Monday, August 23, 2010

First day.

Dear littlest siblings,
Today was your first day of school. I was thinking of you. I hope the year's not too hard and you make plenty of friends who make your life richer and more full. I hope you are kind to your classmates and you look for opportunities to share the Gospel. I hope you work hard and you try your best. I hope you fill your minds with fascinating things that make you really exercise your thinking powers. I hope you don't think of school as boring. I hope you want to learn and read and explore. I hope you don't give up when things are hard. I hope you push yourself. I hope you always do your very best work. I hope you stand out in your classrooms. I hope you lift others up. I hope you nourish friendships. I hope your learning continues when you leave class and that you actively explore the world. I hope you cultivate curiosity wherever you go. I hope can look back on these years and remember them with fondness. You are my favorite 4th, 7th, and 10th graders around :) Love you.

Picture taken on my family's weekend vacation to Wimberly, Texas this summer.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

"You can take the boy out of the mountains, but you can't take the mountains out of the boy."

Said so well by my lovely mother on the phone today.

JD is homesick and tired and ready to be done. He is entirely unmotivated to continue knocking the doors of classless, rude, obnoxious homeowners. He does not want to deal with folks with poor credit, poor manners, or so-called poor bank accounts (Really, people? I feel like the safety of your home and family is probably worth 50 bucks. Even we, as college students, could afford 50 dollars a month if we wanted. There's the difference. You can afford it. You just don't want it. Be clear.) I could go on and on with the list of complaints JD comes home with at the end of every day. But, clearly, it's an unpleasant topic.

Instead, let's talk about the mountains. Let's talk about camping. Let's talk about the cool breeze and the smell of burning wood mixed with savory meat and veggies on the campfire. Let's talk about the tent that's been patiently waiting in a tub in the back corner of a dark storage unit for 4 months to get out and see the sunlight. Let's talk about the sunset and the quiet feeling of contentment that's waiting in a little grove of trees to meet up with us come a few weeks from today. Let's talk about JD's home. The home that has started calling me back, too.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Steve Carell.

You probably know him best from The Office, where he plays Michael Scott, regional manager at Dunder Mifflin. My husband and most of my friends enjoy this show. I don't really and I sort of held a grudge against the guy because I think the type of comedy he's involved with is crude and stupid (examples being Anchorman and The 40-Year-Old Virgin- neither of which I have seen in their entirety, admittedly... however, I can tell just by previews and stories I would dislike them). Also, I have attempted many times to sit down and enjoy an episode of The Office, only to be mocked for not having a sense of humor because I didn't laugh. Some of JD's friends, and maybe some of mine, think I am a little... I don't know...dry? I promise I do have a sense of humor. It's just a little more innocent and childish (meaning I still laugh at Laffy Taffy jokes...)

But on with my story... Steve Carell started to win me over a few years ago with his performance in Dan in Real Life, which I really enjoyed. He also recently won brownie points with me as the supervillian Gru, in Despicable Me. Then, he was on Oprah yesterday to discuss his new film Date Night with Tina Fey. After discussing the movie and their lives as comedians, Steve and Tina decided they had some questions for Oprah. Tina went first and asked some funny questions and then Steve told Oprah he had some real questions. He looked up at her like he was going to ask a deep, powerful, thinking question and then asked, with such a serious face, "Oprah, who let the dogs out?" And I laughed. And then I thought to myself, "Maybe Steve Carell is funny after all."

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wednesday memory.

I've been working on a special project for my brother lately and have looked through some fun pictures. Pictures are such a happy way to capture memories and try to hold onto time a bit longer. Sometimes when I'm scrapbooking, or working out, or just walking about... I'll think about a moment or time or experience in my past and it'll make me smile, or ponder, or wonder. And then it's gone. I have this big fear that as more years pass, I am going to forget all about my childhood and adolescence (This is already happening, as evidenced by my inability to answer Lindsey's questions about what my life was really like when I was her age...).

In a small effort to document my life a little better, I am going to start posting a random memory or story on Wednesdays. So here's to the first Wednesday memory!

Overnight laser tag extravaganza:
When I was in high school, my dad was a leader for the young men at church. All the boys loved "B-Rob" and thought he was the coolest guy. Of course, I think he's awesome too. I'm not sure if it was his idea originally or one of his boys' or maybe a group collaboration, but someone came up with the idea to rent out a lasertag place overnight. It wasn't an official church activity, clearly, but we did it. A few years in a row too. And it was so fun. My dad and a few other men in leadership came to chaperone because it was a co-ed thing. We had snacks and everyone dressed in black. We just played over and over all through the night (different rounds of people, different strategies, different game plans). I think it must have been my junior and senior year that we went (maybe sophomore?) My junior year... I was pretty infatuated with Jordan and hoped we'd get some time alone in a dark corner or something. Oh gosh! My senior year... Stephen came and I think he was upset at me because he thought I was flirting with Jordan too much. So silly! Nevertheless, the overnight laser tag extravaganzas were such fun activities I did with my friends from church.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

New York, in pictures.

JD and I took a four hour bus ride to New York City this weekend. As we approached the city, both of us were just speechless. It was such a rush to see so many buildings, lights, motion, and excitement. It was literally breathtaking. I was just so excited to be in NEW YORK CITY with my favorite traveling companion, my very best friend. It's one of those feelings I am struggling to find the words for. Traveling is so incredible. Here's a re-cap of our adventure:
Bravo Pizza. Yum. Statue of Liberty lego building at Toys R Us in Times Square. So cool!
(They also had impressive Empire State and Chrysler buildings.)
A (very skinny) cookie monster.
NYC from way up high.
Top of the Rock observation deck at the Rockefeller Center.
69 stories high.
Central Park.
Cutest hotel room ever!
Seriously? Fun orange lamp, green bench and desk chair, red fridge, orange walls! So fun :)
Dos Caminos restaurant. Yummiest pork tacos! We'd definitely recommend it.
Times Square night life.
Clearly, I was obsessed with this little place JD chose to stay!
He did so good.
Ferry to Staten Island.
Statue of Liberty.
Grand Central Terminal.
So many people. So many lights. So much culture.
We loved it.

Saturday, August 14, 2010


You put away the dishes and like the kitchen really neat.
You always fold the blanket when you get up from your seat.
You like to cook dinner and make food that tastes so good.
You can't cook every night, but probably would if you could.
You think to surprise me with things like picnics in the park.
You come to bed at the same time I do so we can cuddle in the dark.
You read scriptures to me before we close our eyes to rest.
You pray with me and keep me wanting to be my very best.
You listen well, but you also like to talk a lot too.
You are fun to be around even when there's not too much to do.
You like to play games and are competitive like me
(But not too much.. or there's no telling where we'd be!)
You watch sports and like to go out to see events.
You love to light the candles that fill our home with lovely scents.
You enjoy having people over and are an excellent host.
You're a pretty humble guy and never like to boast.
You know Spanish and can speak it like a pro.
It comes in handy in a lot of places that we go.
You like to travel and explore new places we haven't been.
You calm me down when my patience runs thin.
You serve others willingly just to make them smile.
You start the laundry when I'm too lazy to move the pile.
You notice when I do something different with my hair.
You call people out of the blue to tell them you care.
You go on dates with your Grandma and won't let her pay.
You try to think positively even if you've had a bad day.
You are willing to work hard to provide what we need.
You are very reasonable and aren't driven by greed.
You remind me to take pictures and bring the camera along.
You know most of the words to Taylor Swift's songs.
You make friends almost everywhere you go.
You tell me scripture stories I don't already know.
You look at the things I make and compliment my style.
You lift me up when I get down every once in a while.
You give me big hugs and sweep me off my feet.
You iron my clothes, even the skirts with pleats.
You never use bad words and you discourage me from gossip.
You share your food with me and then leave a good tip.
You are an Eagle Scout and a hard worker, too.
You'd never ask anyone to do something you wouldn't do.
You love your family and are patient and kind.
You send me little texts to say I'm on your mind.
Every day I discover more reasons you're so good for me...
I love you, little lovebug. Happy anniversary!

Friday, August 13, 2010

All Grown Up.

Did I mention when I went home this weekend I found some strangers living in my house? Like this 6'2 creature: Papa John's employee, future Idaho resident, and center of a thriving social network.

Or this pretty blue-eyed pre-teen: well-developed girl, brilliant mathmetician, and already prepping for college.

Or the new leader: an almost licensed, ready to date, volleyball star.

Really? Who are these people and what happened to my little baby siblings?
Honestly, when did Jake shoot up taller than my dad? How did Morgan already skip ahead to 9th grade math? And since when is Lindsey old enough to drive?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Happy memory :)

I found this little gem as I was browsing through all the pictures on my hard drive for a little project I'm working on. Made me smile. I miss these girls!

Feeling Rebellious.

Dying my hair brown is just about the most rebellious thing I've ever done. Before I left for Texas last week, Brittany and I were talking about our hair and I told her about how I really wanted to dye my hair dark when I was in high school, but my mom would never let me. Then, I thought to myself, "I'm 21 now. I can make my own decisions!" And in the spur of the moment, we went to the store, bought a box of hair dye, and she transformed my look! It still seems a little weird to me to be a brunette, but it's a good way to break the monotony while I keep trying to grow my hair out.

Ps. I love this picture of my parents and I. They are so cute!

Baltimore Harbor.

On the last day JD's parents were here, we went up to Baltimore a few hours before their flight departed to people watch, eat lunch, and explore the harbor. Baltimore is quite delightful.

We're so glad they were able to stay with us and see this part of the country!

NYC, here we come!

JD and I are in the midst of planning our first anniversary get-a-way to New York City this weekend! We are having lots of fun looking up exciting attractions to visit while we're there. So far on our list: rent a boat in Central Park, get icecream near the Brooklyn Bridge, explore the Grand Central terminal (otherwise known as Grand Central Station), see the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty, and of course... party it up in Times Square! We'll only be there for 2 days and a night- so we are looking at the best ways to maximize the time we have. If any of ya'll have been to NYC, we'd love your tips and suggestions! Can't wait!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Atlantic City, NJ.

Because I've been scrapbooking so much lately (a few hours a day usually), I sometimes forget what things I've scrapbooked and what things I've blogged about. In mid-July, JD and I went to Atlantic City up in Jersey with a few of our friends for the weekend. We had a really great time. We walked on the Boardwalk, enjoyed a watershow, watched our friends lose their money in some casinos, ate at The Rainforest Cafe, shared some icecream, toured a Ripley's Believe It or Not museum, played cards, and laughed a lot. It was quite a delightful little get-away!

Cool trivia fact for the next time you are on a gameshow: The game, Monopoly, was based off this very Boardwalk in Atlantic City. Cool, right? Also, this is the place where the first salt water taffy was discovered. Yum!

Monday, August 2, 2010

My Granny.

My Granny passed away on Sunday. She was ready to go, and has been for years. She was my mom's mom's mom and the most precious little lady. Although I didn't know her intimately well, I am grateful for her testimony of Christ and the commitment she had to take my grandmother to church as a child. Her eyes twinkled the way people's do when they are pure in heart and have a strong idea of who they are and where they came from. I have no doubt she is rejoicing with her loved ones who've passed on and singing praises to her Maker. I know she is happy. I know both because of what I know about Heaven and because of the sweet moments my mom has described of my grandmother and her's last few days together before she passed. I am so thankful for Heavenly Father's eternal plan of happiness and for the blessed opportunity we will all have to return to Him if we are righteous and choose to live his commandments. I look forward to an eternity of learning more about Granny and all my precious family members. Also, I booked my flight home to Texas for her funeral. Can't wait to see the fam :)