A time last year...

So, for those of you who don't know me, I love a few things in this life a little more than I love other things. Those things would be:

Making videos
Laughing
Friends
Being Random

Last year for my friend Baz's birthday, my dear pal Leslie and I made this video for Baz.  It consisted of us getting whatever we could find, writing down extremely random things on paper, and putting some tunes to it.

This is what came of it.  I haven't watched it in awhile so when I did I bursted out laughing because of its amazingness.  (yup...it's a word now).  AND, Leslie is coming into town this weekend and I hope that we will be able to make another video for another friend- here's to us in our pj's and bedhead!



video

Sometimes you need a little trust


Sometimes I wonder why each of us is given a different trial.  This question of "Why?" only goes through my head for about 5 seconds before the calming, reassurance of what I know to be true fills my heart and mind and then I just trust.  I trust in what I cannot see, but I know to be true. 

Sometimes I watch people in my life and wonder why they have to go through such hard times.  I wonder why them? Why do they have to struggle with not getting pregnant? Why did they have to lose a loved one? Why do they have low self-esteem? Why do some people have mental illnesses? Why do they have financial burdens? Why do they have to deal with what is right in front of them.  Every time I watch these people and ponder their lives, I am strengthened.  I am strengthened because I see how they deal with their situation.  I am strengthened because by seeing them deal, my faith grows and the question of "why" slowly disintegrates. 

There is this woman in my life. We will call her "Joanne" from here on out. This woman is the epitome of strength and goodness. She has been given some very hard times in her life, but especially in the last few years. I only slightly understood the deep despair she was going through until just recently. I was given a glimpse of her pain as she spoke to me about the trials that have been given to her. I have been able to feel the pain, anguish, embarrassment, frustration, longing, and confusion that lives within her every day.

This woman is my hero. She is strong when times are the toughest. She rarely ever lets her walls fall down, when for most every other human, their walls would've fallen down years ago. She truly understands the importance of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and of a Forever Family and she is willing to fight for it. Joanne is everything that is good, strong, faithful, unwavering, dedicated, loving, and kind. I barely understand what she is going through, but my heart goes out to her. It longs for her to know that I will be there for her every day. It longs for her to know that her loved ones (those that truly love and appreciate her) will never leave her side. No matter what might come in the next few months.

Joanne- I want you to know that I love you and care for you. I appreciate the friendship that has grown between us the last few years. You are a shining example of the Light of Christ. If I had to think of one word to describe you, I would pick Strong over anything else. I know hundreds of other people that would choose that same word for you. Please know that through watching you go through these hard times, my faith in my Heavenly Father and His plan has been strengthened. I don't know what will happen on this earth, but I do know that our Heavenly Father, our Loving Father, has a very specific plan for you and for your situation. Things will work out. They always do. Maybe not in the timeframe we need them to, but they do.

 

When my dad fell rock climbing and was life-flighted to the hospital, the only thing I could think to do was to kneel down and pray. I prayed that Nick and I would drive out safely to the hospital. I prayed that my dad would be alive. I prayed my heart out knowing that there was someone listening to me. The answer that came to me and continues to come to me since that day was, "Everything will be okay. Whether he lives or whether he dies, everything will be okay."

Joanne- Everything will be okay. I know that. Our Father knows that. Your family knows that. Just trust.

Love you

Elise

She Fell Into Our Laps...

Well guys.  The time has come. (Well about a month ago... actually, a month ago today to be exact).  But Andrew and I have become Dog people.  Yup! It's the truth! And we love it so much!
This is how it went down:
The week of November 10-19, Andy and I dog sat for my boss.  She has two little pugs and they were a lot of fun to look after.  My boss has them on a very strict schedule which includes 2 walks a day, treats for every occassion, and them sleeping right under the sheets with you!
Needless to say, after a week and a half, I was 100% not ready for a dog in my life!  It was just too much responsibility I guess! 
The night of the 20th we were out to dinner with Dave and Lara and we were talking about how dogs really are a time commitment and I flat out said I didn't want a dog for a couple more years!  After dinner we went over to their apartment to change to go the temple and as we were walking out to our cars, there was a girl there walking a little puppy.  A little Weimaraner to be exact...  Andy's dream dog to be exact... 
So Andrew strikes up a conversation and we come to find out that she is selling these little puppies for about $250 a pop.  So Andy said goodbye and just slowly walked away with his head hung low.  I told him he should at least go get the girls number and that we could think about it- That was all he needed to hear because before I finished my sentence, he had already ran after the girl!  (Come to find out, the girl was leaving for Montana the next morning so she needed to sell them that night... That placed a little bit more urgency on our deciding.)
Well, I didn't care either way (which is surprising because 45 minutes before I was pretty darn sure I didn't want one.  But I also knew that Andy has wanted that dog all of his life, so I think that's what helped soften my heart!) We went to the temple and had a great time and then afterwards we were walking out and we decided we were going to go through with becoming Dog People. 
We called the girl up, bargained a bit, drove down to some small little town close to Nephi, and picked up our cute little puppy! She was so scared the whole drive home and sat in Andy's lap and just shook all night long!
We spent the next day and a half trying to think of a name.  We wanted something to do with Alberta, Canada since that was where Andy and I met.  After a billion names thrown out there (like Wild Rose, Banff, Chinook, etc.(and clearly none of those would've worked!)) my mom finally texted me with the name of Albie.  We loved it, it fits her perfect, and it has stuck! And we are happy.

So here is to a long time ahead of us with our cute little pup!


Another Post About My Bestie…


I'm sure many of you (or the 2 people that read my blog) are sick of how I always put a plug in there about my Bestie. But when it comes to Besties, I think I have the very best one… just sayin.
Exhibit A:
  • I went on a cruise last week for work and I was so stressed out because our house looked like complete Pandamonium (you know… when a panda goes through the rooms and destroys everything in sight?? (Thanks Baz)). Well, the Panda had come and gone and left our house a complete disaster. Well Bestie knew this stressed me out and so when I arrived in Miami, I was greeted by a video message of him showing me our shining house in all of its clean glory! I cried. Just a little. But I cried.
Exhibit B:
  • While on said cruise, Bestie called my phone every day and left me a sweet message for me to listen to when I finally had service. It was quite tough to be gone from him and Albie for a whole week! But I guess if I had to be somewhere without them, the Western Caribbean is the place to be! J
Exhibit C:
  • So Wednesday I was home sick (I know, I know… I'm olways sick… it's as frustrating to me as it is to you to hear about it…) BUT, I was home sick and Andy had just gotten done with his finals. I sat on the couch looking like a dead zombie before he told me to turn on a movie and just relax. The Sandlot it was. I was knocked out on the ground within 4 minutes of watching said show only to be awakened 2 hours later after the movie was over. What was I awakened too you might ask? You guessed it! Bestie had cleaned our whole house again (and I'm talking about guest room, kitchen, front entryway, table, etc.) All he was waiting to do was for me to wake up so he could vacuum.
Question: Could Bestie get any better?! I really don't think so. PLUS, he took me on an awesome date last night to Bed, Bath, and Beyond where we frolicked through the aisles and spent some of our last wedding money while we pretended like we were on a Game Show! Oh happy day!
this is how the day's gone so far:
*Woke up and stared at the ceiling for about 20 minutes.
*Gave Andy a head massage... awkward?? I say nay- I did it as an act of love.
*Walked the dogs.
*Closed the shower curtain before I got in only to see a spider the size of a quarter smack dab on the outside of the curtain.  Me=Frozen/paralyzed for about 4.3 minutes while I contemplated how I would accomplish the killing of said spider.  Grabbed the shower head while the water was off, aimed the shower head at the spider, turned on the water and screamed.  Got the bathroom more than a little wet, but luckily watched as the spider curled into a ball of unconsciousness and sailed right down the drain!
*Got ready and styled my new hair-do! I'm in love! :)
*Drove to work, walked into work and saw a women with a sock on her shoulder.  I had that moment where I didn't know whether to say something or to just pretend I never saw it.  I chose the noble route and let her know of the potentially embarrassing situation that might have happened.  
*Spoke to my friend Amanda at work while we discussed some prizes that we will be giving away for a certain contest- Amanda is going to give out a 47" Vizio Flat Screen TV- In my amazement and excitement, I combined the statements of "Holy Cow!" and "47" and ended up saying, "Holy Kevin!" random, I know, but funny nonetheless.
*Now I am sitting listening to my ipod do a little shuffling while working my little tail off (despite the fact that I am blogging at work) so that I can go have a wonderful weekend with Andrew. (Whom I love dearly and am grateful for every day and I know he will be there for me olways.)

now... back to that work thing...

New kids on the block

Wow.  I am inspired/frustrated/tired/unmotivated/motivated about so many things right now! I will now proceed to tell you what has been bogging my mind right now:

Inspired
*April Smith and the Great Picture Show- New obsession of mu-sak.  Makes me tap my toe and brings a big 6-year-old grin to my face. 
*Thanks to my girl Jessi, I have now become obsessed with this little chica from TheDaybook blog. Seriously so inspiring- I even tried my hair like hers today (thanks to her tutorial) and I'm in love with it.  I am inspired by her blog that is read by thousands and how strong her testimony is of her beliefs. 
Good on ya Syd!
*I bought this book from Better Homes (or something of the like) called "The New Decorating Book" (I could  have just made that title up) and it's the greatest!  I feel so inspired to go home and decorate my whole house according to my internal color pallette!
*Sisterscafe is all I have to say.  So many of you know how much I adore am obsessed with this blog! I have cooked some pretty amazing treaties for me, the man, and the family! Thanks to my Sisterscafe
 (I sometimes feel like I really am related to them)
*Makeit-Loveit.com.  Wow.  this girl is great and she creates the cutest things for her home! She recovered a flat paneled clock that I want to recreate for my guest bathroom...
I sense some design inspiration coming to me!
*Biggest Loser.  I don't think I have to say anymore about this, except for the fact that if you are not watching this, you need to.  Seriously.  I cry everytime they lose a pound, or break through one of their trials, when they eat a cupcake and then feel bad about it, or even if they just smile at the camera.  Andy's Aunt and Uncle's fam got me hooked and I now consider the cast of Biggest Loser to be some of my besties.  (Oh and just to throw it out there- you should probably be watching Modern Family also=my fave.)
*I came across a wedding video website that has completely FLIPPED my whole world upside down with amazingness. No seriously- it's all I think about and dream about.  I have to thank my biggest supporter (Andy of course) because he is helping my dream of becoming a wedding videographer come true! Seriously.  Look out Utah because this missy has something great that is about to pop out of her sleeve!!
Frustrated
*I was trying to play one of my new fave songs by April Smith and my computer wouldn't work... but now it is and I listened to it 10 times in a row.  So now I am not frustrated anymore... thanks April. And computer.

Tired
*Andy and I are housesitting/dog watching two of the most high maintenance pups in the whole world
(that is an exagerration, but they still are very H.M.)
*They love to sleep in the bed with you, on you, under the covers, on your bladder, cuddled in the nook of your arm in all their snoring glory.  Wow.  Good thing I love dogs!  This is good birth control, but it is making me want to get a dog of my own.  I could be a dog person! I can see it now...

Unmotivated
*Have I ever told any of you how much I love my job? I really really do and I feel so blessed to have the opportunity to work for USANA Health Sciences.  (It was a big blessing that was dropped straight out of heaven right into mine and Andy's laps. I constantly am thanking the Big Man upstairs- Seriously.)
*With that being said, I have about 2% motivation right now.  In my defense, I am waiting on a bunch of people to get stuff to me so I can send stuff out and complete my tasks so now I just wait.... and wait.... and wait.... and read TheDaybook.... and study wedding videos.... and wait... (mixed in with the work that I can get down while I am waiting).  (Oh and my work is taking me plus 90 contest winners on a cruise to the Western Caribbean! Wahoo- cannot wait for my departure on Dec. 4th. 
Hot sun, swimsuits, and ocean... here I come!
 I'm sure I could do without the swimsuits part due to the lack of exercise in the last 6 months... oh well! Bring it on!)
Motivated
*Because of my new obsession with so many great blogs and books, I have so much motivation to do so many great things in my life! I want to be crafty in every way.  I have realized in my desire for motivation, that a lot of those things take money.  So I am slowly working on accomplishing what I can.  A new camera for the videography is coming very shortly and I couldn't be more excited! Hallelujah for Black Friday!
 (fingers crossed!)


This is the beaut.  But the A33 is cheaper so that's what we will go for.
Sony has the greatest video capability out of all of the DSLR's.  I think we will work well together!  

This is me.  This is what has been swirling around in my brain the last couple of days.  (I had to finally have one of those Dumbledore moments where he puts his wand to the temple of his brain and then slowly pulls out his memories and places it in the big pool of other memories... or pensieve as the sophisticated people call it) So thank you for listening and from now on you can call me Headmaster.


Farewell and Happy Veteran’s Day

Oh and a special thank you and shout out to my cousin who is serving our Country over seas at this very moment! Love you Eric!!


                                   

Sleeping in Bed with a 50 year old woman...

So I flew to South Carolina this past week to visit my brother, sis-in-law, and nephy Judah and it was a trip of a lifetime! It was so relaxing to get away for the stresses of life, be able to walk on the beach every morning, go paddle boarding, go on bike rides, hang out with the family, and not worry about one single thing! It was a long needed vacation!
Craig and Em live on Hilton Head Island and it is gorgeous! It reminded me so much of being in Hawaii, but then you would see deer and pine trees (right next to the palm trees and alligators!) What a great great place!
I will post more about it later when I get pictures to put up, but let's just say that the trip was a total success!

Throughout my travels to and from Hilton Head, we had to stop in the Atlanta airport.  Normally, I get off the plane, sit at the next terminal and wait for the next plane to leave, thinking only about my bed at the end of all the traveling.  But at the Atlanta airport, my mind is flooded with memories of one crazy night! I promised myself I needed to come home and blog about this because I feel as though the world needs to know this story!

Two years ago, my mom and I flew out to Washington D.C. to visit Craig and Emily (who lived there for work) during her UEA and my Fall Break.  My mom bought a ticket and I decided to borrow one of my Aunt's buddy passes (who doesn't like to fly for cheap?!)  We got there on Wednesday of my Fall Break and had a blast exploring the city! That is one of my favorite places to visit! There is so much to do and it is all free! So we spent about 3 1/2 busy days exploring every nook and crany of the city before we had to leave on Sunday. 

Before I continue on, it needs to be said that my mom and aunt were watching the flights for me all day Saturday, and Saturday night looked very very grim for me.  It didn't look like I would be able to make the flight with my mom, but I packed up my stuff anyway and hoped for the best!

Sunday morning came along and my Aunt Mary called and said there was no possible way that I could make it on to that mornings flight with my mom.  So we ended up taking her to airport and then I came back and spent one more awesome day with Craig and Em! I wasn't complaining... (except for the fact that I had a test in my Gender Communications class early on Monday morning (side note: What professor schedules a test the day AFTER Fall Break? Lame-O!) So I emailed Jamie (my totally awesome prof who was from Canada!) and told him about my situation.  He said that I could come in early Tuesday morning and take it.)

So this would all be okay if I were to get on the plane Monday afternoon. So Emily comes, drops me off, and I have to sit and wait and stare at the screen that slowly lets you know if your name has been approved for boarding.  (Similar to this screen except names are on it...)

(So for all of those that don't know much about Buddy Passes, I need to let you know that I was at the bottom of the totem pole! Since I was a niece of my aunt, I didn't have ANY priority- so I could only get on if it was wide open!)  I spent about 1 1/2 hours just waiting.  I had the pleasure to see my bestie's mom, Jody, waiting for the same flight.  Unforunately, since she is the daughter of a pilot, she got right now! Bye Jody! I'll just sit here and wait my life away and stress about missing my test the next morning.  (I guess I should mention that I was starting my first day of work at Cowboy Grub on Tuesday Afternoon too.  Couldn't miss that! They would not be impressed!)


So I went and sat down and started working on my computer.  This kid came and sat next to me and since I had been home from my mission for about 2 months, my friendly missionary skills were still intact! (where did those go by the way... :) ). So I struck up a conversation and came to find out that he, Jordan, was traveling back from visiting his mission in Portugal and had been stuck in the airport without a shower for about 2 1/2 days.  Those darn buddy passes can really suck sometimes!

So I felt comfortable enough to trust him- two return missionaries just trying to get home! So we went and spoke with some travel agent peeps and finally they told us they could get us onto a flight from D.C. to Atlanta and then we could go from Atlanta to Utah.  It looked promising, so we jumped on it!

Fast Forward a couple hours: We land in Atlanta, unboard, and then go look at the numbers for the flight from Atlanta to Utah.  The numbers looked very bleak! There were about 91 people that were waiting to do stand-by from Atlanta to Utah.  NINETY-ONE!! Are you serious?! So we hear this and our hearts sink about 2.4 inches.  Now what?!

So we sat in the chairs and just contemplated.  We started talking to this woman named Glady's, who is originally from Honduras, and her son Jimmy.  Apparently they were trying to get back to Alaska, but were seasoned veterans in the Buddy Pass Department.  They had been stuck in Atlanta so many times that they knew their favorite cheap hotel and they were on their way to go there for the night! (At this point there was no hope to get a flight out that night... we would wait until the morning!) 

As Glady's and Jimmy get up to go, I asked if I could follow them and get on the same shuttle to the same hotel.  They of course said yes, and Jordan said he would come along to keep me company.  (Remember people: I felt comfortable in this situation.  I, the queen of paranoia, or Paranoid Polly as Andy calls me, felt comfortable to go with these people. So I went.)

On the shuttle over there, we got to know Glady's and Jimmy and they were such sweet people! The Shuttle driver was a fantastic man who was trying to flirt with me and was convinced that I would be the President of the United States.  Apparently he didn't know that I know little to nothing about Politics... too bad! So as we were driving over, Glady's asked Jordan and I if we just wanted to share a room with her and her son.  It would save us some money and... yup.  That was the only perk in this situation!

I jumped on that again! (I don't know what had gotten into me... maybe it was still my friendly missionary skills).  I'm assuming that there are some of you that would read this part and just think that I was crazy.  I'm sure there are some of you that would rather sleep in the corner of the Atlanta Airport then share a room with 3 complete strangers.  I think in any other situation, I would have one of those attitudes.  But for some reason, this was not one of those times!

We check in to this beauty:


 Make our way up to our room, and then we start to work on getting flights worked out for the morning.  I emailed Jamie one more time and asked him if I could come in later to take the test.  He responded and said that was fine but then pretty much called me stupid to use a buddy pass over Fall Break and he thought that was irresponsible. Sorry Jamie.  It is the way it is!  My mom and I decided that in order to get back to take that test and get to work that we would end up paying for a ticket- $600 later, I had a flight booked for Tuesday morning.  (We should've just bought a roundtrip ticket in the first place! Oh well- if we did, then I wouldn't have experienced the greatest story of my life!)

Jordan showered, Jimmy and Glady's booked a flight for the next day as well and by that point it was about 1:30 in the AM.  We had to get up in about 4 1/2 hours- Tough.  Luckily, Glady's suggested I sleep in the same bed as her and that Jordan and Jimmy slept in the same bed. (I'm sure that was more uncomfortable for the two boys than it was for me!)

Everyone had climbed into bed and I spent a couple minutes on blessed Facebook to broadcast to everyone where I was, what I was doing, and who I was about to sleep with! I got some great comments back from friends and then I decided I should go to bed.  I turned off my computer and slowly slid between the cold sheets of the Atlanta EconoLodge.  I lay there in bed staring at the ceiling and laughing so hard inside about my situation! I would try to fall asleep but then I would envision my sleeping next to Glady's and then I would wake up.  I would look over and Glady's face was about 3 inches away from me.  "Perfect. Absolutely perfect! I'm in bed with a 50 year old woman from Honduras! Blessed Day! hahahahahaha.  I cannot believe this is happening to me!" All of this just kept running through my head.  So great!

4 1/2 hours flew by and before I knew it, it was time to get up to get us to the airport.  We were all getting ready together- talking very minimally, I'm sure!

 *Timeout*

 I truly do believe that I was placed in the paths of these people for my safety and well being.  I never once felt nervous and I actually felt quite peaceful.  The next morning as I was packing my stuff, I decided to read out of my "pass-a-long" Book of Mormon.  As I was reading, I got the strongest impression that I needed to give it to Gladys and Jimmy.  So I wrote my testimony in it, gave them some passages to read, and then I started to explain it to them, there in our joint room at the Econo Lodge.  Both of them said they have friends that are LDS, and that missionaries had actually come to Glady's door but they didn't speak Spanish so nothing came of it but that she was always interested in what they had to say! Anyways, we had a great discussion about the Book fo Mormon and Jimmy seemed really excited about it. 

Now if anything came of me giving them a Book of Mormon, I don't know.  I didn't know how to reach them.  But I believe that I went through this "Great" ordeal to be placed in the path of Jimmy and Gladys to give them a Book of Mormon.  I know that God works in very mysterious ways, and I guess that way was for me to end up stuck in airports and sharing an Econo Lodge Guest Room with 3 wonderful strangers!

I will never forget my Honduran "Mother" that helped me feel comfortable to sleep in the same bed as her when I was all alone in a scary town! :)

The End.



A True Friend

"A true friend is someone who makes it easier to live the gospel of Jesus Christ."

-Malcolm S. Jeppsen, “Who Is a True Friend?,” Ensign, May 1990, 44

Update of the Life

Well, it's been a VERY long time since the last time I posted- I have just been so incredibly busy that it has been the last thing on my mind! Just a little update, Andy is back in school, I just finished the USANA International Convention (Where Andy came to help so that was great!), updating the house a little at a time (takes more money than we are comfortable in spending all at once!), recuperating from the Convention (I'm pretty sure my body was beat up that week- working 80 hours on my feet all week will do that to me!), and just loving life with my handsome man!
I do want to thank Andy publicly for being so amazing.  I have been sick the past couple of days (no surprise to a lot of you!), but on Friday he set up a whole bubble bath for me- the bubble bath, the candles, the lighting, etc.  Everything! He just made it perfect for me! Last night I woke up at 3:00 am and was WIDE awake- I read Tehmi Tolbert's blog for awhile (thanks for going public again!) and then Andy finally woke up at about 3:45.  I was intently reading the blog when I felt a gentle finger on my face taking my hair out of my face.  He then started to tickle my back and this is a HUGE thing to get him to do when he was wide awake, but he was worried about me and stayed up with me until I decided to leave the room. I then watched "Say Yes to the Dress" for about an hour until I lulled myself to sleep.
Tim McGraw concert- July 2010. 
BASICALLY, all I am trying to say is that I feel so so lucky and fortunate to have such a caring person in my life.  Seriously- I tries to act all tough, but he is so caring and will do anything for me.  I know that 100%.  Thanks Andrew for always being a support for me- We're in this for the eternities!
May 2009- Graduation from the University of Utah

Beaches of Cancun- most amazing Honeymoon ever! :)

When You Got a Good Thing

I have felt so impressed these past couple of weeks to mention how grateful I am for all of my wonderful, wonderful friends.  I feel so blessed to be surrounded by such AMAZING people! Throughout my life God has placed people in my life at the exact moment that I have needed them and I feel blessed to say that I have stayed close friends with so many of them!
From EFY counselor friends, high school friends, college friends (Chi Omega, Sigma, roommates, groups of friends), work friends, mission friends (Companions, members from Canada, etc), etc- I feel so blessed!
A couple weeks ago, my friend Lauren Murakami (from Chi Omega) got married and I was able to attend her wedding.  From the second I got there, I saw so many familiar faces that I hadn't seen in forever! Tom Raynor, Jen Friedel, Angie Nielson, Sarah Reale, and so many more friends- they were everywhere! (And not to mention that my good friend Baz came a long with me and I am so so grateful for her in my life! She keeps me strong!)  That night we went to the reception and I just was going to run in and run out since Baz was with me.  Once we got inside, I didn't want to leave! Girls that I hadn't seen in about 4 years were there and it seemed like no time had passed at all.  Girls that I wasn't even really close with seemed like such long time friends.  I remember talking to Angie out in the parking lot and getting an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my lifetime friends of Chi Omega.  It's so great to know that even when you go on a mission, move to another University, and get married, I will still have a huge set of girlfriends that will always support me.  (And let's not forget how so many of them supported me on my wedding day! I literally wanted to cry with happiness when I saw their faces in the line! CHI-O forever! :) ).
What a great group of girls! (I realized after this that it was the middle of July and I had sat out in the sun one day back in May during the whole summer- time to hit the pool!)

My wedding- Thanks girls for coming!!

Nothing better than a Onsie Chi-O Christmas!
One of many Dinner Clubs

Around the same time I got an invite to go to Spencer Nelson's surprise birthday party- oh my was I so excited and so grateful for the invite! It had been a LONG time since I had seen all of my old Utah State buddies- It's hard when everyone runs off and gets married and then you are left a lone wolf standing in an open field! HA- (Don't know where that came from!)  But seriously- when Karly asked me if I wanted to go I was so excited! I was excited for Andy to meet all these great/crazy people! We showed up and it was like no time had passed (except that there were little children running and crawling everywhere!)- Chad and John were their usual quirky selves, Spencer was so outgoing like usual, and all the other guys were cooks! And I can't leave out my girls- my girls are wonderful! Seriously- It was so great to spend time with everyone!

Just the greatest group of people ever! All of them added so much to my great experience at Utah State!

Karly and I as crazed basketball fans!

Our first of many S.O.'s (Sleep Over (Which always ended with everyone going home at about 3 AM)) We had an agenda (which included painting rocks and Chauri giving us a presentation on how Alaska is different than Utah), and then we did face masks- the guys only of course!
So much fun- Go Aggie Football!
Spring Break in Mexico- nothing beats 18 people crammed into a 2 bedroom house! (Oh and we didn't have reservations- We dropped Brett off in the middle of downtown and he searched out a man that rented the place to them the last year- everyone led him right to the bar where Brett did his thing and the man let us use his place!)
Just a little Utah State Birthday Party!
... and John Neil... In all his glory!

I am grateful to our friends Dave and Lara- who would've thought that two sets of best friends from the Canada Calgary Mission would go home and marry each other and create the perfect dynamic for a friendship to grow.  Dave and Andy are so much a like and are giddy little boys when they are together. Lara and I are able to be there for each other when times get rough and be each other's bestie's!  Every little girls dream is for you and your best friend to marry best friends and then live next door to each other forever- who would've thought that this would happen?! (Dave and Lara just put an offer on a condo in a near by complex- it would be so so nice to have them so close by!) Thanks Dave and Lara for being answers to mine and Andy's prayers!
The week before Andy and I got engaged- we all went out to breakfast with Alicia before she left on her mission.
USANA Lagoon Day!

(Most of )All of my best mission friends together!! (I am also very very grateful for Jered and Mariah and I can't wait for them to move back to Utah so we can hang out!)

Some friends and myself have felt inspired to start doing Personal Progress again- I know, I know.  I bet some of you think we are crazy for doing that over again! But let me tell you- such a blessing in our lives! Seriously! We have a blog where we share our ups and downs and our spiritual insights- it is such a great place for us to come together and inspire each other and help each other through our trials.  We are starting to get together once a month (over dinner or going to the temple) and it is so much fun.  This past month we went to dinner- Janna, Chelsea, Lara, and myself.  We had such a blast talking about pretty much everything but sharing our testimonies throughout the night. I feel so blessed to be surrounded with such amazing, inspiring girls.

Chelsea, me, Janna, and Lara- Such a fun fun night!

Because of putting such an emphasis on the Gospel, my relationships with everyone has increased with an abundance of love.  The #1 person being Andy.  I cannot tell you how amazed we are after each day goes by and we recognize His hand in our lives so much.  We have put Family Home Evening and Scripture Study a #1 in our relationship and we are reeping all the benefits! We are more patient with each other, we support each other, we love each other so much more it seems! Elder Hinckley told us at our sealing that we should always be worthy of a temple recommend and to go as often as possible.  We slacked there for awhile and things weren't going our way! We would just complain about things going on, we got stressed out easier, etc.  But after we spent time serving the Lord, He is helping us out in our lives- we can feel it!

March 12, 2010- Best Day of Our Lives! We got a good thing!

Today I got online and read my friend Elizabeth's blog.  She is going through a pretty hard time and I just pray that she will have the courage to stand strong in her life.  She said that she had stumbled across a blog that made her so much more grateful to be a mother. I decided to click on the link and my life has changed.  This blog belongs to two complete strangers but my heart goes out to them.  The pictures of them and their beautiful daughter caught my attention right off the bat.  The blog sucked me in as I read of how in a matter of a week, their life had completely changed.  I marvel at their strength and testimony.  Reading this blog brought back a ton of memories from when my dad was in the hospital for about 1 1/2 months due to a rock climbing fall.  Reading this blog has made me grateful for my husband, my family, my friends, and my life. 
I want to thank everyone that has played a part in my life.  I know that I wouldn't be where I am today if it wasn't for you. 
Lady Antebellum said it right when they said "Oh there's going to be some ups and downs but with you to wrap my arms around I'm fine.  Baby hold me tight, don't let go, hold on to the love we are making, cause baby when the ground starts shaking, You gotta know when you got a good thing."
I am so aware that I have a good thing (All of you).  Thank you again-
And I need to give a shout out to other people that have changed my life!
My amazing sisters and friends
SIGMA SISTERS!!!
EFY Friends- I had one of the best summers with them!
Back in 20 D there were two amazing guys that lived above us in 20 F- Skyler and Kevin have played such a great role in my life, introduced my to some amazing people, stayed such great friends, and I have just loved all of them so much! (Strong, Jordy, Rhett, Coy, Tyler, just everyone!) This picture is of us in Lake Powell last year- Butch was not included in this picture, but Butch made the trip!
Here is Butch in all his glory- we probably showed him the best time of his life down there in Powell! (Him and his Wolf'ems)
Amanda singing the National Anthem at Block Party: The Monistat Invitational... bah.
The Crew
Mission Besties! Oh my- I love these girls so so much!
Just a huge misunderstanding... and hearts were broken...
Mission Reunion- So great!
And Kaylee- the BEST MTC Roommate ANYONE could ask for!
And I love this picture of Jessi- I don't have a picture of her and me on my computer, so this will have to do until I get one! Jessi was sent from heaven straight to my Gender Communications class at my first day of the University of Utah.  What an angel she has been in my life and I am so so happy for her and her life!
I love all these people so much!! I need to give a shout out to Sanders for making the drive from Canada down to our wedding- what a stud! And Erika was one of the best roommates ever- probably the most spiritual person ever!! And can't leave out Carly- my new seester! She is so great to me and has made me feel like I have always been apart of their family!!
All in all, I love everyone- and unfortunately I don't have pictures of everyone! (Like last night I went to such a fun Baby shower with Brighton, Kate, Hilary, Shannon, and Jen- I love them but I don't have pictures!! Someday!)
Please know that I am so aware that I have a good thing- I have hundreds and hundreds of good things in my life! I love you all!!

Motherhood: An Eternal Partnership with God

This makes me want to be a mother!! Don't worry friends- I won't be jumping the gun because of some very moving words by Elder Holland, but it is very comforting to hear these words. Sometimes I worry that I won't be able to do it! It is so nice to know that even when I am working a full time job, I can still rely heavily on my Heavenly Father and He will help me make it through so that we can support our family. In time, these blessings will come into my life. Until then, I need to do everything I can to strengthen my testimony so that when God sends little ones to me, I will be ready to teach them the ways of the Lord.

"Motherhood is an eternal partnership with our Heavenly Father"

Colorado

Two weekends ago we went to Colorado for my cousin Andrew's homecoming.  I have been talking up Colorado to Andrew forever so I am so glad that we were able to go see it! On the way there we drove late in the night through the Wyoming way- nothing too exciting.  But on the way home, I made sure that we went through the mountains, through all the big ski resorts and everything- good thing I did because Andrew FELL in LOVE with it!! Someday, we will move there, or have our 5th home there :) and we can just ski all day, and he can fly fish in the summers! It will be perfect!

So we got there at 3 in the morning on Saturday morning.  We woke up at about 9:30, and the day was JAM PACKED with fun-ness from the beginning! Andrew was swept away to go play Basketball with all the cousins, while I stayed home and layed on the massaging bed for a good hour and then got in the steam shower! It was like I was at the spa- all I needed was someone to give me a facial, and mani and pedi and the morning would've been complete!

After that, we watched the US soccer game (bummer they lost) and then we were swept away for boating! I love, LUF boating! It is one of my most favorite things! My calf's had horrible charlie horses in them, so I stayed on the boat and watched the boys go- it was a good time! Andrew went surfing and got up on his first try- I was so proud of him! What a hottie! :)

With the cousins
Nick and Christian
Chris was flexing his arms and legs for this picture!
There he is! What a stud!
Just chillin on the boat!

Once we got home, my aunt and uncle had reserved a court to play walleyball (don't know how to spell it!) so we rushed over there and played Walleyball for about an hour and a half! It is not a good idea to get about 25 people in the same small room that carries echoes like nothing else! Trying to organize that game was a nightmare, but once we started playing, our team was dominating so it was so worh it! The underdogs came out on top!

We went home, had dinner and dessert, and then we played catch phrase! Seriously- when you are with the Holmes, you never EVER stop going! It is just one thing after the next, but it is so much fun!

On Sunday we went and heard Andrew speak, see Scott get the Melchizedek Priesthood, raced home and ate dinner and then we hit the road! Our two day adventure felt like a five day vacation because of all the stuff packed into it!

I love Colorado and I wouldn't mind living there someday!