Here is a picture of my screen! Check out the reflection of the icons in the dock!




Sweet! Welcome to my new blog. This will be kind of fun. I'll be posting pictures and (perhaps) video and I'll talk about stuff. Woot.
Here are some pictures taken out in the Woodscross area at a small airport!


About Me

On a cold morning in November of 1987, an attorney woke up around 6 AM to get ahead start on some work for her client. This attorney is my mother. About an hour later, she started having contractions. I was born at 9 AM (please let quick labor be genetic!) and given the gorgeous name of "Natalie". Christmas Day. Birth.

I think about birth a lot. The birth of children, of course, but also the birth of ideas, big and small. The births of extraordinary people and thoughts that change the tides of humanity but also those of people and thoughts that only add to the current. Perhaps this metaphor is lacking but I like to think of humans as being drops of water in a giant lake. We all make a ripple and I hope to create a big one.

I am a graduate student in developmental science. I study ethnicity, romantic relationships and dating during adolescence (hands down the most fascinating developmental period). I'm interested in the mental health outcomes of these relationships (e.g., depression, anxiety, self-worth) as well as general long-term outcomes (e.g., long-term mental health, dating patterns in adulthood, marriage). Did that sentence put you to sleep? I hope not. Most of the literature of adolescent romantic relationships focuses on the negative (e.g., teens who date are more likely to abuse alcohol and drugs, have depression, etc) but my thesis focuses on one positive outcome of dating or involvement in a romantic relationship! Body satisfaction. Anyway, I am fascinated by relationships in general and how members of a dyad influence one another, for better or worse.

Besides academics, I'm a Catholic, fiancée, sister, daughter, and friend. More or less in that order. I converted to Catholicism on April 19, 2014 after years of discernment and education. It has been simply the most incredible experience in my life. My fiancé is a civil engineer and jokester. He always has a trick up his sleeve to keep things interesting and the best arms with which I love to be surrounded. My older sister, Emily, is an attorney and ballerina. She is the most incredible dancer I've ever seen -- so much passion! My brother is a zinester/writer and produces a lot of bizarre work. He also has a crazy amount of pop culture knowledge. Honestly, 75% of the time I haven't a clue what he's talking about. My younger sister is a history buff and kick ass tennis player. She has got more drive than anyone ought to have. She's the type of person that's going to change the world. I also have a pet rabbit named Ben Rumson. He has more character than most humans. All of my family lives in Utah, save my dad in Washington, and myself, my love, and my soon-to-be-in-laws in California.

California. California. How do I describe my love for this place? When I was little and not-so-little, my family would visit California on vacation. We'd mostly kick back in Anaheim or San Francisco. I have always been in love with California. The humidity is just perfect, palm trees are magical in their own way, and everything about Californians seemed perfect. Even the way they drove seemed so modern, so free (of course, that's all in my head). So, when I went to apply to graduate schools I only applied west of Utah... only to California schools. I figured, even if I hated the program, I'd love where I lived. I ended up in Davis, a quaint, tiny, college-ag town. For now, it is perfection. I love being so near wine country and my favorite city, San Francisco, where I can hop on a train at whim and be in the bay area in an hour. Now I live in the suburbs of Sacramento, in a beautiful home with my fiancé. We go on so many adventures in and outside of California. We will be getting married next August at the Carmel Mission Basilica.

I have this blog for a couple of reasons: One, it's my journal. I used to have a private, paper and pen journal but I found that I hated everything I wrote and that it wasn't even accurate to my day-to-day experience. When I blog, I try to stay positive. If I can't stay positive, I at least don't focus on the negative. Happiness is a positive feedback mechanism. Two, I like sharing my experiences and thoughts. I like sharing them because I like reading about others', and I hope others enjoy reading about mine.

So that about covers it.