Friday, September 28, 2012

It's back...

I have been trying to grow my hair for a while. I have definitely cut it, but I was trying to grow out my layers to make it so that as it grows it will be a uniform length. After starting at the Saratoga Springs Branch, I started to second guess my decision to grow it out. Lindsey & Angie both have the CUTEST A line hair cuts EVER. I decided to cut my hair back to an A line and text Kariann {my hair dresser} and get it set up. And then I backed out. I have been trying to grow out my hair for SO long - I just couldn't quit.

What my hair looked like on a good day. I really liked it when it worked, but it was just at the awkward length and hit my shoulder just wrong.
Yeah I lasted another week and then decided I was ready to cut it so I got an appointment set up for last Thursday! Kariann was able to get me in the same day that I decided I wanted to cut it, so I looked at pictures of bob's and a line while at work to find what I wanted.

I LOVE Jill Stevens, Miss Utah 2007 and Soldier in the National Guard. I also love her hair, so this is what I decided I wanted!
Kariann did an amazing job, and I left the salon absolutely IN LOVE with my new shorter hair cut!

After my hair was styled, getting my eyebrows tinted
After I left the salon - LOVE it!!

The next day, straight instead of curled under. LOVE it!
 When I styled it on Sunday for the temple dedication, I was loving the front but had a little bit of trouble with the back. It seemed a little long, and then I realized it wasn't an A line - it was a bob. I tried to style it again on Monday and same thing - loved the front, hard time getting the back to do what I wanted. So I called Kariann again. I absolutely HATE doing that - I don't want my wonderful hair stylist to think that I am mad or anything, it just isn't how I had wanted it and I want to love it. She got me in Wednesday night after I got home from work and we got it all fixed and I am SO in love with my hair now that it's kinda ridiculous. SO in love with my hair!!

Wednesday night, after Kariann shortened the back to make it more of an A line
This morning - seriously I love my hair!
Did I mention I love my new hair??
So yes, I am back to my traditional A line. It makes it just about impossible to style it any other way and I LOVE that - it makes me not feel lame that my hair looks pretty much the same every day. I love getting to the point that because I do my hair the same way every day, I am good at it and can do it pretty fast. And I am glad that I love my hair again, everyday. Life is too short to not love your hair!!

Brigham City Temple Dedication

This past Sunday was the Brigham City Temple Dedication. They broadcasted the dedication to all of the stake centers in Utah, and cancelled church as a result so that members could go to see the dedication. This is the first dedication I have been to since the Fresno, CA dedication in 2001 ish. And guess what? JAKE GOT TO COME WITH ME!!!! That means he has a limited use temple recommend. We are SO close to getting sealed - HAPPY FREAKING DAY!!!

My mom had a wonderful suggestion to go to the dedication together. That means I got to go to a dediction with my entire family, minus my dad. All my sisters were able to come!! It was an amazing experience to be there with my family. I got pretty emotional because the Spirit was very strong. Let's just say that we have been thinking a lot about starting our family and after last Sunday, we are definitely feeling like it is time! YAY!!! We are SO excited!! Hopefully we are able to get pregnant fairly quickly!

After the dedication we made sure to take lots of pictures!

The whole family after the dedication
Me & my beautiful sisters - so glad we were all able to be there!
Mom & her ladybugs
Had to make sure we get a picture of the men too!
My favorite couple to double with - I LOVE BRYNNE & BLAKE!!!
We all had matching handkerchiefs! We didn't talk before hand on bringing them - we just all happened to bring the same one!
Everyone's handerkerchief
The amazing man I am married to - can't wait to be sealed for Eternity!
I wish we had been able to go to the Temple Open House that was going on for the last few weeks but we weren't able to make it. Can't wait for the Payson Temple to be done - scheduled for 2015!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Park City

Last weekend, after I got off of work, Jake & I went up Parley's Canyon to go to Park City for the day. We had no specific reason for wanting to go there - just wanted something to do for the day and I REALLY wanted to go see the colors, so we chose Park City!!

Fall colors are STUNNING - one of my FAVORITE things about living in Utah!
We got up there and had originally planned on maybe going to see a movie or something. As we were driving, we stumbled upon the Tanger Outlets and Jake said we could go! Heck yes! I LOVE SHOPPING!! The only thing we ended up getting was some more cologne for Jake, but we looked in a lot of stores. Lots of fun, and we got to do a lot of walking as we walked around the outlets, enjoying the PERFECT fall weather!

Looking at coats in Columbia, holding Jake's new cologne
After we were done at the outlets, we found a road and decided to drive on it and see where we end up. Well, we ended up at one of the training facilities for the Olympics, just above the rest of the city. They have a bob sled ride open, so we decided to go check it out! The colors were even more gorgeous up there!

Seriously - isn't that GORGEOUS?! I mean Jake, but hey the colors are pretty too ;)
Official Olympic sign!
 The bob sled ride was $60. Each. EACH! So yeah, we weren't able to go on that one, since we aren't quite that rich to just throw $120 for a 60 second ride. Hopefully we can go for one of our birthdays or our next anniversary. They had a skiing ramp set up where people were skiing off and landing in the a swimming pool. I am sure it has a really cool name, but I have no idea what it is so just imagine what I described!

One of the skiiers doing a front flip
Back flip!
Snowboarder going off the smaller jump
Relaxing on the hill watching the skiiers
After we were finished watching the skiiers, we drove around Park City some more and found a Best Buy. We looked for a new cover for Jake's iPhone 5 while we were there but we couldn't find one that he liked. We drove home through Provo Canyon after stopping at a gas station for drinks and enjoyed more of the gorgeous colors.

These pictures seriously don't do justice to the colors - STUNNING

As we came out of Provo Canyon onto 8th North in Orem, we decided to stop by Beebaw's house where Brynne & Blake are living. So I guess I should say Brynne's house but it just feels like Beebaw's house to me. Anyway, we stopped in and talked with them for a while and then went to a Sushi Bar in Orem for dinner all together. SO YUMMY. I seriously LOVE sushi with a passion. After we were stuffed, we went to a yogurt shop across State Street. It's one of the ones where you pick your flavors and then load your toppings onto it yourself and weigh it afterwards. I got peanut butter yogurt. Yep that was to DIE for {in case you don't know - I am a recovering peanut butter addict}. Yay for fun Saturdays!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Camaro Analogy...

I love analogies. I think that is what first got me so into Dave Ramsey's book "Total Money Makeover" - he does lots of analogies with comparing money and finances to weight. It really hit me hard and just made sense to me, and from then on I am really into analogies.

Yesterday, as I was dragging myself out of bed at 5:30 to workout, I was reminding myself why I do this - because I like how I feel afterwards and I like the person I have become as a result of changing my health. And I choose to do this - no one is making me do it. I have a LOT of people ask me how I do it, why I do it, and then tell me that I am so great or so awesome or whatever for getting up that early or eating that strictly - whatever the case may be. And I really hope that does not sound like I am bragging. If anything, it kinda bugs me. I don't feel like I am doing anything that amazing, I don't feel like I am an inspiration, but I am not gong to argue with people who chose to see me that way. While I was doing a personal pep talk to get out of bed, this analogy came to my mind and I just had to share it.

Let's say that Suzie Q is 18 and just graduated from high school and off to college. For her graduation present, her parents give her a brand spankin' new convertible Chevy Camaro. {Nobody should give an 18 year old that kind of car, but hey just roll with me here} The only stipulation is that she is responsible for the maintenance of the car, on her own, but they paid for the car with cash so she won't need to worry about making payments on the car.

Suzie Q drives her car to graduation and everyone is drooling and jealous over how lucky she is and that they wish they could have a car just like hers. But over time, it isn't as exciting anymore. People at college don't really care about how nice her car is. The car needs gas and she has to pay for her insurance, which starts to seem tedious each and every month. And then there is the occasional tire replacement, oil change, etc. Before she knows it, Suzie Q is mentally complaining about her new car that she has to take care of. She gradually stops taking it to be detailed, stops cleaning out her school papers and clothes that end up in the back seat each day, doesn't vacuum out the dog hair from the back seat, etc. She reasons with herself that she will get to it next week, next month semester - just not right now because life is too chaotic.

Then she starts procrastinating getting the oil changed. Next she chooses not to wait in line at the tire store to get the tires rotated. The check engine light comes on, but the car still works so she doesn't worry too much about it. Her car registration is due and she procrastinates that too - it's an extra expense and money is really tight right now, being a college student and all. On a spring day during spring break, she tries to roll the top off the car so that she can enjoy the spring weather but it isn't working. She made a mental note to get it fixed before summer - driving around with the top down is a requirement when you have a convertible!

Then one day, her car won't start. She tries everything and it just will not start. She knew it was pretty low on gas, but it had enough in there to get her to and from school for a few more days, at the very least. She called a friend to get a ride to school, and had a friend, who happened to be a mechanic, come look at her car when school was out for the weekend. He said it looked like her battery had died and the cables were too corroded to jump start it. She scraped together enough money to buy a new battery but it STILL wouldn't start. After looking under the hood some more, her friend came to the conclusion that maybe her engine had died. She was shocked! How could this have happened?! Thinking he was wrong and just trying to get money out of her, she called a tow truck and had the car taken in for a second opinion at the Chevrolet dealership.

The diagnosis was the same - the engine had died because she had no oil in the engine. The total on how much it would cost to get the car running back to normal was FAR more than she could afford, between replacing the engine, repairing the sunroof, fixing miscellaneous timing belts, cables, new tires, getting the car re registered with the state, etc. She had taken a wonderful gift from her parents and nearly ruined it. Yes, it was fixable, but it would take a lot of work and a lot of money {translating into a long time, because she would need to save up for it}.

Now compare Suzie Q's car to our bodies. When we came to this earth, Heavenly Father gave us our bodies to house our spirits while we are here. What an AMAZING gift that is!! As a result of the wonderful gift that He gave us, we are expected to take care of it. To put in the right kind of fuel, to do the necessary maintenance. This gift was bought and paid for - we just need to take care of it. And thanks to fast food and how convenient our lives are becoming, taking care of our bodies is becoming less and less of a priority. It's seems to be on the backburner - whether it be finances or kids or no kids or work or no gym pass or whatever. Excuses come up and if we let it get out of control, we can find ourselves in a similar situation as Suzie Q. Having to change eating habits or stop drinking this or start doing this or quit eating that can seem like too much, especially when you see how long the road ahead is to get your "car" back to where it is designed to be.

For me, it started gradually, thinking that it would be okay if I ate this or skipped this workout and before I knew it, I had developed some very bad habits. I really gave up on myself, and by the time I realized it, it was nearly too late. I told myself often that I just needed to deal with it - there was no way I was going to be able to change now. But guess what - it WASN'T too late. It just took a LOT of time, dedication and effort to get my "car" back to how it was designed to function. If I had worked daily on the little "maintenance" things, I wouldn't have needed to work this hard to get these results.

That being said, I wouldn't change it for the world. Yes, I regret that I didn't take good care of my body and that I let myself think nothing was wrong with being 300 pounds at 22 years old. But I have learned SO much about myself along this journey. I have learned SO much about nutrition and exercise, and it has become a HUGE interest & hobby of mine. When I go back to college {someday}, I will be getting my degree in nutrition. And I never would have realized just how fascinating nutritions is to me if I hadn't taken myself on this journey. I have learned to be grateful for the little things, like being able to buy clothes at any clothing store I want. Or being able to buckle a seatbelt at an amusement park or on an airplane. Yes, I could do those things before but it was a tight fit and now it isn't uncomfortable at all!

I have learned that I am in charge of my body and how it feels {for the most part - obviously something's are out of our control, like cancer}. I have learned to realize when my body is communicating with me. Just because my stomach feels hungry doesn't mean it's okay to scarf down 2 McDonald's sandwiches off the dollar menu as a snack. Just because I had a bad day doesn't mean it's okay to have ice cream for dinner. I may not even be hungry - it may just be that I am thirsty. Or that I need to eat some more lean protein at my next meal. My body won't run the way I want it to if I don't fuel it the right way. As a result, I am choosing to eat this way, to work out this way, to get up at 5:30 every single weekday to work out and get drenched in sweat. I am choosing to have my muscles be so sore somedays that I can barely walk up a flight of stairs. I am choosing the blisters and the smelly laundry. I am choosing to say no to a donut {happened today!} and eating my slices of cucumber instead. Because I know that I am worth this. And I ALMOST have my "Camaro" body!! Don't even try to tell me THAT isn't worth it!!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

BYU vs Utah

This past weekend was the BYU vs Utah game! Last one until 2015!! And after last year's slaughter {final score 54-10}, I REALLY wanted to win this game!!! So that meant my superstitions went into full swing. Cleaned the house SUPER well, kept everything tidy all week, worked out EVERY day, paid a few bills early, etc. I kept thinking "I have lost 70 ish pounds since the last time they played, we are in a totally different financial situation, I just got a new job - things will be different this year because I have accomplished A TON!". Yeah, my superstitions are ridiculous but they help me to get things done because I get stressed we won't win if I am not super on top of things! 

Game day arrived and superstitions started first thing - I made sure to sleep in BYU pajamas and not wear ANYTHING red all week long. 

Rocking my BYU pants and Bank shirt while I cleaned the house
Then I went for my run. I had decided to give myself the day off from working out and then I got worried that we might not win if I didn't work out so I got dressed for my run.

BYU hat & T shirt on my 3 mile run. Max was rocking his blue harness and blue leash. We gotta represent! 
After I got back from my run, I put the BYU flag up in the front yard and put the flags on the car. Seriously - there wasn't ANYONE who wondered if we were BYU fans haha. I hurried and showered and got ready to go to Brynne & Blake's for the football party.

My new BYU shirt - it's a women's BYU shirt. I don't have to wear guy ones anymore - I can fit into GIRL ONES!!!  
New hoodie over my new BYU shirt. Same thing - it's a women's hoodie. BOOM BABY!! 
We got to Brynne & Blake's about an hour late - I seriously lost track of time. We got there just as Blake was finishing the BBQ and we ate dinner and talked in the backyard before Brynne & Blake left for the adult session of Stake Conference. Aren't they such good examples?! While they were gone, we played games in the backyard because the weather was PERFECT. And their grass is SO soft and the house faces west so the shade was in the backyard and it was just amazing. I seriously LOVE fall! We played a few thinking games involving professional football teams and chocolate bars and then threw around a football. Then Brynne & Blake got home and we got ready for kick off!!

Popper & her bestie Sam getting ready for the game to start
Jeannene & me so excited for the game to start! 
Brynne putting away the last of dinner stuff - already changed out of her dress and into her BYU shirt 
Brynne & me - I seriously love my sister!! 
All the sisters, ready to cheer on our Cougars!
Another picture of the 4 of us 
Popper & Sam got ahold of my phone and took this LOVELY picture! 
Showing how tough we are!
Brynne & Blake - he wasn't wearing his BYU shirt yet so Brynne covered up the logo on his shirt haha
I love these two!! 
Jake & my dad ready for the game to start
Blake setting up the surround sound
Jake & I sat on the LoveSac the entire game - we really miss ours! 
He worked the night before {ended up working 51 hours that week} and was really tired but he still came! LOVE HIM!! 
We are SO tough!!
Smiling right before kick off 
I took this picture at half time but I love how serious everyone looks. That's how we ALL looked throughout the entire 3rd quarter.
At half time the score was 7-7. We had made a few mistakes but nothing awful, just a LOT of false starts by the linemen. And then the 3rd quarter happened. And we apparently didn't come out of the locker room or something - we played AWFUL! At one point, the score was 17-7 and we were on around the 20 yard line, getting ready to score a touchdown and close the gap to 3 points. The center snapped the ball before Riley Nelson had called for it and it flew past him. He and Alisa {number 42} went to recover the ball and one of them tried to pick the ball up {BAD IDEA} and it popped out and a Utah defensive player picked it up and ran it in for a touchdown. Yeah that was depressing to say the least. We were all F R E A K I N G out - BAD.

But then we started to get it together. We scored a touchdown, bringing it to 24-14. And then we held the Utes and they had to punt. And we scored another touchdown!! And the Utes had a hard time converting that drive - we sacked them and they ended up having to punt with only about a minute left. We were SCREAMING and freaking out like crazy people, except Jake who is ALWAYS really calm during intense moments. And we had no time outs. We converted on 3rd or 4th down and made it barely into field goal range - it was going to be an ETERNAL field goal. So we decided to try one more play. We threw it and it was incomplete, the clock ran out. Or so the crowd thought.

The Ute fans stormed the field, and the ref's called it a game but Riley and Bronco kept saying that there was still 1 second left. So they went back to watch the final play and sure enough - the ball hit the ground with 1 second left on the clock. The refs announced it wasn't over yet and we were SCREAMING - we had one more chance!! They got all the fans off the field and brought out the kicking team. We kicked it and it was blocked - JD Falslev picked it up and tried to run it in for a touchdown but he got tackled before he got there. And the fans stormed the field AGAIN. This time though, they stormed the field as soon as the kick was blocked, not when JD was finally tackled.

So the game ends, says it is Final, but there is a flag on the ground. So after like 5 minutes of the refs talking and reading the rule book, they got a live ball foul on the fans. ON THE FANS! Greatest moment of my life!! Because they came onto the field before the play was over, the Utes got a 15 yard penalty and we got 1 final play. So they cleared the fans off the field AGAIN and we lined up for our field goal.

It was a 34 yard attempt because we got 15 yards thanks to the fans and then we missed. WE MISSED! After all those chances!! WE MISSED!!! GAHH!! Bounced right off of the left upright. SO freaking depressing. Blake and Nate {one of his old roommates} were vocally upset - the rest of us were just stunned silence. It was so depressing!!! Brynne thought it had gone in, so she didn't understand why the rest of us weren't super excited about overtime. But yeah we lost. And the fans stormed the field again. 3rd time is the charm apparently.

We took a few more pictures and then took my dad home while we listened to the post game show.

LOVE this picture, even though we just lost. Love how sexy we look in our BYU gear haha
Nate & Blake getting ready to punch something, or cry, or both.
The girls with my dad - all rocking our BYU gear {my dad had a  BYU hat on}
The post game was really helpful. I used to hate listening to the post game when we lost, but it helped me focus on all the little things we did to mess up, not just that final play. In my opinion, we deserved to lose. Utah didn't deserve to win, but their defense really gave us a hard time and our offense just did not show up. But their best receiver was out all game and they had to play their 2nd string QB because Jordan  Wynn got hurt the week before and is now a coach for the Utes instead of a player.  And if we can't win under those circumstances, we don't deserve to win the game. Wish we could have won - they have won 8 of the last 11 meetings but oh well.

The next day I saw this on Facebook and couldn't help taking a screen shot of it - totally made my day!!

Well, hopefully we can beat them in basketball. Not that it matters. It all comes down to football. But we still have 9 more games this season and we look really good so hopefully we make a decent bowl game, despite this heart breaking loss. And at least they didn't kill us 54-10 again like last year!! 

No matter what though, I am still a Cougar - even if Cougar isn't cool.