Monday, December 31, 2012

Goodbye 2012! Hello 2013!

Well, it's that time. Time to round up 2012 and welcome the new year.

It's still a BIT mind boggling that it's going to be 2013. That sounds so futuristic for some reason...haha.

Well this year didn't really seem like much. I can only really think of one thing and that's that Clay and I just kept getting better. Which sounds like not much- but it really is a lot!

I'm trying to think of any big things that happened but nothing much really. We traveled to visit some people a bit, had some visitors, but nothing extraordinary. Oops! HELLO?! We had some huge ones I'm totally forgetting! YIKES. What am I thinking. Seriously. Let's bullet point this out.

  • Clay and I got better.
  • Clay quit his job and started his own business.
  • I became a Certified Public Accountant
  • I started food storage
  • I've kept trying really really hard. 

That's all I can really round up for 2012 but I'd say that's a fantastic list!

2013 will be a good one. Even though 2012 wasn't as good as I hoped (I am still in treatment), I still have high hopes for the future. Here is basically what I've come up with for what I want to accomplish and work on in 2013:

  • Pay off MY student loan (it's very small but BLAH- it's there. time to get rid of it)
  • 6 months food storage, organized (I started out with the goal of a year...but decided that's a bit much for me right now. I will shoot for 6 and if I get there easily we'll go from there)
  • 72 hour kits
  • successfully budget once a week
  • exercise once a day 6 days a week 
  • be more spiritual
  • read jane austen
  • get better at sight reading on the piano

So I am really determined about these. There's lots but I feel strongly about all of them. Here is how I've determined I'm going to accomplish these things:

  • Exercise minimum 10 minutes. That's all I'm requiring of myself each day.
  • Spiritual 20 minutes. This is probably going to be the HARDEST of them all. Our young women did a "beauty project" where they talked about inner beauty and stuff. One of the challenges was to spend as much time getting ready on the inside as you do getting ready on the outside. That REALLY hit home with me and I thought- wow how much time do I spend on so many pointless things? And I barely get in any spirituality in my day. Time to try and change that. 
  • Read recreationally 10 minutes in the evening. I figure I'll get some Jane Austen in that way. 
  • Do my treatments twice a day- and all of the treatment (we've been slacking on our supplements)
  • Sight read 10 minutes after dinner while Clay does dishes with the primary children's song book or the hymn book. (Have I told you how crappy I am at sight reading? This will help immensely)
  • Have family home evening every Monday night
  • Budget every monday night after FHE
  • Fast with a purpose each month
  • Assess budget once a month for any extra we could put towards my student loan.
  • Wash face each night
  • Drink lots and lots of water

The last two aren't like OFFICIAL but they are new resolutions as well. So if you look at all those bullet points it looks like I have a lot of goals. But that's really misleading. I have about 9 resolutions and lots of ways to help myself incorporate them. I know...I know. I should probably just pick one. But I can't really help it. I even made myself a daily resolutions chart where I will check off if I've done something each day...dorky, I know. But I know it will help.

I guess I just am at a point where my life feels really dead and pointless in a I feel like making some changes would help. We shall see. I certainly wont be perfect! But I will keep trying.

This last weekend we had Lizzie's family over for a few days. It was so fun! I loved having them around. I didn't take any pictures though! Woops! We basically hung around a lot- we went sledding one day for probably a half hour or so- and it was SO fun. Tanner loved it, the girls not so much. They got cold fast. We baked and made homemade yogurt, which was great. We went out to eat and played was lots of fun!

Well...I am hoping to take a nap today in order to be able to stay up late and not be miserable tonight. We will be playing games and eating good food. I think I will make a batch of chocolate chip cookies and french bread and artichoke dip. One last hoorah before the new year....since I will be renewing the whole, no sugar/gluten unless it's a holiday thing.

Happy New Year! Lets hope 2013 brings lots of happiness for lots of people. And lets hope that we can spread more happiness too. I just want everyone to be happy. I suppose if I were to pick an underlying word that I would like the theme of this year to'd be HAPPY. Happy me, happy people. Be happy- share happy- give happy. Everything happy. Ready for a tangent? Okay- cause I have one. I think that if you are determined to be happy- you can get there. There are literally so many people I have come in contact with where it is so clear they DON'T want to be happy! There is a lady in my ward who EVERY time I ask her how she is, she says, "Well...ya know...I'm workin on it" or, "Hangin in there", or, "I'll get there". And...I just don't get it. I know people have bad days...but to ALWAYS be having that attitude? I also know people that have REALLY hard lives and they try so hard to be cheerful and happy despite everything. So yeah. I prefer to be the latter person. Being cheerful and happy no matter my circumstances. I want to be a person that people walk away from feeling happier, not sad. I don't know where I am at right now...but I'm sure I can always go up!

Wow. Long post. Happy New year.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

A very Merry Christmas, Indeed

Well Christmas here has been great. It's been nice and lazy. I am sitting my new jammies and eating lots of bread and sweets! They great thing is, I'm not suffering much from it at all except for the occasional stomach ache. But I figure I'd have that no matter what...even if I didn't have Lyme! :)

One thing I've realized for sure is....candy making, cookie making, the NEED to make way too much...runs in my blood. I've seen it in my Grandma, and who knows how much further back it goes. I made way too much and the truth is...I've eaten most of it. Clay ate the next most. And Clay's family barely ate any of it! I don't understand. I mean I can say this with absolute certainty- it is ALL DELICIOUS! Except the caramels didn't turn out great this year. Too hard. But everything else is divine. I think it must just be that second stomach I have always assumed I have. The one dedicated for sweets.

Anywho- besides all that...we have played lots of games...watched some good movies...which reminds me. Clay has turned quite the corner this year! Usually, he is quite grinchy. He doesn't really like anything about Christmas traditions. He never wanted to watch Christmas movies or turn on the Christmas lights...well...though he didn't show interest in every Christmasy thing I wanted to do this year...he DID turn on the Christmas lights most nights for me before I got home from work, and he DID watch Elf, It's a Wonderful Life, and National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation with me! Not bad...not bad at all! I'm telling you- it's been a great turn for the good and made me one happy happy girl.

Tomorrow my sissy Lizzie and her family will come to stay with us for a few days! I'm so excited! And the ground is spread with lots of white hopefully we'll get some fun sledding in or something. It'll be fun.

I got lots of new clothes for Christmas which makes me really happy because can I be honest here? I haven't gotten new clothes in ages. What a treat. I was starting to feel really out of style and now I feel a bit perked up.

I also got new dishes from my mom and dad and I am SO pumped about that. Call me crazy, but having pretty new dishes gets me more motivated to make meals and put more effort in. And I can ALWAYS use more motivation in that area.

Well...I have a couple more weeks of not too much business and then BAM. Tax season. My life will feel a bit more busy for a few months. Oh well...I wont be studying for the CPA exam...I wont be taking classes...and I am really almost done with being treated...and my body feels so much this tax season should be a cinch! Right? ha...ha...I have a feeling I'll still feel stressed at times :)

I have been chuggin away thinking about what I want most for my resolutions in 2013. I have already made lists...and already crossed some off that I realized aren't as important as the others and don't need to be there...and I've been trying to really narrow down what is most important. I think I've got it pretty close to where I want it. Again, I just have a feeling of hope that 2013 will be our lucky year! We shall see.

2012 wasn't too shabby. It's been a lot of just trying to get by. Trying to keep up with treatments....trying not to have a bad attitude...and all of that wasn't bad at all. We have been very blessed. I am happy today for many things...and I plan on getting even happier next year!

Hope you all had a Merry Christmas! I will most likely not be posting till the New Year. Have a good week!

PS- Did I tell you I am pretty positive I have a bone fracture in the top of my left foot? It has been hurting for over a month now. It started that everytime after Zumba the next day the top of my foot would hurt everytime I walked on it. I, whatever. Cause it always went away after that next day. Well...after a few weeks of that it started hurting EVERY day. That's when I took note and thought, hmmm....something is wrong here. So I did the good ol' google "What does it mean when the top of my foot hurts after I work out?" and what do you know? I saw a bunch of results saying that I most likely had a stress fracture that is caused by high impact activity (like maybe jumping, twisting, lunging, etc in Zumba?) and the only way to get better is to stay off it. So...I haven't been to Zumba in weeks and it STILL hurts. Clay told me he can tell I'm not favoring it and not giving it much thought and that is why it's not getting better. He told me I need to favor it and if that means limping, then I need to limp. And it's just so hard cause I don't NEED to limp in order to has to be a conscious effort to limp. And it's just such a drag. I'm trying. I really am. Cause I'm SICK of not being able to work out and I'm SICK of it hurting all the time! Nothing like this has ever happened to me. All my friends have these random injuries all the time and I never got it. NOW I do. It's awful. you know that story. Cya!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Merry Christmas

First off, wow. I am so happy right now! Even though I have slight menstrual cramps (sorry, tmi?), have ALREADY eaten too much candy and feel a bit sick to the stomach, and I look really special (morning bangs aren't the best look on me)...I am really happy because I don't have to work until next Thursday! Halleluiah! Then I'll have the weekend off with my sister and her family. And oh...lets not forget CHRISTMAS is right around the corner!

We have barely any presents under our tree, and even less for ourselves! It's okay...most of them are at Patty and Paul's house.

So I have been thinking a lot lately and figured I'd share with you. I've had a lot of random opportunities to question in my head...Do I really believe in Jesus? This might come as a shock to probably everyone, but I really have had these thoughts in my head a lot the past couple years but especially probably this last 6 months. I don't think it's me questioning my faith, or having doubts. It's me renewing my faith in myself, and making sure I'm where I need to be.

With Lyme Disease constantly giving me trouble emotionally and physically, I ask I really believe in this stuff? Is this really just a temporary state? Do I really believe in Jesus? Can he really comfort me in these times? And if I'm truly looking and seeking that affirmation, I receive it. Sometimes with the most gentle of affirmations...that yes, He is here with me and I DO believe in Him. Sometimes it is really hard to feel him around and it is really hard to remember. Sometimes I feel VERY alone. But then I look at the small touches of His hand and the many many small miracles in Clay's and my life. And I remember, Yes, Danielle, He is here and He has a plan.

Then times like last week...when things are so horrifying and hard for me to understand. I I believe in Jesus? Is he real? And I'm not going to lie...sometimes Satan can get a good hold on me and make me wonder for a bit. But I really do always come back to it. Yes, He IS real. He loves all of us. And there are some moments that really grab me when a thought suddenly enters my mind and I realize, wait a second. He loves him too. In fact, he chose Jesus before we came here. All of us did. And it all comes full circle for me.

I realize that we all come to earth because we all chose Jesus. We are all completely innocent and wonderful when we enter this earth and then we are shot with tons of trials and tests. God gave us choices, agency, the ability to make our own minds up. So it's our choice to decide what we do with these trials. I can live my life hating those who make horrible and evil decisions...and then my life will be that much less. I will have that much less light. Or I could choose to forgive and love and make myself better after seeing evil bad choice, and have that much more light! I decided that I choose LIGHT. Love. Happiness.

Over and over the thought keeps coming in my mind lately, "Contention is of the devil". I've thought that in so many situations lately. I feel like sometimes in today's world things can be really confusing and look right, sound right, but doesn't quite feel right. And I kinda feel like that phrase helps me solve a lot of those confusing situations. Contention doesn't just happen between people, it can happen right inside my soul. So if something makes me feel contention within must not be right.

All I know is...Christ is King. There are a lot of great people to look up to in this world but the ultimate example will always be the Savior. Thank heavens I have this knowlege! Thank heavens I know of Christ! I know He has saved me and helped me through tough times and I know he will continue to my whole life. I'm so grateful.

I don't KNOW with a surety that all I believe and feel is true...there's no way to know until I meet my Savior again. But I sure continue to have hope and faith, and those two things help me continue to go on in this crazy world. I have hope and I have faith that this world is surely NOT the end. And one thing I DO the more I try to be like the Savior, the more I am happy. So...even though I am FAR FAR FAR from perfect at this...I keep trying. Like President Monson said, "Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says 'I'll try again tomorrow'". One of my favorite quotes. Cause it's so dang applicable to me.

I will keep trying. Love you all and Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Today sucks so bad

Well today started just fine. I went to bed around 3:30 am after going and taking a nap while watching the Hobbit at the midnight premeire. I woke up before my alarm clock even went off for up, got ready, read a talk from conference since I had time, and headed to work. The talk I read was called "First observe, Then Serve". It talked about how we need to be like Christ and observe individuals and see their needs and serve them. Christ served others one by one. Individually. That's how we should serve. 

Work was slow and then my boss came in and told me to look on Yahoo and there had been a shooting. 

I read and watched the news as I realized some sick sick soul had shot and killed 27 people including 18 children. 

They weren't my children, they weren't children I even know. But it hurt really really bad. I immediately thought of my nieces and nephews. I thought about the parents and the horrible fear they must be feeling. I thought of those poor children who have all lost their innocence so quickly. I thought of the husbands and wives of the teachers, the kids of the teachers, everyone in that town. I thought of the primary children I taught in primary, I just couldn't stop thinking. 

So I tried really really hard to keep my tears in until my lunch break.

I called my mom right away because when I'm really really emotional, she always knows what to say. I started saying, "I just don't understand why he had to attack an elementary school..." when I saw flashing lights behind me. I haven't been pulled over since our first year of marriage, like...6 years ago! 

I pulled over and the cop said, "I clocked you at 32, license and registration"...I said, "Really?" and I gave him my license and registration. He goes and sits in his car for what feels like an eternity and comes back with a ticket for $156.

Now, if he had said something like- "Were you aware you were going this fast? Were you in a hurry?" etc, like some cops have done...I probably would've burst into tears saying, "Honestly I just found out about the shooting in that elementary school and I was so distracted I guess I wasn't paying enough attention. I know I was going under the regular speed limit...but I guess I was a bit shook up and distracted" But he didn't even give me a second of his time. 

So...incase you didn't figure it out, I was in a school zone. So technically I was 12 over...but I was also 3 under the regular speed limit. It wasn't like I was some reckless person. Whatever. 

Anyway, after he walked away I literally started BAWLING my eyes out. Uncontrollable. So I waited till I got home (by the way it's not illegal to talk on phone while driving in Idaho), and called my mom and cried to her and she made me feel better.

Sigh...the world is really confusing for me. But I will just try to be nicer and kinder and more loving to everyone I come in contact with. And maybe my small contribution to society will make some sort of a difference. Just like the talk I read this morning...maybe if we all strive to be more aware of each individual and observe their needs and then act on the observation and serve and help them, people will feel more loved and have more support, and then maybe less bad things would happen. A girl can dream. 

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Fa la la la laaaaaa

So, I have come upon some great holiday music lately. And I wanted to I think I might just share one song that I am loving in particular each day :) It'll get me on here to post!

Today's song...Sleigh Ride by FUN! So, I fell inlove with the band Fun when they came out with "We are Young"...and then of course I love Some Nights, and then I don't really know how I found this song but when I heard it I was like, HOLLA! And was severely disappointed when I realized they only have this ONE holiday song. I think they need to come out with a whole christmas album. Whose with me?

It's just a real fun adaptation for that song I think :)

Anywho...tonight is our Relief Society's Christmas party...which is a favorite things party! Woot woot! We are all supposed to bring three of our favorite thing. They encouraged homemade items so I made three twisty headbands (tutorial here) except this time I wasn't lazy and I made it so there were NO exposed seams. Much more quality! So anyhow, I will end up with three things by the end of the night so it sounds pretty fantastic!

Idaho has been really mild and we pretty much haven't gotten a real snow yet. It's odd. But the past few days have been really wet and chilly and my bones don't like it. Oh well. The REALLY odd thing is...I want it to snow! I think it's because the Christmas season feels a bit off without it! Eyeyeyeee...what am I thinking?

I have been thinking of the resolutions I want to make for 2013...I'm thinkin up some good ones! We shall see...I want them to be really good ones that are right for me.

Well, that will have to be all for now.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Megan and Greg's Visit

I realized today if I don't dump all my pictures off my phone and get this posted I might never blog again! So I decided to just do two big collages. That's the best I can do right now!

Megan and her family came to visit for the weekend and it was great!

I just have to say, seriously? I have the cutest nieces and nephews in existence. I'm sorry- it's just the simple truth. I mean look at those two.

Brighton is the happiest baby I've ever seen in my life. He is just so content and happy. AND SO DELICIOUSLY CUTE! I couldn't get enough kisses or squeezes in. 

Scarlet is the sweetest girl. So well behaved. And so cute. She loved Dante so much and it was SO PRECIOUS to watch!

She was always hugging him and petting him and trying to sneak kisses in. 

She would always ask me when I got up for the morning, "Dante? Dante sleeping?". 

We went to look at my friend's chickens and picked up some eggs, we went to the pet store and looked at all the animals, we went to Patty and Pauls for sunday dinner, and mostly just hung out and enjoyed each others company! Clay and Greg made a brazillian meal of beans and rice, and these yummy cheesy rolls. It was great! I also took Megan to Zumba with me the night she got here and it was so fun as always...but I got a horrid allergic reaction where my ears basically swelled up to the point of practically closing off. It was really fun. So we had to leave early. Oh well...we got a solid 30-40 minutes in. 

I loved having them around. It was so nice cause I was really getting homesick and family sick. I miss my family so much- all of them. So it was nice to get a quick fix. And I have to say...when I went through the pictures and videos on my phone today...oh I missed them! They didn't help with my baby hunger.

Lizzie's fam is coming in a few weeks! Right after Christmas! It will be great. 

Well, it's time for me to get busy busy! I have so much to do, but its all fun stuff. Like making presents and shopping. I really only have one or two annoying things to do...and that's cleaning the kitchen- YUCK! I also need to clean my sewing room....bah humbug. It's okay though cause I just watch tv while I do that. 

I plan on getting real Christmasy up in here these next few days! So get ready!

Here are some videos I took of the kiddos...sorry...most of them are of Scarlet with Dante...I couldn't help it- I just thought it was so cute!


Saturday, November 24, 2012

Reindeer Pillow & Thanksgiving

So I had this idea in my head about a reindeer pillow….and so I did a google image search. Turns out Target has sold one in the past that was EXACTLY what I was envisioning. They don’t sell it anymore I don’t think, but anyway…I basically did this:

  1. Copied the picture of the pillow into photoshop
  2. Sized the image to about 16”x16” (cause that was about how big I wanted my pillow to be)
  3. Had the image viewed in “print size” and lightly traced the image onto a bunch of pieces of papers then taped those together
  4. Cut shape out, traced image onto red felt
  5. Cut red felt out
  6. Cut two pieces of white felt each 16 ½” square
  7. Pinned the heck out the reindeer onto the white square
  8. Sewed close to the edge all around the edges of the reindeer
  9. Put right sides together and sewed around edges a 3/8” seam allowance, and left a gap in the bottom large enough to turn inside out and stuff a pillow form into
  10. Snipped corners, turned inside out, pushed corners out, ironed sides, stuffed pillow form inside, pinned gap closed, and top stitched close to the edge
That’s it! It was so easy. Definitely time consuming. The two most time consuming things were cutting out the reindeer and sewing it on! Lots of twists and turns which involves a lot of sew, stop, lift pressure foot, turn, lower pressure foot, sew, repeat.

Anyway, it turned out just as I’d hoped! I'm very happy.

Thanksgiving was great. Everything turned out. One odd thing...I got sweet potatoes- I DID- and they were cooking and when I cut into them...they were white on the inside! Not orange! What the? I have no idea. They still tasted yummy though.

Another highlight...I made this UH-MAZING peanut butter cream pie that had chocolate ganache layer, oreo crust, peanut butter cream, peanut butter cups atop, oh it was yummy. It was made in a spring form pan. About half of it was eaten when I put it in the fridge. Well, I was taking it out of the fridge later...when I don't really know what happened but the spring form was open and the pie slipped RIGHT THROUGH MY HANDS AND FACE FIRST ON THE FLOOR! Don't worry, I was still holding the spring form part. Yeah...I was heart broken to say the least. I mean seriously. That thing took time and money. AND IT WAS DELICIOUS! Oh well. 

Next morning Patty had to watch a ton of kids at her house but she really wanted the sewing table and cutting mat that goes on sale on black fridays (SUPER good deal), so I offered to get it for her. I decided to head out at 5:45 cause I just wasn't sure how busy it'd be (opened at 6am) well...GOOD THING I DID! There was a line outside for I'd say....forever. Oh man. So I trucked out there to the end of the line and stood in the cold for 10 minutes or so...chatting with the ladies around me. Then we went in and let me tell you- it is a good thing I went that early because there were only THREE tables in the store and guess who got them?! The lady infront of me, me, and the lady behind me that were standing in line! Oh my! So anywho...I got those and was out of the store an hour later...and by then I was awake and hungry so I ate and started bringin up my Christmas decor!

I couldn't believe it...I think it took me around 5 hours to decorate my house! But it is decorated and cleaned and I am good to go. So fun. Here's a little preview.

One thing I just kept feeling so happy about was that I cooked in the kitchen and cleaned my house for hours on Weds, I cooked for hours on Thurs, I decorated for hours on Friday, and holy smokes it was all possible! I just kept flashing back to two years earlier when I was making ONE apple pie at my sisters house and I just felt so exhausted after it. I don't think I even cleaned up! Just standing and doing something for that long made me so tired. I remember things feeling so hard back then. And then the Monday we got back we found out I did in fact have Lyme Disease. forward two years and working so hard and taking so many pills and disgusting herbs...and I am a new woman! I can work! HARD. In fact, yesterday, I even had enough energy even though yes, I was tired! But I really wanted to sew that pillow, so I did it! I had enough energy and even after days of working I still could do it. So so so grateful. Makes me really happy. I am so blessed!

Well, now it's officialy the season and I am needing to hustle and start getting/making/wrapping presents! Woohoo! So fun.

PS. I have probably LITERALLY eaten about 20 rolls in the past two days. We had lots leftover. They are yummy. 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Plans plans plans

You guys. I am so happy to report...I AM ALIVE!

I was starting to wonder...but seriously, today I feel better than I have in days. With the help of good ol Nyquil and Dayquil, I've made it. I've crossed the bridge. I am on the up. Perfect timing because I have a busy few days ahead of me!

Here's the plan:

Tomorrow I will make apple pie, chocolate pie, and peanut butter pie. I will also be cleaning the bathrooms and helping Clay with any of the chores he's planning on doing (vacuum and mop floors, wipe up the slobber on walls). Of course early in the day I will prepare the turkey by starting the brining process. Oh, and in case you are wondering, yes I am working tomorrow! Yikes!

Thursday morning I will pop that turkey in the oven, make two batches of rolls (there never seem to be enough in my opinion), make some sweet potatoes, clean up, set up, welcome my guests and eat and eat and eat!

I am SO excited. About all of it! I happen to love making pies. It's just such a great end product, and pie just feels like such an old fashioned thing to makes me happy.

I also love making rolls. I love bread and dough and baking.

Sweet potatoes on the other hand...we'll see about that. First time for that.

I'm really really really excited for Friday to decorate for Christmas!

I am not planning on doing any shopping...unless something SCREAMS at me from the ads. But I highly doubt that will happen. I'd rather relax and watch movies and sleep and stuff.

Well, good luck to all of you on your cooking and eating festivities! I am feeling really blessed to have a double oven this week :)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 16, 2012

I'm just hangin in there

 So, I haven't been posting and that's pretty much because I GOT SICK! UGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. I have this awful cold that has my throat hurting and my nose sneezin and runnin and going RAW from wiping so much. Boo. The other night I was on my first real day of being sick so I dug up my energies and made myself this.

Chicken noodle soup and biscuits! All gluten free! So so tasty.

We won tickets to breaking dawn and Clay kept saying, "You aren't going to be able to go!" and I kept telling him to stop talking cause I was going. And I went! I think Heavenly Father really was lookin out for me because all up to the POINT of the movie I was sneezing and miserable and I don't really think I sneezed once during the movie. Don't worry though, I did after.

I know I don't look sick, but I am! 

So I'm just drinkin my tea and trying to rest. But I have to go grocery shopping today for Thanksgiving! There's no way I'm waiting till next week after work...

Another random thing is my left ear is plugged and it wont unplug. And it hurts! I don't understand. 

So please pray that I will get over this cold quickly and that my left ear will unplug. Thanks!

By the way- LOVED THE MOVIE! It was so good! The fake baby was a bit strange but everything else was just great.

Monday, November 12, 2012

A whole lot of random goodness

I am so excited for Christmas! I'm SO happy that Thanksgiving is next week so I can eat a bunch of delicious food and then decorate and shop and make things and listen to music and watch movies! YES!

My thanksgiving decor is a bit pathetic. I mean...I just don't have enough of it. The truth is, if you only have a few decorations for a holiday it doesn't work because it just doesn't flow right and ugh. I am NOT enjoying my decor so I really need to add to it.

I am planning on making 3 pies for Thanksgiving. Patty will make another one. That will be 4 pies. It's exciting. Desert is kind of the most important part in my opinion. And rolls.

I am going to twilight on Thursday. And not even at midnight! I get to go to an early showing at 6:30. Talk about fantastic.

Let me tell you what movie I'm SO EXCITED about. Les Miserables. Oh baby, it looks grand. I am planning on seeing it Christmas day. And I'll probably bring cadbury mini eggs with me. It's a plan.

Clay and I are just finishing up our Star Wars marathon. Clay and I LOVE to do movie marathons. About once a year we do Lord of the Rings. We've done Harry Potter maybe a couple times. This is our second time doing Star Wars. We've done Bourne movies a ton of times. It's always fun. I realized I haven't seen the old star wars in a long time. I just kind of love how cheesy they are! And the special effects from those days are fantastic. episode V, there is this monster at the beginning that gets Luke while he's in that horribly cold snowy place, and OH MY GOSH I laughed out loud when he came on the screen! Luke screamed of course, but that monster was funny looking. Anyway, they are awesome. I just love Han Solo. And now I understand why my parents and siblings always made fun of Luke and called him so whiney. Cause HOLY SMOKES he's a cry baby! Clay and I couldn't help but laugh so much when he found out that Vader was his father! I mean really, it's pretty embarrassing. Although I admit it'd be pretty traumatizing to find out the biggest evil person in the universe (literally- all of space!) was your dad. 

Poor Luke.

Well, that's pretty much it for now.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Saturday Morning

I love Saturday! Especially days like today. I woke up at 10 and was like, hmmmm what am I going to do today? Cause I seriously have NO PLANS! It's so fantastic! So I decided I should read some Les Mis, and make some homemadeish apple cider (apple juice, cinnamon, and nutmeg heated on the stove).

Do you remember when I had the goal to read this book in 50 days? That was approximately 168 days ago. PAHAHHAA! I laugh in the face of my overachieving goals! I am finally on the last third of the book I think...I am determined to finish it by the end of the month. That way I have a month before the movie comes out and then it'll all just be wonderful.

You know what? I make goals A LOT! And I don't reach them A LOT! But I'm not really discouraged or upset about it. I just kind of giggle at myself that I thought I'd read this book in 50 days. But I keep on truckin. I also resolved to post once a day. I obviously didn't do that well this week...but I keep trying. I think my goals are fantastic! Even when I don't achieve them perfectly. They keep my life exciting and give them purpose at different points in time. Sometimes, I need a goal that keeps me entertained or distracted...and anywho...I can get off track and get away from the goal but I can also come back to it. I feel sad when people don't want to make goals because they are scared they wont achieve them. Cause I am constantly not achieving my goals! But I am also constantly striving towards something. It's the journey, not the end that has merit. That's my opinion anyhow.

This book is so amazing. It's most likely the most wonderful amazing piece of literature I've ever read. It is HARD to read. That's why it's taken me so long. And its my second time trying! People simply don't write like this anymore. It feels really immature when I read current books right after I've read Les Mis. Don't worry, I'm not becoming a book snob...I still love lots of current books. It's just different. A lot more of feeling on the surface, instead of deep in your soul.

For instance, Marius and Cossette. Their love story. Oh! It's like...I have no idea how they portray it in the movie or play, but in the book, they literally fall in love before they've even spoken to each other or known each others name. And it's completely real and believable. And wonderful. And romantic. There are so many pages dedicated to Marius's internal agony and joy as he simply catches Cossette glancing at him. Or his struggle as he decides to walk past her. And once they FINALLY meet, after a year of not seeing each other, they both know they love each other and seal it with one simple kiss. I just love it. There is something so romantic about falling inlove after only glancing in ones direction and catching their eye.

Do not ruin anything by talking about what happens after this point because I don't know what happens after this.

Anywho...I am still enjoying my slow slow process of reading this book. I will be glad to be done, but I am still enjoying it. I just wish there weren't so many pages dedicated to history that I just can't wrap my head around.

Anyway, happy Saturday! Have a good day.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Election Emotions

Well, this was me yesterday morning so happy and excited to vote! I had high hopes for the things I voted on. I voted for Romney/Ryan. I voted Yes, No, Yes on Idaho Props 1,2,3. Oh! And I voted in preserving the rights to hunt in Idaho. 

This is me and Clay stuck on the couch going CRAZY watching Fox News. Oh man. At one point I was just seriously going ABSOLUTELY insane. I'm like, oh my gosh! It's seriously only 7:25pm?! I feel like I've been watching this my ENTIRE LIFE. So I got up, cleaned our two bathrooms, watched 1 and a half episodes of Alias and Clay came in with a frown and a thumbs down. 

Obama is still our President.

I started to tear up. NOT out of joy. Out of utter sadness and worry. I worry about the taxes coming on small businesses. I worry about the economy. I worry about the values of our country. 

So then I went online and looked at our local news and it looks like Props 1,2,3 all go NO. I only wanted no on one of them, so that was another disappointment. I'll tell you this- I know this is super controversial and people are super emotional on both sides, but I truly feel like our kids education is lacking and Prop's 1 and 3 could've helped that. I fear that Idaho kids are lagging behind much of the country. 

Clay decided to change his attitude QUICK. Like literally minutes after the election was called. I told him I needed at least that night to sulk. But he told me that America wasn't ready for a Mormon president, and to just look at all the open conversation that has been had about our religion. Most of America probably now realizes mormons aren't freak cult members. Either way, the door has been opened.

But I want to emphasize that I didn't want Romney to win because he is mormon. Not at all. I wanted him to win because he has solid successful experience. He aims for getting America working, not keeping Americans dependent on government aid. He believes in people working hard and earning what they get. Also, he has good moral values. And honestly? This isn't the most respectful reason for wanting him to win, but I wanted him to win so that Obama would lose. I've come to realize Obama is a liar, a fame whore, and kind of annoying. I mean really I get annoyed when I see his face and hear him talk. I know that's not like a legit reason (that I'm annoyed), but's real for me. I hate negative feelings in my body, and he just always seems to stir them up. 

Alas, I will still pray for this country, pray for our leaders, and hope for the best. It will be an interesting 4 years. We will see how some of these things play out that Obama has set in motion. I am still grateful to be an American and I still love this country! I'm so happy that I could vote and I really am so amazingly HAPPY that I live in a country where I have rights and can speak my mind and get infuriated with others with that same right! I'm grateful I have the right to disagree with my husband, or any man for that matter, and I'm grateful I can wear the clothes, makeup, hair everything I want. I'm grateful I have a house, a job, a family, and though my health isn't optimal, it is a lot better than many. Life is still good. Do I still have a nagging worry in the back of my mind? Yes. Oh well. It is time to look forward with faith and do MY best in helping our country and society become better. 

Now we can all focus on more important things like how to decorate for Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Paul's Bday/Mustang

This is Clay in Paul's 1964 1/2 Mustang. Paul has held onto the Mustang for years and finally this past year he restored it and it's just awesome. Clay drove us to Stockmans, a steakhouse, for Paul's bday on Saturday. It was fun! I hadn't ridden in it yet. He did such a good job.

 Patty and Paul in the back.

 Here I am attempting to get us all but it didn't quite work. Oh well...

I stole this one from Patty's facebook cause I couldn't find any of the outside of the car that I'd taken. They took these earlier in the summer I think. Cool pic huh? Patty's sister Susan took some and anyway, it really is a cool car. Everyone loves it.
 Well, in the theme of happiness, I am so happy for the family I married into. I love them all so much. They are all so kind and wonderful! I'm really really really lucky.

Today I am tired. I don't know why really. But I worked and then went to three different stores to run errands. Then I came home, unloaded, put away groceries, made dinner, and the kitchen is an absolute disaster. Sigh...I suppose I should clean it. I decided to opt out of Zumba tonight. Sometimes life is too stressful and I need time to zone out. I'm okay with that. It's called managing stress.

Alrighty, off to do the dishes! Don't forget to vote.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Halloween, Seattle, etc

This year me and the girls at work decided to be Where's Waldo girls. Pretty fun. I realized at about 9:00pm the night before that I didn't have a hat. So I took some fabric and made one really REALLY quick. It's not that impressive but it works for a halloween outfit I think!

So here's the deal. I've never handed out candy before for halloween, but planned on doing so this year. I went to winco and got three bags. Then realized, okay that means there's approximately 45 pieces of candy and what if these kids are sticking their big hands in and grabbing huge HAND fulls?! Clay thought this was highly likely. So we were looking at maybe having the potential for 15 kids or so? This got me stressin. I mean like majorly stressin. I just didn't want to run out of candy and leave these kids hangin. And I didn't want to be stressing out the whole night saying, "nu uh uh! Only one!". So after much deliberation, Clay and I decided I'd better run to Sam's club after work and get one of those big bags, just to be on the safe side. And I know what made Clay lean towards this decision. I told him that any leftovers we have we could take with us to Seattle and eat cause whenever we go to Seattle we cheat...and this way we buy less snacks. Cause pretty much everytime we are waiting around in the airport we end up buying snacks. Which basically cost as much as our airplane tickets. Anyway. Clay's face pretty much lit up at the thought that we could have the leftovers and EAT them.

I know, it's bad. But it's not like we are having tons of candy all the time! So I figured, what the heck. Lets celebrate this holiday.

Turns out we did need that extra bag, but we still had leftovers. And we definitely both made ourselves sick eating so much candy!!!

Seattle was good. Let me tell you- Seattle is GORGEOUS right now. Holy moly, the trees are so stinking beautiful. Our appointment wasn't anything extraordinary. For a bit of an update....

I am basically symptom free but just have these REALLY subtle lingering symptoms. Our doctor, Clay, and I all feel that I am not done yet. But we feel that I am SO SO CLOSE! Clay is on a good track, he is also dealing with subtle symptoms. We asked her how she feels about where we are at and she said we are "poster patients" or something. And that we are further along than she would hope for us. So that's good! We knew at the beginning this could take 3-5 years to get rid of and we've been at it for 2 years.

Our doctor has her dog at the office and seriously she is the SWEETEST dog ever. Like she just comes and greets you and is just so nice and sweet. She loves Clay cause he's really good at scratching her. 

I decided that I am still going to post a picture a day of things I'm grateful for...but I'm not going to put so much pressure on myself about learning my camera. I will continue to learn slowly, but a lot of my pics will just be how I used to do them. I will still work on it though! I think I kinda hate doing the same thing everyday, so I feel like the way I was thinking before was like...making it so I would only be able to study my camera each day and that just gets boring and stuff.

A few randoms....One, I am like OBSESSED with the show Alias. I'm watching it on netflix and it's pretty great. Two, tomorrow is the election and can I tell you? I am SO EXCITED for it to be over. Here at Idaho obviously Romney will win but we have some local propositions that are getting some HEATED discussions. I have never seen so many people in Idaho at odds with each other. Literally, there are no commercials on the radio anymore- its one after another about each of these propositions. It's about education reform. Teachers are all anti-propositions and business people are for it and anyway, Clay and I have been really really thinking hard on it. I'm still not positive. I know what I'm voting on one of them, but am still on the fence about the others. Did you know Idaho is 49th in the nation in sending their kids to college? That's like...awful. So you can see why Clay and I are thinking hard on this. Anyway, I guess we'll see where I stand tomorrow!

Well, that's all for now.

Monday, October 29, 2012


Okay, so this might be lame...but here's the truth. Mings eatery is like the best chinese I've ever had in my entire life. I've had quite a bit of chinese for the average american woman I think...and like for real. NO other place can beat the fried rice. And in my opinion, all chinese food can be judged based on their fried rice.

Anywho, Mings really saved us through a lot of our sick days. We got Mings maybe once a week for a long time cause we couldn't really get any other fast food like pizza or burgers or whatever. We now probably get Mings once a month, or once every two months.

  My favorite is the fried rice. Usually I get chicken fried rice, but today I got pork. A little spicy.

Clay's favorite is the combo meal of sweet and sour chicken, fried rice, and chow mein. Chinese style. Medium spicy.

So on today when I am not feeling that well physically, Mings makes me happy. And on that note I have to say that I could probably eat chinese food everyday the rest of my life and be happy.

OH- and this was such a crying shame. For the longest time we just LOVED reading our fortunes from Mings. They had ACTUAL fortunes. Things like, "Three months time from now you will receive good news." Yeah, I got that one which TOTALLY predicted that I would pass the CPA exam. Or, "A great adventure is coming for you soon". Or like, you know- lots of things like that. And I'm telling you, they were just always so great and applicable. Well probably two months ago or something? They must've changed vendors cause now they are LAMO fortunes like, "You have knowledge" or "Wise men find the light in the day". You know? Like- they don't give you any insight. They just state facts. Major bummer...but there is hope my friends! Tonight Clay and I BOTH got some majorly awesome fortunes, just like old times.

Although I must admit, my fortune (the top one) makes me a little nervous. What if I'm the center of attention for like...accidentally tucking my skirt in my undies?! You never know. Hopefully it just means I'll be on the Ellen DeGeneres show or something. 

So today I am happy because I have a place like Mings in my life. And I got a new book from the library. OH! And I got bangs.

More pictures to come. I LOVE THEM!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Tea, winter, and resolutions

These days I am pounding down this tea.

It's full of yummy ingredients like Cinnamon, roasted chicory, roasted carob, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg! Incase you're wondering, the perfect combination is a cup of water in the microwave for 1:30 minutes, seep the tea for 6 minutes, and add a glob of raw local honey. It's pretty much perfection. Especially at this time of year. Oh, and it's from Walmart. 

Even though our ENORMOUS amount of leaves are still on the ground under that snow, it's really really pretty outside this morning. Secret? I really want it to snow today. I dunno. I know it goes against everything I ever felt towards winter but don't you think it'd just look nice and make today cozier? I do. Since I don't have to go anywhere, it would be nice.

Yesterday I read Elder Uchtdorf's talk "Of Regrets and Resolutions". Find the talk HERE. I highly recommend every person read that talk! Even if you aren't a mormon, it applies to everyone and I PROMISE you, it will uplift you. In the talk he mentions three resolutions we should strive for:

1. Resolve to spend more time with those we love.
2. Resolve to strive more earnestly to become the person God wants us to be.
3. Resolve to find happiness, regardless of our circumstances.

That's what I'm trying to work on.

Well, I hope you have a good weekend.

Friday, October 26, 2012

A cold cold day

Well, today was cold and lousy.

I woke up and I saw the brightness shining through our drapes, a brightness which I easily recognized as, "it snowed". So I double checked and sure enough, the ground was covered in white! Honestly? It looked pretty and seemed cozy and I wasn't at all sad about it!

Then I went to work and spent half of my day trying to figure out a dang printer and honestly? It just drove me nuts. Then everytime I go outside it's freezing cold. Then I realize I'm starting to get sick because my throat feels tense and my body feels heavy and I am so so tired and just feel sick. Then I go to this Young Women's training meeting for church and I kid you not, I FELT COLD AIR COMING FROM SOMEWHERE. It was so cold! I am going to sound like an oldie here for a second, but really. If we can put a man on the moon, can't our church figure out how to keep the thermostat at a temperature that doesn't have everyone shivering in their coats? I guess not. And ontop of all this I just was having some real emotional struggles probably because lets face it, it's about that time of month.

And seriously? I just had the worst attitude all day. But I was thinking all day, "I'm supposed to be looking for happiness, remember?" So...all day I planned on making hot chocolate. So...that's what I did tonight. It was basically honey, vanilla, chocolate, and milk. The "recipe" I used didn't have NEARLY enough was like really not sweet at all. So I added tons more honey and it's not too shabby. Not the best hot chocolate I've ever made, but it'll do.

I got one of the Photography books I ordered at the library today. It's called, "Digital Photography Book". Hopefully it's a good one. And then maybe I can figure out how to use my dang camera. Holy smokes, my pictures are awful without automatic settings! It's basically cause all I do is just hit buttons hoping they do something.

So, what am I happy about today?

Hot chocolate that warms my bones.

Long johns and soft socks that keeps me comfy and warm.


P.S. I don't work tomorrow- hallelujah! Plans?


Thursday, October 25, 2012

Honey Honey

My son, eat thou ahoney, because it is good; and the honeycomb, which is sweet to thy taste -Proverbs 24:13

What makes me happy today? 

Clay was making fun of me for HOW EXCITED I was when I got this honey. I don't know, it just makes me happy. This is healthy, inexpensive, raw honey. 

Did you know that Elder Ballard, an apostle of Jesus Christ, spoke about the benefits of honey?! Yes, I admit, it wasn't the purpose of his talk...but he said this, 

"Father loved his gentle honeybees and marveled at the way thousands of them working together transformed the nectar gathered from his peach blossoms into sweet, golden honey—one of nature’s most beneficial foods. In fact, nutritionists tell us it is one of the foods that includes all the substances—enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and water—necessary to sustain life." know, honey is good. I use it in a lot of baking, I put it on top of peanut butter on toast, I sometimes eat a spoonful for allergies or indigestion, and I put it in tea. 

The truth is, honey has SO many health benefits. Which is why it ticks me off when people say, "Well it just ends up being the same as sugar." NO- NOT TRUE. Does sugar contain antioxidants that help prevent cancer and heart disease? Does sugar boost your immune system?  Is sugar a probiotic? Yeah, all these answers are no. I suppose I must clarify that most honey you buy at the store that is highly processed and pasteurized is much like sugar. I'm talking about RAW honey. 

So anyway, I am happy today for my honey. 

If you live in the area, I got the honey from Hoopers Honey Farm in Rigby, ID. They sell their honey for about $2/pound and you can just drop off jars, containers, whatever you want, and they fill it and will even drop it off at your house for you! It's great. And they are so nice. 

As much as I DESPISE bee's buzzing around my house where they aren't suppose to, I sure am grateful for honey bees! 


PS. I seriously took like a billion blurry HORRID pictures. And I feel like that picture above is pretty craptastic. Shooting on manual type settings is really confusing so I'm really hoping my DSLR Photography for Dummies book becomes available at the library soon. I'm not even joking. I'm actually going to use one of those "for dummies" books. Oy. 

PPS. Clay just came up to me and said, "Well, gonna go save the world...actually I'm gonna be saving the UNIVERSE". He's off to play video games in the basement :)

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Two Goals

I have wanted basically for years to learn how to use my camera manually. I have only ever used it on two settings, A) Flash, or B) No Flash.

Pretty technical stuff!

So anyway...I just love pretty pictures, just like everyone. So it's time to start learning my camera better. Which is why Goal ONE- learn to use my camera manually...I suspect some library books will be on order!

Next, oh man. You know how like I go through phases of blogging where I'll blog everyday for a week and then none at all for a week? Well it's cause I suck at moderation. Just like this weekend- I got SO MUCH DONE! This happens all the time. I'll just have a SUPER few days, and then I'll crash and do nothing but watch tv and sulk and hate life for a few days. I think it's not the best habit. I mean, yeah it's not awful. At least I'm balanced. But I'd rather be consistently balanced. Make sense? So along with my new goal to learn my camera, I am going to try and capture some sort of happiness in my life every day...WITH my camera, and then blog it. I know, not that original. But I think it just might help me keep moving and keeping a sort of happiness with me each day.

I don't think of myself as a depressed person, but I definitely am a goal oriented person. An acheivement person. If I'm not like...doing something awesome then I feel like I'm so lazy and awful. So in a small way, I am resolving to achieve something each and every day. I am going to capture some sort of happiness in my day. Which I think will probably cause me to try and SEEK OUT or CREATE a sort of happiness each day. Sometimes, I'm just not motivated to even try. Maybe this little project will help me be more motivated.

A while ago when I was reading the happiness project (again, LOVED this book and highly recommend it) I was talking to my mom about it and how I think it'd be nice to just own the book (I had checked it out from the library) so I could go back and refresh myself when I needed it...but then I was like, "Well...I know it's not scriptures or" and my mom was like, "Well we are taught to seek after all good things." and kind of ever since that conversation the thirteenth article of faith (in our church we have 13 articles of faith. They are kind of like 13 things that our church holds true to) has been strongly planted in my mind. And here it is

 13 aWe believe in being bhonest, true, cchastedbenevolent, virtuous, and in doing egood to all men; indeed, we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul—We believe all things, we fhope all things, we have endured many things, and hope to be able togendure all things. If there is anything hvirtuousilovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things.

It's kind of a huge part of my belief system that we are supposed to seek after good things and happy things. Our life is about finding joy in the journey. If we just sulk by through our whole life and don't enjoy the huge blessings all around us, what's the point? I don't want to JUST endure. I want to endure with joy. 

So obviously I wont be perfect. I'll probably have many breakdowns and think my life is awful. But I am hopeful that these days will be less and less and I will soon see happiness all around me! Anyone want to join me? A picture a day of something happy in life? 

PS. This little project is perfect timing since it's supposed to snow tomorrow. Eeeeeeeek! I shall endure with joy! I hope!