living the fairytale

Thursday, January 26, 2012

To Sara

My little sister is such a joy to be around! She is sweet, hilarious, smart, a great dancer, an awesome baker, and oh so funny. She has THE best laugh in the whole world. Truly.

Well, this lovely lady turned 18 (!!!!) on Sunday. 

My sister (another one) and I decided we were going to make a cake that my mom would never have made......

I think she loved it. What do you think?

(Idea found by spending wayyyy too much time on Pinterest).

Recipe for the cake (Texas Sheet Cake).

Happy Birthday to a lovely, wonderful young lady! She makes every day that much better :)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

6 Years

On this day, January 18, 6 years ago- in 2006-, I entered the Missionary Training Center in Provo, UT to become a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

It was a very intense, emotional, and beautiful day.

And the start of something very incredible for me as a person. Anything good that has come to me during these past 6 years I can totally attribute to beginning that journey 6 years ago today!

my two companions and me in the MTC, Jan 2006

Little did I know that Elder Holland would be OH so right when he talked about missionary work and the incredible yet totally difficult days that would be ahead-all starting for ME on THAT incredible day 6 years from today.

 From this talk he said,  "I am convinced that missionary work is not easy because salvation is not a cheap experience.Salvation never was easy. We are The Church of Jesus Christ, this is the truth, and He is our Great Eternal Head. How could we believe it would be easy for us when it was never, ever easy for Him? It seems to me that missionaries and mission leaders have to spend at least a few moments in Gethsemane. Missionaries and mission leaders have to take at least a step or two toward the summit of Calvary.

Now, please don’t misunderstand. I’m not talking about anything anywhere near what Christ experienced. That would be presumptuous and sacrilegious. But I believe that missionaries and investigators, to come to the truth, to come to salvation, to know something of this price that has been paid, will have to pay a token of that same price.
For that reason I don’t believe missionary work has ever been easy, nor that conversion is, nor that retention is, nor that continued faithfulness is. I believe it is supposed to require some effort, something from the depths of our soul."

It is a beautiful talk that poignantly describes how I might feel on some days ;) 

My sister once said before I left to be a missionary that "Heavenly Father takes care of His sister missionaries--before, during, and after."

my sister on the day she returned from HER mission, 2005 --she inspired me to even ask in prayer if I should go
She was right. He does take care of me, and has given me awesome experiences these past several years. 

my original MTC group, FEB 2006
One of the best being marrying my awesome husband. My husband rocks!

wedding day -April 30, 2010

It does the soul and mind good to reflect on what you have done and become because of YOUR blessings from Him, our Heavenly Father. 

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Happy New Year (+ holiday fun)

What a fantastic holiday break!! 

I had about two weeks off from my job and Jared had a week off, so we got to spend quality time with the family. Score!

This was the Christmas year that my entire family was in town. Talk about AWESOME party. All 10 kids (and spouses and children) gathered for a week (+ more for some) of total fun. I really love the holidays-they are so magical!

By the way, I dragged several of the fam to the fitness classes I teach, so if any one of them looks like they're in pain in these pics, they probably are/were ;)

I found little Santa!

Jared's first, real Swiss fondue!

Swiss cookies!!!! YUMM (find recipe HERE)

New Pajamas! My parents gave us all new matching Christmas jammies (it's tradition!). Thanks you guys! We all love 'em--especially the boys, and how hot they get  ;)

me and my favorite guy :)

isn't my nephew adorable?!

I got a PINK foam roller!! THanks to my fabulous husband! Thanks babe :)

Rolls on Christmas Day -a must. Recipe HERE
It was such a great holiday!

And the New Years was fantastic too:

We did gift exchanges,

Went to the Zoo and Science Center and Ice skated.

Sister love:

The two of us at the zoo:

And much, much more.

Fun was had by all. Hope you've started your New Year's off well :) If not, then come join me at this website and I can help ya out.

Also, VOTE for me (here's the blog post explaining how)--this is the last week to do so, and you can do it every day! Woot.