Sunday, November 9, 2008

Free Fallin'....

Time for the monthly report. I can't believe it is already November. That means Thanksgiving is coming soon! But that also means my 15 page midterm paper for my anthropological theory is coming due the day I leave. Eek! Gotta get it done.

One of the life decisions I've been trying to make is where to go and what to study for my field project for my major. We have to do a project where we go out and do real, empirical anthropological research on a topic of our choice. I'm on track to do it next summer and then the next school year is spent writing my thesis and finishing up all my remaining classes. I was presented with an opportunity to possibly go to India on this really awesome program that my advisor is currently trying to get approved, but it never felt right and didn't really fit into my academic plan well because it would take up my fall semester and it would just complicate my life all the more. So, I kept looking around for ideas and I told my mom to think of something for me. Last week she called and she and my dad found me a project! The plan is to go live with my grandma in Orderville, Utah, and study her community. Orderville was one of the places the United Order was practiced and was quite successful. I'm interested in studying how living the United Order way back when still affects the social dynamics of the community today. This project fits my timeline, is NOT oversees (which my parents appreciate), I can live with my grandma, she knows everybody, I'm related to half of them, and it just feels good. I thought my advisor would be disappointed about me not going to India, but it turns out that the United Order is one of his areas of research interest that he has had for a long time and he wants to collaborate. He's also teaching a class next semester on intentional communities in America and one of the units is on the Order! I'm going to take it in preparation for my project. Everything is working out just right.

BYU football won again yesterday against SDSU and our defense was back! It went missing the last month and a half. Maybe SDSU was just not very good, or we were doing something different, but either way we were looking a lot better comparitively and I hope the upward trend continues. We need all the help we can get against Utah this year. Basketball season opens this week and the first tipoff is Friday night. I missed basketball season last year because I was in Israel, so I'm very excited for it this year!

Halloween was fun. I was inspired by Michael Jackson's Thriller and dressed up as a zombie. I've never dressed up as anything scary before so it was really liberating. I brushed and ratted out my hair into a fro, had scary makeup, and had so much fun! I freaked a lot of people out. I'll put up some pictures. I also watched a scary movie that night and survived. I'm not a scary-movie watcher, but I sat next to a girl who had seen the movie before and she'd warn me of all the scariest parts so we could hide our faces. I got though it with flying colors.

The happiest parts of my fall are when I get to meet up with friends that I haven't seen in a long time. The Jerusalem and Nauvoo reunions continue all the time. Last night we had a big Nauvoo reunion that we've planned for a month. We probably had at least 40 or more students come over the course of the evening. Many brought husbands or significant others. Some kids came down from Idaho, Logan, and Salt Lake City, and even Arizona. It was so fun because all the boys but one are home from their missions so I saw many of them for the first time in almost three years. One kid got home the night before the reunion! My semester in Nauvoo was such a formitive part of my life. Whenever I see people connected with the experience it's like seeing long lost relatives again, and it makes me happy faster than almost anything can.
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