Wednesday, August 24, 2011
I loved the earrings I got to wear tonight from Ryan Amelia Design. They’re cute pink roses and they’re easiest to see on the post date interview so you’ll have to make sure and watch that tomorrow.
Tonight changed my life. I will forever be indebted to The Mormon Bachelorette and my dates for many reasons, and tonight was one of those. But it will take a minute to get to that part...
I actually started the evening with a videographer from ABC news following me as I got ready for the date and asking me a few questions. ABC was going to do a news spot on TMB, which we’d already done with a couple of TV stations, but they were taking a different angle on it. Rather than focusing on me and the fact that I was going out with 22 guys to find love, they were more interested in the fact that there was a show built around the endeavor. Given that ABC carries The Bachelorette, I think the station was just really intrigued by this kind of “spin off”. I was happy to see that our incredible production crew was getting some attention and getting interviewed as well. They have done so much work on the show, and they deserved some spotlighting too!
Once I got to open the door and meet my date, Alex Dayton, something told me that I was in for an unusual night. We started out with dinner at Oregano’s Pizza Bistro which is a very popular local restaurant. I have to say, I’ve never been a big fan, but I was actually converted tonight by the Big Beefstro Salad. So I might finally understand what the big deal is with Oregano’s. But the more important part was the conversation with Alex. I was having a hard time getting a read on Alex. He was pleasant, and he was flirty. But it seemed like he would tell me one thing, and then counter it just a few minutes later. I couldn’t quite tell when he was joking or when he was being sincere. It was very clear that he was being honest when he talked about the fact that he likes attention. Many people would knock this as a bad quality. I think that any character trait can be a flaw if you let it be. But if you are aware of the things that you desire in life, then you can take that and figure out how to achieve it through your work or your social interactions. You can also work on balancing out the need with something that is more productive or rewarding. So, I give Alex props for being self aware, and being honest. Conversation was flowing easily through dinner and I was having a good time.
Alex was being very mysterious about what we’d be doing after dinner. As we drove to our next stop he took a call from someone. “Yeah, we’re really close. We’ll be there in just a minute.” Apparently we were meeting someone. But as we pulled up to the East Valley Institute of Technology campus, I was even more baffled as to who we’d be meeting there and for what. We walked in and sat down in the back of an auditorium. On the stage was a banner for “Young Women’s Conference: Time to Blossom”. I had heard of this conference. I also noticed singer Alex Boye on stage, who I am a fan of (if you haven’t seen his “I’m a Mormon” video yet, it’s great. Watch it HERE). He was telling an inspiring (and hilarious) story about giving the Book of Mormon to Prince Charles. After the story he began singing. Suddenly I thought I heard Alex sing my name. Before I could determine if I was going crazy or not, he sang it again. The next thing I knew he was walking down the aisle toward me. Alex Boye brought me and Alex Dayton on stage and Alex Dayton actually recited a poem to me. Now, we had a mishap with the production crew getting separated from us, and so they weren’t actually in the room when this happened. The conference was filming though, so they caught it on camera. If you want to see it, watch THIS video. As you can see in the TMB video, Alex Boye actually brought us on stage again at the end and I was given a bouquet of beautiful red roses from Alex Dayton. I felt very undeserving of the attention, but it was magical nonetheless. Talk about a once in a lifetime experience.
The girls in the audience went crazy over Alex Dayton. It was so cute. At the end he and I walked around meeting some of the girls and Alex gave roses to some of them. In a world that so often can seem bleak for the future, with youth who are lazy, choosing to be immoral or dishonest, etc., here were hundreds of young women, who were making good choices and it showed – through their modest dress and their shining countenances. They truly glowed with the Spirit and I was so impressed by each one! I loved talking with several of the girls, including a beautiful young lady named Brinley. She was sharp, kind, and confident in who she is. After talking with the girls, we were able to talk with the Co-Founder of Time to Blossom, Debbie Forrest, and some of the speakers, Vivian Cline and John Bytheway, along with John’s wife, Kim. Each of these individuals are incredibly inspiring people. I really mean that. You can read about each one by clicking their names in order to understand why. I have listened to talks from John Bytheway for years, and there have been many instances where I heard him say exactly what I needed to hear, exactly when I needed to hear it – some of the tender mercies of the Lord in my life. John truly is one of my heroes and I felt tremendously honored to meet him, and his beloved wife, Kim, that he talks about in so many of his talks. Speaking with Debbie, Vivian and Kim, they gave me wonderful advice on dating, love, and faith. I just continued to feel buoyed up by the Spirit that was there in our conversations.
After the conference Alex took me for ice cream at Dairy Queen that we ate in the park. It was nice to be able to talk with him some more, and learn more about who Alex is. We also talked about what an amazing experience the evening had been. Perhaps the craziest thing of it all was that Alex didn’t have any idea what we’d be doing for our date when he got on the plane that morning. But once he ran into Alex Boye on the plane, everything just fell in to place. Sometimes life works out that way.
I feel bad that most of this blog has been about everything and everyone but Alex, but tonight was about so much more than just Alex. I feel so incredibly blessed and I feel changed after tonight. I have Alex to thank for that which does actually say a lot about him. I’m still very unsure about Alex though. I just can’t quite put my finger on how I feel about him. Perhaps time will tell.
Posted by The Mormon Bachelorette at 5:00 PM