Tuesday, November 29, 2011

My Orchid

Today, I finally felt up to cleaning the house and was in the office filing some things when I found my scriptures from seminary. I had a whole bunch of "glue ins" in there - quotes that went along with scriptures that we discussed. One that really stuck out to me was in D&C - I don't remember the section unfortunately. The "glue in" was talking about the importance of journal writing and that Heavenly Father has commanded us to keep journals and records of things that are important to us in our lives. It made me realize how grateful I am that I have got back into blogging so that I could keep a record of what is going on with our families. Then I realized I haven't written - in my journal or on my blog - about my orchid.

My beautiful Orchid Jake gave me August 17, 2011
I had a dream last month and woke up really upset. To calm down, I wrote a post about Jake (click here to read it) and how grateful I was for him. Here is what happened in the dream, since the post doesn't talk about the dream.

I was in a store, like a grocery store, with a guy that wasn't Jake. The person that I was with worked there, and we were holding hands and kissing. I remember thinking that Jake and I were married and I was confused about why I was holding someone else's hand, but that didn't stop me from holding this person's hand. I remember he had a really nice car - no idea what it was haha but I remember thinking it was a really nice car. He had just finished his shift at the store and we were going to go get some dinner in his car. As we walked toward the doors, we passed the floral section of the grocery store. I said something about how pretty the orchids were and he picked one up and said that he would get it for me. I looked at it and we both realized it was dead, so he put it down and picked up another one and handed it to me. It was alive, but it was limp and had no blossoms on it. We walked out of the store and got in his car. As we drove out of the parking lot, I saw Jake. He was walking in the store, alone. His shoulders were slumped and he looked so sad (remembering this is making me cry - I hope I never see Jake look that sad). He looked up as the car went by and he saw me sitting in the passenger seat. He looked at me, and a little smile came on his face before we left the parking lot. I looked down at the orchid sitting in my lap, and realized it wasn't as pretty as the orchid I had at home (Jake gave me an orchid for our 2nd anniversary, so I really did have an orchid at home). I decided right then that I was going to "break things off" with this other guy and go back to Jake.

I woke up and was bawling. Jake works graveyards, so I was in bed alone. I texted him, just to reassure myself it was all a dream, and then blogged about how grateful I am that Jake chose me to be his wife. So fast forward to today - when I was cleaning the house. After I read the scripture about journal writing, I put my scriptures away and walked into the kitchen and saw my orchid. It is still alive (that is seriously amazing for me - I kill plants so fast) and just had a new blossom on one of the branches yesterday. Ever since that dream, I can't look at my orchid without smiling and thinking of Jake. I think I had that dream because I had been thinking and preparing to go to the temple and was wishing Jake could go with me. For a minute, I think a part of me was thinking my life would be "better" if I had married someone in the temple, but I know that isn't true. Yes, I want to be sealed to my husband in the temple, but Jake is the man I am supposed to be with and that I want to be with. And I know that someday, we will be sealed. I am so grateful that I have the "orchid" I do - he is the best "orchid" I could ever ask for.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Thanksgiving Part 2

2 days ago was Thanksgiving with Jake's family, so that made it our second Thanksgiving this year. Kenzie & Emrie flew into town from Arizona on Wednesday night and got to join us for the festivities! Yay!! This is our 4th Thanksgiving together, but my first year making a turkey! Jake asked me to make a turkey specifically for turkey sandwiches, so I decided to give it a try since no one else would know if it was an epic failure! We bought the turkey breast on Wednesday and started marinating it in the crock pot on Wednesday night. We both were a little disgusted while we were digging the turkey's guts out.

Jake was trying not to be too grossed out
I couldn't hide it - I was disgusted! 
We got the turkey all set up in the fridge and went to bed. I woke up the next morning (Turkey Day!) and put the crock pot on the warmer and started the timer. I also made the one assignment we had for Thanksgiving - a Jello Salad. I found a delicious recipe from the cookbook used as my kitchen bible and was so excited to head over to the in laws for Thanksgiving. THEN my Jello Salad decided not to set. So we ran to Smith's, got a Raspberry Parfait salad and headed over to get our grub on!! 

Our Thanksgiving Feast!! It was delicious - thanks mom & dad McClellan!
Awesome In Laws
Cute Kenzie (she is SO smart - she was reading to us!)
Dustin & adorable Emrie
The best husband ever!
#1 thing I am grateful for - my sexy husband
After we finished with dinner and dishes, Kenzie, Emrie & I played some board games and played games on the Wii while Dustin & Jake played Call of Duty 3 and mom & dad rested on the couch. When everyone had made some room in their tummies, we had pie! There were 5 different kinds of pie. Yes, 5. Pecan, pumpkin, banana, cocunut & chocolate! Once THAT had digested, we loaded in to the cars and went to the Cinemark in American Fork to go see Happy Feet Two.

Adorable movie - highly recommend it!
When we got back from the movie, we said goodbye to everyone and then headed back to our house. We opened the door from the garage into the house and were nearly knocked on our butts with the smell of slow roasted turkey - I seriously out did myself. It smelt AMAZING! After we took Max outside, Jake started to cut apart his turkey so that he could put in into a container and we could dispose of the carcass (that is so sick haha). The meat fell right off the bone - I was so surprised that it turned out so well, and it was my first turkey! Jake has already had 2 turkey sandwiches and keeps saying how yummy it is. Good job me :)

Our finished turkey!
To make our turkey (just so that I remember for next year haha):
- Place thawed turkey (cleaned & dryed) in the crock pot, with 1 can turkey or chicken broth
- Rub butter under skin and over top of skin lightly
- Sprinkle with lemon pepper, salt, pepper & a hint of paprika 
- Cover the crock pot with one sheet of tin foil (to help lock in moisture) and set crock pot timer to cook on low for 8 hours!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Lost on the couch

So I somehow got sick. Colds and bronchitis are going around rampantly so I won't point fingers. I have been coughing all week but last night (Thanksgiving mind you) it got much worse. Rather than doing my traditional Black Friday shopping, I took a sleeping pill and ended up sleep walking around my house and cough/choking. When I woke up, I felt like dog juice (family expression) and decided to stay in my sweats all day and relax and watch TV. After an hour, I was bored of everything on TV and then it hit me - I can watch "Lost"!

For anyone who hasn't become obsessed with Lost at some point in their life, you are missing out! Jake and I became obsessed with Lost last Christmas and quickly worked our way through the first 2 1/2 seasons thanks to Netflix instant streaming. In the spring, we slowly stopped watching it, due to prepping for our move, and being totally overwhelmed by how intense the plot is. Well, I am now back on the Lost wagon!!

So here I am - 2 PM on a holiday weekend and I am wrapped in my favorite quilt, in my sweats, sitting on my couch, eating a bowl of turkey chili with wheat thins and sipping DayQuil while watching Lost. Third season of Lost, here I come!!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

When you take advice from your father in law...

Dave Ramsey, as I have mentioned before, is one of my financial icons. He gives great advice and is someone I really look up to. My father in law got me into Dave Ramsey almost 2 years ago and I thank him quite regularly for that! The best part about that is that my father in law has applied all the same concepts to his financial life - before Dave Ramsey was even around! So that makes my father in law the original Dave Ramsey!

My amazing father in law Danny McClellan
We got debt free in amazing time, thanks to living in my in laws basement apartment rent free, advice from my in laws regularly, and Dave Ramsey's book. We were able to put down 10% when we bought our beautiful house. Now, we are trying to build our emergency fund (3-6 months expenses in case one of us loses a job) and it is killing me!! I want so many things for our house and I am fighting with myself everyday whether or not to just go buy a new sectional or new king size sleep number bed or fence the backyard or re carpet the house or whatever is on my brain that day. And then I hear my father in law's voice in my head and I decide not to buy anything. We have started calling it "being McClellan-ized".

The day I became a McClellan
He is so amazing at telling me what I may not want to hear but what I need to hear. I think that's what a good dad does. He is really good at it too haha. He tells me how it is, not how I want it to be. As a result, I know that Jake and I would have an entirely different marriage and financial situation if we hadn't listened when my father in law voiced his opinions when we almost bought another house 2 years ago. For that (and many other reasons) I am so grateful for my father in law. He is an amazing dad (seriously - I love him so much) and the best grandpa ever.

My father in law with his awesome boys - Dustin, Jake & Clint
I am so grateful my husband had the chance to grow up with his dad in his life.

Jake & his dad :)
I am also so grateful that his parents stayed married despite how difficult marriage can be at times so that Jake and his brothers could grow up with their dad in their lives and in their home.

My amazing in laws - Dad & Mom McClellan
I am so grateful that he is a worthy priesthood holder and temple recommend holder - he is a wonderful example to his boys. And last but not least, I am so happy he will be our kids Grandpa. He is the most amazing Grandpa ever - I love watching him with Kenzie and Emrie.

Grandpa & Grandma with Kenzie & Emrie
If your father in law gives advice, in my experience, you should listen.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Gratitude Attitude

To celebrate this Thanksgiving, I decided to think of one thing for each day of the month of November that I am grateful for. If there was a picture to go with it, I included that. Otherwise - just use your imagination!! I am grateful for:

1. Being married to my Jake

2. The Gospel

3. Our puppy Max

4. My amazing family - I love my siblings and parents!

My sisters, Jake & me with my dad

5. My in laws - I seriously lucked out on having fabulous in laws!

6. Amazing friends!

7. Our House!!

8. Being an "Apple" family

9. So many temples in Utah!

10. Living in such a wonderful and safe community.

11. Being debt free except our mortgage!

12. Technology & Appliances - I love our washer & dryer & dishwasher!!

13. A functioning heater and AC in our home so we don't freeze or die of heat!

14. Our functioning, nice, paid for cars

15. Cafe Rio

16. Dave Ramsey's podcasts & books!

17. Our amazing jobs!!

18. Peanut Butter!

19. Living in the United States of America

20. BYU football

21. Christmas time!

22. Autumn in Utah

23. Easy access to so many church distribution stores and Deseret Book's!

24. My blog and gratitude journal

25. The color pink!!

26. The Scriptures

27. Bubble baths

28. My CHI Hair Straightener!

29. Bath & Body Works Aromatherapy Lemon Zest Lotion

30. A garage I can park my Jeep in so that I don't have to scrape my windows!


"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them." - John Fitzgerald Kennedy

**As a side note - I wrote this posting on Friday but published it on Sunday since I had so many things to post at once. So Sunday morning I posted it, and then I got asked to speak in Sacrament Meeting next Sunday (gulp!) on gratitude! Haha good thing I already had gratitude on the brain!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Thanksgiving Part 1

This Thanksgiving was going to be a bit different - Jake & I most likely wouldn't have been able to make it to my parent's house because Kenzie & Emrie will be here (YAY!!!), and my step siblings wouldn't be able to drive back down from Smithfield, and Brynne & Blake would be in Hawaii for their honeymoon, and Poppa wouldn't be coming back for Thanksgiving so we decided to do Thanksgiving a week early! 

We started off the night by giving Poppa his belated birthday present - a framed picture of one of the cabins at his Ranch in Northern California

I don't know what we were doing - making unattractive faces apparently!

Brynne & I flashing the camera!! 

One of the 2 tables

The other one 

My sexy man

Part of our Thanksgiving feast! We had turkey, potatoes and gravy, stuffing, rolls, green bean casserole, yams, cranberry sauce and caramel apple salad, plus pies!!

2 days before they were married!

Gorgeous mother!

This is my "this meat was recently hear a bone" face

Uncle Aaron and me

Brynne loves the drumstick!

Behind Brynne & Blake you can barely see Ron & Sharon - every single picture taken of them that night was so blurry! They were there too though! 

The amazing photographer!

The chef finally fixing herself a plate of food! 

The older I get, the more I am really starting to love Thanksgiving. I love the opportunity to be with family and remember all the reasons we have to be grateful!