Tuesday, September 30, 2014

5K Recap

I know that the picture quality is terrible, but this is the only picture we were able to get of our 5K last weekend before my phone did this weird reset thing that it does. Oh well, at least it is one right?

We ran a 5K organized by the Orem Public Library, and if there is anything I belief in giving money to, its libraries. I was also happy that this race was pretty affordable. After doing a free race a few weeks ago, but not actually running it I wanted to do another one quickly where I actually got to test what I was capable of at this point. And I am proud of what I am now capable of. My goal was honestly just to run 3.1 miles 30 minuets or less. Well I think you could say that 26 minutes is less than 30! It averages out to just under 8.5 minutes/mile. It was so good to feel the satisfaction that comes from not only meeting your goal, but exceeding it as well.

About two years ago Brett convinced me to run with him for about a month. During that month we ran a 5K with some friends because if I had an attainable goal I would be more motivated. Well we ran it, not very fast, and right before it started to snow, so running dropped from my priority list almost immediately. Honestly it didn't become a priority again until my doctor told me that I had to, and then I stuck with it long enough to see progress. This time, running the race and getting a relatively good time is a motivation for me to keep going again, not an excuse to quit like it was two years ago.

Now its just time to decide what the next goal is. Do I try to improve my time or distance?

Monday, September 29, 2014

Part of a Great Sisterhood

One of my favorite things is when a group of united people get together. It gets even better when the group is united by faith and a divine purpose.

Twice a year (in April and October) The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints holds a General Conference for all members and anyone who wants to know what we believe from the leaders of the church itself. Each time, the first session is the General Women's Meeting where leaders of the church, particularly those over the organizations of women and children, speak about what they feel is most important for all women of the church, and women of the world to hear. I watched the broadcast with my sister that also goes to BYU and nothing breeds the feeling of greater sisterhood, than participating with your own actual sister.

This October session did not disappoint. Here are just a few of the snippets from the meeting on Saturday. I highly recommend that you watch the rest of it here. I can promise you that if you go into it with an open mind and truly listen you will feel inspired.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Three Years

This happened three years ago today. Up until that time, this was the happiest moment of my life. Since then, all the happy moments have centered on the events of this day. We have had some ups, some downs, some adventures, but mostly smiles. 

Here is two the last three years, the next year, and all the many years to come. I can't say what will happen, but I can say that at the end the smiles will still be here. 

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Our Favorite Seattle Places

We did so much amazing stuff this summer, and with the first day of fall quickly approaching, I thought it would be appropriate to spend some time remembering summer before I get too excited about fall. Not being in school and living in a new part of the country sure helped increase the number of our fun activities, and I for one was surprised to see it all listed out. So here it is, our favorite places we found in he Seattle area this summer.

Carkeek Park
Definitely our go-to park. We came here for our first walk on the beach, for a Saturday picnic, to show family, and once to try to run the trails. Turned out to have lots of stairs so that didn't last long.

Safeco Field
Hello baseball! The combination of baseball and family made the day a hit (pun intended). It also got me sentimental about going to a Mariners game on our honeymoon.

Kerry Park and Queen Anne
The greatest view of the city. I'm sure it is always beautiful, but being there at sunset when the sky was clear was amazing. The colors were so vibrant that I am so glad someone with a nice camera was there to catch it.

Llandover Park
Another one of our go-to locations. Most of the time wanted to mix up our runs with some hills and some shade. Once we went just on a Sunday walk. What remained consistent is that we could never remember what it was called. I always thought it was Lavender, Brett thought maybe Labrador. I had to look it up just to write this post.

13 Coins
Diner food in a fancy leather booth? Yes please. Delicious, if a little overpriced for diner food.

The Root Beer Store
What more can I say, it is a Root Beer Store. Every first Saturday of the month you can go in for a free tasting and then take your pick from the walls of bottled root beer. I highly recommend Frosty's vanilla flavored root beer. It seriously tastes like a root beer float.

Green Lake
We ran around this lake so many times. A flat 3 mile circumference made it the perfect location. It was also great to see so many kinds of people there enjoying the sun.

Bastyr University
Natural Medicine school located by Lake Washington and Saint Edwards State Park. The school is pretty small, but the architecture and the location are amazing. The chapel was closed off the day we went, but even looking at the pictures you can tell how beautiful it is.

Saint Edwards State Park
This park is on the edge of Lake Washington and includes shoreline, wooded trails, a community pool, large fields, a baseball and cricket field, and an old seminary building. Similar to Bastyr, the architecture was amazing to see.

Downtown Waterfront
This is somewhere we have been lots of times at this point. My favorite part about the waterfront in Seattle is how quickly you actually get there. You are getting off the freeway, then all of a sudden, bam! You are driving down a hill and you realize you are right there, with the piers and the skyscrapers all at once. I love it there.

LDS Temple
The grounds and the interior of an LDS temple are the post peaceful places I have ever been. Aside from the peace and clarity that makes any visit enjoyable, I love seeing the way the architecture and the grounds are adapted to the location. The Seattle temple has such amazing greenery on the grounds, and the motifs are in organic patterns. And the stained glass window? Blue and green. Its fabulous.

Richmond Beach
We loved Richmond Beach. Its larger than the beach found at Carkeek, allowing for a fun walk along the water. We got up first thing in the morning on a Saturday, packed up some muffins and fruit, grabbed the baseball gloves, and spent a few hours relaxing on the sand. I highly recommend a morning on the beach.

Lake Washington
I'm a girl from North Idaho, one of my favorite landscapes is a big lake, and boy does Lake Washington deliver. This lake is huge! There is an island in the middle of it so large that there is an entire city on it, and ya, it costs a ton to live there.

University of Washington Campus
Going to BYU means that I am used to a college campus being its own little world. A single student has almost no reason to leave campus. UW on the other hand is so integrated into the city. The first time I went I din't realize how quickly campus would sneak up on me. I loved seeing all the apartments above the little shops and resturaunts. And the fact that campus goes right down to the water adds another level of beauty. My favorite part however, is the Suzzullo Library.

So there you have it. All of our favorite places to see in the Seattle area. Hopefully we have a chance to make it back to a few, and add even more to the list.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Payson 5k

Last Saturday I spent the morning hanging out with Brett's sister and her cute family. They were participating in a free family 5k and were nice enough to let us know about it too. Since Brett ended up needing to work that day, it was just me, but hey, Brett didn't have a Wonder Woman T-shirt anyway.

Jason actually ran the race and did great pulling in at just over 26 minutes, while Laurel and I pretty much walked and talked, coming in at a time significantly longer than 26 minutes. :) And how could you not love walking through this kind of view first thing in the morning?

Even though I didn't run, which is something I have been doing for months now, it was a really enjoyable time. I like all of Brett's sisters and the fact that I could have some free time with any of them and we can fill in all the time with conversation and fun. Not to mention that Laurel's kids (like all my nieces and nephews) are adorable.

Ten days from today Brett and I will be actually running a 5k in Orem, and I can't wait to see what kind of time I can get when I put my legs into it.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Gratitude for Seattle

I love this picture. I know I just used it in the last post, but I have a feeling it will be in the regular rotation. It's just the two of us, on the beach, enjoying a perfect weather, and loving the time we got to spend together. Living in a new area for such a short time gave us the amazing chance to capitalize on all the free time we had to explore the region. Sometimes I wanted a few friends to have over for dinner, go to a movie, and explore the area with (so its a good thing some friends came to visit us the weekend this picture was actually taken), but I really appreciate the long amounts of time we had to spend together as a couple. We were already each other's best friend, and that grew exponentially over the summer.

We spent so much time together that now we make the same joke, at the same time, very regularly. And not even a long standing one either, but just one that pops into the conversation. We are almost too used to only having each other as company. But in all honesty, I love it. We became so united, so centralized on what we want for each other, for us, for our future experiences, and for our future family that I wouldn't trade those days for anything.

We got exactly what we needed out of our summer in Seattle. Brett's internship gave him a great spot on the inside track for some potential jobs after graduation. He got to apply all the stuff he has been learning in his classes, working on projects where he was given a lot of responsibility and trust. He got to meet some important people in public finance and local government in the region and pick their brains about what to expect in the future.

I was able to find a full time job at the relatively last minute in order to have two incomes over the summer. It wasn't the most glamorous work out there (I mean, who doesn't love housekeeping?), but it was during the day, subsidized the bus pass I needed, and gave the the chance to meet some amazing people from all over the world. I loved learning about where they came from, how they view life, and their amazing success stories of immigration, as well as sharing my own experiences and beliefs. I used my evenings and days off to fall in love with fitness just like I used to be.

Together we actually became one of those runner couples. Every day after work we would go for a run (anywhere from 2-5 miles) before coming home to make dinner together. We got to experience what it felt like to be married and not have at least one of us being a full time student and getting to have our evenings together. This even helped us to get into a much better habit of couple's scripture study and even Family Home Evening with just the two of us. Those discussions and talks gave us so much strength and knowledge.

See, living in a new place, with high costs of living, having to move twice in four months in order to do it, and even me having to take a job I wasn't stoked for was maybe the hardest thing we have done together so far. And yet it was also the greatest. So here's to Seattle. The city that, even if we don't get to move back, will always have a special place in our hearts and memories.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Where in the World is the Lee Family?

Please tell me I am not the only one who remembers this game? Does it still exist somewhere? (image via)

Well odds are that it was one of five places.

  1. Somewhere in the great state of Washington: the weekend we moved we trove the road between Seattle and Portland 4 times. In 36 hours. Yep. We had to be in Portland for a meeting on Friday, but couldn't use my in-laws trailer until Saturday. So we drove down a day early to drive back the next day.
  2. Lost somewhere across Idaho: when the time finally came for the 12 hour drive back to Utah, we took a wrong turn on a road we have driven many times. Maybe we shouldn't have been to involved in our prank call to a sister-in-law as she answered after hours calls at a mortuary. Then we probably would have made the cutoff and not realized to late that we were taking a two hour detour through Pocatello. 
  3. Somewhere in Utah Valley: our first week back we were homeless. Our move in date wasn't until the first day of school, but our jobs and ride south were a week earlier. So because of that we bounced around, spending nights at different families' houses, catching up with everyone, and driving into Provo for work each day. Our new car sure got familiar with Utah quickly. 
  4. On BYU campus: this is now the third week of school. And this is our last fall semester (probably)! That means we are doing a ton of schoolwork right now, as well as our two campus jobs. This is my last semester of classes before I start student teaching in January, so I am making sure I hit all my requirements and even had to go back to a freshman class I somehow missed. Brett is front loading his semester so he has more time to work next semester to make up for the fact that I will be student teaching and not earning any money for 4 months. Lets hope that works. 
  5. Trying to situate our belongings in our new hobbit-hole: at least that is what I have been calling our new little apartment. I feel like that is an appropriate name considering that when my sister stopped by the other day she started laughing and saying "It's so cute! It looks like they just took everything in an apartment and made the mini version of it! Look how little your oven is!" 
So there you have it. This is what my last month has looked like. Its no wonder I didn't post anything, I barely even know where all our stuff is! I just keep telling myself that once we finally finish getting into a groove of the semester, we will fall into our routine and life won't seem so hectic.