Recent Happenings

So a lot has happened since our last post:

1. Mapleton Track and Field won the district championship meet! It was a blast to coach such a great group of kids. I can't wait to coach them again next year!

2. Brett and his fellow BYU brethren brought home another conference championship!

3. Brett and I both got teaching jobs! I will be teaching 8th grade English at Mapleton Junior High and Brett will be a Special Education TA at Reagan Academy. We feel so blessed that the two jobs I took this spring lead to two amazing opportunities for both of us! It was a rough few months there, but we know now it was all worth it.

4. We are moving out of our place in Provo to a basement apartment of an adorable home in Mapleton (2 minutes from my school!) We make the move on June 26th!

5. We went on an incredible trip to Montreal over Memorial Day weekend. Brett served an LDS mission there for two years. It was amazing to walk the streets he walked and experience the wonderful goodness of poutine, the metro, Haitian food, beaver tails, etc. We'll be posting a more in depth blog about the trip but here are a few pics for your viewing pleasure. (Click here to view our facebook photo album from the trip.)

6. My brother Mike and his cute little family are moving to Salt Lake City from Mesa Arizona next week. We are so excited that they are going to be so close! Katie got a job at Wells Fargo and Mike will be focusing on his photography business Eli Mac Photography.


Man vs. Two Women

So, Haley went to work this morning and I was to go shopping. Last night we went over a list of things to buy at the store formerly known as Albertsons because they had a sale starting this morning. Haley's favorite kind of chocolate chips that are usually $2.50 for one bag were on sale for 98 cents a bag! Haley instructed me to buy 10 bags, enough to make her incredible chocolate chip oatmeal cookies for months.

I went to the store at 8:45 am and the shelf was almost barren! There I see a lady in her thirties with who I assume was her mother hoarding what was left. The ad said you can only buy 6 per customer. Well, these little deviants had a system of one lady grabbing six, going through the self-checkout station and running to the car to drop them off, then returning for more. So, as I'm standing there watching, I realize that there is only one more box at the far end. I remembered how much Haley LOVES those chocolate chips and I knew I couldn't fail her.

The women looked at me with a gaze of curiosity. Then I lunged forward and took the whole box!! Then their gaze became one of disgust and honestly a little angry. They obviously knew I couldn't buy all twelve in the box, so they waited to see what I would do with the six extra bags. "Well," I thought, "two can play at this game."

So I continued shopping, then I found myself in the domestic area of the store. Nobody was around so I moved a big section of napkins for sale, stashed 6 of the bags, returned the napkins to their proper place and headed for the check-out. Sure enough, the women were still in the area. If they were men I would have worried they would jump me with the way they were looking at me. I bought my six bags, dropped off my chips in the car, then went back for more! I entered the store, bee-lined it to the napkins, snagged my other six bags and returned to the check-out area to rub it in the faces of those women.

So, I bought twelve bags of Guittard Milk Chocolate Chips for my wife and I'm pretty sure I seriously offended two women in the process. Ha! The joke is on them for trying to hoard all the chocolate chips.


Looking beyond the flaws...

Here is my usual bedtime ritual:

I brush my teeth, I may or may not floss, I wash my face with cetaphil, and I remove my contacts. I lean forward closer and closer to the mirror (because I'm blind without my contacts) and then, turning my head slowly from one side to the other, I examine my face for any little zit, flaw, red mark, etc. I may pick at a scab on my chin, pluck a few stray hairs from between my eyebrows, and squeeze a white head or two. I turn out the bathroom light, close the door, and head to bed.

Last night, somewhere between clawing at that scab on my chin and and prodding my face with my fingers in search of zits, I paused for a moment. I realized that although I was looking at myself, I wasn't really looking at myself. I was looking my flaws, each and every one of them.

I saw the big red mark on my chin, I saw the annoying scar on my cheek, I saw the peach fuzz, the stray hairs and the crooked teeth. What I wasn't seeing was me. The big picture. Beautiful, lovely, me.

So many times we focus on the flaws. We focus on the zit, the scab, the scar, the extra 5 pounds, the stretch mark, the wrinkle. Likewise, we focus on the one thing during the day that didn't go our way; the flat tire, the menstrual cramps, the broken dish, the stain on the carpet, the gossiping neighbor, the messy kid, the argument, the leaky pipe, the empty bank account, or the bad grade.

I am guilty of turning out that bathroom light without ever seeing the big picture. I pick at all my flaws and I don't bother to step back and really look at myself. I don't bother to see the the dusting of freckles across the bridge of my cute button nose, or the way my eyes crinkle up when I smile. I'm guilty of sometimes ending my day in a bad mood, laying in bed reliving each annoying experience while simultaneously laying right there beside the greatest blessing in my life, Brett. I am guilty of often forgetting that those little flaws in my days, as annoying as frustrating as they can be, can't even compare to the wonderful people and experiences that enrich my life daily.

Tonight, during your bedtime ritual, take some time away from scrutinizing the flaws of your face and the low points of your day.

Don't forget to look at the whole you: wonderful, beautiful, lovely you.


My Best Friend

This Easter, I've been thinking a lot about my best friend.

If you don't know Him yet, you should meet Him. He already knows and loves you. He is your big brother, your advocate, your friend, your companion, and your savior.

His name is Jesus Christ.


Holi Festival of Colors

On Saturday Brett and I went to Holi Festival of Colors in Spanish Fork. Holi is a spring festival that is celebrated by the Hindus and Sikhs. During the festival there are bonfires, music, traditional dancing, and then the throwing of colors. This is definitely the most fun I've ever had celebrating the arrival of spring. Even Brett (who isn't a huge fan of getting messy) had an absolute blast. It was amazing to see the juxtaposition between the Indian architecture of the Krishna Temple and the snow capped rocky mountains.

Here's a video of the fun we had this year! You wouldn't believe how many people were there and how colorful everyone gets.


My favorite phenoms' road to a new name

So, here I sit. Haley suggested that I write a post on our blog tonight and I accepted. I was contemplating about writing about what will happen to me in nine hours....some random person will yank four teeth from my mouth while I'm not even unconscious! But then I came to my senses and realized that if I don't even want to write about it, even fewer people will want to read about it.

Perhaps what interests me will interest you. hmmmm.?

I've always been entranced by Shania Twain, Faith Hill, and now....Lady Gaga??? Now, let's get something straight, I love country music and old school rock songs. I am not in love with new age type music. So the fact that for some reason I find Lady Gaga's music rather addicting will remain a secret.

So, here is what interests me. These obviously aren't their real names, so how did they stumble into them?

Shania Twain was born Eilleen Regina Edwards but took her Native American stepfather's last name of Twain at the age of 9. When she was 26 she signed a record deal with Mercury records and changed her name to "Shania." It means "I'm on my way" in Ojibwa, the language of her stepfather.

Faith Hill was born and quickly adopted by the Perry family. She was Audrey Faith Perry. Her first marriage was to a man named Daniel Hill and it lasted six years. She kept the last name but always went by "Faith," her middle name.

Our most recent phenom, Lady Gaga was born Stefani Germanotta but her producer compared her voice to that of Freddy Mercury, the lead singer of Queen. Her producer said she would be as popular as Queen's hit song, "Radio Ga Ga." While texting those words to Stefani it was autocorrected to "Lady Gaga" and it became her moniker.

I've always wanted a stage name. Some alius that I could use for either flying under the radar or promoting myself as the next hit sensation. But alas, I have no such name. (Although I'm open to suggestions)

Wordless Wednesday


Our future babies

On Friday night we had our good friends Matt and Hillary Romney over for a belated St. Patrick's Day dinner.

After we had our fill of root beer and corned beef & cabbage, we decided to wind down in the front room. We got to talking about kids and Mrs. Romney showed us a little game that is supposed to predict how many kids you are going to have along with each child's gender. It is incredibly scientific process and 100% accurate. (Okay I lied about that, it involves a piece of string and a wedding ring.)

She tells me that if it turns in a circle it's a girl, if it moves side to side it's a boy. When the ring goes still, you are done having babies. When Mr. and Mrs. Romney did the test they both had the same number of kids and the same gender! Kinda spookey, but I guess we won't actually know if it was accurate till they have 5 kids. We repeated this test with my Mom and it was 100% accurate (2 boys and a girl). Brett's Mom did the test once at a party and it was right on for their 6 children. It was also right for every other woman in the room.

So I take off my ring and string the piece of yarn through it. Mrs. Romney asks me to hold my left hand straight out with my palm up and my thumb out. Taking the piece of string with the ring in the middle she "dips" the ring three times between my thumb and my pointer finger. Then she holds the string above my palm and we analyze the way it moves.

It moves in a circle which means that child #1 is a GIRL

She stops the ring and makes it still. We go for round two.

She dips the ring "1... 2.... 3..." this time the ring goes side to side. Child #2 is a BOY!

"1...2....3" Child # 3 is a DAUGHTER

"1...2....3" Child #4 is a SON

Onto the next child. "1...2...3..." We watch the ring go side to side then suddenly switch and go to a circle. Hillary gets giddy as she says, "I think that means you'll have twins!"

So pregnancy #5 = TWINS

(Is it totally odd that I got really excited and was smiling like a fool at this point?)

Hillary goes to dip the ring again... "1....2....3..."

She holds it up to my palm and it doesn't move. Looks like we'll stop at 6.

Now it's Brett's turn ... The moment of truth

1...2....3 GIRL
1...2...3 BOY
1...2...3 DAUGHTER
1...2...3 SON
1...2...3 And this time, the ring goes instantly from a circle to side to side. TWINS AGAIN!!!

I was seriously giddy, even though this is a complete wives tale. I was so excited. I was smiling and imagining all of their cute little faces. I was imagining that our oldest daughter would play house with the younger daughter and force one of their brothers to be "daddy". Even though I know this test isn't scientific I was just so happy. Maybe it was just because I felt like I was getting to know my kids even though I don't know them at all yet.

There are times when I wish Brett and I could just get a little sneak peak 10 years into the future so I could see what they all look like, find out who they are, and hug them. I dream about our son ALL the time. But he never tells me his name. Which is a shame because I know in my dream that his name rocks... but when I wake up I never remember it.

Ah well. This blog post isn't to say that I know for sure how many kids I am going to have and in what order, but mostly to say that I just can't wait to meet them. Whether we have all girls or all boys, or five boys and one girl, it doesn't really matter. What will matter is that they will be here and I'll be able to hug them all goodnight.

So hey, you babies in heaven. I love you. Night night, and I'll be hugging each of you soon.


An evening in the life of a married couple

earlier tonight...

Brett and I went to Albertsons (I guess it's called "A Fresh Market" now).
We bought 6 lemons, 3 potatoes, and 2 lbs of 97% lean ground beef.

We watched The Princess and The Frog, ate enchilada casserole, and held hands...

...it was a good day.


i love: eShakti Day Dresses

eShakti Day Dresses

I stumbled onto this website a few months ago after reading about it in a blog post on c jane enjoy it.

eShakti has the most adorable sun dresses for afordable prices and get this... you can customize the dress before you order it. You can change the neckline, sleeve length, and the hemline. There are several options for each dress.

eShakti is a godsend for us gals who never seem to be able to find that perfect dress that isn't sleeveless, doesn't have a plunging neckline, and doesn't require constant adjustments or layers to stay modest. I often get bored of the Shade and DownEast Basics dresses that have the same cookie cutter "mormon" cut. eShakti has so many different styles and designs to fit every girl's personality.

Spring fever has hit and I am craving about 13 of these dresses. Here are a few more of my faves: