Tuesday, December 30, 2014

life lately, Christmas break edition

christmas break was wonderful.  gordon and i had extended time off work to spend with each other and our families.
the week of christmas started off by me speaking in our ward's sacrament meeting.  i was so happy i did because i got to share a very special experience about a family fast i had participated in just days before that helped me to know without a doubt that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ know each of us personally. We took the opportunity to reach out to Jesus Christ through fasting and prayer for a family member who was lost. My testimony of fasting wasn't the strongest before this experience. I had been taught that blessings can come through fasting. I had heard others bare testimony of it. I have even been a reason people have fasted and prayed! But I have never asked my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ to help me to know that fasting is true and helps those for whom you are fasting for. This time I included that in my prayers. I never expected to have such a miracle happen. Just hours after I had ended my fast the person who was lost returned, and he was safe. The heartache and pain we had felt was eased. The peace and comfort we had prayed for was given to us. I was overwhelmed with humility and gratitude. I am still overwhelmed with humility and gratitude. The power of fasting and prayer is real. Jesus Christ knows us personally and loves us! He wants to help us and give us the strength and power we need if we but reach out to him and get to know him.
that experience set the tone for the entire christmas break.

we got to spend so much time with our loved ones.  little miss and tiny had me running all over!

this photo is being sent to gordon's cousin who is serving a LDS mission in Lithuania.
we wrote a little note to him to go along with it.
my uncle that lives in Texas sent my family the best hot cocoa and homemade marshmallows from an
ice cream shop that i was obsessed with when i visited them 6 years ago.  amy's ice cream.  i went there 4 times in my 4 day stay, it was that good. 
the hot cocoa paired perfectly with my mom's sticky buns, our christmas morning tradition food.
skyler is always demonstrating his many talents. 
can you believe that he's going to be 19 in just 2 months?  i can't.
there is always a little something for the granddogs under my mom's tree .
i'm pretty sure briggs knew it was christmas because he headed straight downstairs and to the tree
for his stockings as soon as we got there.  it was adorable.
at my dad's we got to relax and enjoy a delicious turkey lunch. 
it was really nice to spend time with my dad on christmas.
when we went to bed christmas eve there was absolutely NO snow on the ground.
we woke up to a winter wonderland and couldn't have been more excited.
we LOVE the SNOW!
i've mentioned this before, but little man is very interested in us finding our baby.
he has told us time and time again that if we have toys our baby would find us.
"babies like toys."
slowly we have created a nice toy collection for our future little one.
we added this toy this christmas.
it's from gordon's parents.
they didn't want our future little to be left out of the gift giving.
i love how much our little one is loved and they aren't even with us yet!
i couldn't end 2014 without a trip to my favorite place with my favorite person.
i had been so focused on finding our baby that i was getting pretty discouraged.
i am so glad we went to the temple!
i was recharged and reminded of how blessed i am right now at this point in my life.
i have the most amazing eternal companion.
he is with me each step of the way in everything.
i am so blessed.
gordon's cousin, travis, got married a couple of days after christmas.
while waiting for the luncheon to start we decided to go wonder around the city creek center.
gordon and his brother, matt, wondered around solo while i went into different stores.
they may have been mistaken for a gay couple a few times. 

while at the wedding luncheon, gordon's mom requested a photo of us.
gordon isn't the biggest fan of photos and pulls a face in just about all of them.
he was pulling this face while his mom snapped picture after picture.
she didn't even notice!!  it was hilarious.
jodi and trevor noticed she wasn't really paying attention and decided to kiss.
i was cracking up, obviously.
i love gordon's siblings and their spouses and love the fun and close relationship we share with them.
with tiny being in town we had to make sure we got some time with her.
she's beginning to recognize us and runs to give us a hug when we see her.
she would grab our hands and lead us all over the house to play with her.
she wore herself out and needed a little break.
she made herself comfortable on uncle gordon's lap.
i love how comfortable they all are (even briggs!).

we got a killer snow storm.  to quote gordon:
"Pow. Pow. Pow. Pow. Pow right before stump/rock/something hard.
accidental front flip.
i landed feet down and everything seemed fine so i just kept on going."
i love this guy of mine!

Monday, December 22, 2014

travel diary: hot springs and lava tubes, tabernacle hill, meadow, ut

we always thought this would be a pit stop as we were passing by to go to on a different adventure.
turns out, this place made a pretty nice overnight trip.
just off the main road in a very small town is a place where lava used to flow.
now there are just remains of it all.
and tubes to explore.
and hot springs to soak in.

our little spot nestled next to one of the only "mountains" around.
briggs is cute.
yoga on top of a lava mountain...of course.
gordon making me breakfast.  he normally cooks a nice breakfast but because this was going to be such a short trip we decided to eat oatmeal.  glad we did because we forgot our utensils and ended up drinking it.
i love going places with these two.  and they love coming.  they're a couple of explorers.
abbi is cute.

jr., our neighbor friend, and gordon starring off into a deep lava pit.
little lava bubble caves all over.
lava arch.
can't you just picture the lava running.  so incredible.
lava pit.
as wondered the flat plains every now and then you'd come across a cave.  pretty awesome.
a mossy patch among the lava rocks.
move caves.
we love our la tortuga blanca and one day hope to live in her full time.
a couple can dream, right.
the lave tube.  it went on for a mile or so with bubble holes that led to the ground level appearing every so often.  it was incredible.

at one point all you could see was black lava rock for miles.
there were three hot springs we could soak in.  one was overrun by a boy scout troop.
the other was overrun by cows.
when we finally found "our" hot spring we were glad the other two were occupied.
the water was nice and warm. and so clear.

in a hot spring with my hot spring.
i love him so much.
glad i am his adventure partner.

Friday, December 19, 2014

indie ogden awards

my sister and i attended the 3rd annual indie ogden awards.
we love ogden and love celebrating all of the local people that make it so great.

we got to ride in a golf card limo from the parking lot to the venue.
the whole awards area looked so nice!  indie ogden does a great job.
some of ogden's best restaurants catered the event.
we have a navajo taco from jeremiah's.
slice of pizza from lucky slice.
sushi and ribs from tona's.
cupcakes from lucy's cupcakes.
and gormet hot cocoa and homemade marshmallows from grounds for coffee.
everythine was DELICIOUS! 
the local restaurants in ogden don't mess around.  they are the best of the best.

my good friend and local ogdenite, priscilla, and her husband, jose, attended
the awards for the first time.  they had a GREAT time!
the photo booth was so fun! 
with my foxy date.

blurry but a goodie. seriously, such a fun night!
at the end of the evening we mingled with some of the other guests.
one of them was the co-host, richie T, who is the
producer of my favorite morning radio show, radio from hell on x96.
he was hilarious and thought priscilla's husband was just the funniest.
(which he was...he also may have had a little too much to drink)
another great year of awards to celebrate ogden.
can't wait til next year!

Friday, December 12, 2014

a Christmas tradition

Dear Santa,
Please send us a baby cousin
for Uncle Gordon and Aunt Jess
our nieces and nephews have started a tradition of getting their photos taken together with santa
for christmas.  this year they surprised us with this photo.  jodi, gordon's sister, had thought of this
idea in the middle of the night as a way to help us spread the word that we are hoping to adopt.
it is perfect and we love our family so much.

Monday, December 8, 2014

best friend sleepover

little miss turned 4 and we got to have birthday/best friend sleepover.

i heard that a yoga studio in ogden had a little yogis class and i knew i wanted to take little miss with me.  she loved it!  it was so fun practicing with her.  we joined a friend of mine and her niece.  we asked them to pose in their favorite poses for a photo and these are what we got...
tree and warrior (little miss and i called it princess warrior)

and lion
and downward dog (which we both looked under our armpits at each other to chat...she is so cute!)
she loved tree pose so much that the instructor shared a partner tree pose with us.
challenged my balance much more than little miss (she was leaning on me).
we worked up quite the appetite (especially me, i had gone to pilates beforehand).
i asked little miss what she wanted to eat and she said "i like pizza."
so we walked to one of my favorite pizza places, lucky slice,
to get "pizza slices bigger than our heads."  if you can't tell, she loved it.
later than night we met up with gordon's parents (her grandma and grandpa) who were having a
sleepover with little man for dinner and a stroll through christmas village.
little miss LOVED all the decorated houses.  we had a good time.
on our way to grandma's house for sunday dinner the sun was shining.  it was shining a little too much for little miss so she asked if i had some sunglasses she could wear.  i about died when i looked in my rear view mirror and saw this.  she is so cute!

little miss has often called me and told other people that i am her best friend.
i just knew we had to get best friend necklaces.
so i presented these to her with her birthday gift.
we were both reallly excited about them and wear them just about everytime we're together.