So, when I first came home I was very very verryyy apprehensive. Last summer was okay, but I just looove being at BYU. Heather was coming home with me, so I was comforted in that I would always have a best friends with me, but I was still worried. Especially because her bf Jake was leaving on a mission, but it has actually worked out very well.
So mostly this summer I have worked, and that has been interesting. Last summer I mostly just looved my job, and this summer I was definitely grateful for it, because it kept me sane and made me money. It was also in air conditioning, and I was, in general, treated well. However, I didn't love it as much, because it wasn't as organized and I often did not know where I was going. I also began to realize how much of a pawn I am. Sometimes different branches would seem to fight over who needed a floating teller more, and it struck me as almost catty. And I had little to no say as to where I was going, even though, having been at the branches, I knew a lot about their need levels. So, I was grateful to work there, and I would do it again next summer for sure if I was coming back, although I think I am going to be staying in Utah and taking classes during this next summer. One of the first highlights of the summer was when Winnie and her sister Helen came to visit. We took them to NYC, which was quite the adventure. Heather's blog gives more details on that, you should read it :) Another fun event you should look at her blog for is the family reunion we went to this summer for my grandparents's anniversary.
We also toured DC more than I have in my whole life this summer. I remember going once to tour it when I was at a youth conference, and a handful of other times we probably went to see random monuments of memorials, but I never really appreciated it. I thought that youth conference was incredibly boring, mostly because, if I recall, they had people dress up and pretend to talk like historical figures or something. All. Day. Long. And don't get me wrong I looove those awesome stories about George Washington and the other amazing and brave men that helped to build our nation, but it was hot, and we were so closely monitored that we didn't get to go explore the city on our own, and I don't think we saw many cool monuments except from a distance. So my touring of DC started with a date where we did picture tag in the FDR memorial I believe. It was really fun, and that is a beautiful memorial. It's kind of like a huge rock garden, with fountains and statues... It's very pretty.
The next weekend, I was invited to go to a baseball game by another guy in the singles ward because his brother was in town so he wanted to get some other people to come too. I got my sister and four of the pest controls boys on board(Jordan, Joshua, Troy, and Taylor), and we got on the metro. When we were about halfway to the stadium, Jeff (the guy who invited us) called and said all the cheap tickets were sold out, so we decided to just tour DC. This was a challenge, because even though we had lived there our whole lives, we didn't really know much about the city. However, I thought we winged it rather well. We saw almost all of the memorials, took a ton of pictures, and by the end of the night the boys seemed to be enjoying themselves too. Especially when we finally found a McDonalds for us to eat at. All night they had been complaining that they wanted food, but no one was willing to ask for directions, so finally I did, and there were two options: walk about two minutes to a small snack place, or walk about a half hour to 7th street, where there were tons of restaurants. The boys wanted to go to 7th street, so we walked there. by the time we got there, however, nothing was really open except bars and McDonalds. Heather, Taylor, and I were under 21, so those were out of the question, so into McDonalds we went. When we went inside, the door was opened for us by a police officer with a club. He was id-ing a lot of people, but he just let us in. There were tons of black people outside screaming at him and each other. One girl kept saying "Why you rattin' out ma friends??" We didn't really know what was going on, so we just ordered our food, ate, and left. While we were exiting, the chatter had escalated to a roar. Everyone was yelling at the police officer, each other, themselves. It actually didn't seem to matter who was listening. We literally saw a group of girls clearly walking together, all shouting as loud as they could about the situation, and no one was listening to each other. They all faced forward and yelled pretty much at the air as they walked with as much attitude as possible. Taylor got up the nerve to ask the police officer why they were checking IDs, and was instantly put in his place: "Did I check your ID?" "No..." "Well then just walk away, just walk away, don't ask me any questions! There are gang members all over this town!" He apologized as we all walked hastily away. What surprised me most was how okay the boys seemed with the situation. They did not seem to think there was any danger, and they were perfectly content to chill outside with the angry mob until they saw how uncomfortable Heather and I were with what was going on. I was very glad to have four such manly men in our company, though :)
Speaking of pesticide boys, they made our summer so fun! The ones that usually came over were Jordan Lontine, Joshua Robinson, and Troy Campbell. We met Jordan through a double date we went on with him and Eric Stephens from our stake. I already talked about that date in a previous post, so feel free to look back. That Sunday Jordan texted me and asked if I wanted to hang out after church, and I invited him to dinner. After that, he started bringing over Troy and Joshua to dinner as well, and that tradition went through the summer until they left. Later on, TJ Albertson started to come over as well, after he moved in with the original three, and we also had Cole and Taylor over one Sunday after Josh and Troy had left. TJ even brought some of his old roommates over one time. And our family just loooves all of them :) They would come over and eat and talk to us and play with the kids and hang out for forever. Usually they would come over atlike 5:30/6, and stay till anywhere from 8-11, depending on the week. It was so cute because they were such good friends with our whole family. They will listen to the younger girls (Nicole and Julie) talk about their social lives and their boy issues, and give them advice. They let the boys and Sarah climb all over them and get shoulder rides. They would even stand around and talk to my dad. For like everrr. Especially Jordan. He will usually take about an hour or so to talk to my dad in the kitchen. They became very comfortable in our house so they would go wherever (except upstairs I guess, they usually stay downstairs or in the basement). The kids would usually take various ones to see their creations or how good they were at the pull up bar or to get shoulder rides, so they were rarely all in the same place, but I loved it because it was so chill. They were all so different, but they truly made our summer so fun simply by being there. Our whole family looked forward to their visits, and they basically became a part of our family. Our summer was so much more fun than it would have been without them. For the first time in my life, Sunday was definitely my favorite day of the week. I'm really excited to see them this school year because Troy and Josh will be in BYU housing, Jordan will be at BYU, and TJ will be at U of U (boo!).
Anyway, this summer has been a lot of fun. I can honestly say it was probably ten times better than I expected it to be. I made lots of new friends and some money, and got to spend time with my favorite people in the world, my family :) I'm so glad I decided to do it!