Saturday, November 28, 2009


My favorite "tweet" on Twitter regarding the game:

Deseret News Sunday headline:

Thousands of loyal Cougar

fans cleaning up

after the pants-crapping

of the century.

Play of the night: Andrew George... touchdown! Go COUGS! Awesome way to end my last year at BYU. So proud of my university. The U played an awesome game - they were competition and they kept it tight... BYU had some good strategy and we WON! SWEET VICTORY!

Cougar fans storming the field after the final touchdown:

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Picture to Portrait designs

I had fun this morning creating a few designs for Picture to Portrait's blog... she (Arian, the writer/artist for P2P) wanted a new look.

This is what I came up with:

 I like this one... but...

this one won... I love how this turned out.

I am still working on creating some buttons and working out a few kinks with the blog and website... but I think it looks pretty good. I am excited for her! She has some awesome opportunities coming up to advertise with some well-known blogs.

I just have to say... this is TOTALLY what I want to be doing. I want to be a PR person for all those Mommy-preneurs out there. They have such amazing ideas... I want to help them. That is what I tell people when they ask what I ultimately want to do with my degree. I want to help those Mommy-preneurs get their ideas out there... while they, and I, are being mothers.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

What are YOU thankful for?

This video is absolutely phenomenal.
I didn't stop smiling through it. These are regular people in New York City. Everyone is grateful for something - even if it is something you are thankful for when it doesn't happen.

What are YOU thankful for?

Pandora limit?

Who knew you could reach a limit of listening time on Pandora? I didn't. But apparently you have 40 hours of free listening per month and I am almost to my limit.

Here are my options from Pandora:

1. Pay 99 cents.

2. Pay $36 to upgrade to Pandora One for unlimited monthly listening.

3. Pay Nothing. If neither of the above options is right for you, simply come back in December to start listening to your stations again.

The Pandora Team

Pssh. I love you Pandora, but I think I can come back at the beginning of the month and keep listening.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Saturday, November 21, 2009

KiK Worldwide - Which design is your favorite?

I'm doing some volunteer PR work for a charity called KiK Worldwide. We are planning an upcoming event. The following is the info for the event. I've been working on different designs all day. Which top two do you like?

Side note: if you are interested in participating, everyone is welcome. Register here.

Number 1

Number 2

Number 3

 Number 4

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Billy Joel and Elton John :(

Billy Joel still has swine flu... postponing his concert in Salt Lake!

Tip Junkie gives free painting

Tip Junkie is an awesome website that is doing the 12 Days of Christmas gifts... free giveaways!

Our favorite Picture to Portrait is being featured as day # 9! Check it out.

Daydreaming of Italy

This past summer marked four years since I spent time studying art in Italy. I was thinking about it today and so wishing I was there right now. What an amazing experience that was. I fished through my photographs and thought I would post a few of my favorites. One of them is displayed below, in a previous post, along with a beautiful portrait, courtesy of Picture to Portrait.

Enjoy a taste of Italy!

Our gondola ride in Venice... our gondolier's name was Bond... James Bond.

The Colosseum... notice all the pock marks? That was from the builders of all of the cathedrals in Rome coming and taking the white marble from the Colosseum... the pock marks mark the nails where the marble use to be intact. I had no idea the Colosseum used to be covered in white marble.

Gorgeous views in Venice. I could take pictures all day long there. Everywhere you look it is a picture for a calendar or National Geographic.

Fountains at St. Peter's Square in Vatican City... so beautiful. The water is drinkable because it comes right from the aquaducts.

Another gorgeous gondola shot.

The fruit stands in Italy were unlike anything I have ever seen. GORGEOUS!

I caught this picture at dusk one night as we were heading out to dinner. Just an old woman looking out her window. Totally poetic. I love the colors of this building.

Columns in St. Peter's Square.

Vatican City at dusk... with small gipsy boats down below. I love this bridge.

Looking up the winding spiral stair case in the Vatican Museum. Such an amazing place. I cried at one point.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Give him a cape... cause he's all over the place!

Last night, I attended the BYU Basketball game against Idaho State, care of The Daily Universe. (Thanks DU!) We had front row tickets (I ended up getting 10 tickets and brought along 10 friends) and screamed our lungs out.

I was surprised at the "enthusiasm" with which some of the guys behind me were responding to the game. Wow! I forgot how lively a game can become.

As I was flinching, trying to protect my eardrums, I mentally made notes of some of the things these guys were saying cause I wanted to include them in this post.

"HEY REF! YOUR SHOES ARE REALLY SHINY!" (They really did look like tuxedo shoes.)

"HOW LONG DID THE DOCTOR TELL YOU TO WEAR THOSE SHOES REF?!" (To a ref sporting some nice, black, grandpa shoes.)

Referring to Jackson Emery playing the court really well: "GIVE HIM A CAPE... CAUSE HE'S ALL OVER THE PLACE!"

Directed to the Idaho State Coach: "HEY COACH! PUT YOUR GOOD PLAYERS IN!" Ouch.

Cosmo was definitely getting into the game. He also came and paid our row a visit... and gave me an apple.

We made it home and my roommates informed me that they had seen our row on the sports report on TV that night.

I also went to bed with a sore throat from screaming... definitely worth it.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Pure talent

Arian Hatch has the most amazing company. It is called Picture to Portrait. She takes your photographs and turns them into portraits. I sent her one of the photos I took when I was in Italy and look at how amazing it is:

Before (as the photograph)

And after... as the portrait.


Isn't that amazing? She definitely knows what she is doing. Check out her website for more examples of what she has done. Picture to Portrait

Monday, November 16, 2009

The "quote" vs. "quotation" war

Vocabulary correction for the day:

Word: quote

Verb or noun?

ex: "Who are you quoting?" "May I quote you?" "The author quotes him in his book."

Word: quotation

Verb or noun?

"His speech was full of quotations from President Lincoln." "The quotations she shared were very uplifting."

Friday, November 13, 2009



I just found out that I got the internship for which I interviewed a couple weeks ago. I will be spending April to August in LA working for a public relations firm called Porter Novelli. I'm so amazingly excited. It feels so good and right!

A testimony

My name is Ashley Elizabeth Jones, I am 23 years old and I believe in God.

He gives me purpose. I understand why I am here on this earth and toward what I am working and focusing my efforts.

I believe in one God, not "a" God. He is all powerful and knows everything and yet is loving enough to care about what matters most to me: ie: where I should move after graduation, into which type of career I should settle, whom I should marry, my relationship with my parents, the list goes on. He cares and He knows. For me, understanding that someone so powerful knows me personally, is a great strength. God, knows who I am. He loves me. I know that is true.

There is a very important part of the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. His name is Joseph Smith. His experience in the woods one morning was one that changed my view of my relationship with God. It proved to me that God knows me. "When the light rested upon me I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other—This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him!" (Joseph Smith-History 1:17) Joseph Smith saw God the Father and Jesus Christ. How did these two Personages address Joseph? They called him by name. They knew his name. I know They know mine and yours.

Life is hard. We all know and have experienced this. But, there is a secret help to receiving comfort during those hard times. It is the peace and comfort that Jesus Christ can bring to us. One of my favorite scriptures is from part of book we call "Doctrine and Covenants." It is modern revelation that Joseph Smith, as a prophet in the 1830's, received from Jesus Christ. The following gives me so much comfort during hard times:

"Ye cannot behold with your natural eyes, for the present time, the design of your God concerning those things which shall come hereafter, and the glory which shall follow after much tribulation. For after much tribulation come the blessings. Wherefore the day cometh that ye shall be crowned with much glory; the hour is not yet, but is nigh at hand." (Doctrine and Covenants 58: 3-4)

I absolutely know this is true. I am grateful for it. I know God lives. I know Jesus Christ lives. They love us so much. This brings me peace and true happiness in my life.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Photographer of choice

One of my favorites - also the featured photographer for my blog header background.

Rodney Smith

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The cheese is alive...

According to French intellectual and internationally known expert in Archetype Discoveries and Creativity, Dr. G. Clotaire Rapaille, cheese is alive... but only in Europe.

In America... it is dead. We keep it in plastic bags: also known as "body bags." Then we put in the fridge: also known as the "morgue."

"You wouldn't put cheese in a refrigerator because you wouldn't put a cat in a refrigerator."

What makes Thanksgiving: the Turkey or the sides?

So... it's the question of the season: what makes Thanksgiving for you? The delectable, luscious, salty turkey? Or candied yams with caramel sauce and red potatoes drenched in butter and thyme? Yes, my friends, that is the question.

You may have never asked yourself this question. But, it is a logical question. What makes Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving? Some may dress up in pilgrim and Indian costumes... some may go out to dinner for Thanksgiving to avoid the mess of post-eating clean up. Some have the traditional dinner and watch football the rest of the day... mingled with games and maybe a movie. But, the highlight of all of these situations is one thing: food. Am I right, or am I right?

Personally, my allegiance lies with our "five-fingered-friend." (If you don't know what I'm talking about, go back to 2nd grade, place your hand on a piece of paper and trace your hand... then put a head on your thumb... add a beak... then color your fingers in red, yellow and orange. Voila. You have a five-fingered-friend: a turkey.) I believe from a good turkey all Thanksgiving flows. Norman Rockwell didn’t spend all that time painting pans of sweet potatoes and cranberry sauce, did he? No. He painted turkeys.

Personally, I have never cooked a turkey. I hear there is an art to it... and a million different ways to paint that canvas. I think I will wait til I am married to tackle that bear. (Let's see how many analogies I can fit into a paragraph. PS: who tackles bears? Ash, where do you get this stuff?)

Until then, I will enjoy watching my mother stuff a turkey with whole oranges, onions and lemons; getting full on my grandmother's yam and apple recipe; gorge on fresh veggies; reflect on Thanksgivings past; see a movie at the theatre with my fam; spend as much time as I can with my little sister before she leaves on her mission and maybe watch a little football with my papa.

If you like Twilight... you're going to hate this


Lawrence Welk

This is hilarious. I remember watching Lawrence Welk, Saturday nights, as my mom put my hair in curlers for Sunday. This is a sort of variation on his show.

Lawrence Welk Show

Saturday, November 7, 2009


WOW! I am seriously in awe right now. I cannot believe this clip. I heard a ton about it yesterday but until I watched the clip, did I really believe that this chick was really pulling stuff like that. I am so impressed with BYU women's soccer that they didn't smack this highly-disturbed chick back. Good for them.

I just love the BYU soccer player at the end that walks up to Lambert at the end and points at the score board. The best response ever! I don't know why they are only suspending Lambert -- I feel like her actions are grounds for being kicked out of the NCAA altogether. Go Cougs!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Swine Flu- H1N1 or not?

So, I would just like to make a comment on the swine flu vaccination.

I have an opinion about it.

I am very against the H1N1 vaccination.

Watch the following clip - it explains a little more.

To be honest, I don't agree with any vaccinations. I have never been vaccinated (except for my mission shots) and am just fine. The vaccinations cause more problems and shoot more junk into a person's body than do good.

I think, a small part of why people use vaccinations, is that they are excuse for poor health. People can eat whatever they want and just go and get the vaccination and think they are protected. Wrong! Good health is the best and only true vaccination. Eating fruits and vegetables, whole grains, plenty of protein, drinking water, cutting sugar out of your diet... and probably the most important thing of all: get enough sleep. This isn't a "hippie's guide to health." It is the way God created us. If we just lived according to the Word of Wisdom in DC 89, we would be set.

That is my opinion.

Eat well and sleep enough. No need for vaccinations. There are a million ways you can dispute this... but there are also a million ways to support it. This is my opinion - you have to do the research and see what is for you.
Best friends for life

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Office episode

Today, my life was an episode from The Office.

We had a meeting in our department (The Daily Universe) called The Sensitivity meeting.

We learned about the importance of not discriminating against others. Period. The presenter from the Equal Opportunities Office gave us examples using Sam, the statistics TA, and Andrea, a student in his class. Sam was interested in Andrea, so he asked her out. Andrea wasn't interested in going on a date with Sam, so she gracefully declined. Did that stop Sam? Nope. Sam persisted in asking Andrea out but she never consented. Pretty soon, Andrea's grades started to decline.

Uh oh! Discrimination!

The presenter talked about texting and how an unwelcome text can be discrimination. We all looked at one of our co-workers and started laughing, because he loves sending texts to all of us in the office and with discriminatory remarks... jokes of course.

We came back to the office, laughed, and then proceeded to talk to each other on our phones via conference call. You have to understand: our office is one big room... everyone has a station and a phone... and we talk to each other via conference call.

My day was an episode from The Episode.

A toast to romance

I wish I could wake up to this every morning on my iPod! I go to work and my co-worker and I have our daily Michael fix. Love it. I dedicate this to Caitlin!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Infinite power of hope

Building trust with stangers

In Matthew 4:19 it talks about Christ calling Peter and Andrew to come and be fishers of men. "And they straightway left their nets and followed him."

What kind of man must Christ have been to command their attention in such a powerful and persuasive way? What attributes did He have that persuaded Peter and Andrew to simply drop their nets and follow Him?






Plus many other things...

I volunteer for an organization once a week where the people I am serving have a hard time building trust with strangers, at least right away.

Last night, the group of students who volunteer together, came together for a quick spiritual thought. The guy was talking about spiritual gifts and recognizing those gifts within us so that we can cultivate them and use them to bless the lives of others.

I have definitely come to understand the power and importance of building trust. But more importantly, I think we have to ensure that we emanate love and peace so that others feel calm around us and that they CAN trust us.

Last night, that barrier with a certain person, was overcome. Trust was gained. Sincere love was established. There is nothing better, nothing, than sharing Christ's love with others and literally seeing the happiness come to their eyes.

Tender mercies.

Teaching Mission Prep

My dad is the mission prep teacher in my home ward... he asked me to come home on Sunday to help teach the second lesson (Plan of Salvation) in his mission prep class. A good friend of his was bringing his non-member daughter who is interested in the church.

I have to be honest - I was nervous. I read through Ch 2 of Preach My Gospel and felt the missionary mode seeping back into my brain. The excitement and nerves came back. I remember those feelings right before walking into a lesson and saying a quick but fervent prayer with my companion... woo! What a great feeling.

The father and daughter showed up, along with five future Elders and one future Sister.

She was fabulous.

Really fabulous. 27 years old, beautiful, well-dressed and very intelligent. A total firecracker. She sat down on the front row and we started teaching and she started firing away with questions... but these weren't dumb questions - she had been thinking hard and long about the purpose of her life and what is coming after. I was (still am) SO excited!

The only bummer thing is that lessons only can last an hour. The hour came and went quickly but was so powerful. The Spirit was so strong. She was a little hard-headed in a few areas of the lesson but as soon as my dad and I started talking about and testifying of the Atonement, she calmed right down. Not that she was riled up, but she was so much more peaceful.

We committed her to go back home (mother Texas) and find the missionaries and get a copy of The Book of Mormon. She said she already has a BOM and that she found a missionary - a co-worker of hers who has told her about the church. She said he served a mission in London. *Ha ha, that isn't going to cut it. An RM?!* I told her she needed to find the full-time missionaries... the guys with black nametags and suit coats. Those clues were enough of a visual reminder -- she smiled and nodded her head and looked me in the eyes and said, "Okay. I will." YES!

She gave me a hug as she left and told me how grateful she was for our time. I gave her my e-mail address and told her to e-mail me if she has any questions.

I hope she e-mails!

This was an amazing experience! I want to go on another mission! This is what matters -- these experiences are the ones that bring TRUE happiness.


I love this blog.

I love themed blogs. She toasts to everything. (Yes, this also happens to be my little sister's blog... but I still love the concept.)


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Heart of Life

This song makes me want to take a fall drive up the mountains with the windows down, bundled up in a jacket, boots, a chunky scarf and matching gloves.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Around the corner

I found this blurb on a blog... I wanted to keep and share it:

"What's around the corner? Who knows? But, I used to have this intense need to know...everything...all the time. I wanted to know what was in store for me year...Now, I've discovered that much of the enjoyment in life comes from surprises...and patiently waiting for them. Happily, life is full of them. Let go of expectations of what should be coming around the next corner and just get ready for what is...or what might be...

"You cannot behold with your natural eye the design of your God concerning those things which shall come...." That I'm certain of."

She's a big girl

So, I'm sitting at work right now listening to one co-worker tell another co-worker a story from his experience at a haunted house this weekend.

He was describing a girl he was with and said the following: "She got so scared and jumped on me and you know, she's a big girl --

I mean, she's
Jonesy's* size and..."

Enough said.

The greatest thing was that no one even caught it. I was biting my lip to not laugh.

*My nickname is Jonesy in the office where I work.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Sunday study

I studied a talk this morning before church -- all based on the Atonement and Sacrament.

"The Very Root of Christian Doctrine" is an extremely powerful talk based on bringing the focus of the gospel back to the suffering and empowerment of Christ's Atonement.

My favorite part of the talk is the example that Brother Griffith shares from his experience as a stake president of a BYU stake:

Years ago Elder Boyd K. Packer gave a general conference address titled “The Mediator.” In that address Elder Packer said:

[The Atonement of Christ] is the very root of Christian doctrine. You may know much about the gospel as it branches out from there, but if you only know the branches and those branches do not touch that root, if they have been cut free from that truth, there will be no life nor substance nor redemption in them. [Boyd K. Packer, “The Mediator,” Ensign, May 1977, 56]

I will confess to you that I have participated in—indeed, I have taught—many lessons that, although interesting and motivational, according to Elder Packer’s guide had “no life nor substance nor redemption in them” because they weren’t directly linked to the Atonement of Christ. That’s a serious criticism of much of what we do, and I believe it’s on the mark. I believe that one way—the best way, and possibly the only way—to meet President Hinckley’s challenge to do better at getting the gospel down into our hearts and the hearts of those we love and serve is to focus all we do on the Atonement of Christ. And so, as a newly called stake presidency, we tried to do just that.

We laid down a rule that every sacrament meeting talk and every lesson in Sunday School, Relief Society, and priesthood meetings must be related to the Atonement of Christ in a direct and express way. Our goal was to have all of our meetings filled with “life [and] substance [and] redemption” by having them connected to “the very root of Christian doctrine”: the Atonement of Christ. We told the bishops that if they wanted a sacrament meeting about the principles of emergency preparedness—important principles, to be sure—that meeting would be about “Emergency Preparedness and the Atonement of Christ.” If you cannot figure out the link between the topic you are to teach and the Atonement of Christ, you have either not thought about it enough or you shouldn’t be talking about it at church. Your topic may be fine for the city council, your neighborhood organization, or the commercial break during SportsCenter, but in our limited time in church, we must be talking about the Atonement of Christ.

This is what they did in the church in Alma’s day, the first church described in detail in the scriptures. They were given a mission similar to ours: prepare a people for the coming of the Risen Lord. Their experiences have special meaning to us as we try to fulfill our latter-day responsibilities. Note how the Book of Mormon describes their teaching:

And he commanded them that they should teach nothing save it were the things which he had taught, and which had been spoken by the mouth of the holy prophets.

Yea, even he commanded them that they should preach nothing save it were repentance and faith on the Lord, who had redeemed his people. [Mosiah 18:19–20]

They taught only from the scriptures and the words of the prophets, and they taught only two principles that are inextricably intertwined: “repentance,” that we have the constant need to improve; and “faith on the Lord, who had redeemed his people.” This was not faith in general—and not even faith in Christ as Friend, Good Shepherd, Prince of Peace, or any one of a number of important roles He plays—but faith in a very particular aspect of Christ’s mission: faith in His ability to redeem us, to improve us. He did that through His atoning sacrifice.

We thought we’d try what Alma’s church did. We tried to link every principle taught in our meetings to the Atonement in a direct and express way. Now that isn’t hard to do in sacrament meeting, because the bishopric can pick the topics. And it isn’t hard to do when the study guide lesson is on the Atonement or repentance. But what do you do when the study guide lesson is on tithing or visiting teaching or the value of education? That’s a little tougher.

We made it clear that we expected the teachers to teach the approved curriculum. There is strength that comes from teaching materials approved by priesthood leaders. But it isn’t always obvious how the assigned material relates to the Atonement. To address that challenge, we had two suggestions.

First, we urged teachers to find examples of the principles being taught from the life of Christ. When we are talking about His life and using the words He said, we are remembering Him, and a power comes into our teaching that is otherwise not present.

Second, we encouraged teachers to see how the principle taught was either part of Heavenly Father’s effort to draw us closer to Him through Christ (the vertical pull of the Atonement) or a principle that could draw us closer to our fellow humans through Christ (the horizontal pull of the Atonement).

So, how did it work? Pretty well. People got excited about this approach. We didn’t think there was any way that we could—or even should—try to measure its value, but it seemed right, so we pressed forward.

Why did it feel right? Why did it taste so good to—using the words of Nephi—“talk of Christ, . . . rejoice in Christ, [and] preach of Christ” (2 Nephi 25:26) in all of our meetings? Because when we are speaking of what the Savior has done for us, we are at the core of the meaning of life, we are connected to “the very root of Christian doctrine,” and we are doing what Christ and His prophets have asked us to do.

Joseph Smith said:

"The fundamental principles of our religion are the testimony of the Apostles and Prophets, concerning Jesus Christ, that He died, was buried, and rose again the third day, and ascended into heaven; and all other things which pertain to our religion are only appendages to it."

Isn't that amazing!? What a difference it would make if all the members in the church had this same outlook on teaching the Atonement. Satan is working as hard as he can to take the focus off of the Savior's Atonement -- sure the world still focuses on Him, but in a variety of less-than-appropriate ways; focuses not meet for The Son of God. We need to put the appropriate focus back on Him and the roles He plays as Savior and Redeemer.