Monday, November 30, 2009

the smell of clean sheets is one more reason why life is beautiful

"Go confidently in the direction of your dreams!
Live the life you've imagined."
-Henry David Thoreau

Proactivity (is apparently not a word based on the red line currently under it, but I'm going to use it anyway) is my new theme in life. My application for the French internship is in, including my letters of recommendation (many thanks to Julie and Stephanie for doing that for me!), my request for post tour travel is all filled out and just needs to be turned in, I have an updated resume, I have clean clothes (haha, this is a big deal for me, laundry is not my friend), invitations for Shannon's bridal shower will be done by tonight, my undergraduate research proposal is complete, I found where the two broken wires on the thermometer in the calorimeter need to go. Oh! And I'm giving a talk in church in January because I pretty much volunteered for it.

Dear World,
I am back.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

What better way to spend a Saturday afternoon?

Alfred Pennyworth: A long time ago, I was in Burma, my friends and I were working for the local government. They were trying to buy the loyalty of tribal leaders by bribing them with precious stones. But their caravans were being raided in a forest north of Rangoon by a bandit. So we went looking for the stones. But in six months, we never found anyone who traded with him. One day I saw a child playing with a ruby the size of a tangerine. The bandit had been throwing them away.
Bruce Wayne: Then why steal them?
Alfred Pennyworth: Because he thought it was good sport. Because some men aren't looking for anything logical, like money. They can't be bought, bullied, reasoned or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn.

Lt. James Gordon: Because he's the hero Gotham deserves, but not the one it needs right now. So we'll hunt him because he can take it. Because he's not our hero. He's a silent guardian, a watchful protector. A dark knight.

Bruce Wayne: People are dying, Alfred. What would you have me do?
Alfred Pennyworth: Endure, Master Wayne. Take it. They'll hate you for it, but that's the point of Batman, he can be the outcast. He can make the choice that no one else can make, the right choice.

Batman: What happened to Rachel wasn't chance. We decided to act! We three!
Two-Face: Then why was it me who was the only one who lost everything?
Batman: It wasn't.
Two-Face: The Joker chose ME!
Batman: Because you were the best of us! He wanted to prove that even someone as good as you could fall.
Two-Face: [bitter] And he was right.

Batman: You either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain. I can do those things because I'm not a hero, like Dent. I killed those people. That's what I can be
Lt. James Gordon: No, you can't! You're not!
Batman: I'm whatever Gotham needs me to be.

Alfred Pennyworth: You spat in the faces of Gotham's worse criminals. Did you not expect casualties? Things were always going to get worse before they got better.

Harvey Dent: The night is darkest just before the dawn. And I promise you, the dawn is coming.

I love this movie because its theme of this movie of putting what is best for others above what is best for yourself is so powerful. I love how it portrays human nature as intrinsically good instead of intrinsically selfish and evil as the Joker would have us believe. The symbolism of light vs. dark, Two Face/Harvey Dent, the juxtaposition of Batman's work in secrecy and darkness vs. Harvey's use of the law, Harvey's deterioration from symbol of hope to agent of chaos and terror is all so awesome.
And you know, it's always a plus that Heath Ledger plays the most horrifying villain of any superhero movie and Christian Bale is incredibly attractive...

Friday, November 27, 2009

colors of the wind

This is a day late, but I am thankful for:

The Gospel.
Where would I be if I didn't understand who I was, where I came from, the purpose of life, what happens after I die, and how to achieve happiness? How grateful I am to know these things! How grateful I am to a God in heaven who knows me as an individual, is concerned about my well-being, answers my prayers, and blesses me with all the other things for which I am thankful. I am so grateful for Jesus Christ and for His atoning sacrifice, for the fact that I can be forgiven of my sins and return to live with God again.

My Family.
Yesterday all of my mom's side of the family got together at my grandparents' house for dinner and games. We went around and each said three things we were thankful for. I was having a hard time keeping back tears, because I love these people so much. They have been such a tremendous support and example to me in my life. I can't even begin to express how much my parents have done for me, and how grateful I am to them for the way they've raised me.

I feel so blessed to be attending an excellent university and to be studying the subjects that I love. I am so blessed to have so many opportunities! I get to work in a research lab, I get to learn about quantum mechanics and French literature, I get to learn everything from how to problem solve effectively to how to dance the samba properly. It just blows my mind by how much knowledge there is out there to be gained, and how readily available it is to me.

I could not ask for better people to associate with. I look at the people my friends have become and what they are doing with their lives, and I am just amazed. I know that you will all go on to do great things with your lives, and I feel so privileged to have been a part of that. Thank you all for your encouragement, your advice, your willingness to do crazy things with me, and everything else. You are amazing people.

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!
What are you thankful for?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I have had it up to here with solenoids and current direction

Dear Physics,

We only have 24 days left together. Please do not make it any more torturous than is necessary, and perhaps I will look back on our shared experience with the fondness gained by many years of separation.



Katya, the chemist

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

On this joyous note I begin my Thanksgiving Break:

Guess who had the best correlation on her ECCE models of half a dozen hydrocarbons?


Give ECCE some love, and it will love you right back.

It's been a while since I've had anything to brag about concerning chemistry. Please forgive my enthusiasm and excess number of posts mentioning ECCE...

Monday, November 23, 2009

currently less than threeing*:

a. Candles. Not sure why, but it gives me much joy to light the little candle I bought at Smiths when I get home.
b. "Doogie Howser", the ever-so ridiculous early 90's tv show about the sixteen year old doctor. Starring Dr. Horrible, aka Neil Patrick Harris. I'm sort of in love with him. Too bad he doesn't like girls.
c. ECCE, the amazing molecular modeling software. See last post.
d. Curry. My roommates and I made some last night, and then I got to have the leftovers for lunch today. Delish!

What are your current obsessions?

*Laura asked me what this meant, and it occurred to me that probably no one but me knows...people type things like i <3 you because "<3" looks like a heart on its side, and if you say what those symbols are it's "less than three". Therefore (I feel like I'm making a mathematical proof), "currently less than threeing" is the equivalent of "currently loving".
Whew. That was a long explanation.

I am waiting for a calculation to go through on the computer so...

I thought I'd blog!

I have several nerdy thoughts for you:

1. For Christmas I would really like a periodic table poster, one that is simple, black and white, and big. I am not having much luck finding one however...any ideas?

2. I wish I had ECCE on my laptop so I can build molecules and calculate a ton of different things. Such a cool program. Unfortunately, I don't think my little dell has the capacity to make all of those calculations. Sad.

Thanksgiving Break, please come soon.
That's all.

Monday, November 16, 2009

have a little faith

"It's not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man actually in the arena, whose face is marred with dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes short again and again, who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worth cause, who at best knows achievement, and who at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly so that his place will never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat."

-Theodore Roosevelt

via a card from Laura. What a perfect quote! Thank you!

I am feeling much better mostly for two reasons:

1. Because of a tremendous outpouring of love and support from my mom, roommates, teammates, friends, and coaches. Thank you all for your words of encouragement. I really, really appreciate it.

2. During my mad scramble this morning to see if there was any possible way I could still apply for an internship I discovered that the deadline was extended to December 1st. Miracle of miracles, I still have the chance to at least be considered for this amazing opportunity!

More than anything, I guess this weekend has been a testament to me that I don't need to freak out. Things will be okay, and whether the definition of okay matches with mine or not is not important. This time it did (minus the fact that there was no way to go back and redance the competition), but it won't always in the future. And I have to accept that. Heavenly Father has a plan for me, like he does for each of you, and if I'm doing what I can to live the Gospel, I need never worry about what events or circumstances I have to experience.

That being said, this girl is not going down without a fight.
Bring it on, finals week, scary social situations, and the next round of ballroom competitions (ah?). I'm not dying with the song still in me.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

knock on wood.

And then when I thought I was okay, I realized I missed the French internship application deadline by 52 minutes.

Congratulations November 14, 2009. You are my worst Saturday ever.

I lost the invincible summer somewhere in the last few hours.

I do not know what to think, I don't know what to do, I don't know how to act.
I don't believe that I've ever driven away sobbing from a competition. I am so tempted to cut my losses right now, walk away and be done forever. I have wasted so much time, so much of my parents' money, so much effort, and for what? To not make it past the quarterfinal in a single event while I watch all of my teammates dance the final?

No thanks.

Maybe it is time to be a chemist.

Because then I can get out of it exactly what I put in. The right answer is the right answer. I either know it or I don't. I don't have to worry about someone else's opinion. I don't have to worry if my hair, makeup, fake tan, costuming, etc etc etc are good enough. I don't have to watch myself crash and burn. I don't have to come up with some euphemism as an answer when people ask me how it went. (real answer: Basically it was the worst competition I've ever had and oh, I don't think I want to continue competing. fake answer: It just wasn't my best.) How embarrassing is it to walk around with the evidence of being a ballroom dancer, the nails, the fake tan, and have nothing to show for it? I can explain away one bad event, I can explain away two, but all three? How many flukes do I get?

I left the competition with the dance still in me. I wasn't even tired, except emotionally from crying. I think that was the saddest part.

Is this a message? Am I supposed to be done, stop taking lessons, sell my dresses and never look back?

Sounds like a pretty good option right now.
Peace out ballroom. I dislike you too.

Friday, November 13, 2009


"In the depth of winter I finally learned that within me lay an invincible summer."

-Albert Camus

Thursday, November 12, 2009


just might get you lost
And she just might leave you torn
But she just might save your soul
If she gets you any closer.

Why did your concert have to get canceled Dashboard? :(

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

the ink in my veins keeps scribbling the same song

I wish I could put into words whatever it is I'm thinking. Some frustration, sadness, nostalgic, tired (as usual), sentimental...I don't know. More of the same as previous posts I guess.

Sum total: I wish I could fall asleep while watching "Pride and Prejudice" on my stadium seating we threw together for tonight's Fall of the Berlin Wall party instead of frantically reading a French book and writing a paper on it.

Too much partying the past semester, I think.

Monday, November 9, 2009

it has commenced...

ballroom season.

the ridiculously long fake nails are on. the two cans of $7 aura hairspray have been bought. the spray tanning sessions are planned. the rush to alter costumes is just now making me anxious.

Friday and Saturday, it is on.

Bring it.

Friday, November 6, 2009

deux petites lettres pour votre plaisir

Dear Family,

Thanks much for the Rock Band. I greatly enjoyed playing every evening for significantly longer than I had planned. :) My apologies to my roommates for the noise...


Your somewhat lost, currently academically challenged Katie

Dear Everyone Else (particularly guys),

What do you think of girls asking guys out?
Just curious.


Katie la courageuse