Saturday, December 18, 2010

Ahhh...Christmas morning

Faithful blog followers...
As you all know I opened my presents early this year so we didn't have to haul them to and from West Virginia.



Here's a good starter. I LOVE the Denver Nuggets. I especially love Chris "Birdman" Andersen.



Here's the front. This shirt was custom designed by Michael. He's so sweet.



I wasn't really in the work out mood this morning, you know between the candy and all, but I did try a little bit of this and it is awesome. I can't wait to get my workout on.



Don't knock it until you've tried it. It's a good arm workout.



Fossil... Need I say more? Oh maybe I should say that the face is a really cute pink color.



Michael won this in his office Christmas party. It works out that it's so freaken cute.



My old crockpot broke. I'm really excited to have this new one.



This is what our living room now looks like. Michael is currently staring at the TV while he plays Call of Duty on his new 360. In the meantime Rump is enjoying all the trash that she can play in. It was a good day.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

I'm so close

Most know that I'm leaving to West Virginia on the 23rd so that I can spend Christmas with two of my sisters. Ok..Ok..they are "really" Michael's sisters but whatever. I'm so excited to go and my next few days are so busy that it makes it seem to come even faster.

To show:

December

17th: Half day at work, Go to grocery store to get ham for a family in need, go to the Nutcracker with friend, Robert.

18th: Open Christmas presents, play with my cool new stuff, Ward Christmas party

19th: Ward Christmas program, tithing settlement, drop off ham with other presents to family in need, Survivor Finale (GO FABIO)

20th: Half day at work because Michael has doctor's appt (unless his bike is ready by then), dinner at Haye's home with missionaries

21st: Busy work day, starting packing list, workout

22nd: Busy work day, double check packing list, start some cleaning, Wondering what I'm going to do without Survivor, workout

23rd: Pack, deep clean the whole house, show friend how to feed my cat, GO TO AIRPORT!!!

See, Jeigh and Sarah, I'm only a few days away from hugging you and holding your babies. I can't wait. I can't wait. I can't wait.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

The final product

My niece, Dylann, is getting baptized in January. Michael and I are both so proud of her and her decision. Because I'm crazy, I've decided to make a quilt for each niece and nephew that gets baptized. I recently finished her quilt and wanted to show it off.









I would like to give a big thanks to Masha for helping me tie it and Chris for entertaining my husband while we tied it. It turned out great.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thanksgiving is great

















Here are some pictures from my Thanksgiving break.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Black Friday

When most people think Black Friday they think of that woman on the Target commercials. You know the one; she works out in her heels in preparation for the big day. She is first in line at Target with her face pressed up against the glass ready for her big shopping day.

I am not that woman.

I like to give a lot at Christmas. I don't really know why, I just do. I think the feel of Christmas in the air makes me want to share my love for others and to express my love through service and giving. This year Michael and I decided to do a little extra giving. This meant spending more money. Even though Michael and I have two incomes and no children we still have a lot of debt so we don't really have that much extra. This meant I had to become a magical wife and make it so all bills were paid, we had extra for fun, and enough for Christmas presents. Answer to my problems...

BLACK FRIDAY

My sister and I looked through a lot of ads and mapped out our route. I had Michael circle the things he wanted and I made a list. We started at 4AM and our day went a little something like this:

4AM: We started at Old Navy. This store opened at midnight so the crowd was gone by the time we got there. I saved the same amount there that I spent.

5AM: We went to Sears. This store opened at 4AM so the crowd was gone by the time we got there.

6AM: We went to Bay Street Mall and started at Victoria's Secret. I wasn't really looking for anything there but my sister was so I just browsing. At 6:30 I went over to Bath and Body Works to get a couple of presents there. We also did a quick trip to Gap

7:30AM: We made our last stop Target. The main crazy person crowd was gone and it was pretty easy shopping.

All day long I only stood in line for a total of 10 minutes. I enjoyed myself. I saved $250-$300. I ended up spending 1/2 of what I was planning on spending on Christmas. I feel so good about today and I'm proud of myself.

Yay! I love Black Friday.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I must like lists

I'm excited for:

1-Finishing my parent's Christmas presents

2-Going grocery shopping

3-My family coming for Thanksgiving

4-Finishing Dylann's quilt

5-My spontaneous day off today

6-My anniversary...four years baby

7-Black Friday shopping

8-Christmas present wrapping

9-Christmas decorations

10-Going to West Virginia

11-Going to Arizona

12-My friend Rosie and her possibilities (once again, no pressure)

13-My paycheck

14-The idea of getting caught up on some school debt

15-The idea of moving out of our crappy apartment and into a better one

To tell you the truth, I love lists. In fact, this is my fourth list today and I have one more to go. It helps me organize my life. So thanks for helping me organize.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Thanksgiving...

...is only two weeks away. I didn't realize that and had a little panic attack. I just thought I would warn those who are as awesome as me.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

I can be Charlie Brown too

I don't know if that is the best name for this post or not but I really feel like Charlie Brown right now.

Ever since I was promoted at Panera (in May) I stopped hanging out with everyone. Since I had two jobs and one of them was so demanding I just didn't have a life outside of Michael. The only time I hung out with anyone was when Michael was out of town for a month and the time I usually dedicated to him was dedicated to friends. I also got to know my cat a little bit better (that's a side note).

Ok, point of my post.

I really feel like in all this craziness I have really neglected my friends and in return I have been neglected. Now, I do realize, it was completely impossible to get a hold of me. If it wasn't for the internet on my phone I wouldn't of been able to check my email and my Facebook. Also, I realize that if you don't pay attention to people they eventually get bored and move on because they want to have fun. So now I feel friendless and kind of lonely. I feel so disconnected with people I go to church with. I feel really disconnected with those friends I don't go to church with and now don't even work with. I just feel disconnected.

*imagine open arms asking for a hug here*

Friends, I love you. I'm sorry that I've been on another planet and I've been focusing more on work than the things that are important. Please know that I'm going to make more of an effort to spend time with you and I hope in return you will want to spend time with me. I know most of you have sweet babies and that maybe you feel like you aren't presentable to the public because you all mommyfied (it's a word). Just keep in mind I too don't wear makeup, my clothes are always a wreck, and I wear my hair up 6 out of 7 days out of the week. Also, I don't mind our spending time with each other us sitting at your place while you clean and I entertain your little one. Or whatever you want to do. I'm not fancy and don't expect anything fancy. I don't care I just want friends again.

Please come back.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Isn't that funny?

I'm pretty much overwhelmed right now. I'm days away from quitting a job that I love and hate all at the same time. I've started on a quilt. I need to make 60 cupcakes by Saturday. I'm having a Halloween party on Saturday. PLUS, I have some other personal things going on. Yes, most of these things I want to do and volunteered myself for them but I'm still overwhelmed.

On my way home from work today I lost it. By lost I mean embarrassing full on weeping and wailing big tears lost it. Most of those tears were from the personal stuff and I got so frustrated with myself and my situation and not knowing how to fix it. I, once again embarrassingly, pleaded to God for help. I needed some guidance that I've been dying for and needing.

So what's so funny? Not long after my sobbing the next song to some on the radio was this. I must warn you I was listening to country. So, listen at your own risk. How's that for an answer?

Even though nothing was solved and I'm still in the same exact position I was an hour ago, I feel better.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Things I love

Here is a list of 20 things I love in no particular order.

1- My husband

2- My cat, she is so cute.

3- Food

4- The rain

5- Halloween

6- Kids

7- Knowing I made a difference in someone's life

8- Chickens

9- The color orange

10- Fruit

11- Chalkboards

12- Playing the piano

13- Musicals

14- The Book of Mormon

15- Going to a session in the temple

16- Painting my toenails

17- Singing as loud as I can when in the car by myself

18- On the same note I love dancing around like an idiot when no one is home

19- My family

20- Basketball... More specifically, the Denver Nuggets

I now challenge you to make a list as well. It's fun and makes you think happy thoughts.

That reminds me there is a book, can't remember the name of it, that is just a really long list of things that make people smile. I really want that book. I will figure out the name of it and let you know. I encourage each and every one of you to own one. Just reading it makes you smile.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Fun Projects

Today was an unplanned day off; those are the best. So, I decided to take this opportunity to work on some of my fun new projects.

First:
My cute niece is turning 8 in January. Turning 8 in the LDS world is a very exciting year; it's the year that you get baptized. Because there is a good possibility I might be insane, I have decided to take on the challenge of making each niece and nephew of mine a quilt when they are baptized. With my niece's baptism being just around the corner I needed to get a head start on her quilt. I bought her fabric and I'm super excited to get started. Here is the inspirational fabric:


Second:
I know it's not even Halloween yet, but I have to get started now or I will not finish on time. Today, I started my Christmas cards. I was able to get all the stamps I needed and after several loops around Michael's I figured out what I want to do. I was able to come home and get started right away. It was also a fun time to hang out with my cat. She gets really into bright ribbons and plastic.

Third:
I'm starting a secret project that involves my third greatest passion in life. First being, my religion. Second being, teaching children. As more time goes on maybe I'll let you in on a little bit but you'll have to be patient.

I love projects. I love crafting. I love sewing. I love...to cook. :)

Monday, October 11, 2010

I'm really tired

I am extremely exhausted and I don't really feel like I have a reason to be so I just wanted to list some things I've been doing over the last two days so it makes me feel ok for being as tired as I am.

Sunday:

Woke up
Got ready for church
Made myself some breakfast
Went to church
Practiced for the Primary Program
Left church
Went home and changed
Went to work
Found out an employee didn't show up for work
This leads to:
Me having to run around to make coffees, stock napkins, sugars, condiments, straws, lids, and silverware.
In the mean time I have bring food to customers, do other managerial things, and make the bakery display look like a million dollars. When I walked in it looked like it was in debt by about one hundred dollars.
Talk with other managers and boss about firing employee that did not come in. This required a lot of research.
I had 3 new employees on that all needed training at the same time
Close the cafe (this requires a lot of work)

Monday: (supposed to be my day off)

Take Michael to work
Make breakfast
Talk to boss, once again, about firing employee who didn't come in
Turns out we are firing her and I need to cover her shift
Go to work
Watch a girl get fired that is living on the streets. This was so hard to watch. But business is business and sometimes that has to come first.
Work a really busy lunch.
Work
Work
Work
At the end of my shift I found out that every minute I work tomorrow is going to be overtime...I'm scheduled for 9 hours. That means a 50 hour week.
I just got over the flu and still recovering and not very well may I add.


That's depressing. Even though I wrote it all down I still feel like it doesn't really give me reason to be as exhausted as I am. Keep in mind that my job is super stressful All. The. Time. Luanne, say good bye to that weight you lost because it's right back with all this stress. Sigh. 17 more days.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Here's the favor

As most of you know and some may need to know, my husband is very good at what he does. What does he do, you ask? He's a motion graphic designer(MGD). What is a MGD? Pretty much everything you see on TV, especially ads, has been touched by a MGD. So, they do EVERYTHING!!

Michael just finished a project and it looks pretty dang good. I'm not just saying that because I'm his wife, either. I bet you want to know what this project is. I'll tell ya.

Have you ever heard of the band Unwritten Law? They are pretty awesome. They are releasing a new album in 2011 called Swan. They decided to reach out to their fans and have the fans design their new album cover. It's a contest. The album cover currently in the lead sucks. On top of that Michael's is so awesome that he has to win. So please go to this website and vote.

The link that is the word "this" takes you to Michael's album cover. You will need to go to the main (home) page. Once there go to Michael's thumbnail and click on the link under it and give it five (5) whole stars. Please oh please do it. We don't win any money or anything but it's something to add to Michael's resume which is pretty cool.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Things that are going great:

-We bought tickets to go visit my ever so awesome family for Christmas.
-My paycheck was...let's just say a lot....a lot more than what it normally is.
-With Michael's paycheck we were able to start a savings. A REAL savings. Not just a place where we keep money even though we know that we will have dip into it sooner rather than later.
-Our new health benefits rock. I went to the Pharmacy to get my test strips and they were FREE.
-Halloween is on it's way.
-I have started my Christmas cards.
-I'm going to have O's for breakfast this morning.
-O's were on sale at Target for only $2.00 a box.
-My cat is in a snuggly mood this morning.
-I got to sleep in and will be able to sleep in tomorrow.
-I'm only 24 days away from having only 1 job.
-General Conference weekend was last weekend and it was so amazing. I cried pretty much all 8 hours.
-The Primary Program is only 2 weeks away. I love seeing all my hard work pay off when parents are in the "audience" smiling from ear to ear because their kid looks so cute singing.
-I have enough groceries in my house to last me a month. This include fresh fruits and vegetables.
-I found out that when your back is against the wall and you have no meat defrosted but a friend who just had a baby and needs a nice, warm home cooked meal, canned chicken rocks. Seriously, rocks.

I'm sure there are about a million other things that are going awesome but I now want to go enjoy that bowl of O's. :) Also, I have a doctor's appt. that I have to get to

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tag, you're it!!

I was tagged!! My sister is a daily blogger. I really love reading her blog and always make it a goal to read it every day. One of her most recent posts she posted this game of tag. The idea is this:

She answered 8 questions that another blogger wrote. She (my sister) then made 8 new questions and tagged 8 new people. It's like a chain. Fun, right?!?


1. What specific thing made you happy today? (I accidentally erased this question but it was something like that...):

I worked out this morning. I've been working out three days a week now for a month. I've also upped, that's a word right!?!, my fruit and water intake. I even lost a little weight. It's been nice to work towards something.

2. Are you a morning person or a night owl?

Can I be both? In reality I am.

3. If you had/have free time, what would you/do you spend that time doing?

Spending time with Michael; whatever that may mean. I have a friend who told me that, not in a bad way, I spend way too much time with Michael. She said that I need to spend more time with my friends and with myself. I just can't help it though. I love being married and I love who I'm married to so why wouldn't I want to spend time with him?

4. What is your favorite breakfast?

Eggs, sausage, fruit, and possibly a pancake or two.

5. You are alone in the house. No one is watching. You are listening to your favorite music. What kind of music is it? Are you singing along? Are you dancing? Remember, no one is watching. =)

Most likely I'm listening to Wicked or something really dancey. I can't help but sing along to anything I'm listening too and of course I'm dancing. Who do you think this is?

6. What have you never tried but really want to?

I have tried it but I really want to do it again; does that count? I want to be on a dance team again. I would love to be a professional dancer (not in a naughty way).

7. Do you have a favorite holiday? If so, what is it and why?

I'm constantly fighting this. I love Thanksgiving because of the food thing. I love to cook and eat. Oh I love to eat. At the same time, though, I love Christmas because who doesn't love Christmas?

8. What is the most recent thing that someone has done for you that made a difference in your day?

Just the other day I was feeling kind of down and my friend, Toni, wrote on my Facebook wall a little comment about how she was thinking of me or something. It really meant a lot to me.

Ok here are my questions and the people I'm tagging:

1. What is your favorite part about you?
2. If you could vacation any where, where would you go?
3. What does the best meal ever involve?
4. Name your favorite sweet.
5. Up to now what is your greatest accomplishment?
6. What would be your best day ever?
7. Favorite season and why?
8. What is the best book you've ever read?

1. Toni, because she always has such a funny blog.
2. Jenny, because I'm sure she could use some time to think about her. I have to explain to everyone that she is a mom, a wife to a student, pregnant, and just got called as the Relief Society President in her ward.
3. Janelle, because I love reading her blog.
4. Aynna, Best. cousin. ever. Ok, I have a lot of really great cousins but she is almost like a twin cousin.
5. Chelsey, because I love her and she needs a reason to blog.
6. Heather, because she hasn't blogged in a while and I love reading it.
7. Britta, she is a daily blogger anyways so I might as well get a little glory from it.
8. Amanda, because I haven't heard from her in a while.

By the way, I would have a link to each of these blogs but my computer is absolutely ridiculous and won't let me do anything like that and Michael has his computer with him.

Now go! I can't wait to read.

Monday, September 20, 2010

This is so odd...

I was on Panera's website doing some work when I found this story. I just had to share it.


A Panera Wedding Featured News
The last-minute surprise one couple will never forget

Jeff and Natalie Daniels were supposed to be married at 10 a.m. on August 16, 2008, in an outdoor ceremony at Lake Eola in Orlando, Florida. The bride was 45 minutes late but, unfortunately, Tropical Storm Fay arrived right on time with wind-swept rain that quickly soaked guests, drove the bride into her car, and sent the preacher scurrying into a nearby Panera Bread.

“We didn’t have a backup plan,” recalls Jeff. “I was so soaked, the dye from my tuxedo went right through my shirt. But then the reverend called and said it’s nice and dry in Panera, and the manager was willing to let us get married in there. I thought this is going to be one of the strangest weddings ever….”
The Reverend Glynn Ferguson and the Panera staff took charge, handing out towels and moving tables. A cloth was draped over a trashcan, and the couple’s Unity Candle was set on top. Meanwhile, the groom and his party were sequestered in the men’s room while guests formed a canopy of umbrellas so the bride could get from her car to the bakery-cafe.

“Once everyone was in position, I gave the staff the nod, they turned up the classical music, the bride and her father walked down the aisle, and I married them,” says Reverend Ferguson. “Everyone clapped, customers included. It was one of the most unusual weddings I’ve ever done, but it was warm, inviting, classy, and it sure smelled wonderful.”

“Natalie and I plan on going back to that Panera for our anniversary and giving the staff a photo of us taken in front of the store that day,” says Jeff. “Whenever we tell people this story, they can’t believe it. But it was very special, and we’ll never forget it.”

Publish Date: September 8, 2010

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

See TV can teach us something

Have you seen the most recent commercial from Nutrigrain Bars? The screen is split in half and it shows a woman who starts her day with a pastry and her day with a Nutrigrain Bar. She goes throughout her day making different nutritional decisions. The idea of the commercial is that if you start your day with a Nutrigrain Bar you will make healthier decisions throughout the rest of your day.

The first few times I saw this commercial I though, "Yeah right." Even if I had a Nutrigrain Bar for breakfast I would still choose the piece of brownie over the piece of apple that they were sampling at the grocery store any day of the week. I thought about it quite a bit and wondered if it was really true. I decided to conduct an experiment.

I made a goal three weeks ago that I would work out every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. So far, so good. On the days that I work out I tend to drink more water, eat more fruit, and eat a little healthier. I usually do spill over with my healthy living on days that I don't work out but still I have my days. Plus, I was working on my experiment. One morning there was 1/2 of an Almond Joy waiting for me to eat sitting on the kitchen counter. I ate it for breakfast. All day long I ate like crap. I didn't do it consciously either. It wasn't until later that day that I realized how bad I had eaten. On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I usually open at work. This means that I'm eating breakfast there. If I eat eggs or a breakfast sandwich, a healthy one, I usually end the day well. But if I eat a sweet and high calorie bagel or a pastry I usually end the day feeling like crap because of all the crap I ate.

On top of that at the end of my good days I am more likely to cook dinner, have a different kind of energy (even though I'm still tired) and read my scriptures. I'm friendlier and easier to get along with. Finally, it makes me want to do it all over again so I can always feel that way.

I hope that all of you try to start your day with a healthier option. It really does work!!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Well that's disappointing.

You know those nights where you are tired after a long day? You worked on dinner as well as house work and you sit down just to realize that you want something sweet. You know the day, right?

The other night this happened to me. I could have gone to the grocery story that is right across the parking lot and got some chocolate chips or a candy bar but I didn't want to put that much energy into it. I decided to go online and get a recipe for cookies that need ingredients that I had lying around the house. I ended up finding this recipe that looked a little fishy because of the amount of ingredients but that was also the appeal. I decided to read the comments to get a better feel. The comments said things like:

"This is one of the best cookies I've ever had."

"I just wanted to make a cookie with the ingredients I had lying around my house. These cookies were just what I needed to fill my sugar need for the night."

"Super easy and the kids loved them."

You get the idea, right? I was so excited to make a cookie that was everything I was looking for. So, I spent the time to make the cookie (it really didn't take much time they really are easy). I was so excited for them to come out of the oven. I even poured myself a large glass of milk so I was ready.

I pulled them out of the oven and they smelled so good. I put three on my plate, grabbed my milk and sat down on the couch. I was so ready to get lost in a warm cookie and finish my day off right. I pulled up the biggest cookie to my mouth, smelled it, then put it in ready for the cookie to melt in my mouth and hit me in the spot that makes me happy that only cookies can reach.

WORSE COOKIE E.V.E.R!!

It was dry and had no flavor whatsoever. It crumbled and cracked. It was exactly the opposite of everything that I was expecting. Moral of the story; don't ever make a washboard cookie.

The next day I had work from 9-5:30. I woke up, worked out, and ate a good breakfast. I had a few minutes before leaving to work so I started the crockpot for some "Tex Mex Tacos." I was so excited about the thought of dinner being ready after a long day at work.

While I was at work I imagined Michael and I getting home about the same time. I would pull out tortillas, jalapenos, cheese, and sour cream. We would load up our tortillas and eat some of the best tacos ever made.

As soon as I got off work I rushed home to indulge in my tacos. I got out all the fixins I needed and opened the crock pot to find...dry meat. The tomatoes had dried to the bottom of the pot so the pork ended up drying out.

Hopefully next week will be a better food week for me. I'm thinking I need to buy some molasses and make myself some ginger snaps. MMmmmm...

Friday, August 20, 2010

Some good news

I have been working at least two jobs for almost three years now. At one point I was working two jobs and going to school all at the same time. I'm not complaining, just stating. I knew when we moved out here that I would have to work really hard so that Michael could go to school and get good grades. I felt it pay off as he went to school. I could see his work and see how much time and effort he put into it and knowing that he didn't have to juggle work on top of that made me feel really good. Also, when I've seen the several reels that he has put together (mhardydesign.com) I felt so good knowing that he could put all of his energy and effort into it without having to worry about a job. Then, when we went to his graduation and he had the opportunity to give a speech because he was salutatorian I felt good because I knew he earned it and he did it because he didn't have to worry about a job. Finally, he had the opportunity to go and spend time with his parents for just about a month. I knew all three of them needed that time and I felt good knowing that he could do it because he didn't have a job.

I have to be honest though...


I am exhausted. It is really hard to support a family with such a low income and two jobs. I'm constantly tired, I'm always working, and I don't get to spend the time with Michael that I want. Every time I do our budget my stress level rises knowing that we just aren't cutting it. Knowing that we are drowning in our bills and on top on that student loans are coming due is making me crazy. I've seen a million miracles and find it amazing that we have a place to live, food to eat, a car to drive, and gas to put into it. We have managed to eat out, see movies, and have fun. Even when it didn't make sense we have always made the most important bills on time and those not so important bills have not bothered us too much with the late/non payments and it's been a blessing. There was one point where we didn't have an electricity bill for six months for no reason whatsoever. I have tried to be patient with my hard struggles with money. I have tried to count my blessings outside of money and focus on the important things in life. I'm far from perfect, though, and even though money is not important in the eternal perspective it can be kind of/really important in this mortal life. So, I've cried, wished, and prayed for a break. I've always received a break even if it was temporary.

Point of my story...

The biggest break that I will ever receive was given to me today. Michael was offered a job. Yes, Michael is officially employed! He is a online course designer (sort of, I can't really explain because I don't completely understand) at UC Berkeley. He starts Sept. 1st. We will have a good salary, free vision, free dental, and medical benefits. I started to cry when I heard him say, "Ya, of course I'll take it." We have a lot of plans to help us pay off debt so that when we start a family and I'm not working anymore I'll be able to be a mom with out much debt holding us down. Also, in January, I'm going to go down to one job. ONE JOB!!! I won't have to worry about juggling two and working my little buns off.

If you are one of my friends who doesn't believe in God or if believing in miracles is hard for you then read closely. Michael and I were reluctant to go on the Pioneer Trek we went on a couple of months ago. Our bishop told us we should go. After we had decided to go we ended our meeting with a prayer. In the prayer the bishop prayed that going on this trek would help Michael find a job. On the trek we meet the guy that Michael will be working for. Michael has had the Berkeley job offer, got some free lance work, and was offered a job at our local channel 5 station, part time, that he might work for a little while to help with bills. Our state has the highest unemployment rate in the nation and Michael found a job. Michael has only been graduated for a few months in a field where 400 people were recently laid off and he found a job. All the jobs that he was offered(including free lance work), the people sought out him.

All of this is proof to me that the Lord truly knows us. He loves us and works miracles for those that work hard to do good. I will forever be in debt to the Lord for this miracle.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

High School

I was talking about high school today at work. I have mixed emotions about high school. I don't really know if I liked high school or not. I had some fun times, ok I had a lot...A LOT A LOT of fun times but there were some crappy times in there. Anyway, it's funny that I was talking about it because I then came home to find my friend's blog all about her high school boyfriends and I was mentioned because we were BEST FRIENDS in high school so I was involved in some of her stories. These stories made me smile and helped me remember some good times. Also, through her blog I felt inspired to write about some good times from high school.

For starters I hung out with quite a few of different groups in high school. My freshman year I hung out with a whole bunch of punkers. My two best friends were Kayla and Kristie. We spent the majority of our time listening to Blink 182, Green Day, Sum 41, Weezer, and others like that. We got really good at sluffing school, getting in snow ball fights, jumping puddles, eating fries and shakes at McDonalds, sneaking out, liking boys, and a million other things that I can't list because it would take all day and you would get bored. They can always Lean on Me.

My Sophomore year was the year I really got into band. I spent most of my time with Rosie and Rachel. We would sit and play our instruments. We would try to find ways to amuse ourselves with the no money we had. We hung out with boys with cars and money. I listened to Simple Plan, Blink 182, a lot of jazz, and whatever was popular on the radio. *Stacy's Mom has got it going on!* We went to Pasadena and marched in the Rose Bowl Parade AND the Christmas Parade at Disneyland. "You bet your bippy" we had a good time.

My junior year was the year that I would go back to over all others. That is if it was either going back to high school or something crappy because I don't really want to ever go back even if it was good times. *Please don't be offended if you are not mentioned.* My junior year I was friends with Toni and Chelsey. I was working at Dairy Queen and attempting to graduate early. I hung out with a lot of red necks with big trucks, sexy trucks, and listened to a lot of country music and for a short amount of time we got into Gloria Gaynor. Let's just say I will survive. I could write about a million sentences and I'm pretty sure I would make Chelsey and Toni laugh so hard that they would pee their pants. "Be a tree. There are no trees in Wendy's." "Find Toni, I need Toni. She is wear green pants and a red shirt." Possibly the other way around. We did a lot of extremely crazy things. Most of which I choose not to talk about. I want to make it clear that it's not because I am ashamed of my past or that I don't want to remember it. It's not because I don't want to "blow a cover" or act like I'm something I'm not. It's because I have simply moved on. Most of my good memories come from my junior year. I still smile when I hear most country songs and I'm taken back to some really good times.

My senior year was a blur. I lost myself in a whirlwind of awfulness. I don't really feel like publicly posting all the things that were drama in my life so let's just say I was going through some hard times. I hung out with Emily, Kristen, Ashley, and Kristie. (a different one from my freshman year) We were absolutely nuts. I really think that we actually thought we were invincible. But through my senior year I learned more about myself than I ever will.

Even though I would never go back to high school I'm glad I went through it. I'm glad I learned what I did and I'm glad it has made me me. I'm a pretty cool person.

Monday, July 26, 2010

I challenge you

I want your best slow cooker recipe! Whether it be soup, roast, chicken, or whatever you want!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Wow, what a good idea

Yesterday I stayed the night at some friend's house. Right before we got to bed we started into a deep discussion about this and that. The conversation led to talking about qualities we don't really like in people. One of my friends said something about how we can't really criticize other's qualities until we fix those qualities ourselves.

I got to thinking about it and decided I'm going to fix:

Spending money I don't have
Reading my scriptures
Writing in my journal
Cleaning as I go...cleaner house= a happy LuLu
Communicating exactly what I want instead of waiting for other people to guess

I love when friends have good ideas.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Learning to be patient

Over the past two years Heavenly Father has been trying to teach me patience. I felt I was doing an ok job but realized today that I'm far from.
*I realize this whole blog may sound completely random. I'm sorry about that.
I know that every single trial in our life only makes us stronger. I believe that the trial I am facing now is here specifically to help me become patient. The hard part about everything is that even when I learn patience and learn to wait that doesn't mean that it's going to be the ending I expect. It could be complete opposite of what I want. In that case does being patient really help? I'm worried that if I'm patient and wait all I'm doing is waiting for something crappy to happen. Will I then continue to be patient? Or will I still think that patience brings me nothing?
Thoughts...

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

What a hottie

I was just scrolling through m blog to get to the comments when I whizzed by all the pictures of my husband.

I just wanted to let everyone know that I think he is such a hottie. Sometimes, especially lately, his long hair drives me crazy (sometimes it crazy) but with long hair, short hair, blond hair, and even when he gets to no hair he will always be the sexiest man I've ever seen.

That is all.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Trip and Graduation

As you all know Michael and I have been very busy with the Pioneer trek, visiting his mission, and graduation. I just thought you would like to see some pictures.

Pioneer Trek:





All those kids that you see were are daughters and sons. Ok, not every single kid you see but all the ones you see carrying a handcart with a sand color flag.

Graduation (pictures in reverse):


After graduation...sorry I look like a stoner.



This was right after they were official graduates.



These are all of Michael receiving his certificate and giving his speech as a salutatorian.



This is in Michael's mission. He has a picture of him at this sign with his companion and a ward mission leader. The sign has changed but it still was in the middle of no where.


This is at the Madonna Inn in San Luis Obispo. We stayed at my childhood best friend's place. It was so great to get to know her fiance and I'm so glad Michael got to finally meet her. Anyway, so this picture is right outside the bathrooms.


There's Brittani. I'm sorry the picture isn't better.


This is the woman's restroom. In the men's they pee into a waterfall. I have a picture but it just looks like rocks.


In Oxnard. This was a part of Michael's mission he wasn't allowed to step foot on.


We had a lot of fun and we lost a lot of sleep. Now he is gone living with his parents for about a month. I'm excited to have the time away but I miss him already.
I'm exhausted right now from vacation and working hard. So I really need to get off the computer now.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

I'm back

Hello!
It has been one crazy week and now I'm just tired, stressed out, and I have a headache. But I am back from one fun week.
I'm too tired tonight to give great details but I will tell you:
The trek was one of the most amazing and spiritual experiences I've had in a long time. It was physically hard and taught me a lot about my pioneer ancestors. I now have a better love and understanding for them and I know I would of not been able to gain that understanding with out that wonderful experience.
Michael's mission was great. I kind of felt like a celebrity when we would talk to people. It was so wonderful to meet all the people that Michael had talked so much about. It was also great to be reminded of how great of a missionary Michael was.
Now Mom and Dad Hardy are here playing Beatles Rock Band. (You Hardys should see Mom rock out as she plays the bass.) Tomorrow we will go to Michael's graduation. FYI, Michael is Salutatorian and will being giving a speech at graduation. I'm so proud. :) I'm trying not to be grumpy (not working very well because I'm so tired) and soak in every last moment because Michael leaves on Saturday for one whole month. There is a possibility that he will come back for an interview...more about that later. I like to keep you in a little suspense.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Where did I go?

Hello there people who love me so much that you can't stand to not read every word I have to write. I have been totally absent and I will continue to be.
I'm going on the Pioneer trek on Thursday. We get back from the trek on Saturday. We will then go home, take a shower, grab our already packed bags and head down to Southern California to visit Michael's mission.
Whew....I'm tired just talking about it. Be looking for pictures.

Monday, June 21, 2010

We did it!

Well, it came sooner than I thought it would.
It was hard work.
It was a lot of late nights and early mornings.
It was a lot of no sleep.
It was a lot of penny pinching.
It was a lot of miracles.
It was a lot of stress.
It was unbelievably crazy.
It was some tense moments.
It was "I need a break before I go insane."
It was "Man I miss my husband. I haven't seen him in about a week."
It was some weeks without anything in the fridge to eat.
It was date night=us eating whatever was laying around+what's on TV because we don't really have the energy to watch a movie.
It was me working a lot. A whole heck of a lot.
It was some skimpy Christmases.
It was a lot of prayer.
It was a lot guidance.
It was exactly what we needed to go through in order to learn what we have learned.
It was an experience I'm already excited to tell my kids about it.
It was the hardest thing I have ever done.
BUT WE ARE DONE!!!
We are no longer college students.
*SIGH
Michael and I are quite the team. Between me working my buns off at work and him working his buns off at school we managed to be the busiest couple of all time. Plus, we managed to stay a couple.
I'm really proud of Michael and what he has accomplished. He has produced some really good work and he worked really hard to get it. I know this is only the beginning of a whole new stage in our lives but I'm excited to close one book and open a new one. How exciting it is to move through life together. To get over these challenges together and look back and be proud of what we have accomplished.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

S.E.V.E.N days away

Hello there everyone. I just thought I would take these few moments to brag about the fact that there is only seven days, well six now that the day is almost over, until Michael is done with school. It's scary because he doesn't have a job yet at the same time so exciting to start this new chapter in our lives. I have never not been a student before and the only time Michael has not been a student he was protected by a special bubble because he was on a mission. We now will have to start being grown ups by having REAL jobs, which I'm already working really hard for that, and we "get the opportunity" to start paying back student loans. I will have you know that you don't think about those loans while you are in school because you don't really realize that the end of school actually comes. But I'm not focusing on the bad, I'm focusing on the fact that we are ALMOST there. Everyone hold there breath because you probably will be able to make it until midnight next Wednesday. *do not actually hold your breath. You will die. Michael and Luanne will not be held responsible for any blue, purple, or red faces (including death).

Monday, June 7, 2010

Just so busy

Hello blog followers. Lately I've been SOOOO busy.
As most know I'm working 2-4 jobs; depending on how you look at it. So I just thought you might be interested in what I've been up too! Go check out my other blog:

http://luannedinnerfortwo.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

I'm so proud

My mom is a proud owner of a Temple Recommend!

Getting Ready

Today is Tuesday; making tomorrow Wednesday. On Wednesday I leave to Pocatello! Now for all of you faithful readers who live in Poky/IF don't get too excited.

One of my best friends from High School is getting married (Go Chels). I will be making her wedding cake. I have just a little over 24 hours to make her cake. I then will go to the wedding...then go home. So, I won't be there for that long. While I am still here in Cali I have to make sure to cross my T's and dot my I's because when I get back I have to dive right into a 150 person memorial service that I am catering. Oh and somewhere between all that I am going to WICKED!! (The word wicked is so much more exciting to read if you pause right before it and imagine the first few chords of Wicked in your head.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fplGR59YHHs&feature=PlayList&p=12F42A58A33708DB&playnext_from=PL&index=0&playnext=1

That is all. I hope you have a great day and be waiting for pictures.

Friday, May 28, 2010

What a GREAT day

Today was a great day. It started out by deciding that I needed to take a day off at my personal assistant job. I realized that my house was a complete disaster and I needed to clean it. Knowing that I wouldn't have a dirty house anymore started me off in the right direction.

Work at Panera was pretty easy. I just worked my little buns off, even through my break, so that I could get off early. I ended up getting off only a half hour early but it was worth it.

After work Michael and I headed to Target to get a new vacuum. We have been married for 3 1/2 years and in that time we have owned 3 vacuums: the same one twice. We have always gone cheap and we have paid the price. So, while we were at Target we took the time to look at the vacuums and weigh them out for what was best. We decided on a Bissel something something. IT IS AWESOME!! I just vacuumed with it and it picked up all the cat hair, even on the couches. It has this attachment that acts as a little hand held, powerful vacuum. SO AWESOME!!! Also, while we were at Target we got the 5th season of The Office. We don't own 1-4 but some friends of ours let us borrow them and I really wanted to start season 5. It was on sale too. Double awesome.

After Michael left for school I cleaned the whole house. It feel so nice to be in a clean, vacuumed (our other vacuum has been broken for longer than I want to admit I've gone with out vacuuming) home.

During my cleaning I was called by a gentleman that I am catering a party for. (This is my most exciting news) I've been in contact with this lady from my ward over the last couple of days talking about a memorial service for this man who was a "patron of the arts." The party is going to be about 150 people. I made up a mock menu and sent a quote last night. Today the conversation was about vamping up the menu to meet more of this guys style. I think that everyone here pretty much knows my passion and love for food. I truly believe that food brings people together better than anything else. So between my passion for food and the coordinator's stories of this gentleman we were able to create a wonderful menu. I'm excited for this event. I can't wait to get started.

I am now going to end this awesome day by taking a shower and relaxing while watching Season 5 of The Office. I love good days.

Monday, May 24, 2010

A letter to laundry day

Dear Laundry Day,

I just have some things that I've been thinking about lately and I feel it's time to get them off my chest.

I don't like you. You always sneak up on me, I never have time for you, and I am pretty sure you make clothes appear out of thin air because there is no way Michael and I wear that many clothes. You always take at least one full day but usually manage to make it two. You make me separate stinky clothes into piles all over my house and refuse to wash and dry them at a quicker speed. On top off all of this you mock me by making me fold the clothes and put them away. What is your deal? Why must you hate me?

Like I said, I've been thinking about this a lot lately. I have come up with a compromise. Would you be willing to fold the clothes and put them away? I think it would make you a little less annoying. Just let me know.

Thanks,
Luanne

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Because 3 is just simply not enough

I am crazy. I think something snapped and I started to realize that Michael's school loans are not only going to stop "paying" us but we also have to start paying them back. Because of this, I am now working three jobs:
1-Panera
2-Personal Chef for Jason
3-Piano Lessons

Obviously, though, this was not enough because I just decided to take on a whole new load. There is a woman in my ward who is working for a family a little bit like I am, except she doesn't cook. The mom in the family has just decided to start the raw veggie diet. If you are wondering what that is...well it's just what it sounds like. Anyway, so the mom needs someone to chop up veggies for her twice a week. So, I have "volunteered" my time in exchange for some extra cash. Looks like I will be able to save up for that Disney Cruise after all.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Almost there

I just thought I would brag and let everyone know that Michael has only 5, count it F.I.V.E, weeks left of school. We will then be going on the trek mentioned in my last blog, then down to visit his mission.


Oh, and I finally got that promotion at Panera. I am officially a shift supervisor. Well, in a few weeks. :)

Friday, May 14, 2010

Just call me Ma

I have some exciting news...
Have you ever heard of the Pioneer Trek? I hadn't... youth, ages 14-18 have the opportunity to spend the weekend in the forest pulling a hand cart and doing other pioneery stuff to have a better appreciation for the pioneers. The youth are split up into groups and make "families." And as we know every family needs a Ma and Pa, right? Well Michael and I are going to be a Ma and Pa. We are in charge of making sure the kids work hard and get the spiritual stuff. It is going to be such a great opportunity. I'm so excited.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Heather Isom

I have this pretty awesome friend, Heather Isom. She and her husband have recently become really good friends of ours and I like to think that we both compliment each other very well. One GREAT thing Heather and I have in common is our love to cook and bake. The slight difference is Heather is a little bit more out going about it. Good for you, Heather. Anyway, she bakes and cooks a lot and then she posts the recipes and pictures of her yummy treats on her blog. So, you should all take advantage of this blog to get great recipes.


WARNING: You might drool on your keyboard.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

I love to see the temple

It has been almost 8 months since I have been to the temple. I understand that for most people it's perfectly normal to not make it to the temple that often. Most people have kids or live far away from a temple and it makes it really hard to get there. But I have no excuse. I live really close to the temple and have no kids. So, pretty much, my excuse is...nothing.

Every first Thursday of the month is my ward's temple night. Last Sunday a member from the bishopric announced ward temple night and I made a decision that I would go, no matter what. Don't be so proud of me, though. Tonight is Thursday. All day all I thought about was how I "had" to go to the temple. I was thinking of how tired I was and how I just wanted to sit at home and watch The Office. I even made a whole bunch of reasons of why I "can't" go because I was so busy. I even started to think, "I shouldn't go to the temple if I don't want to."

I started to think some more about the whole situation and realized that there is nothing that I had planned for tonight that is more important than the temple. I also realized that I would be able to stay awake no matter how tired I was and that Friday would be better if I just went. So, I hopped into the shower and left.

Oh man, I'm glad I did.

I was a little stressed because I left late and there was bad traffic. I arrived in barely enough time to get in there. The sweet temple worker slowly took my recommend and slowly scanned it. I was thinking, "Go FASTER!! I'm late." But right as he said, "Welcome to the the temple Sister Hardy" my world came to a screeching halt. I made one step into the temple and the spirit spilled over me and I was overwhelmed. To make it even better the sister that was welcoming people at the front door asked me if I would do one of her family names.

My session was awesome. I didn't realize how much stuff I needed to work out in my head and how much I needed to hear. I was able to stay wide awake and I learned so much.

I'm so glad I went.

P.S. Don't wear a watch while in the temple. You'll just keep looking at it and all it is, is a distraction.

Monday, May 3, 2010

People keep asking...

..."So how's the new job."

Things are going well. It's nothing too exciting, yet. The first two days I had to help him finish this huge filing project he was doing. It was nice because we got a chance to sit and talk and get to know each other better. On Friday I was able to do menu planning for this coming week and grocery shopping for the weekend. I'm at that point when you start a new job and you think, "I will never be able to get all this." So I have to remind myself that I will be able to get it all and it will be fine.

Tonight I cook my actual first meal. I'm making quinoa with a roasted red pepper sauce and salmon. I haven't cooked salmon in a long time so I'm a little nervous about that but I know it will all come back to me.

Talk to you again soon bloggers.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

And it begins

Tomorrow I start my new job. With this job and my job at Panera I will be working about 60 hrs/ week. I'm a little worried; not because of the 60/hrs but because of my house cleaning. Already I have a hard time keeping up with house work. It's really hard to have a full time job plus cleaning the house. I want to let you know, at this point, that Michael does house work as well. I don't even have to ask him, he just does it; but one person can't do it all.

As I was thinking about my worries today I decided the best option would be to make a schedule of what days I will be doing what. I started out by writing down everything that needed to get done and how many times a week that needed to get done. I then mapped out my days so I know exactly when to do what things. I feel better.

On another good note, they had strawberries at the dollar store last time I went so Michael and I just ate a really good Luanne specialty for dessert. Mmmmm...

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

There has been a slight change

Fellow blog stockers...hello.
So, remember that post that I just posted about my awesome new second job, well it's not going to work. Don't worry there is even better news coming. It turns out I was almost involved in this huge craigslist scam. These people send you a fake check for $3000. They then tell you to send $2300 of it to a company that they always use so that you can buy your computer. The check than bounces in your account and you are out $2300 and the scammers come out big. Long story short, the $3000 is still in my bank and I'm not sending anyone anything. I know that in about a week that $3000 check I deposited will show up as no good and will taken out of my account. So, I'm not spending it, it will just sit there and wait to be taken out. The guy who is scamming me has been turned in and I'm left feeling like an idiot. But, in my defense, it sounded totally ligit.
On the so awesome side, I got a job as a personal chef!! Michael works for this really nice/rich family every once in a while. The wife is the bread...I mean major bread...winner and he is a stay at home dad. They have a nanny and a house cleaner. So, for 20 hrs. a week I'm going to do grocery shopping, some reading to his son, some laundry, light cleaning, and...THE BEST PART...I will cook dinner for them every night. If after three months I can commit to a year than I will become full time. So, I'm going to work a little less at Panera so I can do this job as well (something I really really want to do) and I will be making so much extra money. Enough that we will be able to pay rent and have money for groceries, and for going to the movies, and other fun things.
Even though I thought that I had a second job on Sunday I still decided to fast for some help. I have also been praying every night, with all my heart, and I am so blessed to know that Heavenly Father has heard my prayers. He not only gave me this job for the extra money but he gave it to me because he knows it is something I enjoy. I consider that the icing on the cake. I'm so grateful that my Heavenly Father knows the bigger plan.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Job #2

Well it's official, I was able to get a second job. I will be working for SF Supply Co. as a data entry...person. I get to work from home and choose my own hours. :) I can work as often as I want or as little as I want. I plan on working two hours before Panera and two hours after; that way I can get in four hours a day (20/week.) With that I will be able to make enough money a month to pay rent!! So now we don't have to use student loans to pay rent AND if Michael doesn't find a job right away, chances are small, than it's ok! Hopefully this works out the way I plan on it. Please keep us in your prayers and be excited.

P.S I'm sorry that I have been absent. It's just that Michael is home during the evenings now so I tend to spend more time with him than with the computer. Also, things are starting to look up *knock on wood* so I don't need to vent as much. But no need to fear I will continue to run into hard times and continue to have revalations. So stay tuned.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Oh to be a cat

Today I was over at a friends house and while I was there I was observing her cat.

My friend had to hop in the shower and during that time the cat and I started to have some fun. She decided she wanted to play a game of fetch with her mouse. She would drop the mouse in front of me and wait "patiently" for me to throw it. She would then do some awesome flip or dramatic somersault to get the mouse and would bring it back to do it all over again. We played for a long time together and even though it was funny I had other things to take care of so I nicely told her that I couldn't play anymore. After a minute she understood that I wasn't going to throw the mouse so she took it on herself to play some fetch. She would take the mouse and throw it way up in the air. She was doing the same somersaults and flips and was just as content playing by herself. I would watch her and I realized she loved to play with that mouse whether I was there or not. Even though she liked that I was playing with her she didn't need me there to enjoy herself.

It made me start to look at my life and how I entertain myself. The majority of the time I am not very good at entertaining myself. I sit bored staring at the computer or TV. Don't get me wrong, I really enjoy/need that time to let my brain turn to mush but after a while I get pretty bored. I don't have any motivation to get up and do anything and I don't really want to. The majority of the time I just sit there throwing a pity party that I'm by myself.

Today, though, I realized that I just need to learn how to play fetch with myself. Even though it is fun to play fetch with others you can do it by yourself and have just as much fun. It's amazing what you can learn from a cat.

The A's Game

I won some A's tickets at work. I did have to go with my boss and some other co workers but I got to bring my husband and it was a lot of fun.

To start off it was dollar day at A's stadium. So you could buy up to 10 hotdogs for only $1 each. Awesome. We were able to get sodas, hotdogs, some cotton candy, some ice cream, and give a bum some cash! It was really exciting. The excitement reached a new level when a foul ball came flying our way and Michael caught it! He got to join the foul ball club for a chance to win tickets. He gave the ball to a little girl sitting in front of us. It was her first A's game and she was really excited to be there. Then, to top our sundae off with a cherry the A's ACTUALLY won in the bottom of the 9th. So it was really intensely awesome when they made that final run. It was so. much. fun.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Easter Day

I know I'm a little late but better late than never, right?

Easter was good for us. Since it was General Conference (they should do that every year) we woke up later than usual, ate some Easter candy, and then went to our friend's, Chris and Masha's (from here on out I will be calling them Crasha; it's what Michael and I call them. It's shorter) house. They just bought a new home and moved in a week ago but they were still gracious enough to have people over. Every 6 months Crasha pulls out their deep fryer and make freshly made doughnuts and the best. chips. ever. All just so we can sit in front of their TV and watch conference. This time 'round was no different than any other time. We also had these awesome, three ingredients peanut butter cookies. The cookies were brought by the other couple there, Yoko and Levi. We have not thought of a quicker way to say their name yet.

Since Crasha has a Tivo we slowly settled in and watched the first session of conference. During the first session Crasha was preparing a ham dinner. So, between sessions we ate it and it was awesome! We even got to partake in Masha's special Easter bread. She is from Ukraine so we get to have the benefits of learning about her cultural and traditions. One of these traditions is this awesome Easter bread. It's a sweet bread with raisins usually topped with a glaze; so good.

After ham we all mosied our way back into the living room to watch the second session. I did fall asleep for part of it but woke up just in time to hear my favorite talk of the session. I also got to cuddle with Crasha's cat, Coco; that was nice.

After the second session we spent about four and a half hours talking and laughing. It was great fun. But everyone, but Michael, had work the next day so we had to eventually scrape ourselves off the couch and go home.

At home I dove into my Easter candy and then fell into a candy coma. It was fantastic. Below are pictures of what the Easter bunny brought.

*Just in case you were wondering: the thing about Easter Sunday that helped me move forward was watching conference.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Memories

Today I was driving home from work when I started to think about my dad. I've been thinking about him a lot lately; I really miss him. I was remembering when he used to take me out on daddy/daughter dates. He also used to take me hiking, fishing, and camping. He always tried so hard to let me know that he loved me.

It's cool that when I think about my dad those are the memories that come to mind. I don't think about the times I was in trouble. I don't remember all the fights we got in or any time he embarrassed me. I just remember him loving me and teaching me. Even when he didn't realize he was teaching me he was. I want him to know that.

*For those that aren't sure, my dad is not dead or anything. We just don't see much of each other anymore.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

It's Miley!

I was watching TV the other day when I saw the ad for the new make-me-want-to-throw-up chick flicks. It has Miley Cyrus in it with some guy. The movie is about a girl who is forced to move to her dad's house for the summer. He, of course, lives on the beach and she, of course, meets a dude. The ad shows their love exploding on the screen and if you watch it too much you might actually throw up.

While I was watching this ad I was reminded of the beginning of Michael and I's relationship. We were never too throw upee but it still wasn't pretty. We would hold hands, snuggle, kiss, look into each other's eyes, and all that jazz. We were slowly trying to get to know each other and learn the best things about each other so we could fall in love and get married. Well, it worked. We managed to show our best qualities to each other and "trick" one another into locking the other one in for eternity.

Now that we have been with each other for a while we no longer hold hands, snuggle, look into each other's eyes, and I can honestly say I can't remember the last time we actually kissed. **We do these things at proper times but it's not all the time. It's very very rarely We do stuff that is so much better.

Instead, we can look at each other and know exactly what the other one is thinking. When we really want to piss off the other person we know exactly what button to push. Then, when it's gone too far we know exactly how to bring it back to home base. We also know how to avoid those fights all together. We make each other laugh just by making silly faces. We giggle about nothing all day. I know that Michael is showing me affection by putting his stinky feet all over me. He also shows this kind of special affection when he knows my day has been awful. We can tell each other our deepest, "darkest" secrets in confidence. We can sit in the same room all day and not say a word to each other but it doesn't matter. Even though we were in love back in the day, I know that we are more in love now than we have ever been. It's crazy to think that we will be even more in love one day because that seems simply impossible.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Ugh...school

I hate student loans. Correction, I hate Sallie Mae. When I went to culinary school I got all of my loans through Sallie Mae. Some of them were federal loans and most of them were private loans. My federal loans are currently all bundled together under a blanket with my loans from ISU patiently waiting for next September when repayment starts. My private loans, on the other hand, are making me crazy.

Today I accidentally left my phone at home. Usually, I take my phone with me to work and turn it off when I am working. But today it was at home. When I got home I had seven, S.E.V.E.N, missed calls all from Sallie Mae. They have been harassing me over the past month because my private loans are $1800 past due. I know you are thinking, "Wow Luanne that is so many months of not paying your loans." No, no, only two. You see Sallie Mae thinks that I can afford $700/month payments. They won't work with me on refinancing and won't budge on anything. I have tried forbearing my loans in the past but can't do it now. Pretty much I'm screwed. Today I dealt with Sallie Mae for a while and was so upset by the end. I decided to take a shower to help cool me off.

In my shower I thought about a lot of stuff. I want to share.

The original plan:
When Michael and I got married in Dec. '06 we decided we would have Michael go to one more year of schooling at ISU and start having babies! We would then move to Cali in Aug..ish '08 so he could start school for his MGD.

What actually happened:
We came to Emeryville to check out Michael's school in July '07. We decided, since we were in the neighborhood, we would check out my school. They recommended me to start school Oct. of that same year. After much thought and prayer we decided to put off the baby thing until Michael got a job after school, we packed up all our possessions, and moved away from our families and the only place we've ever really known to expensive California. I started school right away and Michael soon followed.

Moving to California when we did was the best thing that has ever happened to us. Living in Idaho for another year would have been a waste of time and money at ISU. We needed to move away from family. We needed to get to know each other better and learn to trust each other before we start a family. We needed to meet the people we have met. We needed to get to know people that have given Michael so much advice about applying in the industry. And the biggest thing is I NEEDED to finish school. I can't emphasize enough how much I needed to finish school. I know it was important, no matter what I went to school for, and I wouldn't of done it if we had a baby.

So you see. Us going to Cali when we did and me going to school were essential in our lives. So, in my mind, it's only logical that going to the CCA was a good step in my path. I know that it wasn't accident that we decided to visit my school while we were down here visiting.

Drawing these two points together:
I know Heavenly Father creates good times and trials in our lives. I know that through trials we grow and become better. But why did I go to a school that I can't and never will be able to afford? I'm 22 and Michael is 25 and we are inches away from screwing up our credit. I know that in 10 years from know I will remember this blog and my shower today and laugh because this trial I am going through right now will make a lot of sense. But it's hard right now.

I do want to end by saying that because I went to school I will be blessed for the rest of my life. Heavenly Father knows what he is doing and will take care of me and my family because Michael and I listened to the spirit. I can't deny that.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

I forget what number I'm on.

Today was Easter Sunday in our ward. I'm really disappointed because I was so distracted with other things that I couldn't even concentrate on anything. But the one thing I was able to concentrate on was Primary. This month in Primary we are learning the song Follow the Prophet. We have learned Adam, Daniel, and a made up verse of Joseph Smith.

Joseph Smith, the prophet, he's a man we love.
With of faith undaunted, prayed to God above.
When the heavens opened God showed him the way.
To restore the gospel in the latter day.

Today we learned the made up verse of President Monson.

Thomas Spencer Monson
Prophet of our day.
We must always listen
to what he has to say.
He warns us of evil
Tells us what is right.
Tells us to serve others.
Serve with all your might.

My idea in learning the verse was as follows:
I had 12 ties. Each tie represented an apostle. So if the kids sang the other songs well they became an apostle. On the back of each tie was a line of the verse. Each apostle taught us that line and we learned the verse.

I love ideas like this. The kids are involved and loving it. That's all I ask for.

Friday, March 26, 2010

#17 Jury Duty

If anyone has talked to me or heard from me in the last month you would know that I was a member of a jury. You could probably take it one step further and say that I love it. I just wanted to share my experience; mostly because it's really weighing on my mind.

I reacted how anyone does when I opened the mail box and saw an envelope marked "jury summons." I did what every good American should do, though, and I went Wednesday March 3rd. I had to report to the courthouse in Hayward. For those who are not Bay Area savvy, Hayward is about 20 minutes from where I live. I reported to a very large room with several hundred other bay areaens. After the courthouse workers got settled they started by showing us a really cheesy movie about how awesome serving on a jury was. I rolled my eyes and went back to my crosswords.

Not too long after the movie the workers called their first group of 90 people; I was part of that group. We were to go downstairs and report to Dept. 511. In Dept. 511 the judge prepped us on what the case was about and we were instructed to fill out a questionnaire and meet back on Monday, the 11th.

Monday, the 11th was a long day. They questioned almost all 90 people, the same questions bare in mind, before the jury was actually selected. Needless to say we were all caught off gaurd when the clerk swore in the new jury.

The case was about the killing, beating to death, of a three year old little girl. Through testimony we heard the injuries she had and the possible ways they could have happened. We learned about bruising, broken bones, pain, CPR, medical response, and old injuries compared to new. We saw pictures both "good" and bad. We heard a neighbor who couldn't speak English and kept contradicting herself. We heard from a 9 year old witness who was only 4 when it happened. Through all this we heard the DA give her case and we heard the defense plant reasonable doubt in our minds. This was all good and we pulled the majority of our decision from the above witnesses. The hardest part was when the mother of this little girl and the boyfriend/defendant gave their testimonies. Their testimonies of what happened the week she died were different. Two totally different stories. We spent the majority of our time in deliberation deciding what part of their testimonies was true and what part was a lie. We had to go back and listen to several testimonies. We debated, debated, debated. I sat open minded and to tell you the truth I was almost one of the last ones to agree with the majority.

Yesterday was so hard. I think it's when I realized that someone wasn't going to come in and say, "Good job guys. This was just a test. This whole situation was made up." It's when I realized that a little girl really did get beat to death. It's when I realized the sad little life she was living and understood why Heavenly Father felt she was better off with him. It's also when I realized that my decision might or might not put a man in jail for the rest of his life. No matter what, though, I had to make that decision. We decided on guilty. It was undeniable and we all sat in silence for a good minute after we made that decision.

When we went back into the courtroom to read the verdict my emotions were high. There are three very distinct things that will be etched into my mind forever.
1-Walking in and seeing the mother with here parents on either side. Her head was down and she looked like she was praying.
2-The defendant looked as if he was holding his breath.
3-When the clerk was reading the verdict; the defendant dropped his head and his attorney started to comfort him.
We then had to each state that we agreed with the verdict. I remember at one point the sweet prosecuting attorney saw my tears. She looked at me with understanding and I could tell she was saying it would all be ok. I feel good about the decision.

I'm so glad I met the people I did. I'm really sad that I'm not going to be spending any more time with a group of people that I became so close to.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

#16 And the verdict is...

Coming! We started deliberation today and it is so exciting! I FINALLY get to talk about this case that has been driving me crazy. The twelve of us are able to sit down and have a good discussion about things that seem minimal but are really super important to the case. I highly recommend people electing themselves to be on a jury if they are ever called for selection because it is an awesome experience.
I can't wait to tell you more about the case....sort of.

Monday, March 22, 2010

#15: I'm not lying

A while ago, around Christmas, Michael and I were looking for dollar stocking stuffers. We felt the best place to start would be Target. They have those AWESOME dollar bins and we figured we would be able to find a lot. I believe, though, Heavenly Father really needed us to give us a much needed blessing so Target ended up not being everything we wanted. While we were leaving I remembered seeing a 99 cent store kind of close to Target so I directed us that way. We figured that we would be able to find some funky stuff and it would be silly, we had no idea what we would really find. I can't exaggerate enough how awesome this 99 cent store is. There is a produce area, a freezer aisle. It has every cleaning supply you could ever need. Michael has bought several ties there as well. Long story short, it is now our new grocery store. There are only two things I can't buy there; milk and cereal.
Today we went grocery shopping and I decided I would "prove" to you how awesome this place actually is.
Notice my new cute belt. That is an 8 pack of eggs, perfect amount, and name brand air freshener.
Here you will find a bag of Kiwis and name brand brownies. Also in this picture is a bag of P.Nuttles. These are butter toffee peanuts and they are so awesome.
Here is all of our groceries, minus some duplicates. A grocery list that would of ended up being about $75 was only $40!
I do have to say, today was a good day.