Thursday, September 18, 2008

"Merry Christmas, Holly!"

Holly's sleepy reply as she snuggles down deeper into the covers: "Thanks, you too, honey"

Wait a minute...

What happened to the rest of September, October, and November? Not to mention December!

The weather dropped 40 degrees two weeks ago, and my sweet husband's body/brain is confused. I've been trying to figure out why he's been running around with all of the giddy anticipation that December brings and whistling or listening to Christmas music around the house, when "Merry Christmas!" popped out of his mouth the other night. We realized that this is what Mesa feels like when it's almost Christmas, and this is his first experience with a real Fall season! Poor thing has a long time to wait, but I'm going to encourage this fun holiday mood as long as I can! :) (Besides, he's going to Love fall.) :)

So from our home to yours, MERRY CHRISTMAS!! and a Happy....Labor Day... :)
P.S. Thanks for the Christmas stickers on our window, HiTy! He loves them. Ü

Thursday, August 7, 2008

The Joys of our dear Deseret Industries

We have discovered the D.I. in American Fork to be a treasure trove of goodness. :)

While we did not, unfortunately, bring home our furry friends, we did carry out this load of wonderful books. Stephen and I made a goal before we got married to work on our library little by little, so that when our children are old enough to read, they will not be at a loss for good material! And I just about started jumping up and down when I found this pile of Gooseberry Patch books (wonderful, wonderful books that add some more joy to homemaking). Sixteen books that all range in price from $15.00 to $30 dollars apiece for $19.00 dollars? Sounds good to me! We love to read. :)
We also ran into a dear friend that we hadn't seen since high school - Emily Lunt (although Lunt no longer) and her sweet husband! I wish I'd gotten a picture with her. They were absolutely darling and happy. It's so good to see old friends. :)

Friday, August 1, 2008

My Dear Papa

During a birthday dinner, it's a tradition in our family to go around the table and express one thing you have appreciated about the birthday boy/girl that year. So, let's just imagine we're sitting around the table, and it's my turn, because today is my dear Papa's BIRTHDAY!!

Dad, one thing I have appreciated and admired about you this year, is your watchcare over your family.

Watch-care & stay awake and keep a vigil, to spend time observing something closely, to guard and to observe... Watchcare is caring for the spiritual and temporal welfare of those in your stewardship...are willing to "bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light; yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort."

You watch over your family - to be with and strengthen them. (D&C 20:53).

Thank you for taking care of us!

We know how much you love us, Dad. We can see it in all you do. I hope that some day I'll be able to better show you in that way, too.



Wednesday, July 23, 2008


My goodness, life can just get so fun and crazy. :) After two months, Stephen and I decided that the apartment we were living in was not the most ideal for our situation, so we started scouting out a possible change in address. We worked and worked to find somewhere within our ward boundaries (because we absolutely LOVED our ward), but alas and alack - no luck! With the new school year quickly approaching, we were very blessed with an answer to weeks of prayers and fasting that resulted in some fast-paced changes. The surprise two weeks ago -- we needed to move!

Tuesday morning, we decided to try to find a place in Wymount Terrace (the BYU on-campus married housing).

Tuesday evening we signed a contract.

Wednesday morning, I began packing and at 11:45 posted a brief listing for our old basement apartment (christened the "Hobbit Hole" by our dear brother, Marc)

Within minutes, happy young couples were at the door wanting to see the apartment (luckily Stephen had just returned), so we dashed around trying to quickly get our home ready for this impromptu open house - laughing the hardest when Stephen scooped up the freshly cleaned load of laundry off the bed and started stuffing it into a pillow case as fast as he could. :)

After fourteen applicants turned in their forms and more were still calling, I quickly deleted the post and ran outside to yank out the for sale sign. I suppose I should have known there would be a great interest for married housing so close to campus after our own weeks of searching, but I had no idea it would all happen so quickly! And some of their stories seemed so desperate - like the engaged couple who were getting married in a few days, then coming straight to Utah - still with no place to live! Luckily, it was our landlord who had to decide who would get the apartment and not us!

Within a few hours, the decision was made and our contract was transfered to the new tenants - which meant we needed to be packed up and moved out in two days...ack!

Luckily, we are blessed with INCREDIBLE friends who jumped to our aid the next day. Montana lifted and carried and climbed the entire afternoon and evening, and Darrel and Jessica sacrificed many laborious hours for us - despite the fact that they had family in town! I want to be as selfless as that! We are so thankful for their help - it wouldn't have been possible without them and many blessings!

Amidst all of this, we were house sitting for our cousins for two weeks in Highland - about 30 minutes away.

One blessing after another, and on Saturday morning, we swept and vaccumed one last time and turned in our keys - officially moved out! Truthfully, although those days were a bit grueling and miraculous, I think one of the hardest things about moving was saying our surprise goodbye to our wonderful ward on Sunday. Stephen has been serving in the Elder's Quorum Presidency and I've been serving as the ward choir director and primary/nursery music leader, and we have LOVED getting to know these dear brothers and sisters! I love when a ward truly feels like a family, and we're so grateful for the friendships, memories, and growth we've experienced with them. We hope and pray the friendships will continue!

However, I'm so grateful that with all of the tears I shed that day, none were accompanied by feelings of regret or "what have we done?!". We're so sad to leave, but so excited for our new apartment! We moved from a basement with one tiny window by the ceiling in each room to the third floor and BIG picture windows! The view out of each one is beautiful, and I'm in love with light! The first thing we do when we walk out of our bedroom in the morning is go look out all of the big windows and grin at all of the sun coming in. :)

And one of the absolute BEST parts is....we will be living next door to my sister and her husband! And when I say next door, I mean you open our door, walk three or four steps, and you are at her door. We signed up for our apartments at the same time, and I am so excited for you to come in the Fall, Heidi!!!

While we're unpacking and getting settled at a good clip, I'm afraid I still haven't crossed over the computer cord, so pictures will be coming soon. :) Whew - back to unpacking!

Monday, June 30, 2008

"Marriage may be made in heaven, but the maintenance must be done on earth..."

So, my sister has little counters on her blog that track when her friends add anything new to their blogs...and my face scrunched up when I saw that mine reports a hefty two months! My goodness! Granted, for a good portion of that time we were without internet, but excuses aside, I do believe it is high time for some updates around here! I've been looking over my pictures and feel a bit of a loss as to know where to even how about this weekend! :)

Happy Anniversary,
my dear husband! 6 month anniversary, that is. :) I was shocked this last week when I realized we'd be married for 1/2 of a year on Friday! I guess it's true that time flies when you're having fun! :) Well, our dear Stephen is turning into a very sweet romantic, and he's been secretly planning a big date for the last two weeks (the kind of secretly that means every single day you talk about how excited you are for this thing that you won't tell , no matter how hard your wife tries to get it out of you). :)

On the way to the restaurant, the date got off to a perfect start as I listened over the phone while my dearest, sweetest little brother opened his mission call!!! Our wonderful Aaron will be serving in the New York New York North mission - reporting October 8th of this year! We're so excited and proud of him!!!
After a DELICIOUS dinner at Macaroni Grill (quickly becoming a personal favorite of mine) where I had this Parmesan-crusted chicken salad (yum!!), we started driving up Provo Canyon. It was such a beautiful day, and I was just a happy little duck with my camera.

Any trip that involves going up the canyon is bound to be a good one. I still didn't know where we were going, but rediscovered that taking big gulps of woodsy air is a good cure for just about anything.After a winding drive up a narrow road with little peaks of a view through the trees to tease us, we arrived at a BEAUTIFUL spot Stephen had scouted out previously to watch the sunset over the valley. I officially recommend this exact activity in this very spot to EVERYBODY. You know cameras can never really do it justice, but here are a few little shots...

It was just so pretty, some deer came out of the trees to join us. I thought it was so neat to see nature enjoying nature and wondered if they thought the same thing of us sitting there...

Oh, and I cut my hair! Almost ten inches! Whew!

A few weeks ago, Stephen told me that he was excited for when his hair would turn gray. I laughed and replied that I was going to remind him of that someday. Well, that day might be sooner than we thought! What is this waving in the wind?
It may be hard to tell in the picture, but yes, a boneified gray hair! There are actually a few hidden around in there. But now we know he's going to have the pretty, soft, snow white kind of hair. It's just a cute head. :)

We finished off the delightful evening with a trip to the theater to see the newly released WALL-E. I think it's safe to say I've never felt so much compassion for something made of metal - animated metal, at that...

But there's no denying that this is one of the cutest movies I've seen in a long time! It's so nice to be able to sit through a movie with a sweet story and enjoy every minute of it - without worrying about inappropriate humor or material. We loved it! I'm thinkin' this one is going to find it's way to the Johnson's shelf some day... :)

Monday, April 21, 2008

To My Hero

Thank you for being so patient with me! I'm so grateful I get to love you forever. :)

Sunday, March 30, 2008 along

I should be frantically studying for this is the perfect time to do some blogging. :) No really, I've been good, but I think it would be okay to take a minute to share some pictures before my mind turns to mush for the day... It's been a while! So, here's a quick overview of some fun in March....

We love EASTER...

FHE with our cute new friends in our ward

Joy: in progress

Our first time decorating eggs together
(we had such a good time, we went and got another egg-coloring kit at the post-holiday sale just to randomly do for fun some time)

Our 2008 contribution to the Easter Bunny

We love Family...

Family dinner at Brick Oven Pizza (yum)

My sister's new precious little baby Evelyn
(being inspected for broken limbs)

and with Aunt Heidi
(who is going to make a WONDERFUL mother some day)

trying out Dad's fingers

our beautiful little angel!

delicious family Easter dinner

cute Mom and Tylan with some amazing artistry behind them

laughing with cousin Nick
I wish I remember what they were looking at...
but they look cute doing it! :)

"Dueling it out" with the sweetest younger brother in the world

We love cute Husbands...

Noah is helping Stephen see if his stomach is good for baby naps

Nope, faces just don't get much cuter than that

don't eat me! ;)

We love smoothies...

And we think our smoothies are especially good when we freeze the fruit first before we blend it in - it's a little thicker and "smoothier" that way. :) Well, the first time we decided to do this with the bananas, someone may have forgotten a tiny little detail first.... While not essential, of course, sometimes it's happy when we peel the banana before we make it as hard as a rock....
After I sawed at it for a while, Stephen came up with his masculine strength and snapped it in half for me.... It still made a good smoothie. :)

We love April...

...and all of the hope of Spring and Resurrection that comes with it! Now, back to studying for finals...

Friday, March 28, 2008

Watch Your Head!!

I must confess, I love kicking off the icicles that accumulate under our car. That reassuring snap when your foot meets with success, combined with that gentle little tinkling sound when it shatters on the ground...sometimes Stephen has to keep a firm hold on my hand when we walk through a parking lot after a storm. :)

Now, there are a number of perks to our humble little home, but I would like to submit that one of the finest is that the eaves of our roof seem to encourage the growth of the largest icicles I think I've ever seen in my life....

...we're still working on the many uses for these wonderful treasures. :)

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Once there was a snowman

One Saturday morning as we were doing a little cleaning, Stephen announced that he was going to rescue our car from all of that snow residue. I could see the car from the kitchen window, and glanced up after a little while to see how it was coming. All I found was an untouched car and no Stephen! That alarmed me a little bit, so I ran out to see if he was okay. This is what I found...

That dear boy hadn't made it past the walkway with all of that snow taunting him. I'd like you to meet Stephen's first snowman...

And of course he would need (snow)man's best friend to keep him company...

Now that we're almost to spring (keeping our fingers crossed), I thought I'd pay tribute to our faithful friend and guard dog. Unfortunately, he hasn't lasted through these (slightly) warmer days we've been getting, but he was awfully cute for a while!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

We're Here!!!

Isn't he cute Ü

Well, here we are! After one month...oh dear, maybe two...of a blank screen, I think it's high time we started posting! I'm so sorry it's taken so long - I'm afraid I'm one of those people who have a much easier time writing essays once I get through that first paragraph. But now that we've broken the ice, let the blogging flow! Ü Now, I still don't know what I'm doing, yet, but we're excited to share and hear (and see) how our dear friends and family are doing, as well! This is going to be fun!

As we go along here, I may just have to backtrack to catch a few things from the last few months. So, first things first. I think the most exciting event to note from our lives is that we got married!!!! :) Exactly ten months ago from this very day, Stephen timidly stretched his hand out and threw it on top of mine - hoping that I would hold it and not push it away with a look of disgust (so he says). I think he calmed down a bit when he saw the huge smile I couldn't get off my face. ;) He proposed on October 5, 2007 amidst a herd of goats and pouring rain in Provo Canyon (the place where my dad proposed to my mom - sweet, huh), and I said YES (a few times)!! We were married on the glorious day of December 27, 2007 in the Mesa, AZ temple. The reception was that evening at Regency Garden...

Isn't that cake by Erin Haslam WONDERFUL?
(I'll put up more wedding pictures later)
The day was absolutely beautiful, emotional...and a lil' bit exhausting! :) I think another word to describe it would have to be humbling, as well. We were overwhelmed with the love and support of our dear family and friends - not to mention all of their hard work! How truly blessed we are!
After a quick stop at California Adventure and Disneyland (of course)...

...we made our way here to BYU (yay!) where we've been chugging away for the last few months - having a wonderful time! :) Well now, I think that just about brings our little synopsis up-to-speed, and speaking of school....I think I'd better attend to some things....