P to the H to the P

Here's what you've all been waiting for, aye?
My Pearl Harbor Project recaps!
About a month after the fact, I finally have time to sit down and collect my thoughts on everything. So here we go chilluns. Bare with me.

DAY UNO- Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

     We all met in the band room at 7:00 a.m. sharp, early that morning. Everyone was so quiet and anxious, but you could tell we were all unified in purpose. The buses arrived and we departed to the airport in Salt Lake City. Going to check in and going through security kind of took a long time, but eventually we all got through to our gate where we waited for 2 hours until loading. Once loading began, the excitement rose and we filed onto plane, finding our seats which were arranged by who we were rooming with. So I was privileged to sit by my roomies - Wendy Nelson, Hannah Johansen, and Mallory Jones. Party.
      I hadn't been on a plane since I was 10, so I was surprised and excited to find how planes have changed since then. I sat in the middle seat of the middle section so I couldn't see anything outside the window and sleeping was very difficult, but it was still enjoyable. Each seat had a TV in the back so you could watch whichever movie you wanted, listen to any music, or play any game. It was kool!
     Anyways, 6 hours later, we finally landed in the Honolulu, Hawaii airport where they gave us all REAL FLOWER LEI'S! I felt so legit. Immediately we all felt the heat and humidity, but we loved it! We then made our way to our fancy hotel that gave us delicious free cookies. We checked in to our rooms and settled in for a bit, and then we had an opportunity that I have never experienced in my 4 years of being in the band:

free time

you laugh, but it's true. Free time is something that has never been done in the Timpview Band. We were given about 4 hours that first wednesday night to roam Waikiki and do whatever our little tourist hearts so desired. So a group of us chose to find the famous "International Market". We took a few wrong turns and got lost along the way thanks to tour guide Bao, but eventually we found it in all it's international glory. The best thing about the market is that you can bargain! You have not shopped until you have bargained at the market. I wasn't the best at first, but by the end of the week, I was making deals like Let's Make A Deal. Now I get sad here in Utah when I can't bargain. Reality hurts sometimes.
Once we made our way through the salesmen, the market led us to the beach (okay, okay, we got lost. AGAIN.) and we sat in the warm water for as long as we had time for until it was time for lights out.
Let us just come to a consensus that the first day was a great start to our week :)

soooo...I know you're sick of PHP pictures, but for those of you who care, these are my favorites from day uno.

Me and Miriam showing off our tickets to Hawaii

Emileigh and I blocking the jetbridge so that we might gain evidence of our trip.

Sandwiched between too supermodels.

I love this.
I miss this.
I want this.

"We're in Hawaii" faces.
(Plus real flower lei's)

The things you might see on the streets of Waikiki

Our group on the beach.
(Fun fact: this picture was taken by a sober man)


One flew over the cuckoo's nest

The family is silently driving through the deserted, snowy Sunday morning roads. The radio is on in the background.

Radio announcer: Studies show that 1 in every 4 people have a mental disorder.
Andy: Chances are someone in this car is crazy
Nicole: Nose goes.
(Mother is the only one who doesn't put her finger to her nose and everyone looks at her)
Andy: Moms crazy.

I love my family.


Our very own Russian

Last night was a very good night for our family. 
Elder Bradyn Ray returned from his full time mission in Yekaterinberg, Russia. 
And being one of his few cousins, I decided to support the young lad and see him walk out of an airport terminal. And let me tell you, it was a cool experience.

Most of our close family was there - the oldest being my grandma and the youngest being my 4 year old cousin who didn't remember him. There we were, holding some large sign in Russian that we couldn't understand, waiting at the end of the escalator hallway. Nobody wanted to talk to one another in fear of turning our head in answer and missing his entrance. We were all excited and on edge, but I was glad to be there. He's our first full time missionary in the fam and we couldn't be prouder. And as I was standing back in the midst of all the happy reunion, I reminisced on my brother, Kevin's return.....

If you don't know my brother Kevin's story, feel free to ask me sometime, but it's a little long for this post. All you need to know is he has health problems that almost stopped him from serving his mission, health problems that have almost cost him his life. Eventually he did get his mission call and left for Seattle, Washington a year and 3 months ago. He was told not to tract, but that didn't stop my determined brother from preaching the Lord's Gospel. However, that was to become his downfall and his health problems reoccurred, threatening his life and sending him yet again into the hospital. 

I remember the day very clearly. I got home from school. A normal day for me. Except the aura in my house wasn't the same. I know when something's up. My mom didn't ask me how school was. So I dropped my stuff off in the front room, ran up to my bedroom and sat down on my bed. My mom walked in. No smile was upon her face. 
"Nicole, Kevin's in the hospital again."
The world stopped again. My heart dropped. It does that a lot.
There are only a few things that make tears come out of my eyes, and Kevin in the hospital is an immediate one. Within two seconds I was up from my bed and in my sobbing mother's arms. I felt just as scared as I felt when this happened in 8th grade. 

Confusion. Fear. Anger. 
Sadness. Helplessness. Emptiness.
absolutely nothing.
those are just a few of the things that happen to your body.

The next day I was a zombie. I didn't know and still don't know how to react to these types of things. The only people that knew something was wrong were my best friends and they comforted me. I got home from school and again I was made command central. Information was ran through me and both my parents were constantly on the phone getting updates and whatnot. Kevin was to come home that night by airplane with an escort. I don't remember why, but I was told not to come to the airport. Maybe I didn't want to see him like that. Either way, I was given the job of making a makeshift welcome home poster with the materials we had within 2 hours. I did my job to try and make him feel happier. But the second he slowly staggered in with support from my dad and brother, suit and name tag still on, not able to talk, I lost it and went upstairs to bed. 

he wanted to serve a mission so freaking bad. He was out for 2 months total. and then was sent home. 
he was crushed. crushed. He wanted to be normal for once - do something everyone else does. And he only got a little taste of what it was like. It makes me cry even just writing about it. But that's Kevin and he's always been that way. The trooper who doesn't give up on anything and never asks "why me?". This was the only time I've seen his spirits crushed. But the next day he was already trying to make progress and improvements in his recovery. It was a long process though, shorter than last time, but still long. It was hard to adjust to him being at home again. 
but that's life
and we cherish every day we have with him.


Your time will come if you wait for it.

I'm baaaaaaaaccckk.
from Hawaii that is.
Expect some Hawaii posts soon. I gots to decompress  and collect my thoughts first.

Anyways, the day we arrived home from lovely Waikiki, I, well, slept. duh. And then I was forced to once again resume the constant struggle with college applications. I finally finished my BYU application and now I can relax, right? Well not really. Now I'm just stressing even more about when I will find out. People, I'm FREAKING OUT.

And the ironic part? In my essay, I put that I had learned to trust and accept the will of my Heavenly Father.
Now I feel like a liar. Because, yes, I will be very angry if I don't get in. And I'll be all confused, wondering why it wasn't for me. No the whole trust part isn't really true. Whoops.

But it helps me listen to my mom talk about her experiences with my dad and our family in the air force. She always tells me that she never knew why Heavenly Father sent our family the places we went. Sometimes they didn't even realize why they went somewhere for 10 years down the road. Most of the time it was for Kevin's medical needs, which always seemed miraculous. But every place had a special purpose for our family, including me. I know I'm supposed to be here in Utah, right now. I wouldn't want to be any other place than working with a marching band from Timpview High School right now. And it wouldn't have been possible without this seemingly horrible move to Utah.

I guess my whole point of this post is that, I may be mad at first, but 10 years down the road, I will be grateful for whatever has happened in my life. So I say,
bring it on


short skirt and a long jacket

"why are you wearing a leather jacket?"

"It's leather jacket Friday."

"I didn't know about that. When did that start?"

"I started it today."

Join the rage.


cursed people

Well this is embarrassing....

I made such a big deal out of it and now it doesn't matter anyways.
I'm in.
But I don't feel like I deserved it.
People tell me otherwise, but it'll take a while for me to believe them.
I even considered not auditioning for the cougar band for like a whole two hours.
And then, dejavu happened, again.
I got a text from da father.
"there was a mix up. you are in. congrats!"


what was I supposed to say?
i dunno.
so now I'm slightly pissed.
and embarrassed.
I've had so much love and support.
like 3 people have sent me suuuuuper long texts of love and support and they cheered me up tremendously.
they have no idea.

I love my friends.


when it's hard to find hope in the unseen

He read the names off the list, and even before he finished rushing through the results, I knew mine wasn't on there. Immediately, my heart dropped to the pit of my stomach, but not 30 seconds later was I expected to go to orchestra, hold my composure, and play my music flawlessly. For a whole hour and a half, music lost it's meaning. I didn't want to be there and I was going through the motions. It took so much effort to bring my clarinet to my mouth each time. And then Allred yelled at me for not keeping tempo, even though I was watching him like a hawk. Great timing, jerk.

Then all throughout the rest of the day all I heard was:

"I can tell you're stressed, Nicole. Ha."

"You okay, Nicole? You look super tired."

"Nicole, you look kinda dead."

"You're probably mad. Or sad. Or both."

Really? I hadn't noticed
Yeah, I wonder why.
Maybe it's because I just spent my 5th period hiding in my car, crying my eyes out. I don't even know why I'm crying, though. I knew it wouldn't happen. But it felt like a blow to my level of musicianship. It shouldn't, but it hurt. I happened to glance at the list of master musicians today and I had to leave the room; I couldn't handle it. What am I doing here? Why do I think I can do all this? I'm not as talented as those people. I'll never be the role model they were for these kids. I feel like I can't be an effective leader if I can't show them how I've improved. And me saying that is ridiculous and selfish. But at the moment I don't care much. 

this part doesn't matter much but 4 people genuinely asked me if I was okay. and when i said i wasn't, they knew i was lying. even if i was mean to you 4 people, i'm sorry, but know i'm super grateful to you. 

The hardest part will be to tell you, because I don't want you to be ashamed of me. 

I let you down
I'm sorry.

Aubrey Noelle

This post is dedicated to the lovely Aubrey Noelle Snelson.

Aubrey was one of my first friends in Utah, and that friendship has never broken.

She is one of the most genuine, caring, loving, kindest, confident, spunky, and crazy girls I know.
Not to mention hottt ;)
The first thing she asks me when she sees me every day is how I am, and I know she cares. We are always talking about boys and boys and school, and drama....and boys. She's willing to listen to my life stories, help me with problems, and give advice. She's willing to make random Jamba runs after school and belt out Forget About the Boy. I admire her confidence in life and I respect her so much. I don't know what I would do without my Aurbrey (misspelling intentional).

After a long facebook stalking sesh, I collected my favorite pictures of us.
and I'm 78% sure she's reading this now. If you are Aubs, I LOVE YOU.
Marry me?

be prepared for massive amounts of pictures. But who doesn't love pictures?

Same english class in 7th grade. Fate? Prolly
She loved me even in my awkward phases.

We play dress up together.

Typical. Her gorgeous smile and my awkardness

This happens quite often.

She can rock any headgear

We are "one"-der twins

She invites me to her 16th birthday party and what do I give her?
Swedish fish
But she knows it's because I love her

We almost get kicked out of Icing

We have dance parties

We strike hot poses

We bake her cakes for her real 16th birthday because we luv her

We go to stake dances together and our 50's attire

We are in the same group for date dances.
I think it's safe to say that we are the coolest in this picture

We go on facebook during English class and take pictures

We go to lunch together

I go to her 18th birthday party.
Sadly she can't touch me anymore since she's an adult.

We go all out for football games.

We go trick or treating together.

We go on dates together.
Not together, but with other men, together....

And this beauty.
This is my favorite picture of us. 

I'm sure there will be many more to come. Because dis gurl is mah best fwend.


Tick tock

So Saturday was the dreaded All State Auditions. And of course it was the exact same time of our Thoroughly Modern Millie dress rehearsal. And of course half of the pit was in band and was going to audition. So about 10 of us arrived super early hoping to be first and get auditions over with. Which we did.  I was the first one of the day, which prolly wasn't the best for my situation and audition but whatevs.

How was my audition you ask? I don't really know. Honestly. In general, I'm a crappy auditioner. I tense up, get overly nervous, and completely freak out, even though I shouldn't. And I even prepared in advance. I was practicing the prepared piece like a whole month beforehand.
My prepared piece wasn't horrible, but it could've been better. The judge lady asked me to restart after the first line, don't really know why. I screwed up the 16th note run a teensy bit, but we all knew that was gonna happen. However, those high notes?

I owned them. I played them like a boss.
and I played them piano.

The sight reading should have been ridiculously easy but I over analyzed and....we're not gonna talk about it.

I have no idea how I stack up to people around the state. Basically I'm facing the reality that I'm probably not going to get in, but I'm hopeful. So everyday I've asked someone when the results come out, and it's only been 3 days since the audition. Clinton said not for a few weeks and then he said, "As soon as you forget about it, they'll come. So forget about it!"

But I can't forget about it. It's eating me alive and mercilessly taunting me in the face and in my dreams. If I don't get it, goodbye Master Musician - something I've been dreaming about since I was a freshman. I want my name in the band room - my home for the past 4 years - forever. It's gotta happen and I don't know what I'll do if it doesn't. Oh life, why do you keep me waiting?


Any card that you've been dealt

Today I started filling out my BYU application.
And it was....exciting?
I dunno. It was kind of nerve wracking really.
You had to choose a major, and yes you could choose undecided. But again, the fact that I don't know what to do with my life is scaring me.
My dad and brothers found out and they kept on bugging me and distracting me and trying to "help" me, but I just got really frustrated.
What if I don't get in?
What if I get in, but I'm not in the Cougar Band?
What if I have absolutely no idea what I want to do with my life?

The major that interested me the most was one that had really no job options that go along with it. And my mom said, "Pick something you love to do and can make money doing it."

That was one thing that I think I don't agree with her on. What if I don't make money?

Family Life

Tell me what to do.

The thought that my future is in the hands of some weird, random people reading thousands and thousands of entrance applications is scaring me to death. Please let this be for me.


a tribute of sorts

Two words have changed my life:


that sounds like, so freaking stupid, I know. But I don't care. It's true.

8th grade year: I didn't know if I was going to join the marching band at Timpview. I didn't even know if I was going to continue playing my clarinet. But for some random reason, I did.

Freshman year: I hated marching band. What did I get myself into? Why was I running? Why was I in the sun for 8 hours a day for two straight weeks? Why was I sacrificing my time? Who does this?
I wanted to quit, but I decided to stick it out because I signed a contract.

I don't know exactly when it hit me, I think it was a culmination of the whole season. But especially at the BYU competition, I hit the ending note of La Suerte, horns came down, the crowd was cheering and I had the best feeling in the world. It was my best show yet. I don't think I knew exactly why I did marching band, but I knew I liked it. It was hard work, but I liked it.

Sophomore year: I loved marching band. Why had I even thought about quitting? Now the question was, should I go a step further and audition for drum major? I did, and I made it. I was excited but scared out of my brain. I just kept telling myself that I had a year to "train". All would be well.

Junior year: Band was well on it's way. I was learning so much. Zach and David were great Drum Majors and great teachers. Bao and I were prepared. I didn't think I would live up to them and it took awhile to build up my confidence, but I was so stoked.

Senior year: I did my best. The only hope I had was that "my kids" had a great experience while in band. I began to love helping all the freshmen and being drum major took on a whole new meaning. This band was special. This was my band. I loved these kids like I have never loved before. And we had the most amazing season I have ever experienced. It was quite a year and I felt special to be able to have gone through the journey with all them.

marching band:
hardest decision
best decision
no regrets.



  • You stay up till 2:00 a.m. counting $11,000. True story
  • You win 2nd place in Rumba
  • You wear bright pink lipstick and ribbons in your hair to church
  • You lose your voice. Completely
  • The boy you ask to Sadie's has already been asked
  • The boy you semi like has already been asked
  • You find out the boy you admire from afar is dating someone. Oh and he's sometimes a jerk to you but you still ogle at him anyways.
  • You don't want to talk to anyone
  • Your Varsity and JV teams both beat Provo's Varsity teams. And you're proud.
  • Chase Weight knows waaaaay too much about you. Like your pizza preference, how much ice you like in your drink and which boy you're obsessed with
  • You go to Las Vegas in 3 days
  • You prove people wrong
  • You become obsessed with cheesy shows like Once Upon a Time and Pan Am
  • Your foot cramps up
  • You're 30 pages away from receiving your Young Women's Medallion. Finally
  • I wanna hang out with you
  • You have an anxiety attack because of all the music you have to learn in 2 weeks
  • You find socks in your hair. Literally
  • You are an Ewok for Halloween. And you're 17. And you go trick or treating.

sometimes you need a friend. or a sister. or a lover.
but mostly a sister.


Riddle me this

right now:
Person I want to hang out with the most right now? Kent Schmutz. That way we can gossip.

Funniest moment of my day? Jake Callahan genuinely falling of off a spinning chair.

Most critical lifeblood right now? Vanilla Coke. and occasionally Smarties

The thing I'm most worried about? Marching band jackets. and....end of term.

Favorite word to say? Cuddleslut. Try it. It's fun.

Thing I want to do most? Go to a real BYU Marching Band rehearsal

Thing that irks me the most? She asked you to Sadie's.....wow I really must like you...I guess....

Most surprising? The epilogue to the story of the worst date. Didn't see that coming.

Instrument I wish I could play? Clarinet. Oh wait. done.

Best friends? Danielle Sowers and Chase Weight. They should get a medal for all the listening they do because of my venting that they have to endure.

Person I want to be most like? Maren Christensen. She's a saint.

Cutest kid in preschool? Ethan Francis a.k.a. Nate Francis' little brother. I want one.

Job options? None

Newest discovery? Tightening your stomach muscles in fact does help playing clarinet. Thanks Emileigh!

Place I wish I was most? Texas. Schertz, Texas.

Weirdest realization? I'm a senior


Major details

It's official....or at least as official as it gets in the life of a 17 year old.


After helping my 23 year old brother with his ridiculously easy math homework (and I mean easy for college level stuff), I learned I would never have the patience to sit and help the "stupid" kid in a class and explain how to solve a problem in 30 different ways so he understands it. Because that's literally what I did with Andy....and I can't do it.

Maybe I should pursue music? No se.
All I know is my confusion in life is just another reason why I should get my patriarchal blessing. I need peace and direction in my life.



Talking is sooooo good.
And for once, I got to do the talking.

I've never been asked that question until now.
The only other person I've told my feelings about this whole sitcheeation to is Lynnsay Lou.
We're attached at the hip and she is one of the only "older sister" figures I've had in life.
But Lou is busy with college and dancin stuff.
And we haven't talked or seen each other since probably my birthday in July.
And I miss her.
So you probably don't realize how much that conversation was needed in my life.
thank you.
It made me stop and think.
And since that was just an emotional roller coaster day anyways, I basically went home and had a breakdown.
But I've decided breakdowns are good.
They're like sneezes.
It's bad if you keep the germs in.

I like talking.

and pizza.


Dustland fairytale

Once upon a time I had this realization that maybe I should be a counselor. Or a psychologist. Or whichever one tells people what to do..

I'm good at just sitting there and listening to people's problems and giving them advice or inputting my thoughts. Like with Steph last night.

I dunno...it's just another career option that will most likely never happen


Listen to a prophets voice

Today was stake conference and Elder Russell M. Nelson came to speak to our stake for the second time! And as tired as I was and as much as I didnt want to go, I am extremely grateful now that I did. Our stake presidency was released and new ones were called so that all were asked to speak. And then finally Elder Nelson took the pulpit which I was so eagerly awaiting. At first he was kind of rambling like the cute old man he is. He was talking sbout parents teaching their children the right lessons in life early. And then all the sudden he said one line that perked my ears,

"Soon you'll graduate and the only thing that will matter is that your family is together forever."

I felt the spirit so strong when he said that and I felt as if he was talking straight to me from the Lord. I don't know why, but the two things I've been worrying about lately is graduation and my family, and he calmed most of my fears with that line. He then went on to give our stake blessings and all that good stuff. Then again he had my attention by saying something along the lines of, "I bless all of those with concerns about illnesses upon your loved ones. And may they be healed if it be the will of the Lord."

Oh wow I love Elder Nelson. I realize now I need to worry more about the eternal perspective than worrying about the whole college thing. I realized I need to worry more about the time that I have with my family and especially Kevin now than worrying about the times I may not have with him. Because if we do lose him, it's not a goodbye, it's a see you later. I need to trust the Lord and see that he has more knowledge than me. The Plan of Salvation is real and the Gospel is true.

Coming home

Longest weekend of my life? Check. Done. Finite.
I can finally relax. Sorta.

Homecoming was the shortest but funnest (yes, funnest) date I've probably ever been on!
Some highlights:

+Seeing Haley Burrell whom I haven't seen for FOUR freaking years!
+Fitting 10 people in Bao's pilot and almost dying multiple times
+Rushing to get ready for Homecoming and barely making the marching band competition awards ceremony
+Seeing all the other schools drum majors and guard captains look at us all confused
"Why are you wearing your normal clothes?"
+Bao messing up the salute. It was like Jasmine and Anna dejavu...
+Fake salutes
+Blasting Party Rock Anthem in the car driving to the dance
+"I have to warn you, I have epilepsy."
+Bao opening all my doors and escorting me everywhere :)
+Using Jake's cane as a limbo stick at the dance. That was number one.
+Slow dancing like 10 feet away from each other "for the sake of the band."
+Everyone attempting to shuffle. That was a fail. Lolz.
+Going to get delicious crepes. Oh my Allah they were soooo good.

Thank you my PIE for taking me to Homecoming for a grrrreat night! Sorry I never officially answered you...whoops.
But I'll make it up to you somehow!


Ugggghhhh. That's all I have to say.

I. Hate. Room assignments. Hate em.

They make such awkward situations.

"Do you maybe wanna room with me?"

I'm always the orphan nomad child. Por que?
Everytime the band rooming list goes up, everyone scrambles, ready with 4 predetermined people to write down. And where am I? Looking around like a lost bunny rabbit.
People want to room with me, but they just want to room with someone else more. Or they already "promised somebody else." Same with dance. All the juniors are always together. And seniors aren't that cool I guess

But no worries. The room assignments always end up working out....I guess.
At least this year, I'm with my bestie, Chrissy, FINALLY! And Hannah who is a riot! And some other unsuspecting girl who we will have fun with no matter what and be sayin "are you jealous yet?" allllll tour long.

Plus 5 lbs of gummy bears and unlimited swedish fish. Yeah, it's okay to be jealous now.


Coke. Easy ice.

Some good quotes from the day:
(sorry there may be swearing, but hey, I believe in free speech)


"Sherryn, why don't you move the hell away from there?"

"I need to stop telling racist jokes because that's a crime and crimes are for black people."

"But driving loads of children is a lot different than driving loads of dirt."

"I have 100% hearing."

"Stupid Italians. Go back to pasta."

"I especially love you....and you!"


"The boys tried to sneak their iTouches to school. I'm a former teacher. Grandma didn't let that happen."

If none or little of these made sense, then I feel sorry that you're not apart of my family :)


Well this is new...

Today was a grrrrrreat day.

Not only because BYU won. Obvi.
But something else happened during the game.

During the first half, as the game was not going so good, I started just staring at the marching band, because that's what I do. They were playing a song - and I don't even know which song - and something happened within me. The sousas were rockin out as usual. The band was partyin. They looked like they were having so much fun. And I know they were.

I've always been a marching band geek, but I just thought it would end at college because that's not what I wanted to do with my life. And then tonight, some switch turned on in my brain and it went something like this:

'....I think I wanna be in the BYU marching band....'


It's time to trust my instincts

Lately I've been in the:

"drive around town with friends and a jamba in hand singing along with and belting out the lyrics to your favorite inspirational musical"


Well it has only happened like, ONCE, this week. But I'd like to do it summore.
Maybe I should make a Facebook event, chyea?


Lost in transition

Sometimes I feel like my friends in Texas have completely forgotten about me.

"So me and Autumn-"
"Oh. Right. Well she moved in after you left. Anyways..."

Sometimes I feel like my Utah friends don't really know or care about me because I wasn't apart of their childhood.

"Remember in Mrs. So and so's class when we did that one cool thing and me and her used to be best friends?"
"No. I didn't go to Canyon Crest."
"Oh. Rock Canyon?"
"I didn't go to elementary here."
"Whoops. Sorry."

But whatevs. I always have Yoda.


Rise and shout

     Once upon a time there was a girl, Nicole, who, at one point in her life, was 4 or 5 years old.
Her family once again took the long drive to the foreign land of Utah to visit her favoritest familiy members in the whole world, especially her Grandma. They arrived, settled in, and, as usual, took the annual trip to the magnificent BYU Bookstore in the Wilkinson center. Nicole was an expert when it came to the BYU Bookstore. She knew exactly where the clothes, the candy, and, of course, the childrens books were. Every year, she was allowed to pick one book she wanted. And it was always the hardest decision, as she loved reading.

Nicole picked her book, took a walk around her favorite, beautiful college campus bookstore, and returned to Grandma's house with her new reading material in hand. While sitting upon her favorite bed and reading her book, she began to cry. As silent sobs came to her eyes, her dad found his confused daughter and asked what was wrong.

"I wanna go to BYU but I don't know how."

"Do you like school?


"Do you get good grades?"


"Then you'll be fine."

so what became of the girl who loved school? the girl who thrived on getting good grades?

When did the girl who always had good grades and never practiced her clarinet turn into the girl who would rather practice her clarinet than do a silly math assignment?


the path less traveled.

I've been thinking lately, do I really know what I want in and out of  life?
do I really know who I am?

People know what they want for me, but have I decided? Am I  okay with that?

Yesterday, for example, in my Early Childhood Education Class, the kids in the Timpview Preschool came and we taught them for the first time. The reason I took this class was to see if I even want to be a teacher. And after one day with the kids, I'm learning a lot about myself.

I wasn't the lead teacher, but I did help a lot. And I thought I knew the "proper" way to handle children. But today, handling 20 preschoolers, I found myself just standing there with a blank look on my face thinking, "I have no idea what to do."

I love the class and I love the kids, I just don't know if that's what I really want to do with my life.


Have you ever felt this way?

I think I could be in "love" with a boy. Except I've never even been on a date with him.

I think he's my type. Except I don't even know what my type is.

I think he might be interested. Except that's just his personality and it wouldn't matter anyways.

I think....I think I'll just go read my scriptures now.


Incompatible. It don't matter though

Why do I always attract the wrong boys?

okay that was mean.
I meant why do I always attract boys that make things 10,547,892 times more awkward than need be.

I know I said I was on a boy fast, but that doesn't mean I can't look, aye?
3 specific boys come to mind. But that'll never happen. Ha, Nicole, keep dreaming.

Like I was telling my favorite person on the whole planet yesterday, I just want a normal guy. But that won't ever happen until I'm in college. I just want to be in college now. Now. Please. Thanks.
Sometimes I think I'm more mature than I really am.


United we stand

*WARNING: this is slightly long. Get over it. I love America.

Today as we remember that fateful day 10 years ago, I reflect on my own experiences:

September 11th, 2001
     It started out as any other day for most Americans. But as a 7 year old second grader in Texas, the highlight of my day was to be the arrival of my grandparents after school from California. Nothing was out of the ordinary for my class; our teachers didn't tell us anything.
     All day I had been antsy. I wanted to go home and see Grandma and Granpa. I would tell anyone who would listen of my grandparents planned visit, even my teacher, Ms. Sirois. Now I can only imagine what she was thinking at the time as I have no doubt she had to have known what was happening in New York. Still to this day I don't know how she kept her cool in front of a class of 7 year olds.

     The rest of the school day was a blur until the moment I stepped off the school bus. The bus let me off at the entrance of our cul-de-sac and I bounded off to my house, expecting a big bear hug from my grandpa's arms. My best friend and neighbor, Sandra, was slower to emerge and I left her in the dust. But halfway to my house, I noticed my mom talking to Sandra's mom at their front door. Immediately I knew something was wrong and my path veered towards them. I began thinking out loud,
"Where were Grandma and Grandpa?"
"Were they inside?"
"Why weren't they outside to greet me?"
"Were we picking them up from the airport?"
     Eventually, Sandra caught up and our mothers, to the best of their ability, tried to explain what had happened to America to two young elementary school girls. After the realization that my grandparents were in fact not at my house in Texas, I started actually listenting to my mom.
Foreign words popped out:



           World Trade Center


     What did that mean? As a child, I couldn't understand why someone would intentionally run a plane into a building to kill people. Then the only thought that went through my head was, "My grandparents are dead." They were supposed to fly in on a plane and planes had crashed. And now I was scared. I didn't know what was going on. My mom took me inside and my dad was watching TV. He was a pilot and they had shut down the local Air Force Base he worked at. They allowed me to watch the videos of the towers. I remember seeing smoke and flames and people falling out of windows. And tears began to stream from my eyes. I couldn't control my young emotions and I was scared. So I cried.

At that age, I obviously didn't comprehend what the towers stood for. But now I understand so much more and that it was a symbol of our nations freedom. I'm old enough to fully understand that America is the greatest country on Earth and WHY it needs to stay that way. I don't say that because of pride or arrogance. I say that because that's the way it is. We help other countries become free to make the world a better place for all. WE are the beacon and shining example to the rest.

no one should ever be making apologies for America.

Now that the band is putting together the Pearl Harbor Project II, I realize that I am now apart of history. I may not have been there, but I was one of the last age groups on this Earth to remember what they were doing that day. Just as in the Pearl Harbor Project, we are looking for WWII veterans to talk to, one day someone will want to know about 9/11, because it will have been a day in the past just like Pearl Harbor is to us.
But this is our Pearl Harbor
We should never be ashamed of our country. We should always be helping one another and joining together with pride like the days following 9/11. Never forget what you felt that day. And never forget the sacrifices that were made so that you, my friend, may live.

God bless America.
My home sweet home.


burn bright. the world needs your light

So a person whom I admire greatly and love to death (who will remain unnamed to protect their identity) came up to me a couple of weeks ago at a certain band event and began talking to me. She began to explain to me that she wrote about me in her journal. I was like,

'Oh crap. What did I stupidly say or do that will forever remain written in ink in one of my friends journals?'

but it wasn't like that at all.
this awesome person told me how she wrote that I, Nicole Marie Hopkinson, had inspired and encouraged her to do summer band. and she was super grateful for that.
At first I was like, HA! you're funny. NBD.

but then I thought about it. For me it was just nothing. I wanted this person to do summer because she's so outrageously talented and funny and I wanted to spend half my summer with her. Sounds normal, aye?
Something that was so simple for me to do was something important for her. And i'm not bragging. It's just, I LOVE making a difference. I love serving and inspiring people. I thought about how much summer band impacted me and to think that maybe I did that for her just warms my heart.

I want to be that inspiration for someone. I mean I guess I was for said girl above, but also someone else. I want someone to want to do band for me. I want someone to want to play clarinet for me. I want someone to dance for me. I want someone to become drum major for me. Not because of me. But for my existance. Not because I was amazing. But because I was having tons of fun and sharing it with others. I want to see the eyes of the Edgemont elementary students light up when they play clarinet and someday want to become one of those 'Timpview kids across the street'.

I could be that role model for someone. THAT COULD BE ME!

somebody is always watching



prets sure thats the topic on every Timpview upperclassmen's (most likely of the female variety) mind.
and it's not a happy topic.

Marching band can't go
Drama can't go
All State Choir folks can't go
Die-hard BYU fans shouldn't go
Some tennis lassies and cross country folks may or may not be able to go (sorry not sure bout that one)
Some German friends can't go.

I don't know. It may be just me, but this doesn't seem like the 'best date' choice for Homecoming.
I'm not ragging on, ANYBODY. Please do not get me wrong. I'm just a-sayin that this is my (and a whole bunch of other peeps) senior year and I can't go to Homecoming. If you think this post is directed at you, go find another blog to read.

I guess the only other way I'd love to spend my Senior Homecoming night is sitting next to Bao watching some gnarly marching bands. And then maybe going to the BYU football game. But we'll see how this all plays out.

it's just another stupid high school dance that I can't go to.
nbd. I'm over it


Bust A Move

the body should not be allowed to move like this
yet it does
so I enjoy :)


me gusta

On Sunday August 14th,
I am grateful for:

-straight, pearly white teeth
-nice citizens who give you tips that add up to $5
-clarinet teachers who are willing to write and arrange a sacrament meeting appropriate clarinet duet specifically for me
-Bao : who keeps me company at work and threatens to beat up hooligan teenagers who are messing with me at work
-Jared : who has such a kind, sweet spirit and was willing to take out the trash and keep me safe from said teenagers
-Kent : who throws fruit roll ups at Surf N Slurps window for me. And who invites and offers rides to said hooligans to Wendy's
-Wendy : who always has a smile on her cute little face and who is always willing to accept and join in on our random late night Wendy's runs. Oh, and laugh at our not-so-funny jokes
-mangoes. No particular reason. I just am
-My brother, Andy : who watches YouTube videos with me like there is no tomorrow
-Marching band. Oh how i am thankful for this.
-my legs, even though they are having a twitchy spasm attack at the moment


Why did I trill here?

School starts in almost one week. Meeehhhhh
And I'm so excited.

But I'm secretly so scared.

Don't get me wrong, I am grateful for the position I was put in at the end of last school year (especially since it was a nice little change from the 3rd clarinet mishap). But being 1st chair scares me to death.
That was one of the main reasons I started taking lessons with Emileigh over the summer. And yes, I will admit I have made lots of improvements. But I still have light years of skill ahead of me. But what if I'm not good enough? Yeah yeah, typical what if question. But it's the main scary thought entering my head on a daily basis. I will try my absolute hardest to succeed. I will. But let's face it, I will never be a Zachary Giddings or a Rebecca Devonas or a first chair flute prodigy, Kate Cutchins.

Somebody pray for me because I will need all the divine intervention I can get this year.


My worst critic

Alert the masses! The braces are OFF! It's a miracle and I'm aboslutely loving it.

And I now have this new found confidence that I haven't had since I was probably like 8. no kidding.

I am finally okay with myself.
Sometimes though, things I do never seem enough for anyone, especially my family.

Becoming drum major and being actively involved with band didn't seem to impress anyone, except my mother. Not that it should gain reward and praise, but a nice congrats from my grandma and others would have been nice.

Yeah I know I copied Lynnsay by doing ballroom. But want to know a little secret? Her being in Dance III, is copying me. But nobody would have guessed that. And I'm not as talented as her anyway. I'm not allowed to dress fashionably either.

I understand Aubrey's had a hard life and our side of the family needs to show extra love, but when I was told that our graduations will not be on the same day, I will admit it was a relief. Because let's face it, if they were on the same day, Grandma and Grandpa would definitely go to hers. And I would understand and put on this show of being okay, but honestly, I wouldn't. I'm not.

Plus she get's invited on the house boat. Do I? no

Nothing I do is ever good enough.
But I'm being better at not caring.
I do what I do and I try to do well.
Screw what the world thinks.

here comes the real Nicole


I wanna be a star

sometimes I imagine my life as a hit reality TV show. No big deal.
But especially dance.

Can't you just imagine them doing a show about high school ballroom teams and the drama that comes with competitions around Utah?
Maybe not....but I can!
Everytime I dance I feel like there are cameras all around me. And then after something happens, one of us is on screen commenting on what just happened or there thoughts on a new routine. Plus they have that cute little caption down below that says their name.
It would be great, would it not?

I even thought of one scene:

It's lunch break after a long day of dance camp:
everyone is casually lounging on the floor or eating at a table discussing the new developments on team.
We have 3 new peeps. A Texan, a tar heel, and a Polish boy
We also have a new coach.
What are your thoughts?

"Well, he's nicer than Tia."

 followed by a video clip of last year with Tia yelling at Varsity.
Captioned "Previous Season"

We love and miss you Tia. And we know you secretly do too!

But that's besides the point.

My life seriously could be a reality TV show.
Little do you know it already is.


It's my party I can cry if I want to

So basically it's my birthday....Yaya

And I'm 17. Woot

I can officially and legally.....

-Apparate in the magical world
-Do magic in the magical world
-Go to R-rated movies
-Drink illegally for one more year (says yahoo)
-Still date
-Still drive
-Apply for a private pilots license for a plane, helicopter, gyroplane, hot air balloon, an airship. I'll get right on that.
-Donate blood (not gonna happen. sorry world. get over it. I'm a horrible person)
-Leave my body for a medical study. (???)
-Be interviewed by the police without an adult present
-Join the army

...annndd...pretty much that's all I found.
17 is a great age
And I'm only interested in the magical stuff. Lolz

On this day of "coming of age" (in the wizarding world that is), I am grateful for my true friends that genuinely care about me. And I found out who they were today. Not to rag on my other great friends, but you really do see who loves you and people's true personalities. They lifted me up today when I needed them most and none of them realized they did.
that's what I call a friend
And I have the best ones they's gots.

only 365 days until I turn 18. Word


Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and sky

I thought about this the other day.
I moved to Provo UT, June 17th, 2006. (Don't ask me how I remember things like that)
It is now July 11th, 2011.
o. m.
So basically it's been 5 years since I moved. Crazy, aye?

I was the shyest 11 year old on the block. I was turning 12 and my best friend tried to help me meet people by going into soccer. Well that failed because I sucked at soccer and those girls were absolute jerks.
It's true what they say about middle school being the most awkward time in a person's life. Because that was me. Awkward beyond belief.

I went through 7th and 8th grade, hating every minute of it. Hating that I lived in Utah instead of Texas.
But I dealt with it. And eventually became a high school freshman.
and now a high school senior

I guess it takes 5 years to figure out what I want out of life.
It takes 5 years to make leaps and bounds to becoming closer to the person I want to be.
It takes that long to make drastic changes in your life and learn lessons because of it.

five years can make such a big difference.
in another five years, I could be married
It's been so long yet so short. 
But it's all been for the best and I wouldn't have it any other way

happy 5th anniversary
everybody wang chung tonight. 


God bless the freaking USA :)

I love America

yep. I am supes patriotic. Like, a lot.
I love red white and blue.
And I love this time of year.
Driving around seeing flags blowing in the wind in almost everyone's front yard is the greatest.
Everyone is proud of their country.
America is number one. No question.

Rock on America.


Cool story, Hansel

I would just like to announce to the whole world that I, Nicole Marie Hopkinson, am now taking clarinet lessons.


But it's like, the best thing that's ever happened to me. Like fo reals. I don't know why I didn't start sooner in life.
Pssssh. Screw private dance lessons. Who needs those?
I've learned so much already in two 30 minute lessons with Emileigh. And it pushes me to actually practice. Haha. Yeah, I practice now. And I like it. So eat it.

Today, for example, I came home from our last day of summer band (tear) and was supes excited to practice. That never happens. Emileigh had given me some stuff in the lesson that I pretty much sucked at and I was determined to make it better. And I did. Somewhat. I was angry this morning so I made a story like she told me to, and played with so much emotion I almost cried. It was a good way to relax and vent emotions to myself. Music is grand.

Being first chair scares me. But I think if I work hard in these lessons, I'll actually get something done and improve and be first chair worthy. Maybe. High notes, sight reading, scales, solos, all that jazz. Yeah I'm scared. But I can do it. If I just struggle with it like Steve Irwin used to wrestle with alligators, something good is bound to happen, right? But then Steve died. Maybe I'll die if I play too much. Hmmmm... oh well. Anyways, I'm excited for the challenges to come and to make mega improvements.

and now for your entertainment. Clarinet Boy:

Welcome to the Hotel California

It's times like this where I wish I could have a pensieve and siphon out all my thoughts for y'all. There's way to much swimming in my wittle head right now.

*Some times you just have horrible dates. And some times you just have horrible days. Some times, they occur on the same day.


*17th birthday in 17 days. For hollaz!

*Summer band is over. Sad day Jose.

*Boys are stupid. Throw rocks AND snowballs at them

*ugh. ugh.. ugh. ugh. ugh. the end

*What is the meaning of life?

*I really like cheese and friendship bracelets. Yes and Steph Tidwell a.k.a. my saving grace

*Why can't I have a freaking puppy??

*Lagoon and DCI come sooner. Then I get to escape stupid Provo and hang out with my besties.
All. Day. Long

*Would people who are going to Europe not rub it in my face? Thanks. I'll shut up about Pearl Harbor too if it helps.

*No I will not clean that room.

Life is just getting interesting. And I'm gearing up for more drama and action. It's pretty much like a movie right now.


Are you my mother?

"Are you the kind of mother that washes her kids mouths out with soap if they say a bad word?"
"No. I give them cookies."
"Is Andrew Jensen my father?"

This is reason number one of one bajillion why my "mother" is the coolest.


It's the final countdown

If you are anyone, then you know I am a ginormous Harry Potter fan.
but let's get the record straight, the books, not the movies. Talk to me later about the movies

Like, no joke. I freaking read the first book when I was 5. Sure I didn't entirely understand it and I thought Harry was to become a slave at a meat/pig factory called Hogwarts and Dumbledore and Hagrid were evil people who kidnapped Harry, but that's besides the point.  

I study HP
I worship HP
Like everyone else, I wish I wasn't a muggle and I was IN HP

So to celebrate, I have concocted a reading schedule to keep me on the straight and narrow path. If you would like to follow, be my guest.

1     Sorcerer's Stone                    by          June 21
2     Chamber of Secrets              by          June 24
3     Prisoner of Azkaban              by          June 27
4     Goblet of Fire                         by          July 1
5     Order of the Phoenix             by          July 4th 
6     Half-Blood Prince                  by          July 7th
7     Deathly Hallows                     by           the night of July 14th while sitting in line!

happy reading


Alaska, aye?

Guess who survived Trek?

Guess who made it to Zion in one piece?

Yeah thats me.

So basically trek was the greatest thing ever. It actually was a better spiritual experience than EFY ever was (I still love you LOTS EFY). Even though I loved doing it, I probably wouldn't do it again because I actually like taking showers every day and washing my hair and avoiding mosquitos and tents and all the stuff that comes with camping. So summary: it was great, but it's something I will do once.

My familia was so holy and numero uno:

Ma and Pa Hulley were so legit. Ma was pregnant. Like, fo reals pregnant. None of that fake baby stuff. So we took good care of her. Pa was from South Africa, so we soaked up every word he said because his accent was awesome. And he taught us how to throw knives at each others feet!
Parker was the funniest kid ever. We made up some awesome pioneer jokes together. Conversations with him were never dull. And he was always pushing the cart. He was awesome.
Kevin was the coolest kid ever. He has such a strong testimony that he always shared with others. And as our big/oldest brother, he was always taking care of us. He was always helping. Always.
Rhett. What do you say about him? He was always the wandering and lost child. But he was also super funny!
GABBY! Hehehe. She never complained. Even when we yelled choruses of her name. GABBY! But honestly, she was a great sister and never complained. And she was tough!
Lea's my favorite! Haha I don't play favorites, but if I did, she would win. She's the cutest little sister ever. And we had some good talks in the tent late and night. She's going to be one of the coolest freshmen ever. And even though she was small, man she hauled that cart!
And of course Danielle and Chase. But they're already like my family. We had some good times.

Some awesome things that happened:

  • We did the Sweetwater River "crossing" which consisted of walking alongside the ankle high part of the river instead of crossing it.
  • Then the next day, we expected no river crossings. Instead we got 30 degree weather, wind, mud, cold, and 10 waist deep river crossings!
  • The women's pull. Wow. It was great. The men respected us women and might I say Dani and I hauled that cart up that hill like there was no tomorrow!
  • Square dancing. Chase and I owned square dancing!
  • Martin's Cove was such a great spiritual experience.
  • I washed myself in the river. And my dress. And my hair. I told you I only do things if pioneers did them.
That's about all I can remember. But all in all it was a great four days. I've never felt the spirit that much in life as I did up in stupid Wyoming. It was great :)