Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Fox Force Five, er, Six!?

When I was a little girl I used to plan out my wedding. An integral part of my plans included a HUGE wedding party where all my bestest friends would be my attendants and we'd wear fabulous taffeta gowns and high heels. In fact, at the end of each school year, I'd identify one friend from that school year that would be given the honor of being in my long line. Having one sister was a bonus so she'd be in some poofy number as my maid of honor. Kortni Beck, Kara Schenk, Audrey Christiansen, Meaghan Ashliman from my Burley days; Emily Rowland (my first Vegas friend), Cindy Davis and Tiffany Davison were my middle school picks; Cyndi Ross, Leanne Lawson, Jill Kleinworth, and Heather Stewart were my easy high school picks. Then I hit my freshman year at BYU and my whole plan fell apart. Okay, in all reality I had given up the long line, but IF I had held strong I would have been in a dither narrowing down just one friend who affected my life for the better.

Heather Stewart [Rice] came with me from Vegas. We'd been friends clear through high school and I could not have been more blessed with a confidant, roommate, cheerleader, good example, and friend. The above picture was our Christmas card picture. How cute were we? We seriously sent a cute Christmas poem with these pictures. I can't tell you how many times she endured my interruptions on her studying (Heather was a far smarter and better student than I was) or how many shirts she let me borrow (like the white one under my red shirt in the above picture.) I can tell you that Heather made me a better person, kept me laughing, had endless patience in high school, at college, AND now that we're grown-ups!

Remember this, Heather?

I made this one afternoon when I was supposed to be studying and we hung it on our fridge in our dorm room to make sure we avoided the dreaded freshman 15. This poster was one of MANY we had hanging around (which probably explains my low GPA after first semester.)

I only have two journal entries from my freshman year of BYU. In the first entry I found this about the fifth day up there (a Sunday): "We had ward prayer and then went tunnel singing. That was unbelievable! There were about 300 people singing church hymns. Here it's like singing is a cool thing to do. Then we just talked to Nancee and Jenn who live down the hall. They're kindof rowdy girls, but they make us laugh."

That's Jenn Dorsch [Stanworth] and here's Nancee Phillips [Tegeder]
(She's the energy train and you're on board, woot! woot!) Don't they look rowdy? I don't know what I was talking about back then! I do know I would have been very sad if those southern CA girls hadn't, just a few days later, taped a faux honor code violation referral (for dress code violation) on mine and Heather's door. We were freaked out a bit until we called the phone number on the "referral" and it was Jenn and Nancee's dorm room instead of the honor code office. How grateful I am for the both of them, who had also come as a package from high school. Jenn was the pinnacle of together-ness and organization (still is!) and Nancee was brilliant and a blast all at the same time (still is!) We always welcomed them in our room and frequently invaded there's. U-Hall 3rd floor Northside had nothing before or since like us group of girls. But wait, there's more . . .

Then Jenn and Nancee introduced us to another southern CA-ite who's room was right next door to them, Moana Bartholomew [Amador]

And it was ALL OVER from there. I connected with Moana on a level that I can't really explain, but she was slated to be my roommate our sophomore year (until I went and got married . . . I know, bummer timing to fall in love, huh!?) Obviously Moana is beautiful, but there is so much more to her than just beauty. She's got an amazingly open spirit and is giving and loving and non-judgemental. And have I mentioned what a tough cookie she was/is? She used to crack us up when she'd come in our room and tell us about . . . well, about anything and everything because then she'd end her story with, "I was gonna DIE!" None of us, being young and stupid even understood the complexities that Moana would face with her health the decade (and then some) since we were all freshmen, but thankfully she is freakin' tough! And I love her. And she FINALLY started her blog, but I know I've already mentioned that - I'm just trying to pimp her out some more.

Somewhere along the line we were dubbed the Fox Force Five. I don't know if we called ourselves that (which seems semi-egotistical) or if someone else named us that, but either way, we were a force to be reckoned with and we ALWAYS had each others' back. We spent a lot of time together and kept up on each others' lives, sharing our likes and dislikes, eating at the Morris Center, and SO MUCH MORE that I could never blog about (not that it's naughty or anything, but there's so much!) Here's a sampling:

Don't ask what we were doing in the above shot. The next picture is us with a super great group of our guy friends we called the BIC Boys (because they had shaved their heads with Bic razors) when we had taken them on this group sports date thing. Take special note of Heather in the front - I love her.

The next picture was one night before some "mission" we were on. I'm trying to remember, but I think we were spying on some guy that Jenn liked and I want to say his name was Marc Stanworth. And yes, that would be her eventual husband. She knew it even then.

And this would explain my low GPA, too, cuz this is how I studied. First I screwed around and then I finally cracked a book. PS. That book is for physical science - WORST COLLEGE CLASS EVER!

Here's another one of us, minus Jenn. I think she was already in bed, which is NOT surprising because the girl had serious discipline.

And when we had occasion to celebrate something (or anything) we'd go to Chili's for dinner. I'm pretty sure a good chunk of change of one of my student loans paid for my share of chicken crispers with mashed potatoes (still my fave, BTW.) This picture was of us right before we headed home for the summer. We were expecting to all reconvene the Fox Force at the Riviera apartments in four short months, and these four made it through the summer single. Me, not so much.

So, who'd we add, you might be asking. That would be Miss Molly.

When Moana moved out of her dorm room at semester, Molly moved in and we quickly absorbed her into our group. Molly was fun-ny and I will always remember pulling an all-nighter with Molly in the basement laundry room to study for our semester Biology exam. She's the original Brainiac! Molly is hard-working and loyal and now she's a crazy lady running in her neighborhood (K. you have to read her blog to get that, but it cracked me up!)

I have been so lucky in my life to have good, strong woman influence me. These girls from BYU were integral in shaping who I am (you can decide if that was good or not.) When I think back to that time in my life, it is with fondness and gratitude, which is why I will always love Provo. I've long said that if I could change one thing, it would have been to fall in love with Tyler a year or two later, and frankly it's because I missed not hanging with my girls any longer than we did. However, now, there's not many days that pass that I don't get to peek in on their lives and see how beautifully and gracefully they are aging. They are strong woman raising spectacular children and supporting wonderful husbands. They serve those around them and sacrifice for those they love. I read their stories or talk to them about their lives and I am proud . . . no, blessed, to still consider them my bestest friends.

(August 1996; l-r: Moana, Heather, me, Jill (another foxy HS friend who lived at the Riv our sophomore year), Nancee, Molly, and Jenn.

I love you girls, and yes, we're still a Force of Foxes!


Troy and Nancee said...

What an awesome post. Rowedy, eh? That cracked me up and I totally don't remember putting that HC violation on your door. Too funny. As for being foxes, those pictures just remind me of fat freshman days and terrible clothes. It was definitely good times though.

Jenn S. said...

Oh no you di - nt.

You did not just post some nasty old pictures of me without editorial consent? Gross - where was the self tanner in 1995? ;)

Ahh - Sarah I love you - and I am so glad that you embraced me and Nanc and our rowdy side ( I think you got that impression because we had a picture up on our bulletin board of us drinking an IBC rootbear and a virgin pina colada and pretending to be drunk, which you gotta admit is pretty funny since we've never even had a drop).

I cannot believe you have the motivational poster still. I remember it so well (and that it did very little to deter us from pigging out almost nightly) and all the rest of your motivational posters.


Physical Science is by far the worst grade on my BYU transcripts - hated that class.

But no shout out about all the Weds. nights spent at the Edge/Omni? ;)


I love Nanc, Moana, Heather, Molly and You too. xoxoxo

Jenn S. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
OceanMama said...

Oh my gosh!! What great times! You have such a good memory, pullin' out stories behind each of the pictures! Great post, sister and I love all the pictures. We all look so young, and innocent.

I totally remember that sports date that we put together for the bic boys. We had so much fun!

And as Jenn mentioned, the motivational poster, wow! I remember it all too well and I, too, cannot believe that you still have that!!

You forgot to mention how many times we ate out at our favorite local Taco Bell establishment and the fact that they only had PEPSI. I remember fondly that you LOVED that stuff like crack :)

I love you Sarah and I love all you girls and I'm real proud, real proud :)

MollyE said...

Ahhh, how fun! You are so good at remembering all the fun stuff. I was so lucky that you girls took me in, so many fun memories!!

Chris and Heather Rice said...

I can't get over the motivational crack me up! Yeah, Jenn's right, those posters didn't stop us...why did we need to raid the vending machine or hit Taco Bell after having an all you can eat dinner at the Morris Center? Still haven't figured that out. I also remember you alphabetizing your CDs instead of studying. But you helped me study less and have more fun! You failed to mention that my roommate was the most popular girl in DT...that's right, DT president! I don't know how you did it all, but I know you are still doing it ALL and you never cease to amaze me! I love you and all the rest o' the chicas! Let's have a reunion soon!