Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas in San Diego

Brian and I drove down to visit my parents in San Diego for Christmas. Besides the absolute monsoon we had to drive through to get there (it never stopped pouring from Las Vegas to San Diego) and the flooding during the first two days of our stay, it was a great trip. We did a lot of relaxing and it was so great to spend time with my parents. It went by way too fast. Here are some highlights from our trip:

Visiting the San Diego temple--it is gorgeous inside and out.
Watching the sunset at Cabrillo National MonumentDressing up like passengers on the Star of India--and getting seasick even though the boats are all anchored right on the dock. Don't be deceived, they still move.

I love this picture of Brian--it looks like the beginning to an epic adventure.
The Star of India
Just having some fun

This is one of the characters whose story is told at the Mormon Battalion Visitor's Center
Can you see the resemblance?
Some more dress-up fun!

The trip was wonderful and the company even better. And if anyone reading this goes to San Diego you CANNOT miss the Mormon Battalion Visitor's Center, it is so much fun.
I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas!

Monday, November 22, 2010

One Year Down: Eternity to Go

Happy Anniversary! We've made it through the first year with only bumps and major injuries. What a crazy year it has been too with Brian in Law School and me teaching my first year of high school English. It hasn't always been fun and games, but it has always been a wonderful year and it has gone by so fast! I'll spare you all the cheesiness and just highlight some of the best things from the past year.
Getting married for time and all eternity would have to be #1. Besides it's what started us on this crazy journey.Eating these leftovers wasn'tbad either....Goung to BYU Basketball games is something we will continue to enjoy Making Brian take part in the annual Christmas pageant at the Ranch.

Going to Florida for our Honeymoon and hanging out at Disneyworld
Going to Florida and freezing our patooties off...

Cuddling close during those cold winter months...
Traveling to Las Vegas with Rich and Maria in the Spring and hiking around Red Rock

Cliff jumping with Rich and Maria at Sand Hallow

Driving to San Francisco to visit my parents and riding bikes down the beach.

Acting like kids again at Sea World

Living here over the summer: the most beautiful place on earth.
Having Brian's family up to the Ranch for a family vacation and playing crazy games.Backpacking in the Uintas with Brian and realizing how out of shape I really am.Traveling to Glacier, Waterton Lakes and Banff with the Porter fam.Being the suppot crew while Brian completed the LOTOJA: his first bike race EVER!
Here's to a wonderful year, full of family, fun, and laughs. I can't wait to start over and see what the next year brings and the next 60 after that!

Saturday, October 23, 2010


I love the fall, despite the fact that it means the summer is over and with it my break from teaching. I love it despite the fact that it means no more sweet summer corn, grilling outside on the barbeque, staying at the ranch, swimming at the lake or going camping
I love fall because the world turns brilliant shades of yellow orange and gold.

I love fall because you get to play in the trees.....

And I love fall because you get to wear cozy sweaters and cute boots. Particularly these boots....

I bought these boots a couple of years ago and they are still my number one fashion item for comments. I don't think I have EVER worn these boots in public and not received a comment on them. Strangers, friends, mere acquaintances....everyone has something to say about these boots. Besides the general bland comments like "cute" "cool" and "awesome" these boots have been called "gnarly" "radical" "psycadelic" "tripped out" "bombtastic" and "crazy" --and those are only the comments I remember! Thank you fall weather for providing me with the opportunity to see what else people are going to say about these boots. If you want to think up some clever adjectives, go ahead and leave them in the comments.....

Monday, September 13, 2010

LOTOJA: 1 Day * 3 States * 206 Miles

Brian and his dad participated in the LOTOJA this last Saturday. They have been training all summer and I felt like I never saw Brian because he was always biking. They did an amazing job and covered the 206 miles between Logan, Utah and Jackson, Wyoming in a little over 12 hours, including break times. Don't ask me how anyone can stand to be on a bike for 12 hours, but they did it, and Brian was surprisingly chipper after all those miles. I was pretty proud to watch Brian cross the finish line--he worked so hard for this race and did an awesome job! (I'll also be glad to have him home once in awhile). Brian looking good and ready for another 150 miles after the first stop.I was part of the support crew along with my mother-in-law and two brothers-in-law. We provided quick food and drinks at designated stops along the way. Brian and his dad crossed the finish line just before dark. Brian is on the left in the blue jersey (he changed shirts halfway through), and his dad is on the right--crossing the finish line together. Way to go!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Summer Project

My sister Jenny gave me her old dining chairs, which she got for free after she got married. As you can see, they weren't very attractive (this picture doesn't even do it's ugliness justice) so I decided that I would re-upholster and paint the five chairs, despite the fact that I have never done anything like that before. I was pretty proud of my results and I learned a lot about what I would do differently if I were going to do it again. View the transformation....

Monday, August 30, 2010

The Notch Mountain Trail

Brian and I went on an overnighter in the Uintas. I suggested we do the Notch Mountain Loop trail.....backwards. Why I suggested this, I have no idea. I've done the loop before, but generally the trail starts at the Bald Mountain trailhead and travels down to Crystal Lake, with a short but steep ascent up the pass (you can see the pass behind us). I decided that we should do it the other way, not realizing just how much steeper it was going to be. The hike was fun though, and gave us a chance to get some good exercise.

and to see the lovely views.......

and this beautiful moonrise....

and to try out the tent Melanie and Ruben gave us for our wedding....
and to take a freezing cold swim (I didn't get in).....

and lastly, to soak in the wonderfulness that is the High Uinta Mountains Wilderness.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Into the Canadian Rockies

Glacier National Park in Montana was absolutely stunning. We drove up the "Going to the Sun" road--winding through the mist and fog and trying to out-do one another with our effusions of awe and wonder. Our pit-stop for fresh Huckleberry ice cream was definitely worth it. Who knew that ice cream in cold rain could still be so enjoyable?
There were waterfalls every direction you turned. It was impossible NOT to see waterfall.

Come on Brian---smile for the camera

Skipping rocks at the many lakes we visited became a favorite pastime. I was even able to send off a few good ones. However, skipping rocks did become dangerous at some points, like when Emily received a good whack to the side of her head with a rock.

After a couple of days in Glacier, we made our way to the Canadian side of the park--Waterton Lakes, and then continued on to Banff National Park.
The Canadian Rockies are nothing but impressive.
The wildlife was one of the highlights of the trip for me....
This mama bear and her two cubs were amazing to see! We saw all three of the bears stand on their hind legs on the top of the ridge, and then we drove up a dirt road to get a closer view.....
Our next view was just a little too close to comfort for some (John) but it was amazing to see a bear in the wild up close (and from relative safety of the car)
The view of Waterton Lake is gorgeous. We ate dinner at the little town of Waterton below at this little fried chicken place. Ask Matthew about the kid's meals there sometime.......
This is the Prince of Whales Hotel, built to encourage the construction and use of the Canadian Railway.
On a hike near Lake Louise we saw this porcupine. This picture was taken on the way up, but on the way back down the trail we saw him climbing a tree and snacking on pine needles.

The glaciers in Banff were HUGE! I loved this mountain capped by an enormous glacier.

We had a blast on this trip. The wildlife, awe inspiring peaks and lush forests of the Rocky Mountains were the perfect destination for our end-of-summer vacation. More of our mountain adventures will be chronicled on here as soon as I can get my own computer up and running. Before our Canada trip Brian and I went on a fun (or at least beautiful) overnight backpacking trip in the Uintas. So stay tuned for more adventures!