Spike On Without Me

Disclaimer: I don’t do poetry, but here’s for kicks. 

Dear Volleyball,

I’ve known you since seventh grade,

Silently crying because I sucked when we played for youth group.

So I joined the school team,

because I thought I could learn your ways.

Little did I know that all middle school sports suck,

Like a duck,

Trying to drive a  truck.

And so we crashed,

several times,

but it was all fun,

and nobody gave a dime.

Then came graduation,

along with Freshman year that would prove to be inciting.

Terrifying try-outs,

and made J.V.

Had fun making friends,

but not trying to make my lead feet move.

Later, coach would have a baby and move,

 our club team would collapse,

and still time would lapse.

The year of the S’mores,

try-outs a breeze,

with a new mystery coach,

and social hour with now old friends.

Sadly though,

Lead feet had only gotten heavier,

but I could now ace seven serves.

(A marvel soon forgotten)

So I warmed the bench,

along with a few others,

Praying to get put in,

through my cheers and screams.

The chicas were much sweeter in 2012,

the coach much tougher,

and I not much better,

by the end of the ye-AR.

We were 8 and 1,

but I 0 and 8,

no thanks to my lead feet.

I am no quitter,

I am no quitter,

I am no quitter.

I just really like twitter,

and writing,

and drawing

and singing,

and watching,

and thinking,

and being SydneyJoTo.

It’s not you,

It’s me,

me and my lead feet.

The future is unwritten,

who’s to say if I will try again next year,

but if I do it will be for the people,

to study the human spirit in the medium you offer.

Which is teamwork,

an challenge,

and joy at a win,

and despair at a loss,

and silly faces during water break.

That, I will miss.

However YOU my bleached leather friend,

and techniques and ways you are flung about a court,

are silly by the way I choose to look at it.

You are the definition of awkward.

But I will always appreciate the spirit you give off.

Thanks for the memories,

Spike on frenemy.


How to Be a Gluestick

It’s been tender times here at my high school. Ever since the saddest week of my life, people have been a little more loving and mindful to each other. But it’s also been a month and we are forgetful teenagers. Slowly, people are noticing that we’re returning to our old social stacking and silently lambasting ways. People say we should do something, but those same people continue to socially stack up and lambast. I’m sorry to say that SydneyJoTo is not exception. Commuting home one day with a troubled mind, she also got talking to her Dad about this. The words, “stick” kept coming up; like as in Glue.

That’s where Instagram comes in. SydneyJoTo went home and photo-edited a little something that she hoped would get people thinking. She put it somewhere she hoped lots of teenagers would see, just not the ones that she would see at school the next day. Not yet at least.

elmer's glue stick pink kindness love instagram instalove listen

This was a few days ago, but it came up again today. There is a love recession not just among teenagers, but among the world. And there’s an easy solution that costs zero dollars.


That’s right hun.

via bay you belles

And as I’m writing this, that finger’s pointing at the center of my face and  I know I have to not only share this, but live this. This = being randomly nice not just to the funny or the cute kids. But to the kids who really need it the most. Let’s keep our eyes peeled guys.

Utah Trip… pronounced “Yewtah Chripp”

I’ve flown on a plane solo before.  The first time was out and back to Utah when I was twelve (unaccompanied minor), the second was home from Utah, and this time was out and back from Utah ONCE AGAIN. So many things rock out in Utah… including BYU’s Volleyball Camp. I flew out a few days prior to hang with my rock’n Aunt and Grandma, then to the other Grandparents briefly, and off to camp for the kernel of the trip. It was a marvelous trip.

Things I learned?

• One can have church on a mountain

• Water tastes twenty times better once you realize how good over hydration feels

• All dogs are puppies at heart

• “The Office” never gets old, as well as British “Who done it?” shows. (thank YOUU Netflix!)

• Little recycled clock-compass men are adorable

• Salt Lake isn’t that far from Provo

Saying “Goodbye” is hard

• The friendliest horses are males

• Mountain Air makes for a gorgeous sunset

• BYU is pretty quiet during the summer, until the camp kids come

• BYU truffles are the best in the world…. topping Lindor shockingly.

• Volleyball is nothing more than being uncomfortable in the squatting position, or awkwardly smacking a ball over a net. Tough stuff man.

• Guy coaches are an utter blast

• You don’t have to be some athletic god to play @ college level

• Missionaries love Hi-Chew

• A mob of hungry teenagers can be dangerous

• Seven Peaks is a rip-off ($10 for a plastic doughnut)

• The Cafe is not in the least

Saying “Goodbye” is hard

• Advil can prevent painful misery

• Ice Cream and twelve hours of sleep in a dark Utah basement is the best recovery

• “Crazy for You” is the all-time best American play the U.S. has ever seen. Go see it.

• Do all your wash before going home to make unpacking a synch

Saying “Goodbye” is hard

• Sometimes the best friends aren’t roommates, but strangers on plane next to you.

• Temple Run is depressing

• You haven’t felt statehood pride until you’ve flown over California as a Californian.

•  Saying “Hey guys I missed you!” is really fun.

Scared to Pack and Some Pretty Sweet Stuff

Heard these guys in the car on the way to fireworks. I like ’em don’t you? It’s smooth, with a purpose. I’m no music critic but I think these guys have earned a pat on the back :)

That was the sweet stuff. Still scared to pack for Volleyball camp. Firstly, I still have gaps in my packing list that call for a trip to the store… but I could still go clean the cobwebs out of my suitcase in the garage. The one friend from camp last year I made and  have outwardly tried to keep in contact with all year can’t go, and so I’m alone. I did it alone last year, but I was a year younger, a year less mellow and realistic. I’m stoked to see the family before and after though. A long awaited hugs await. Okay there’s my motivation. Now I’m going to play more Imagine Dragons, take my fingers off the keyboard, and stand up. Then I will go dust off my suitcase. (Hope there’s no spiders) Happy fifth everybody! Hope nobody’s dogs had heart emergencies last night. Okay, that’s it. See you in Utah!


Popcorn and Lemonade

Summer days are supposed to be long and filled with antics. From pitching a half-empty bag of marshmallows  back-and-forth across the street to bringing up pillows to the roof to making an epic home video of cops and robbers utilizing all of your kid-neighbors. I’m exhausted. Also, Home Videos rock, so we made one. Two weeks until volleyball camp.

Idea for this home video came from two ten-year-olds. Nothing fancy, just a little imagination and iMovie. Expect more.

Give a girl a Volleyball, and she will be merry.

Well, it’s chilly California December and school Volleyball is done, over, finished, and we can have beautiful self-manicures and regular shaving routines again! …Or can we?

It’s time for Club Volleyball. Yes, I’m about to explain. Club Vball is the BIG mamma of all competitive sports teams outside of the sissy Public Education System sports. You’ve got MJB, Comp Soccer, and Little League all helplessly lost in the shadow of Club Volleyball.

High School volleyball is quiet behaved. Cliques hang with cliques during water breaks, there’s about a teaspoon of team spirit, and the coach is a fifty-year-old, belly scratching, ex-setter from the  eighties  who sits in a camping chair hollering, “USE YOUR APPROACH WOMEN!” (In most cases.)

But CLUB is down, down deep to the core, down to blood and shoe skids on the court… extremely fit coaches screaming, purple neck veins bulging, stomping like fire-breathing ogres yelling commands to girls and at the poor poor refs. Parents with bullhorns and Subway sandwhiches, players ramming each other and getting the most Be•AU•tiful kills and dives this planet has ever seen all while Gatorade bottles litter the sleek golden floors. Oh, and college scouts infest the stands, with their noses in their little notebooks scribbling down, we hope and pray, OUR jersey numbers.

Well I am here at open gym which is some middle-school gym somewhere with it’s doors open. This gym is filled with a hundred nervous girls with their spanking-new white kneepads. Our supportive parents mingle with checkbooks in hand. I spot familiar faces from schools of present and old,  neighborhood… and I’m slowly getting comfy with the insanity.

FLASHBACK to three months ago, (If that’s alright with you.)

I’m at BYU volleyball camp. Walking across campus with my water bottle and gym bag with a few chatty friends. Checking the time. Running across campus. Hitting lines and ten-second water breaks. Diving Liners (BLEch.) and peppering with a sweet new friend. Finding another sweet friend to walk to dinner hall with. Gathering sweet friends to eat with. Inhaling AMAZING food. Eyeing lacrosse camp boys across the room. Going back to dorms with sweet roommates… passing out five sweet nights in a row. Alarm going off and painfully raising my stiff sore body from bed, not at all ready for another day of hitting lines and diving liners (blecheddy blech).

Absolutely the best camp ever known to volleyball obsessants.

The absolute best camp known to man and woman.

I still keep in touch with my amazing roommate. Nessy lives in the potato and snow state and I live in the state of Palm trees and really good Mexican food. So we haven’t seen each other in person for three months. (Which really hurts when this is your long-distance bestie) Pen pals are a dying breed and we, the next generation, are “texting pals”, which is  which is a million times more convenient than finding a stamp. And so that’s what Nessy and I do. We text each other frequently about, well Volleyball.

So Ness shot me a text during open gym and told me that she jammed her thumb during practice that day and was really bummed (I’m not sure how she sent that text then…) but I sent back words of sympathy and comfort anyway and went back to practice, watching my thumbs a little more cautiously.

And in case you’re eyes got lazy and you skimmed to this point:

•Club is downright dirty but incredible.

•Sweet friends can prevent injury to your thumbs.

•When I’m done here a new quote’s going on my wall:

“Give a girl a volleyball, and she will be merry!”

(Unless she likes golf or something)


It was incredibly worth it :)  Love you Cyclone Women!

only the best club on EARTH!