Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Sunshine on the Lake

Check out this view. This is just standing in the front yard of Brett's parent's house and looking down the street. Beautiful.

On Friday during our trip we had a few hours between the DMV and when Brett needed to leave for our friend's bachelor party. Naturally we took to the lake that is just a few minutes from the house. With the lake that close, it is possible to go for just an hour or so and not feel like you need to stay longer in order to make the trip worth it. 

Matt was such a champ holding the boat while we all just sat in it and didn't help at all. Funny to note here: none of us packed any swim suits. We were not expecting to have the time to go to the lake, but we still should probably have packed them just to be safe. Brett and Matt ended up wearing some of their dad's old trunks and I wore some exercise clothes. Whatever works, works right?

Check him out! He grew up going to the lake to ski and wake board a few times a week. I had someone try to teach me to wake board once, but it didn't work. This all being the case, I let him tear up the lake without worrying about teaching me. I would just take a dive every once in a while when they switched out skiers. 

It was a great little relaxing couple hours. From here on out I think we should just always bring our suits with us when we go visit in the summer.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Best Bites in Seattle

As part of our recent trip to the Northwest we went out for a nice seafood dinner in Seattle with Brett's parent's and brother. I didn't grow up eating seafood because my mom is extremely allergic to shellfish. So bad in fact that sometimes she can't even go to a steakhouse that also serves shrimp. This makes me a little skittish around seafood. I have this irrational fear that I am not going to like it so I don't want to spend money (since seafood is often expensive) on something that I am not sure I will even like in the first place. This is the biggest reason why I haven't tried sushi either.

Anyway, one thing I know I like is salmon, so that is what I got and it was delicious. I devoured the entire thing, along with the steamed sugar snap peas and red potatoes. Others at the table got the Tuna burger or the trout and everyone was happy with their order. 

The location was amazing. Located right on the water you could look out the window and see boats lined up to the docks. The restaurant itself had a such a classy nautical feel to it. It wasn't over the top fancy, there were people in there with jeans and t-shirts, but the woodwork gave the look of a yacht. I would definitely go there for dinner again and maybe even be brave enough to order something different. 

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Our Afternoon in Seattle

The first day of our trip, other than the day of driving, we went up to Seattle with Brett's parent's and younger brother. Seattle is pretty sentimental to me. I had wanted to go visit there for as long as I can remember and had the chance to go for the first time with Brett when we were married. Ever since then I have been in love with the city, along with Portland. Something about going somewhere for the first time with the person you love makes it special. When we went almost two years ago it was raining, and this time the sun was out so we enjoyed our time and walked around.

How cool would it be to live in one of these ocean-side apartments? I love the architecture of these larger cities. There is also a part of me that wants to live downtown in a city for a while. Eventually I want to end up in a suburb on the outskirts of a city, but to have some fun downtown would be a fun adventure. Something like these are the adventure of my dreams.

This is probably one of my favorite pictures of Brett. Were were just leaning over the pier and snapped this quickly. The pier next door had the Seattle Aquarium that I want to visit sometime. 

One of my favorite parts of places like this are the details. These pictures were taken on the move, and I don't even pretend to be a photographer, but the nautical details everywhere were just so appropriate. Another detail I love about the northwest is the fact that it is green everywhere. Even the freeways are green! That is something that you would never see in Utah.

Pike's Market was another stop on our day and it was just what I had expected. I had seen pictures before, but never been so I was surprised to see a farmer's market be somewhat indoors. 

The place where they throw the fish. Saw it happen once. I still can't believe that they throw fish around like that.

The different stands were so much fun to look at. My favorites were the flowers, produce, and pasta. I didn't get a good picture of the pasta stand, it was really crowded, but I don't think I have ever seen so many pasta options to buy in bulk. The produce stands were beautiful! I have never wanted to eat a salad so bad in my life. I could have picked up a tomato and taken a bite out of it like an apple. 

Back to my love of details, this view from the stairs of the market to the ocean was one of my favorites. While the stairway was long and steep, it was lined with trees and these interesting light fixtures. The light bulbs were held in the hand of statues mad to look like they are walking down the walls. Any other picture I took of one by itself just got a little disorienting. 

Overall a wonderful afternoon. I already can't wait to go back there again and we just got back! If all goes according to our limited planning ability, we may even end up living there in the next year or so for internships.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A Good Old Fashion Roadtrip

Last week we were lucky enough to get to drive to the Northwest for a multitude of reasons. It was one of those trips where we were so busy that we came home more exhausted than when we left, but it is worth it. Brett and I were able to share the drive with his little brother and one of our other friends, but sadly they spent most of the time sleeping. I am nice enough not to take a picture of a sleeper. Nobody really looks good when they sleep.

Posts and pictures to come of weddings, Seattle, dinners, family, and the lake.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Thunder and Dark Clouds

This picture was taken when we went with our ward to the Jordan River Temple over the weekend. I had to snap a picture for two reasons. First, I had never been here before, so why not take a picture with a large beautiful building. Second, I had to catch these clouds. 

We have had about a week worth of summer thunderstorms and it has been amazing. I love walking out the door in the morning to be able to smell the rain in the air. On the downside, it goes from warm and sunny, to warm and thunderstorm in about 5 minutes, so its been pretty unpredictable. That aside, thunderstorms are still one of my favorite things. It probably comes from the fact that each time a storm would hit my parents would wake us all up, wrap us in blankets and we would pull the kitchen chairs out to the covered front porch. I loved it then, and I love it now. 

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Why I Love What I Study

Recently I have had several people ask me what I am studying at BYU and why I choose it. I get to study Social Studies Teaching which will eventually certify me to teach any subject relating to anthropology, sociology, psychology, political science, economics, geography, and history at a high school level. I love it and there are so many reasons for this.

I find it really interesting

I have the opportunity to study so many different subjects that I am never bored. I am always excited for my next class in any of the different subjects because I don't get burnt out of any single topic. This variety also shows me the bigger picture of what is occurring in the world. In a previous semester I took, among other general courses,  history, geography, and political science classes concurrently and the number of correlations between the three blew my mind. I could get really nerdy about this, but my husband says that I start to get ridiculous, so I won't go into examples, but they do exist. Trust me.

It makes me a better citizen

This might be a little bit of a stretch, but I am a better citizen of the United States and of the world by the variety of things I learn. First of all, seeing so many different sides to any single event or way of though forces me to think critically about what I am learning. I find holes in logic, test the credibility of documents and accounts and just generally be critical in any way you can imagine. Sometimes this is difficult when studying dictators and some of their awful policies, but being critical of all sides of a story is key. This has helped me form opinions and beliefs about world and national policies and events so that when the time comes that I am presented with a choice, I am prepared and confident in my decision.

I can make a difference to teenagers

I am so excited to be a high school teacher! By the time students reach high school they know what is expected of them, whether they choose to do it or not. I especially want to teach juniors and seniors. By this time they are little adults preparing to enter the world, either through college or the work force. I fully believe that high schoolers are our future and that it is our responsibility to prepare them. Specifically in regards to the economics and political science part of my major, I want to prepare teenagers to become active parts of their community in a positive way. My biggest goal? To be able to connect with my students in a way that allows them to trust me and realize that I am there to be an ally for them.

I have options for the future

It is impossible to know what the future will hold for me and my family but it is still possible to make limited plans. For example, by studying education I can work full time, part time, as an infrequent substitute or not at all depending on our family situation at the time. The educational system also gives me the opportunity to have holidays and summers of with children if the time comes that I need to work while my kids are young. From a professional perspective, by becoming certified in so many subjects, I am able to teach multiple classes based from the needs of the school and therefore become more marketable.

It strengthens my testimony of the Gospel

As members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints we are told that we should "study and learn, and become acquainted with all good books, and with languages, tongues, and people" (D&C 90:15). I get to fulfill this on a daily basis and I love it. The more I learn about other people, their cultures, and their beliefs, the more I grow to love them as fellow humans and sons and daughters of God. I also have the regular opportunity to juxtapose my beliefs and those of others. Similar to the critical thinking I talked about earlier, this cements my testimony and beliefs in an unshakable way. I am daily becoming better prepared to

So there you have it. It may not be the most eloquent explanation, but this is how I feel. It might be hard to imagine that a 22 year old still loves school, but when my personality combines with my wonderful major that's what happens. Who knows, maybe I will even keep working (at a much slower pace) and get more education when I am done with this degree.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

4th of July Through Bad Photography

Happy Fourth of July! We spent it with some of Brett's Utah family and just took it easy for most of the day.

Well, we took it easy except for the fact that I spent 6 hours trying to perfect this cake. It looked alright until we started cutting into it. Then we all just wanted cake so it got a little destroyed. If I was ever to do something like this again, I would probably do something like this that you can see bellow. Still just as cool, but looks a lot cleaner and would take so much less time.

Brett's sister Alicia and her adorable family. Too bad Jake can't stand still. They let a bunch of us come over and just hang out in their new yard. It also helps that their neighbors a few houses down spent thousands of dollars on big fireworks that the whole neighborhood could enjoy.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Resolution Recap

Remember here when I outlined my resolutions for the 2013 year? Well here we are halfway through the year and its time for some accountability.

Exercise 5 days a week

I made an Excel spreadsheet with every day of the year as its own box. Months run across the top and days down the side. I can not even tell you how helpful this has been to watch my progress. I printed off a copy for my cork board that I highlight when I finish a workout, and update it every month on the computer. Here are the results so far!  The grey days are Sundays when I don't exercise, green is a workout day, blue is the rest day, red is a missed day, and pink is any day that I was legitimately sick. Lets just not talk about March though deal?

Drink more water a day

This has been so amazing! Drinking more water has made me feel great. It has been helpful that I have a desk job when I am not in class. I just type and drink water all afternoon.

Daily scripture study

Definitely more improved! I love reading the scriptures with my husband most mornings. It is a great way to start our day and makes a huge difference in my overall attitude.

Hard work and success in school

Success! Two semesters in a row with nothing less than an A- does a lot for anyone's self esteem, but it has been great for me. We will see how summer classes finish out. After taking that year off school during the first year Brett and I were married it is wonderful to be back in the swing of education. Gosh I get nerdy about education in general. I should probably write about that sometime.

Six months down, six to go! I can't wait to see where I am at the end of December.