Monday, November 28, 2011

Road Trip November 2011!

A couple weekends ago(Nov 18-20) me and three of my friends took a road trip to Flagstaff, AZ.  SUU was playing football at NAU and we decided it would be fun to go watch the game and spend some time in Flagstaff.  I had never been there and had heard good things about it.  On the way there we hit a wind storm that was blowing tumbleweeds allover the road.  It looked like a game where you were supposed to try to avoid them.  But we weren't able to.
Libby and the tumbleweed.
We had some problems finding our motel when we got there.  The GPS on my phone led us to a place that looked like a motel converted to apartments.  They looked pretty dumpy and we were really hoping that was not where our reservations were.  We finally found it.  The motel ended up having nice beds and I slept pretty comfortably. 
The next morning we went to historic downtown and did some shopping and looking around.  They had some really cool stores.  All of the store clerks were incredibly nice.  We decided that everyone we talked to in Flagstaff was.  It is just a nice place.  For lunch we ate at a place called Brandy's Restaurant & Bakery.  It had been featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives so we decided to try it.  I really liked my food. 
Garlic Fries and Quiche
This is where Guy Fieri sat

 After lunch we headed to the game.  NAU has an indoor football field.  It was really nice.  There was actually quite a few people there cheering for SUU.  NAU scored two touchdowns right at the start and I worried that wasn't a good sign.
Libby and I

At half time I was able to see some friends that live there in Flagstaff.  Brant works at NAU.  I know them because of our mutual friend Natalie.  So we took this picture and sent it to Natalie and asked if she was jealous.  She was.
Me, Rianne and Jana
Kyle, Libby and I.  Camaree wouldn't get in the picture
The game ended up being really good and SUU won 27 to 24! It made it worth the drive.   It was probably the football game that I paid the most attention to. 
After the game and shopping at a goodwill store (another wrong turn because of GPS) we ate at Stromboli's.  It is a pizza and pasta place one of my clients told me about.  It was pretty good.
That night we played girl talk.  It is a game that I remember from my childhood and Camaree still had the game.  Yes Kyle was a good sport and played with us.  If you fail the task you get you have to wear a sticker zit.
Camaree had zits too but she wouldn't get in the picture.
Don't ask me what Kyle was doing here.
Sunday we decided to take a detour to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.  I have only been to the North Rim and that was only once.  I know, it is a shame considering how close it is to where I grew up. 

It was breathtaking!  I was really glad we went.
This is what Libby and I did while we  were driving.  Yes we are like old ladies.
We also stopped for a minute at Lee's Ferry.

We had made a road trip CD and I think the two songs that ended up being the themes from it were "Meet me in Montana" and "Let's here it for the Boy".  They were the fun ones to sing along to.  Kyle didn't love the latter but he was a trooper with us three girls so we dedicated it to him.  We finally made it safely home and I think we all ended as friends still.  :)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

My Favorite Picture of All Time

This picture is of me and my Dad.  I don't have a date for it but I assume I was three or four. I post it today because today is the day he died thirteen years ago.  I'm not looking for sympathy I mostly just wanted a reason to post the picture because I have been wanting to make sure I preserved it.   The first time I ever laid eyes on this picture was the night before my Dad's funeral.   My Aunt and Uncle found it in their collection right after my Dad's passing and made a copy for me and my Mom and brought them to us.  It has become quite famous in my family.  My Grandparents wanted a copy and I think most of my siblings got one too.  It has hung on my bedroom wall ever since.  My niece was about that age at the time of my Dad's death and she looked a lot like me.  We displayed it at the funeral and people kept saying what a cute picture of my Dad with his Granddaughter.  I corrected them, don't worry.  I mean looked at those awesome sunglasses in my hand! Those were so 1983 not 1998.  :)
I love the emotion you can see in his face.  It makes me feel very loved.  I've always thought that I must have been thinking, "Yes, I have him wrapped around my finger."  I think about him a lot and especially this time of year.  He is a good man and I miss him everyday.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Halloween Present and Past

Recently I came across some old Halloween pictures.  So I decided to keep them close by and add them to this post.  I had to scan some of them in so the quality of those particular ones is not great. But get excited because there are some great pictures ahead! ;)
This is the girls at the salon this year.  Megan was a hippie, Becky is a pirate, and then you see me and I know you are thinking "She didn't dress up!" Oh but I did.  My sign says "Shirt....$20.00, Jeans.... $40.00, Halloween costume with minimal effort.....Priceless!"  That's right, I was a MasterCard Ad.  Crysta was Little Red Riding Hood, MaLynda was a slutty Eskimo (although not very slutty), Ashlee was a cat and Krista was a nerd.  We also had a potluck that day.  There was a lot of good food and we had a fun day.
This is little Adam.  He is the newest member of my family.  He was born October 1st.  It was in Connecticut though so I haven't been able to hold him yet.  He is a cute little cow.  
This is my cute little Ellie fairy.  She is adorable!
Here is Erica, Jeff and Adam.  Jeff sent me this picture with the caption "Blame it all on my roots".  It made me laugh because if you know Jeff he hates country music and everything that goes with it.
Here are the ones that actually live by me.  Marshal was a basketball player, Bret a robber, Danny a football player and Shelayne was a cute little spider who smiles after you take the picture. 

This is Danny in 2000.  He was the same one that was the football player in the picture above.  He is pretty cute both times.
This is McKenzie and Wyat also in 2000.  They are now 17 and 14.  I can't believe how fast time goes!
Here are the girls of Salon Divo.  No we didn't really dress like that in 2000, it was Halloween and we decided to be eighties girls.  There is Bree, Kacie, Dayna, Me, Tanny, Liz and Jamie.
And in case you needed a closer look at me with my awesome eighties you go.
Here is Danny in 2001.  You can't tell at all that his Dad is a sports fan can you?
Here is Wyat and McKenzie in 2001.  Wyat was a bear in case you can't tell.
Here I am in 2003.  I had just gotten back from Hawaii and had purchased that outfit.  I was super tan so I pretended I was Hawaiian.  I had a picture of all the girls at the salon but the picture wasn't digital and it turned out terrible.  

The next four pictures are from 2008.  I realize there is a large gap but I probably didn't dress up and if I did, I didn't find those pictures. 
This is Kristy as a white trash beauty queen and Kyle as a homeless man.  His sign says "Needs Rich Woman  (Preferably a HOT one).  M-Jay is the creepy cowboy in the background.  It was pretty funny because Kyle didn't even recognize him. 
Erin was gum on the bottom of a shoe, Laura was a bubble bath and I was a magic 8 ball.  My necklace was triangle shaped pieces of paper that had magic 8 ball responses. 
We had a few doughnut on a string.  Jason obviously wasn't very good. 
This is Todd, Mike and Clint.  They weren't really dressed up but the picture made me laugh.
Here is Erin and Kyle in 2009.  They didn't really dress up but some other girls came over as very modest playboy bunnies and Erin and Kyle decided to steal their accessories for a picture.  
I didn't dress up either in 2009 but Ellie did!  She was only about 2 months old in this picture.
I am not missing last year in case you are wondering.  I blogged about it back then so check my older posts if you want to see my awesome "box of Kleenex" costume.  :)

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Things you don't say to single people. (Atleast not this single person)

In my 31 years of being single I have had some really stupid things said to me.  I know most people mean well and I really don't want to offend anyone.  A lot of times the people trying to give advice haven't been in my situation so they really don't understand what they are saying.  Maybe this will help someone think before they speak.

1.  Well you're just being too picky.   This comment is wrong on so many levels.  Hell yes I am being picky!  I plan to be with him for eternity so I am going to like him.  Lowering my standards just to be married.........not an option.  There are things worse than being single.  From the words of a former stake president of mine (who is now an area authority) "You can be a lot happier single than married to the wrong person."  I will stay single before I am going to marry someone who abuses me or has any other number of issues some men have nowadays.  If you think I am choosing not to date someone because his ears are too big then you don't know me well enough to make this comment.  I don't turn down blind dates.  Guys that are divorced, have children and that are younger than me are not deal breakers.  At my little brother's wedding someone said to me, "you would be married to if you didn't expect him to be perfect."  That person had no idea what my dating life has been like.  I have found several men I would have happily married but they chose not to be with me (which in the long run was a blessing). Don't say things like that to people, especially if you have no idea what their relationships have been like. 
2.  He just needs a good girl.  You know what? I am a good girl and I have tried hard my whole life to be a good girl. I want an equal not a project.   I do not want to date someone to try to help them change.  Nobody is going to change unless they really want to.  Why don't I deserve someone that is already a good person?  I realize that everyone has their struggles and I am far from perfect but I just don't want to be set up with someone because I could "help" them become active in the church again (or whatever the case my be).   It reminds me of a time when a woman wanted to set me up with her son who had recently gotten out of prison.  The reason he was in prison you ask.....attempted rape of his mother!  I just wanted to climb in her brain for a second and see what made her think it was okay to set me up with him. 
3. I know a single guy.  He's single and your single.  Really?  That is not enough in common.  I really don't turn down many blind dates but I would like there to be more reason than that for you to set me up.  I have had some really bad blind dates and it make me wonder what the person setting me up thinks about me. Oh well, good stories for later.  
4. You're sick of dating? That how I got right before I met my spouse.  Well thank you but the first time I remember hearing that was probably seven years ago and I have been sick of dating this whole time.  This one also goes along with if you chop off your hair, buy a new car, get called to be the RS pres of your singles ward or finding him when you least expect it.  I've chopped off my hair five times since I got out of beauty school.  I have bought three new cars.  I was the RS president 8 years ago, and how do you least expect it in a church where family is so important and people are constantly asking you if you are dating someone?  Which brings me to....
5. Are you dating anyone? I don't hate this question as much as some of the others but it kind of depends on who it comes from.  If you don't know me that well, don't ask me that.  If you are just trying to get some gossip, don't ask me that.  If you are someone that I  know cares about me and is good at listening to my dating woes then it is okay.  Besides, if I was dating someone and wanted you to know, I would tell you. 
6.  Have you tried online?  Wow!  I have never thought of that.  I am so glad you brought that to my mind. (read that again with a very sarcastic voice because that is how I wrote it)  No I haven't tried online.  I know it works for some people but I have heard way more horror stories than good ones.  Here is a quote from Dallin H Oaks of the quorum of the twelve apostles:  "My single brothers and sisters, follow the simple dating pattern and you don’t need to do your looking through Internet chat rooms or dating services—two alternatives that can be very dangerous or at least unnecessary or ineffective."
7. If it doesn't happen in this life.... I know people say this to comfort but all I think about is....Well if I live until I am 90 I have 60 more years to be alone.  You really think that is comforting?  This one kind of goes with....Well look at Sheri Dew.  Sheri Dew is an amazing lady but I have no desire to be her.  In fact she came to town and spoke to the Relief Society women of this area and she is not happy about being single either.  I don't know that I would be able to have as good of an attitude as she does if I stay single that long.  I am not as strong as her.
8. So and so isn't married either.  When this is said to me I think two things.  One is that there are obvious reasons why that person in not married and you just compared me to them.  Or I think.......she is a beautiful, amazing person, if she can't get married what makes me think I can.  I do like hearing about the people who got married in their 30's or older.  That makes me feel like there is still hope.

I have been writing this blog post in my head for months now and I knew I had to get it out.  Like I said before, I know people mean well and I don't want to offend anyone.  I just thought I would give you a glimpse into my head when certain things are said to me.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Summer Road Trip 2011

My younger brother got accepted to NYU and therefore was moving across the country.  One day in June I got a text message that said "How would you like to spend 40 hours with your brother?"  I replied with "Driving to New York?"  He said "Maybe."  So I then asked "How will I get home?"  He said, "Fly on my dime."  I said, "I'm in."  It didn't occur to me until the next day that Nauvoo Illinois (Where my Mom is on a mission) is on the way.  So I asked my brother if we were stopping there and he said that was part of the plan.  So then I was even more excited!
Wednesday, July 13th we finished packing the back of the 4-Runner, attached the U-haul trailer (which took four of us standing on the back to do it) and headed out. 
Disclaimer:  A lot of my pictures are taken from inside the car.
Wyoming had a lot of windmills and I found them very serene.
We hit some heavy rain just after Rock Springs, WY
The rock formations were cool.
Can anyone guess what state this next picture is from?
I hope you guessed Nebraska.
The first night we stayed in North Platte, Nebraska.  We were hoping to find some good local food that night but we got there a little late and the only thing still open was Applebee's.  It was disappointing. 
Thursday, July 14th we got out to the car and Jeff realized that he had left the driver's side window down the whole night!  Some of his most valuable stuff was inside the 4-Runner.  Nothing had been touched.  The drivers side was up against a fence and I don't think anyone had even looked.  Thank goodness!
Right before we crossed into Iowa I realized we were pretty close to the Winter Quarter's temple so we took a detour and went and found it.
It was beautiful.  There is also a pioneer graveyard right by it.  We walked around it too.  It was very peaceful.

Right after that little detour we entered Iowa.  I think Iowa has more corn than Nebraska does.  It also had very picturesque farms along the road.
That evening about 6 pm we made it to Nauvoo, IL.  We teased my Mom and told her we had gotten a late start so she wasn't expecting us as soon as we got there.  Her and Neal had the night off.  So they fed us dinner and then drove us around Nauvoo.  I wish I could have taken pictures of the firefly's.  I love them, they fascinate me!  In fact we hit one in the car and the guts glowed on the windshield for a minute.  Only bug I felt bad about killing. 
The mighty Mississippi at sunset.
They also took us to get frozen custard in town.  It was delicious!  My Mom was so excited to introduce us to the owner of the custard shop.  There also happened to be other missionaries there that they were happy to have us meet.  My Mom and Step Dad live in a little fifth wheel trailer so they had arranged for us to stay at a house of some people they know.  The people had a basement with two bedrooms, bathroom and a separate entrance they would leave open for us.  It was very nice. 
Friday, July 15th, my Mom and Neal were busy so Jeff and I went to Carthage.  The minute we stepped out of the car I could feel the spirit there.  We of course took the tour so we got to see the jail and the room where Joseph Smith was last alive.  It really did make everything I have heard since I was little a lot more real.
Before going back to Nauvoo we drove into Warsaw.  Back in Joseph Smith's times they had a printing press there.  It was putting out anti-Mormon publications.  I heard that one of the church leaders told them they would never prosper.  The printing press and most of the main street looks abandoned.  It is kind of a dumpy little town.  Jeff also wanted to drive into Missouri so that he could say he had been there.  After we got back from Carthage and ate lunch we went to a show called "High Hopes and Riverboats" that was put on by the Young Performing Missionaries.  It was really cute.  Then we met my Mom and Neal in the grove where the guy who plays Joseph Smith in the pageant gave part of the King Follett sermon.  He was dressed in character and it felt like I was there. 
That night we got to see "Rendezvous".  It is the cute little play that the older missionaries perform.  We of course saw the one that my Mom and Neal were stars in.  I loved it!!
We were lucky enough to get pictures with some of the cast. :)
This was their big scene as Jed and Annie.

Jed is not a member of the church and Annie doesn't want to date him because of some of his ways.  Anyway they find out that saints need to leave Nauvoo and Jed realizes that he is on the saints side.  
Here the men are singing "We'll leave willingly, because we have to"
Saturday, July 16th was my Mom and Neal's P-Day, so they hung out with us all day.  It was nice.  We went to their trailer for breakfast.  Then we went and took a tour of the buildings that the Community of Christ church still owns.  It was a good tour.  We are pretty sure that the our tour guide was a member of our church which I think was a benefit to us.  He was very diplomatic in how he presented the information.  The Community of Christ owns the Nauvoo house, the Mansion house, Joseph and Emma's first house in Nauvoo, Joseph, Emma and Hyrum's graves and the Red Brick store.  Jeff was mad that they own those sites but they are doing a good job at preserving them.  It is thanks to them the graves are there at all.  Emma had hidden Joseph and Hyrum's bodies and they found them and created the memorials.
Following that tour we were able to go to a little vignette that some of the pageant performers did.  It was John Taylor, Wilford Woodruff and others that talked about the missions that they were called on and the sacrifices made.  I felt like I was back in time.  It was so touching.  The spirit was so strong and it brought tears to my eyes. 
After that we went and did a session at the the temple.  It is a beautiful building inside and out.
Later that evening we got to see the other show that my Mom and Neal are in.  It is called Sunset and it is a series of little skits that the older couples and the young performing missionaries do together. 

I loved this one too!!  It was so cute and a lot of fun.  Then it was time to go to the pageant.  There was a lot of people there.  I ran into a guy that used to be in my singles ward in Cedar City.  That was pretty random.  The Pageant was so so good.  I never wanted to go to Nauvoo in the middle of the summer because of the heat and the humidity.  But I am so glad I got to see all the extra stuff that they have going on during July.
Sunday July 17th we went to church with my Mom and Neal.  They only have sacrament meeting.  I could get on board with that except it is at 8 am.   They had a visiting authority that we got to hear speak.  It was Elder Costa from the Presidency of the Seventy.  After church we went and walked around the women's garden that is right by the visitor's center.  It is really pretty.
After that we went back to my Mom and Neal's trailer and they made us brunch.  Then it was time to hook the trailer back up and head back out.  Is was really hard to leave. 
We drove all the way through Illinois and Indiana that day.  We were still seeing a lot of corn and soybeans.  Somewhere in Ohio we ate at a yummy Italian place and we stopped for the night in Mansfield, Ohio.  We stayed at a Fairfield  Inn.  I only mention this because it was way nicer than the place we stayed the first night and my bed was so comfortable!  It was the best sleep I had had the whole trip thus far.  
Monday, July 18th we drove some more.  When we got to Pennsylvania we made it a
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