Saturday, December 22, 2007

In Case You Were Wondering....

I have been out of school for about three weeks now and have only posted twice since then...I realized that blogging is a form of procrastination for me, usually to avoid school. And since I haven't had any school...I guess I've just been, well, living and enjoying myself. Now I am writing to avoid getting ready for work. Which means I have just twenty minutes. Ready set go!

We've been able to go to Christmas parties, the Colorado Symphony, catch up with friends we haven't seen in a while, put up Christmas decorations, drink hot chocolate, and clean up some clutter.

Here are some random highlights:

1.) We made gingerbread houses out of graham crackers, candy, and super sugary frosting at cubscouts last week. For those of you that don't know, Brandon and I are Webelos (10 year old Cub Scouts) leaders for our church. For the activity, though, we did it with all the Cub Scouts (seven total). It was fun, although we were so busy helping the kids, we didn't get a chance to make our own. Not to mention, we've eaten a PURE SUGAR DIET since Thanksgiving and didn't need the extra cavity inducers in our home. Here are some of the creations:

Fun, eh? Despite all the mumbling we do about Cub Scouts, it is actually pretty fun and rewarding.

2.) Brandon finished finals on Thursday! He just has one semester left of academic classes (and then a whole year of rotations). There is light at the end of the tunnel...even if he can't quite see it yet.

3.) I got nostalgic for Christmas music of my childhood and actually bought the Carpenter's Christmas album from itunes. I couldn't believe I didn't have it on my ipod and couldn't bear to not have it anymore. Luckily, it was on sale for 7.99 AND I don't have to deal with the crappy plastic casing since it is all digital. Now Brandon and I are trying to stop this love affair we have with Karen Carpenter because she's dead.

4.) I got a pager and a tape recorder to use at my internship. Not only can my clients get a hold of me whenever, but my supervisor can review what I say in my sessions for all the quality assurance and professional development stuff. While those things sounds like a drag, I am happy about it. I love what I do and love growing into my role as 'theapist'--I am finding my niche and it feels GREAT. So satisfying.

5.) In addition to all the candy we've been around lately, I made two batches of cookies that were, to put it simply, THE BOMB. I brought some to my internship, set them on a table during a meeting, and watched people reach for seconds, thirds, and even fourths. Finally, one of my supervisors turned to me and said, "What did you put in these, crack? I cannot stop eating them!" I inappropriately replied, "If you put a lighter underneath them, let them get all warm, and then inhale, they are even better." We are a drug and alcohol treatment center, so we are allowed to joke about drugs. I guess. But them cookies--I promise you, they was gooouud.

6.) We'll be in Rocky Point (Puerto Penansco) in less than a week!!! Here we come beach. I finally get to introduce Brandon to quirky Rocky Point, eat fresh tortillas, and watch that tide move in and out. Can't wait.

7.) I have to work Christmas Eve. :( In retail hell, too. I am paying my dues, though, since I missed Thanksgiving, am missing the week after Christmas, which is even busier than the week before, and escaped pretty much ALL of last year's Christmas season. They essentially pay me to do my homework at night and allow me to work less than everyone else. I guess I have to make it worth their while to employ me. Hopefully I won't sulk my way through it.

8.) We passed our six months of marriage mark! And it has been the BEST six months.

If we don't write again before the holidays...peace and goodwill to all. XOXOX

Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Streak is Over

Twelve days ago Alison decided to learn how to rehydrate black beans, because she had never done it before. It turned out to be a major success. After a night and a day of soaking beans, we ended up with enough beans to run a Taco Bell for a day. As a consequence, we've eaten black beans at least once a day for 12 straight days. This is a personal record for both of us. I killed the last few off today with some cheese and salsa. It kind of looked like this:
I know that this may not seem extraordinary to those who have spent time with our neighbors to the south, but I'm still really proud of it.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

After Thanksgiving We Robbed a Bank

Just kidding. But by the looks of this pictures, you would have thought so, eh? This was actually taken just before we (all my siblings and their spouses, minus the one that is on a mission) went go-cart racing in Davis County. I had never done such a thing before, and I have to say it was fun. But I'm not all that into going fast. Leslie and I had a good time dinking along, trying not to lose control, while everyone else had some good ol' fashioned competition. Here we are afterward.
Aren't we all so cute? I certainly think so.

This post is basically a travelogue to explain that Thanksgiving was a nice time. I came home feeling exhausted--it wasn't really the most relaxing vacation and I never really got a chance to recover from busting my tooshie during finals. But the chance to spend time with my family was wonderful and much needed.

Aside from the go-cart racing, some of the highlights included visiting the Nature Conservancy's Nature Preserve at the Great Salt Lake. While that landscape is stark and sometimes buggy, I find it intoxicating and beautiful. Perhaps you need to grow up in the desert to really appreciate it or just have that need for open space, because I know many that just don't get it. I miss the many walks and runs in Farmington Bay and along the Bonneville Shoreline Trail that I used to take while living in Utah--they always yielded me the best views, fresh air, and that needed respite from daily living.
Later that day, we went to Temple Square and saw the lights. There is nothing like visiting the Salt Lake Temple, I always find myself holding back tears when I look up at the spires. The glimmer of the Christmas lights made the ambience that much more meaningful. It was really cold, though, so it was a rather rushed enjoyment.
I unfortunately don't have any quality pictures of Thanksgiving itself...but I bet you can imagine what it looked like. Food, family, and smiles. Melanie--your stuffing was A-MA-ZING (Brandon is a convert) and Mom, I want that sweet potato recipe. I want to try that for Christmas, maybe. Our trip to UT also enabled us to visit Brandon's brother Justin and our friends Kersten and Tai. We pretty much got to do it all...and I'm still thinking about what a nice time it was. What more of an indication do you need that your Thanksgiving was practically perfect?