Monday, January 5, 2009


Ok, so I don't do well with change. I've got to be honest. This new blog template is freaking me out. :) But in honor of the upcoming Valentine's Day celebration, we'll give it a go for a bit. Hope everyone is getting ready for the love fest! :) To be honest, I've never been a huge fan of the holiday, and it's not because I'm bitter, or because Brian's a butthead--I'm not, and he's not. :) I just don't like the fact that everyone is walking around with these huge expectations of romance and giddiness, receiving gifts not necessarily because their lovey-dove wants to give them, but because if they don't they're toast--who or what can live up to that? :) (Pretty cynical sounding considering I'm a hopeless romantic...) ANYWAY, I do like certain parts of the holiday, like the candy...and the candy...and did I mention the candy? I also love ringing the doorbell, leaving a Valentine and running as fast as I can to a waiting car. The past few years me and my mom have delivered little Valentine stuffed animals to all the little kids in the ward. Sooooooo fun. Perhaps me and Brian will try some version of that...hmmmm. ANYWAY, the point is, get ready for Valentines everybody! And congratulations to Brian's brother Allen and his fiance Rachel...they'll be tying the knot on heart day, and we're excited!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Holiday Highlights

Happy New Year everyone!! We hope it's an amazing one! We can't believe 2008 is over, but we definitely ended it with a bang. We spent a couple weeks in Utah for Christmas, and had an amazing time. Here's a few of the many many highlights:

*Maybe this shouldn't be considered a highlight...just a happening. But Brian and I both came down with colds on the airplane ride out to Utah. Horrible timing. The good news is, we definitely got babied! My parents drugged us, and mentholated us, and nose-stripped was awesome! Now they'll just have to deal with the consequences: we're going out there whenever we come down with something! Thanks to their amazing care, we whipped the colds in about 4 days, and enjoyed the rest of our vacation. (I had to share this picture...because of it, Brian's been asked to star in the next big Hollywood blockbuster...his acting is just that good! :) he he he.)

*While we're talking about my parents babying us, we just have to say THANK YOU again. We were honestly spoiled rotten the whole trip. It started with our amazing new guest room (complete with a heated mattress and Christmas tree), and didn't stop the whole trip. Dinners, plays, amazing food, way too generous of gifts...they rolled out the red carpet, and we really really appreciate all they did. We had an amazing time!

*We found out my sister Carly is expecting a baby! (I figured since she's announced it on her blog, I'm not breaking any rules by bragging about it here.) Congratulations to her and Zach! Exciting times to come!!

*We went to Hale Center Theatre's Christmas Carol one night, and WOW. It was almost Broadway-esque. Nothing gets you in the Christmas spirit quite like that story. Even though the play itself was great, something even better happened during it: We were sitting there waiting for intermission to end, when Brian leaned over and said, "President Monson just walked in." I didn't believe him, and laughed. He assured me he was serious, and pointed a couple rows over. Sure enough, there was the Prophet. After the play, as we were standing in the hall, President Monson walked right by us. My dad said, "Hello President" and President Monson stopped and shook my dad's hand, and my two sisters' hands, commenting about what a wonderful show it was. What an incredible experience to be that close to a prophet of God, and see him in his "normal" day to day life. Being in his presence made me surer than ever that he is divinely guided. I'm so thankful to have prophets.

*Another spiritual high came when we went to Nan's annual Christmas party. The grandchildren always act out the nativity. This year it was extra special--Nan's been fighting cancer lately. Because of that, Pa sang his rendition of O Holy Night at the house as part of the program, instead of in sacrament meeting as usual. The whole experience was really touching. Gratitude for the Savior's birth and life surfaces stronger than ever when someone you love has a serious illness.

*Christmas lights at the Salt Lake Temple were beautiful, as always, even though they didn't have as many as usual this year. It was fun to be there for the first time since we were married there LAST YEAR! :) (Yes, we're now officially marriage pros people...if you need any advice, or encouragement, or anything marriage related, we are definitely your best bet. In fact, we'll be buying all the married couples we know marriage 'how to' books as a New Year's gift. Better yet, we'll be giving out copies of the book we're writing... ha ha ha ha ha ha. Riiiiiiiight. We ARE having fun with marriage eight months in, but purposely plan on keeping the "clueless newlyweds" title for a good loooooong while! )

*Can we say WHITE CHRISTMAS!!!!!!??? The week leading up to Christmas was filled with snow. Cute Brian and Meg volunteered to bundle up one night and shovel the and my mom could not get them back in the house! Brian kept saying, "This is AWESOME! I've never seen this much snow!"

Christmas day was the best of all. I woke up Brian, and we jumped on Meg in her bed (I'm so childish...I know...but I can't help it!). We opened the blinds to see a winter wonderland. The snow kept coming all day. Magical.

*One of my favorite things is giving gifts. I can hardly wait to give out presents I've bought on Christmas morning. So, our first married Christmas it was so fun to buy for Brian. I thought it would be hard, but once the ideas started, they wouldn't stop. Good thing we had a budget. Brian did an amazing job with my presents too. I would've been happy just spending Christmas with him (in all our years dating, we'd never been together on Christmas day!), but he gave me some amazing gifts to boot (Photoshop, Photoshop, Photoshop!! Hip hip hooray!). Here's a fun shot of our presents under the tree. Him and Meg wrapped mine in a blue theme, I did his in red and green.

*Spending time with family was definitely the biggest highlight. We loved just being around everyone, whether we were out to dinner, opening Christmas Eve jammies, playing Yahtzee, watching a Christmas movie, eating one of mom's amazing meals... whatever, as long as we were together. How blessed can a girl get? My family is the best ever.

Alas, all good things come to an end (except maybe this post)...the time flew, and before we knew it we were back on a plane (then a bus, then a train, then a bus... :)) headed home. But we took a lot of great memories with us. Now we're smack in the middle of celebrating a long New Year's weekend. Last night we were going to go to Old Town for festivities and fireworks to ring in the new year, but with a "real feel" of 11 degrees, we decided to have a movie and homemade chili fest instead. Our first New Years was spent sitting on the couch, watching the ball drop on TV and toasting with Pomegranate 7-up. How's THAT for a memory? :) Love it!