Monday, April 16, 2007

Success? yes, please.

The past few weeks have been super fun here in Salt Lake. We had a birthday party for eric at our house back at the end of march. it was so great to celebrate his birthday with our group of friends.

Eric's 25th Birthday Party

Last year for eric's birthday it was just he and i and a quiet little dinner and one big cake. This year we got to eat that cake with 20 other friends and enjoy what a year's time has brought us in the way of fellowship. i have felt so connected here this spring. again the feeling of "wow, we really live here now". the feeling of roots being formed- it looks like we are here to stay more and more. Eric has officially decided to not pursue grad school. he is finishing out this semester, taking a test for his Master's degree next October, and meanwhile trying to decide what it is he really wants to do. he has the opportunity to run his lab's new MRI scanner and work as a lab engineer until he finds something he really wants. he has also applied with an outdoor gear company called Black Diamond here in salt lake. they make tents, trekking poles, climbing gear, skis, etc. it would be so great if he could work there, using his mechanical engineering degree. i think we would both be very happy with that. we are just waiting to hear back from them (the worst time- waiting!) if that doesn't work however, at least he will have some form of employement t hrough the lab until something else comes along. we will see, we are kind of in a transition through all this.

it's been an interesting few weeks in regard to transition. i think eric and i are in one of those "young places". i don't have a better description than that- we are young, we have all these choices ahead of us. we can do anything we want. ANYTHING. i think we have begun to realize that we are 'of age' to define what our version of success will look like. coming from the south has brought us both up to believe that success is a nice house, pretty good cars, an IRA account, and 2 weeks of vacation a year. but i don't know that if that is what i want. what about real travel? i brought up this idea that eric and i take off 6 months and backpack around south america, or somewhere in asia. at first he balked at the idea. he thought, "how can i justify a 6 month period of in activity to a future employer?". i think that was an engineer's typical reaction- i mean, 6 months of just travel? how is that productive? but the more we talked about it, the more we realized that that is an incredibly priceless and valuable experience. if i was an employer i would love to see that someone took time off to travel, get to know themselves, see other cultures, become well rounded.and we've started to think about, well do we really want just a nice house? a better car (eric is still kicking in his '88 honda accord with 230K on it), nice furniture.....or do we want to see the world while we are young? is it more valuable to be 'set up' or to have taken time off? i think that taking time off is actually very much more valuable. we are in a place to do that too- within the next two years we could save all my salary (now that eric is working that is..) and have enough to travel and come back to. why do we want to be so 'successful in the world's eyes? b/c it's what we've grown up with. there's nothing wrong with that- nothing at all. our parents did a wonderful job bringing us up. and they did things when they were our age that weren't necessarily to benefit the coming of a family. i just think that if we are going to do anything 'selfish', now is the time to do it .we can recover from any major financial strain at this point, and man, seeing all those places i've wanted to see??! i get so excited just thinking about it. for now, we are just trying to figure out what a "successful Dacus Family" looks like. we've got some time to figure it out, in the meantime, i think i'll be stocking that money away in a travel fund.....

of course, if eric starts working for black diamond things might be a little different. anything can happen.

over easter we traveled 3 hours away to City of Rocks, Idaho for some climbing and camping. a bunch of our friends ended up there with us- it was a blast! the weather was beautiful and the climbing was great- but the friends really made the trip.

Me on top of a big rock! City of Rocks, Idaho

Eric and I at the very top of the Morning Glory Spire in City of Rocks

i have also found something else of great value here in salt lake- a group of incredible women! over the past year and a half i have finally found this group of girls that desire to know each other deeply, and live out life with each other. it's been one of the most beautiful things i have experienced in my life. from making jewlery at a local bead store, to climbing, to running together, to instant tradition coffee nights, and breakfasts in the mornings, we've begun to truly live our lives together, know one another, and encourage each other. i hate to use the words "girl power", but there is something powerful and wonderful about feminine bonds. and it is something that has to be fought for. friendships with girls don't come all that easily. we fall quickly into comparisons, jealousy, and petty disagreements. it is our nature. but this group of girls has all come to realize that about herself, and we've been able to see and help each other through all these feelings. i am just so happy to have found or stumbled upon such a great group of friends.

ski season is officially over- really this time. the resorts have even closed. so no more ski clinic for me either. eric and i went to the closing ski clinic party this weekend in park city. it was in this beautiful house- one of the biggest i've ever been in. it just brought up that whole discussion of houses and success again b/c you know what? i really want a kitchen that's about 700 square feet- basically the size of our little house right now! man, the kitchen in this house at the party was amazing. a wet bar, all the counter space you could want....beautiful cabinets...i know, all this after my big long discussion about not wanting THINGS! and then i get in this house and i want want want all over again. really, i just want a big kitchen. i'll sleep in the closet, if i can have a big kitchen!

we are traveling to indian creek this weekend again to see Sam Higby and of course, climb. i'm sure i'll have some more good pictures from the weekend. it'll probably be super hot though- it's already in the 80's in southern utah. worth it though, for the climbing and friends.