Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault & Its Campaigns to Prevent Sexual Violence

The statistics of sexual assault are alarming and terrifying.

The real, personal stories of victims of sexual assault is even more alarming and terrifying.

Thank you for creating a task force specifically to protect students from sexual assault.

Thank you for doing something to the show the country that this is an important matter.
Thank you for doing something that educates the public and helps heal the ever-present rape culture.
Thank you for standing up for what is right.

ER Stories 8: Burnt Skin

[Entry from my journal on Wednesday, February 6, 2013]
[Only the first picture is mine. All other pictures included in this post are ones I found on the internet from patients with similar cases.]

Patronato was really busy in the morning. I did a lot! Lots of patients, a few shots and a really interesting emergency:

Denise (coworker) and Chanmi (Global Citizen Year 2014) in the office/waiting room of Patronato

Denise and I exchanged a funny look when we heard odd squealing from outside. We thought it may have been an injured dog. A few seconds later, a very frantic set of parents rushed into the clinic, carrying the source of the squealing -- a little boy.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

a little lesson in flexibility (MTC AND mission date change)

Original Call:

California Los Angeles
Spanish speaking
Mexico MTC for six weeks
July 23rd

Modified Call:

California Los Angeles
Spanish speaking
Provo MTC for two weeks
July 9th

[which means I will arrive in Los Angeles on the date I would have originally left for the Missionary Training Center]

Errmm.. That's my senior photo & it's a tad bit outdated. Oops.

71 days.

Monday, April 28, 2014

gwen stefani 2004 love

I have four aunts and they are the coolest.

One of my favorite random memories with my aunt Libby is driving around Salt Lake City singing along to Gwen Stefani's "Love, Angel, Music, Baby" album fully blasted. I remember thinking that when was I was a grown up, I would get that CD so I could be as cool as Libby.

Sadly, I am all grown up(ish) and I do not own that CD, 

but I can still sing along to the album!

Saturday, April 26, 2014

fashion blogging is hard.

I love fashion and I love fashion blogs.

So why not try my hand at my own fashion blog post?


I had no idea how hard it was.


Really my modeling skills are inspirational.


Friday, April 25, 2014

a story by sydni, hardcopy edition (journaling)

Today I finished my tenth journal.

Writing is my favorite.

I started journaling in 2009 and fell in love with it.

My favorite thing about it is being able to look back and remember little pieces of my life, 

like when I first decided to get my CNA ,

souvenirs from sweet kids,

Onto the Next Adventure: Journal Number Eleven.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

flipside // disappointed stateside missionary.

to be clear,,

I am SO EXCITED to serve my mission in Los Angeles.

I know Heavenly Father knows me, because I am going there.

I don't want to go anywhere else.

I'm glad He picked my mission and not me.

I did make the mistake of having expectations about my mission, and, as usually happens when one has expectations, they were not met in the way I anticipated. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

stateside missionary disappointment.

Once upon a time, I had a tiny fear of being called to serve my mission "stateside".

And then I was called stateside!

And it was actually okay. The more I learned about my mission, the more excited I became.

Most people are wonderful and SO EXCITED for me!

But sometimes people say dumb things like 

"Well that's disappointing.."
"I would've thought you'd go somewhere like blank or blank." 
[insert generic 'it'll be okay'/giving-condolences type statement]

Once one of my friends told me she theorized only weird sisters serve stateside. (Ouch, right!) (And very wrong, to be clear.)

Sometimes I get pouty and feel sad I am going to the at-one-time-dreaded stateside mission. 

And then I feel guilty and wonder if I'm a bad person because I feel that way. 

I kind of feel exactly like this...

 It's okay to feel disappointed. 

It's okay to cry.

It's okay to pray to Heavenly Father and tell Him exactly how you feel.

Just remember, though, that there's a much bigger picture to your mission than the state and city you read in your letter. Also remember that someday you will feel foolish for crying over it.

But we all need a good pity party sometimes.

Jacob 4:8 Behold, great and marvelous are the works of the Lord. How unsearchable are the depths of the mysteries of him; and it is impossible that man should find out all his ways. And no man knoweth of his ways save it be revealed unto him; wherefore, brethren, despise not the revelations of God.

Helaman 5:47 Peace, peace be unto you, because of your faith in My Beloved, who was from the foundation of the world.

  1. 1. It may not be on the mountain height
    Or over the stormy sea,
    It may not be at the battle's front
    My Lord will have need of me.
    But if, by a still, small voice he calls
    To paths that I do not know,
    I'll answer, dear Lord, with my hand in thine:
    I'll go where you want me to go.
  2. (Chorus)
    I'll go where you want me to go, dear Lord,
    Over mountain or plain or sea;
    I'll say what you want me to say, dear Lord;
    I'll be what you want me to be.



ER Stories 7: My ER Story [STAPLES]

Over the summer of 2013, my family was moving homes. My boyfriend-at-the-time and I were dismantling a bunk-bed to fit into our moving van.

We lifted.

He got distracted.

He stopped lifting.

Heavy wooden bunk-bed fell on my head.

It didn't hurt that much ,

but it was bleeding quite a bit.

The ER visit was quite unimpressive.

I got four staples in my head.

The doctor explained that the needle from putting anesthesia on my head would hurt just as much as the staples, so we wouldn't mess with that. "This will hurt a lot," he said.

It hurt a lot.

Cute, huh?

ER Stories 6: Before and After - Amputated Toe
Next Wednesday, April 30th:ER Stories 8: Burnt Skin

More ER Stories

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

ER Stories 6: Before and After - Amputated Toe

Another ER Story from Ecuador:

Short Background Story to these photos: On my first week working in the clinic, I met a woman who recently had a good section of her middle toe/foot removed as an eventual result to her diabetes. I cleaned her foot every day and after a few months her wounds heal. 

I am humbled to see the drastic before and after. Our bodies are miraculous.


Saturday, April 12, 2014

Ecuador Archives: An Armed Robbery Story.

Quito is dangerous.

Quito is really dangerous.

I knew that.

In fact, that very week the entire Ecuador cohort and I had received safety training from the US Embassy.

It was dark, but not late at night. Maybe 8 pm or 9? My host mom is a nurse and she was giving a patient their medication. My sister was rummaging through bags of the new school supplies; my host dad had just picked us up from the mall. He was sitting in the driver's seat. My mom's seat was empty. My host sister was to my left.

We weren't sitting there for more than five minutes.


A man wearing all black and a mask appears at my dad's car door. He is holding a gun.

It all happens very fast after that.

Man holding gun aims at Dad. I can't speak Spanish well yet, but I know he has just told him to unlock the doors.

The doors are unlocked.

Man One stays in place with gun pointed at Dad.

Second Man sits in passenger seat next to Dad. He is shaking Dad down. He is demanding Dad's wallet, which Dad willingly hands over. He is rummaging through the glove compartment. 

Dad is always so calm, but right now his eyes are bug eyed and his hands are up on the air in surrender. He keeps saying the same words over and over again. I don't understand them, but I am sure he is telling them to take whatever they want and not to hurt us.

Man Three opens the door on my side and forces his way in. He scoots me to the middle to make room for himself. This man is holding a long screw driver. He points it at me while he yells instructions. Or maybe he isn't yelling. I cannot tell you. All I hear is words I don't understand. Dad's eyes are so big.

I am squished between Sister and Man Three.

He is wearing a mask so I cannot see his face. Maybe I could see his eyes, but I don't dare look. I only notice he, too, is wearing all black.

Man Three looks through my sister's shopping bags. He asks her what is in them. Sister is frantic, in tears, screaming. She yells that it is only notebooks and school supplies. I understand those Spanish words. She is not lying to him. Man Three looks through the bags anyway. 

Sister is scream-crying. I am afraid, but I do not scream. I only sit, stunned.

Man Three is patting us down. First Sister and then me. He keeps saying words to me. I do not understand them. I say "¡No hablo inglés!" because it's the first words I think of. I just told him "I don't speak English!" I think he gets the point, though.

I wonder if we may be abducted or killed. I have an odd thought that this scenario would make a good opening scene for a Criminal Minds episode.

I reach to hold Sister's hand.

Man Three is patting me down again. He pats every part of me, including pulling my dress up in search of anything I may be hiding.

My Ecuadorian ID, my banco de barrio card and my cell phone are all in my bra (a trick I had learned from the US Embassy earlier in the week). I should have willingly given them up, but I am not thinking logically. I am only praying he doesn't find them. I don't know if he will be angry if he finds something I intentionally hid from him.

He doesn't find anything.

I am so grateful he doesn't find anything.


It is over as quickly as it began. The entire scene played out in under ten minutes. I imagine the longer it takes them, the more risk they have of getting caught.


Man One continues to hold the gun to Dad's face while Man Two the Wallet Thief, Man Three the Screw-Driver Assailant and Man Four the Trunk Rummager flee to their car.

Man One waits until they are a safe distance and then runs after them.

I sit still a moment. The fear is really setting in. I think they have left, but I don't feel safe. Are they really gone? What if they come back?

I turn around. They speed off but not before I look The Four Men Dressed in Black right in the eyes. 

My heart is beating fast, or it has stopped beating altogether. I'm not sure which. 

Sister is still crying loudly. I am still holding her hand. I don't want to let go. I lock my door. I don't know what else to do. What if they come back?

Dad keeps asking me if I'm okay. "Estoy bien. Estoy bien," I insist. I am fine. I am shaken but I am just fine.

They're gone, I think.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Ecuador Archives: Carnaval Part 2 THE FOOD

I know what you're thinking: Wow, that intestine soup looks DELICIOUS. How do you think I could make myself some of that?

Now I would never give away my family's cooking secrets, but I do have some behind-the-scenes footage of the making of this tradition Carnaval dish:

¡Buen provecho!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Ecuador Archives: Carnaval 2013 Part 1

Carnaval 2014 happened in early March, so I'm a little late for the year mark. It's a good thing this is my blog and I can do whatever I want.

Carnaval in Puerto Quito is an excuse to throw paint and water at everyone you love and everyone you secretly hate.

You make some enemies. I made the mistake of throwing paint at a little kid with a squirt gun. He followed me around with his squirt gun and then a hose for an hour. I thoroughly regret making that enemy.

Betty & myself before :

Alright, Betty.. white shirts? We deserve every ounce of paint thrown at us; we were asking for it.

Betty & myself after :

(Feel like you're playing "Where's Waldo"? I made it easier for you....)

¡Feliz Carnavales, Puerto Quito! Te extraño.

we could all use a little more ryan gosling in our lives.

Or is that just me?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

ER Stories 5: Dislocated Hip

Note: These posts are intentionally vague (with no names, ages, or dates) so as to protect patient confidentiality. These stories are random and their publication dates have no correlation to the dates they occurred.

My first dislocated hip.

Very cool older woman with a great sense of humor.

Two nurses, me (ER Tech) and the doctor.

The doctor administers sedative, making the patient sleepy.

(We know she is out of it when she says "Doctor... I amm soo glwaoudd yoaahuu........ greaaaaadfdfa .. peeeee... ajlwoudlfajadfljad....")

One nurse charts.

Second nurse holds patient's hips.

 I help hold the rest of the patient.

Doctor props his knee up onto the bed and proceeds manipulating the leg. The goal is to put the bone back into its socket (called reduction).


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