Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Recommended for Reading

Every once in a great while you find a book that you just can't put down. You can't function in life until the book has been read, i.e., the dishes aren't done, homework is set aside, sleep isn't a priority, the poor hubs gets ignored completely, etc. Well, about two months ago, I happened upon a book that fulfilled that very need--thanks to Paige, by the way! Now I reveal that wonderful piece of literary work to you....doo, doo, doo (trumpet sounding). Now, please scroll down...

(So I tried to make the image huge and captivating, but this is the best that little jpeg would do. A little disappointing if you ask me. On another note, I know a couple other people have posted about this on their blogs too. To them I say, please don't feel like I am stealing any thunder! Love you guys!)

Has anyone else read this a-m-a-z-i-n-g book?!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

out with the old, in with the new

The last month was full of stress--I am definitely a Type-A personality, so I have experienced some perfectionist-related and time-related stress in the past, but this last month was an onslaught of stress not seen often at all in my life. I felt like I was spiraling out of control--looking back now I know that things weren't that bad (don't we tend to learn some things after-the-fact?). I was questioning if I could hand my work, home, school, and especially church responsibilities. I remember one day just wanting to be released from my callings and wanting to drop the school stuff. I know, it was a major over-reaction.

A while back I received a blessing telling me to run as fast as I can, and boy have I been running. I felt like I was out of gas when all of the sudden, life got as bright as can be. I have a new resolve in my classes, enjoy the many hours spent working, have found plenty of time to beautify my home and experiment in the kitchen, found better one-on-one time with Dane, and felt like I have help fulfilling the callings. I am so grateful for the blessings our Heavenly Father seems to shower on me. I don't always notice them, but I am seeing life more clearly at this point. I am happier, healthier, and kinder to others than I have been in a long time. Life's daily stresses seem small, and I am not putting so much pressure on myself. Life is beautiful!

I hope you are all being so blessed! Our Heavenly Father loves us and wants us to be happy. I think that is my favorite commandment and blessing of all!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

All Work and No Play...

Last week I went to Colorado for a few college fairs, which are always fun. College reps are a whole new brand of people, and I love, love, love being around them--very outgoing, very proud of their school, very funny! There is never a dull conversation between a couple college reps, believe you me. (Being among few, if any, Mormons does mean that I am unable to understand some of these conversations, however. I have no clue when they name types of alcohol, and a few jokes fly right over my head! These moments, small and far between, make me proud of my peculiarity!)

Even the fairs alone would be enough to make the week a worthwhile, fun trip--but the trip automatically became better when Dane told me that he could come too! Now, I think one reason for Dane's attendance was to be my personal chauffeur--very sweet--but also very smart--I have had little to no experience driving in large cities like Denver. The second, and primary, reason--to play with his adorable wifey!

Here are a few--okay, many--pictures from our little adventure. On a side note: I won't feel bad if you don't make it to the bottom--that's almost a journey itself!

First thing I have to say--I survived! I feared having a heart attack or falling to my death on the gondola! The ride was more relaxing than anticipated, but I prefer to keep these feet on the ground!

Dane and I spent the first day or two in Aspen! I can definitely see why it is the number one snow sport destination in the world--it is beautiful! The people there were so nice to open their city to us--giving us free passes to the gondola, a beautiful reception, and a great welcome!

I loved the Garden of the Gods, our first stop in Colorado Springs. I won't lie--I thought it would be a little lame--but I loved it. The rock formations were a-m-a-z-i-n-g!

Sorry about this one--just a posed picture of Dane and I on our little hike! I do have to say that most of our pictures like this were done with Dane's skill--finding a nearby rock or chair, setting the timer, and running back to pose! He has some skill!

The Balance Rock was spectacular! So big! So beautiful! I think it was my favorite stop in the Garden of the Gods!

Dane and I went to Seven Falls in Colorado Springs--so worth the stop! We saw a beautiful waterfall and got to ride an elevator in the middle of a mountain!

I thought hauling my lazy bum up those stairs wouldn't be too bad, but Dane and I definitely felt the effects during and after the hike. I guess you climb up about 1,000 feet in elevation by the time you make it to the top. I blame the lack of breath at the end on the altitude sickness!

I am deathly afraid of heights, so I am not sure how I managed to take this picture on our way down--I was shaking like crazy the entire time down those steep stairs! (This isn't from the top though--I don't know if I could have taken a picture from much higher up!)

Dane and I headed to a candy factory to see how candy is made--plus get a few free samples. Those free samples are so enticing sometimes! I have seen how candy is made on television, but seeing it in-person was so much better!

The entire room was full of candy--I think I was in heaven at the time! (I think Dane even made a comment about that to someone--sheesh!) So many candy canes--I was ready for Christmas to come after I saw all of them. They have some really fun flavors like apple pie and cranberry! All handmade too. It was so much fun to see how they were made!

We traveled to Lookout Mountain to visit a museum about the one and only...Buffalo Bill! This man was a true celebrity! Thousands of people attended his funeral, and many more mourned his death! He was quite a fascinating man! He was quite a showman!

Dane and I took a quick pic in front of his grave. Buffalo Bill claimed that you could see land from four different states from the top of Lookout Mountain. Quite frankly, most of what I could see included several cell phone towers. Sad day!

I put this one up just because it make me laugh so hard. I think these are meant for little kids, and some other tourists gave us some looks as we tried to work this shot out. We look so tough, don'tcha think!

Here I am getting ready to lasso a calf. Just ignore the fact that my horse has no legs! (This is all about the experience!)

The "Tattered Cover" is a wonderful little bookstore in LoDo, a fun part of Denver. Dane and I have a serious passion for books, so we had to pick up a new book as a souvenir from the trip. I think the book is my favorite souvenir. (We are one book closer to our dream library!)

Isn't it just wonderful inside? I could have spent an entire day inside! A true bookworm's dream come true!

Dane is posing with our desserts at the Hard Rock Cafe. I have never been to one before, and the atmosphere is ridiculously cool! I was in heaven when we found the guitar signed by Bonnie Rait and stuff from Eric Clapton, two of my favorites!

This picture is a little cheesy, I know! I was just so excited to be at the Hard Rock Cafe! (Those revolving doors gave me a little anxiety--I got in the same time as Dane, and there definitely was not enough room for the two of us! I almost lost a foot!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Wedding Bells

A couple of weekends ago, I made a quick trip to Teton to see my cuz Juston get married. I am the oldest grandchild on this side of the family, so it is crazy to see all of my younger cousins "grow up" and get married! I have to say that I am so excited for Aubree to join the family. She is one cute girl! It was also great to see my beautiful sista Kelli Jean and her hubs, the parental unit, more fams, and my adorable Gramma Bonnie! Congrats to Juston and Aubree!

Seeing people get married reminds me about just how grateful I am for my man Dane! My boo is my favorite person ever, and I love seeing just how much we have grown together over these last two years. I love him more and more everyday, truly! Marrying Dane was by far the best decision I ever could have made--I can be a pretty smart girl sometime! So glad this marriage thing can last forever! We have plenty of memories left to make!