James hasn't played his guitar much since we got back from our summer adventure. Oh how I've missed it. I'm sure you can see why. We just couldn't let that beautiful early fall weather go to waste.I hope your Sunday was as inspiring as ours.
I should have posted this back in April, so that shows how behind I am. I just couldn't let this event go undocumented.
James did his first Sprint Triathlon on April 24, 2010. I am so proud of him! He had so much fun doing it that Triathlons may very well become his addiction. I trained hard with James for about 5 months, but pulled a muscle in my lower back just 4 days before the event. I was so disappointed. The only good thing about not doing the triathlon was that I got to cheer my guy on. Number 298- In my opinion the hottest guy in the event Getting into the water- it was freezing outside! I was complaining and I was fully clothed. Nice stroke... Transition area for the bike- if he had been more efficient a this he probably could have cut another 2 minutes off his overall time. Finish Line! There was an amazing atmosphere at the Olympic Oval in Kearns, UT. He was so pumped up at the finish line that I think he could have done the whole thing again without a problem. I was his water girl :) James finished 5th out of 14 in his age group with a time of 1:25:37. He is amazing!
I can't wait until we get to do a triathlon together. Fingers crossed that the Summit Athletic Club Triathlon on October 16th pans out!
I have had some requests to see our wedding video, so here is the link, but it only shows middle part of the video. You can also see other videos done by our talented friends at KANDM Wedding Videography. They are the absolute best!!!
I meant to post this on Friday, but I got side tracked.
I thought one of my best friends in the whole world deserved a post of her own for her birthday. I met Mary Elizabeth Wright Brearton in a fitness for life class my freshman year of college. It was the luckiest tardy I ever had because I ended up sitting next to the best girl in the class. We quickly became "best friends" even though some people said you can't be "best friends" with someone you haven't known that long.
Mary is one of the coolest, funniest, best girls I've ever known. She is talented in so many ways including writing letters, obsessive photography, being the life of any party, 80's music trivia, hiking, biking to work, she has mastered the art of "roughing it with style", making everyone feel special, dressing up in costumes, journal writing, and being an amazing friend.
The best thing about Mary is that no matter how long we are apart, when we finally get together again it is like no time has passed at all. Mary was the most consistent writer while I was on my mission and I'm pretty sure she got to know my companions better than I did! She has been like a sister to me for the past 7 years. We've seen each other through break ups, family troubles, birthdays, holidays, moves, missions, weddings and anniversaries. I can't wait to be there for the next 50 years! I love you Mare Bear!
Here are some of my favorite pictures of Mary(I had to narrow it down from about 1,000): Mary and I at my wedding. Her husband, Klint, was doing our wedding video (which was amazing...) so I didn't get to spend as much time with her as I would have liked, but I was so happy she was there.
Our sweet catalog photo shoot at the cabin in Cedar City, UTDressed up as Poison Ivy and Veruca Salt from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory The best costumes of our lives- The Spice Girls! Mary was one hot Ginger Our Christmas card photo shoot after we got back from Kauai (matching sweaters included) When we dressed up in grass skirts and leis and went to Kalapaki beach. We were pretending to speak in a different language for fear of people discovering that we actually lived there. Pics for the Del Sol news letter. I'm pretty sure this was our best one! I'm not sure why we are always wearing matching shirts :) Our first Sunday in Kauai together Those "misty mountains" were a favorite topic of ours Ridiculous poses on the sun station were a common occurrence at Del Sol, Kauai. This girl is flexible!
I love you my Beautiful Mary Darling! I hope you had a Happy Birthday.
Riding my bike downtown Edmonton Reading at McKinley Park by the river Running on the path by the riverGrilling just about everything in sight including corn, pork, steak, chicken, grilled cheese sandwiches, etc. Tahitian dancing, pilates, yoga and crochet with my new gal pals Shopping at the West Edmonton Mall and seeing the Lemurs!
I am back! So I guess you could say that my extended vacation this summer included blogging. I have a LOT to write about since James and I had quite the adventure over the past few months. It will probably take me a couple of weeks to update everything and then I'll let you know what we're up to now.
It all started at the end of April when we left the warm and sunny land of Utah to go to Canada to sell security systems for Pinnacle Security. We had a beautiful drive up with just a little bit of rain. I had never driven through most of Idaho or Montana, and I couldn't believe how absolutely breathtaking it was. Unfortunately I didn't take any pictures, so I guess we'll just have to do that drive again!
We arrived at the Canadian border at about 10:30pm. Now to back track a little bit, James' manager told us we should take the non-direct route through Glacier National Park and Cardston, Alberta because of the long lines and the friendliness of the border patrol. Let me just say right now, that was our first mistake.
When we pulled up to talk to the man on duty there, he first chewed us out for not doing our research because immigration left at 6:00pm. Then he told us it was pointless for us to even try because we couldn't be traveling together due to the type of work visa we had. Needless to say, I was slightly distraught. He softened a bit by the end of our conversation though and let us through the border just for the night so we could get gas and find a motel. Apparently there was a storm coming in.
We were lucky enough to see the temple all lit up when we arrived in Cardston. It brought me so much peace and made me feel at home. We were not so lucky in our choice of motel rooms however. Since everything was closed except for the gas station, we had to take what we could get. Let's just say that I slept in my clothes with my hood over my head and socks on because the room was SO bad...
The pictures really don't do it justice!
We awoke the next morning to at least 2 feet of snow and no power. We were worried that if we didn't get back to the border patrol we would have problems with our visas, so we set out in the storm to drive the 15 km back.
Within just a few miles we were in a white out that was so bad we couldn't see 5 feet in front of our car. We tried to take it slow, but with so little visibility we missed a turn in the road and ended up in a snow drift on the side of the road. I was positive no one would ever find us and we would die out in the cold in Canada!
Then this big guy came to our rescue! I was so grateful to see him! Unfortunately, in the process of pulling us out, he went off the road and got stuck in the snow. I didn't think that was possible! Since our visibility was still so low, we didn't dare to try to drive back on our own. Luckily, a good Samaritan who knew the road really well came by and led us back to town safely.
I was never so happy to see a seedy hotel room in my life! With no power, we loaded up on junk food from the gas station, since everything else was closed, and settled in for a long stay. We played games, read books, talked and slept. It was actually really nice to not have all of the distractions for a while. At about 11:00 that evening the power came back on. This is a picture of the same road the next morning. Unfortunately, when we got back to the border, their computers were still down, so they told us we would have to go to the border east of where we were (the one we should have gone to in the first place). The told us the best way to get there, so we set off.
After about an hour on the road, we found that the road was blocked because a semi got stuck. I had never seen snow cause such destruction. Most of the wooden poles on the side of the road were shredded and fences were destroyed.
Finally after an extra 2 1/2 hours we arrived at the other border, where they promptly gave us our clearance to go through to Edmonton!
Our 14 hour drive turned into 24 hours on the road. When we arrived in Edmonton, I was ecstatic to see our apartment. Wasn't it beautiful? The "test kitchen" where I cooked A LOT in the 6 weeks we were there... Living room with a sweet flat screen TV and balcony (with a grill!) The bathroom... ah the soaker tub!
We loved our apartment, and Edmonton turned out to be a really cool city. I'll write more on that later. We were so blessed to get to Edmonton safely. I know the Lord was watching over us as we traveled. The experience really strengthened my faith and reminded me that we are all in God's care.
The last in the series! We have moved. It was a ridiculously fast move (less that 48 hours from the time we sold our contract to handing in the keys). I almost died!
We had a really great time in our first apartment. Allow me to take you on a tour...
The living room: I loved our "Enjoy the Journey" wall with all of the scenic pictures of places we've been. We snuggled on this couch a lot :)
The bookcase and "guest couch": That's James' great grandmother's wedding china on top of the bookcase. Love it. We will have many bookcases wherever we live.
The kitchen: So many delicious memories. This is where I got my cooking skills back.The bathroom: Not much to say about the bathroom other than it was so pretty and I love my shower curtain. The master bedroom: Oh, I loved our bedroom! Our first fight was at Bed Bath and Beyond over whether or not to get curtain rods. Needless to say I was slightly hormonal... I'm glad we got them though!
The Guest Bedroom transformed into an office: What you can't see are the bikes and tools on the other side of the room. I think this was James' favorite room.... other than the kitchen that is. A guy has got to have his space...All in all, we loved our first apartment. We feel lucky to have lived in a relatively nice place where we made great friends and lots of memories. Farewell our first abode. We'll miss you!
Oh Oscar. The green giant. As I got him ready to sell I found souvenirs from some of the places we'd been together and things we've done.
Camping stuff from the ward camp where James and I first kissed (in the front seat of Oscar I might add :) ) A movie ticket from when James and I were dating Sand from trips to Cedar City with friends Grease from the bikes being put into the back seat for rides up the canyon The parking stub from the Grand America where we stayed on our wedding night Our long boards from late nights of boarding down the canyon Good times. You were a great oldie.
I am no fan of goodbyes. Never have been. I have been saying "goodbye" a lot lately. I don't know why it has all happened at once, but they must be chronicled! I apologize in advance for all of the sappiness that will likely ensue over the next few posts.
So I may be a nerd for blogging about a bike, but this was not just any bike.
This was the bike that I bought my hubby to replace the beloved bike he sold to buy my wedding ring (tear). This bike was the first major purchase that we made as a couple. This was the bike that James had been dreaming of for so long that when he first laid eyes on "his very own" I though his mouth would split he smiled so big. This was the bike that rode James to victory in his first century. (the ULCER)
These are the reasons why it was so hard for me to part with this beauty.
Goodbye old friend. We had some good rides together. We hope your new owner loves you as much as we did!
You see that there? That is a REAL LIVE GUN. I have never held a real gun in my hands, much less shot a real gun. I even have a hard time holding a water gun. Although that may have something to do with the torturous memories of my brothers and their "super soakers" when we were kids.
That is why when my uncle (pictured below... and no, that is not his real hair, thank goodness) invited us to go shooting, I was slightly reluctant.
Turns out, I am a pretty good shot! I hit a few clay pigeons, and better yet I got the closest to the bulls eye on the target we were shooting at. James got a little carried away and started looking for other targets, but all in all we had a really good time!
Who knew that goin' out shootin' could be so much fun? Maybe my hick roots are finally surfacing. Let's just hope I don't start saying "Americin Fark" and teasing my hair to death!
I felt our 2009 holiday season deserved a recap post. Since James and I were married December 2008, it seemed as though our wedding and honeymoon replaced Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years. That was something I was happy about and wouldn't have changed for anything, but by the time April came around, I was having withdrawls... holiday magic withdrawls.
To make a long story short, 2009 was one of the best holiday seasons EVER for several different reasons. Read on! Since this was our first holiday season in our apartment we decided to go all out! This included holiday goodies and decorations of all kinds! Our little gobblers were pretty delicous! Thanks Kevin and Rach for the idea and skillful execution ideas :)
We got to add a new holiday to our season! Now climbing the list of my favorite holidays is our anniversary. James really out did himself this year.
As James and I discussed our favorite family traditions, we decided to start one of our very own... a 7 course meal with our good friends! You can see them here enjoying their sorbet palate cleansers. It was an enjoyable night of refinement and will be repeated.
Speaking of food, that is what Christmas mostly consisted of while at my in-laws home in Arizona. You see here the best homemade pizza I've ever had in my life! Pesto, sausage, onions and mounds of feta cheese adorned this flavorful crust and it was delicious to the last bite!
No, it was not a white Christmas (although we had to drive through a blizzard), but it definitely felt like Christmas. Celebrating with my new family was better than I could have ever hoped it could be, despite being hopelessly ill the entire time. My in-laws are such wonderful, generous and loving people. I love them so much.
I don't have any pics of of our New Years Eve bash, but I'll just say it was a blast. We shot off confettim, drank sparkling cider when the ball dropped and I got to kiss the hottest guy I know at midnight. The festivities continued until about 4:00am when we finally finished our last games of Bang and Ticket to Ride. Ah, what a good way to bring in the New Year! (More on our New Years Day activities later)