladies and they know me on a strange level that no one else does actually. How do you really sum up such a life altering experience or describe such phenomenal, INSANELY beautiful women? Whitman, Twain, Frost! Help me for heaven's sake!! 
Needless to say we are doing all we can to drag the last few hours of the training into about another month or so. We have some neat business ideas and if anyone is interested in doing this training I just did, let me know, Natalie is starting another one in February. 

Avenues yoga. Coolest studio. 

As far as for my personal yoga endeavors, they are as follows:
I have been teaching at The Cancer Wellness House for a couple months now. I love it there. The people are so sweet and non-judemental of my amateur teaching skills. They let me pretend I'm a yogi and I leave feeling validated and hopefully they don't leave wishing they were doing another round of radiation instead of yoga with me. 

I am going to be teaching at a correctional facility!! That's right! PRISON BOUND AM I! No one has ever said that with so much enthusiasm I'm pretty sure...I hope. I will soon be volunteer teaching at a female correctional facility in the greater SLC area. I don't really know how to describe it, but I've always had an odd fascination with prisons. Since I was pretty young I always wanted to go in and just talk to the inmates, see what it is they are learning while they are in there, what sort of stuff they would do if they could, who the best cig pimps are, etc, etc. jk kids, jk. But I really have always been darn interested and when Natalie told me she had a connection I jumped on it. I'm working out the details still, but I'll keep you updated. Or I at least have good intentions of doing so. 


Ok, enough yoga tears. On to my literal favorite holiday, well, the widely spread, widely celebrated ones anyway (cause you are lying if National Ice Cream Day isn't your favorite day of the year). I love thanksgiving. It's simple. It's sole purpose and angle is F-O-O-D. Food. That's it. Well, I suppose family is tossed around in there somewhere in the more guilty of consciences, but food is the reason for the season and I love it. I do love the whole fam getting together too, even if  I am the one that gets beat up majority of the time. Can't wait to pass that torch on to one of the nieces or nephews someday....it keeps not happening though.

As per tradition we go shooting and eat pie during thanksgiving day. I, due to my passive and gentle nature, rarely find the firearms within my reach. In most honesty, I usually am just too busy eating all the pie and BS-ing with peeps to care about the technique filled sport. Plus I hate that blasted kick that comes when you shoot. It makes me mad at the gun, and when you get mad at the gun you are only starting a losing battle. The gun always wins in those fits.

Uncle Kelly and Matt
Cute little Aschcroft clan

My redneck family thinks the fact that I am a yoga loving hippie in liberal SLC is HILARIOUS. Seriously, nothing gives them more joy than a couple Subaru and Obama jokes. 
So, we thought it would be funny to have me do some yoga poses with the gun. Beautiful irony.

Melissa and I made a rating system for the shooters. Not every little girl can make it to the Olympics to be judged on her leotard and hair flipping, but we can do our best to improvise.
Rating system went like this: 0 = the 0 is a peace sign with things like obama, 99%, Oust The 2nd Ammendment written on it to prove that you belong with me and the other weirdies up north and should no longer disgrace a gun.
5 = Don't Quite Your Day Job
8 = Almost Great
10 = Mark Walberg Status (movie reference, "Shooter.")

Pappa Bruce

We had no fun and survived on flavorless chewing tobacco and pioneer seeds the whole time. Scouts honor

When it comes to guns, we maintain the game face

Things got a little bit more rednecky as the day progressed. Matthew went ahead and brought some sort of explosive stuff you put in a can and the boys then proceeded to wrap a few up together and put them on top of a pyramid of pumpkins. It was the fourth of July for rednecks everywhere. A salute to the country proud if you will.

And how cute is this little turd?

My former roommates at Catfish's (my current roommate) Sweaters and Nog party. Lee is back in H-town and Judy is moved out. The saddness of these two truths is too much to bear and I will not go into further detail at this time.


Only bummer about being a semi-big kid is that I don't get to come home for weeks on end in-between semesters and lay in the luxury of warmth, free living and the biggest source of homesickness....Linnie's cooking. But I did get a few days of the warmest Christmas ever in the most beautiful place a kid could ever be raised. The older I get the more and more I realize what a rarity southern Utah is. It's amazingly diverse landscape the never-ending list of outdoor adventures. My dad always says, "you could live here your whole life and not even begin to see half of the beautiful scenery it has to offer." I think I'm starting to catch what you're puttin down pops. Amazing.

I, like the rest of the honest American population, must admit to seeing the occasional fashion blog. Now, I'm wondering if mine could be a hit. Sweats, sports bras, ripped jeans and tank tops....what do you think? In huge demand? Thought so. 

LOOK WHAT SANTA BROUGHT ME! Best Christmas ever. I literally make a few smoothies a day and put all sorts of impossible-to-blend-in-any-other-blender stuff in them just cause I can. Such a happy day. Plus Snowshoes to boot. It was a successful year. 

My very best friends. We are lookers, eh? This was a couple weekends before Christmas and it was windy as heal. Me and tan sat cozy in the Rhino while Erica and Kwaz froze their cute little buns off. They're both made of muscle, my remorse and guilt is minimal. 

Speaking of the adorable Erica, I would like to introduce you to the beautiful creature that is my bestie with a small chestie. She had some pretty intense braids going on there for a while. 
So, when the time came that they were getting too grody to maintain, we had a lovely Sunday evening of taking out the wretched things.

The horror and beauty all at once is the result of aforementioned evening. Don't be alarmed. No one was hurt in the making of these photos.

Look how happy she looks!

It's not human. It's not animal. It's one of those things we will have to ask about when we get to the pearly gates I fear. 


I loved the few weeks of snowless spring time winter. It was heaven. I am glad it snowed, I was able to take my snowshoes out just last night in a full moon mountain hike that rocked my socks off. So, me and snow are no longer out to kill each other. We prob still will, but it will be with less bitterness and rage. But on New Years I took advantage of the warmth and trekked up Millcreek and spent a beautiful afternoon with the mountains. I've been going a lot of places solo lately. I've had a lot of epiphanies on the subject. I really like being alone. This is a very recent development. I used to hate being alone, at any time of day. I hated it. But now I find myself becoming more and more happy with just the company of myself. Yoga helped a lot with that, but also just going out and experimenting with it. Not even just being alone, but going to social settings by myself. I almost always have a friend, or several to have my back and act as my fall back if I find the situation even the least bit non-stimulating. But I find I am far more prone to invest in my fellow humans when I have no one of comfort to resort to. It's been an interesting little self, social experiment I've been running with myself. I'm still no Alex Supertramp, I like the humans, but I do like this new progression of becoming darn good friends with myself.

I'm embarrassed at the amount of self portraits in this post. But I feel like I can't delete them. Dilemmas.

New years eve was a blast with a TON of dancing, as it should be. I felt completely satisfied and pooped by the end and was eternally grateful. I went to three separate parties and danced until I was dizzy at all three. Most were meant to have dancing originally. I feel bad about nothing.

Another cool thing about my lone adventures are my slc walks. I love where I live, particularly because I am close to all cool parts of town: sugarhouse, downtown, yale/harvard area, university. All of these within walking distance. So, lately I've been just wandering about on walks and finding neat things and going into stores I've never noticed before and meeting interesting new people. I found this house on my walk yesterday and loved it. Picture captured and shared with you cool cats.

My good friend Megan went ahead and went into labor last friday, so I got to have a play date with her adorable son JP. He is the cutest little punk. We spent the day at the Museum of Natural History. Pretty neat new building they built. Totally recommend it as a SLC hot spot.

Well, that's it folks. Nothing too exciting I suppose. Oh, I started school again today, just one class to get ready for grad school and it is literally the hardest class of my life, just in the first day. Nice, eh? It feels good to be back on campus though, I missed it. Hope all is well in your lives! I love my life and feel pretty darn good about existence. Not too shabby, I'd say.