Monday, December 14, 2009

December Festivities

We helped put together our ward Christmas party and took home this lovely poinsettia. We also decided to do a little experiment to feel more Christmas spirit. We are keeping track of our good deeds with using wrapping paper links to make a Christmas chain. Instead of taking away, we are trying to add to it. Those slips of paper in the glass are ready and waiting, beckoning us to serve.

Justin finally got to shoot the gun that his grandpa gave him. Saturday was the only chance we had to go try it out. So we went. It was snowing. I am such a good wife. PS we forgot to bring earplugs so we made due. That glove box tampon is always good for something.

We babysit our cute niece Ava on occasion. She likes to try on our shoes.

Justin's parents gave us a bunch of Christmas decorations including lights and these wonderful shatter proof ornaments. They didn't come with hooks, so we didn't know how to hang them at first. Then I thought, we can string them! Dental floss is another one of your very versatile toiletries.

Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Lesson Learned

Never sub for an unfamiliar second grade class when you don't feel well, or have a canker sore on your tongue, or both. On a happier note, elementary students have their plusses:

They actually like you! (usually)

And oh the pictures!

I have also received as gifts, a half eaten fortune cookie, a broken frog eraser top, and several origami frogs of all different sizes (these kids were obsessed with frogs).

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

End of a Season

Swimming is done. For now.
Here are the approximate results from our championship meet.

200 IM: 2:39-ish, 6th place
500 Free: 6:34 or 35, 8th place (that's more like it)
200 Medley Relay (B), 2nd place (we got 3rd but our A relay was disqualified)
200 Free Relay (A), 1st place
400 Free Relay (A), 1st place

It was a really close meet, but out of the four teams that competed, we still ended up third. Not quite the victory we had hoped for, but it was still a fun season anyway.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Halloween etc. . .

Justin's parents came to visit.
They brought Abigail (Justin's sister's baby) while Rachel received the first of 2 parts of radiation to treat what might be left of her thyroid cancer.
Swim meet.
I arranged to swim a few events at the beginning of the meet so we could make it to the ward halloween party. . . being on the activities committee and all.
  • 200 free: 2:22. (right after sprinting a 50 back in the medley relay)
  • 50 free: 28.00 (still tired from the 200)
Ward Halloween party.
We dressed up as a crazy chemistry teacher and his apprentice.

Justin convinced me to compete with him in the relay race which included:

a 3 legged dash. . .

Justin eating a doughnut on a string in three bites with no hands. . .

and me bobbing lightning fast for an apple.

It took us 58 seconds.
We won.

We did some shopping during the day and then stayed in and played dress up with Abigail.

Church as usual.
To learn more about we believe go here.
Dinner with Jeff and Lauren.
We trade off cooking dinner on Sundays with Jeff and Lauren (Jeff is Justin's brother). They live two buildings down from us. We love being so close to them.

Justin finished up his applications for medical school and got them sent in. Now we wait to fill out secondary applications.

Justin's parents left.
They took Abigail to see her mom for a few more days until she got a bigger dose of radiation and can't be around her for another 10 days or so.

Justin has been doing well in his classes and continues to study hard and do well on his exams. I have been subbing in the district and worked a couple of days last week.
I continue to swim three days a week and am getting ready for the championship meet which is this Friday and Saturday! I will be swimming the 200 IM, the 500 free, and all three relays.

That's the latest. Hopefully I can get some pictures of our awesome costumes to post, so check back soon.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Undercover Adventure

Some mysterious couple from our ward left us a scrumptious carmel popcorn treat on our doorstep the other day with a note in verse that essentially said to pass it on to two other families to spread the halloween love. We were a little late in getting our mission accomplished, but we did it and I think these guys were worth the wait. I was giddy with laughter every time I put a face together because they are so cute!

Making our delivery in disguise

Thanks to My Muffin Thursdays for the idea (I stole the idea from Pinky's sister Emily), and to Colby for her help making them. We were not so domestic and used cake mix from a box and store bought frosting. We also used Reese's Pieces instead of M&M's for the eyes.

Saturday, October 24, 2009


So, as I have mentioned before, I am on an intramural swim team. We have had 4 meets so far and I have only mentioned 1 of them. Let me sum up.

Meet #1: Spartans win
Opponent: Titans
100 Free: 1:03.7

Meet #2: Spartans win
Opponent: Hawks
100 Free: 1:01.8
100 Back: 1:13.9

Meet #3: Knights win (barely)
Word on the street is that there were some mistakes in the scoring and we actually should have won.
100 Fly: 1:20 (how embarrassing)
100 Back: 1:14

Meet #4: Spartans win (by 7 points!)
Opponent: Titans
500 Free: 6:05 (way faster than I thought I could swim)
100 Back: 1:14.5

This last meet was today and it was pretty fun because I actually won all of the events that I swam, including the the 200 Medley and the 200 Free relays. The only reason I won all 4 events was because one of the fastest girls on our team was sick and didn't swim. Luckily we still won the meet without her though!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Back Tracking

So, my parents came to visit this weekend and brought my camera cable. Here are a few events that were recorded on my camera who's pictures I was unable to retrieve.

When we moved out of our apartment in Boise in August, we had a couple of weeks before we could move in to our new apartment in Rexburg. We used that time to visit family and gather all of our things (that were scattered between 3 states) and get it all ready to haul back to Idaho.

One of our family visits included a trip to Northern California where we got to be with my little cousin Jordan during her baptism, and Logan when he received his Eagle Scout Award. Upon arriving in Northern CA, we met up with everyone at the State fair in Sacramento. It was HOT. We found out that the reason we were there torturing ourselves in the heat though was to see David Cook in concert. I have never really followed American Idol, or Pop music for that mater, so I had no idea who he was. In case you are like me and aren't up on your Pop stars, he was winner of the 2008 season of American Idol. Here we are on the grass in the back waiting for the show to start.

While in Norther California, we also got to visit Justin's Grandpa who generously gifted him one of his MANY guns. . .
A rifle to be more specific. . .

Trying on a sweet holster while I was wishing I were a damsel in distress

Lots of driving, a moving truck, and one wedding later, we finally made it to a place we can call home.

Breakfast before a table

Breakfast after a table

Monday, September 28, 2009

Meet Results

Spartans win!

I ended up swimming the third leg of all three relays and one individual event:
  • 200 medley relay (butterfly)
  • 100 freestyle--1:03.7
  • 200 freestyle relay
  • 400 freestyle relay
My 100 free was faster than expected (considering I went a 1:15 in the time trial try-outs) and it actually felt pretty good too. Maybe my body is remembering how to swim after all! I'm hoping to get to swim some more individual events in the upcoming meets and see more improvement as the semester goes on.

Here's to my number one fan who sat up in the muggy bleachers from warm-up to clean up.
I love him for it.

Friday, September 25, 2009


You know you are in Rexburg when you have to drop your truck off next to a pile of hay.

So we finally Made it to Rexburg. I left my camera cable in CA during the three week move/vacation, so this post is limited to cell phone pictures. We rolled into town in the above pictured Budget truck around 8:30 p.m. after Jamie's wedding. The Elders Quorum was there to help us unload the truck and they had everything--armoire, couch bed, everything--in our second story apartment within 15 minutes. The help just kept coming. It was wonderful.

Then we spent the next couple of weeks unpacking and getting organized. Some of our home improvement projects included buying and putting together this Walmart special of a table and hanging these curtains. We have yet to hang all of our pictures. Even though there is still work to do, it is so nice to have a home again.

Rexburg is a small town complete with John Deere tractors and old trucks selling corn in front of the grocery store. So far I love it! However, I don't know if I will be able to say that when it is 20 below. Winter is definitely on it's way and to put it mildly, I am nervous.

In Sports News:
As the spouse of a full time student, I am eligible to participate in the intramural sports that they have here at the school. In an effort to get in better shape, I decided to take advantage of this perk and I did something kind of crazy. I joined a BYU-I intramural swim team. After my first week back in the water, the only positive thing that I have to say is this: I used to be in really good shape. It's been years since I have been on any kind of a swim team (8 to be exact), and I am feeling every second of it. It is fun though. It's nice to be able to work out with people about my speed and I'm actually excited to compete just for the fun of it. Our first meet is tomorrow. I will be swimming in both the 200 medley relay, and the 200 free relay as well as the 100 free. Go Spartans! Feel free to wear GREEN in my honor.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Baby Blessings

This post is kind of late, but these babies are just too cute to leave out. A couple of weeks ago, we made a trip to Provo for two little nieces' blessings. I am kind of sporadic with the camera, so didn't get any pictures of us with Abigail, Justin's sister's baby. Abigail was born just a few weeks before Marlee.

Abigail Eve Ellars (stolen off of Rachel's blog)

The aunties with Marlee and Mom

Aunt Crystal and Uncle Justin (who was pretty sick during this trip)

What a good looking family

The End

Lucky Peak for Real

The last time Justin and I tried to go waterskiing at Lucky Peak Lake, things didn't quite work out. This was take two. Tiff invited me to go one morning last week. Justin was at at a conference in Pocatello doing his final presentations about his summer research, so he was out. I was sad that I had to go without him, but what can you do? The lake was calling and I could NOT refuse.

Let's just say that Tiff could probably ski circles around me if she wanted to. I, on the other hand, am not such a pro. But I love it just the same.

Tiff looking very excited to get in that cold lake at 8:00 am

Tiff tearing it up

Giving it my best shot

Completely wiped out after my fist and only attempt that morning

Bottom Line: So fun. I am now counting down until our trip to Lake Mead with Justin's family.

In other news:
  • We are moving out of our apartment on Friday and staying in CA for a few weeks
  • Jamie is getting married on September 5th in the Mt. Timpanogos Temple
  • We will be moving into our new apartment in Rexburg sometime after the wedding and just in time for school to start

That is all for now.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Love Story

Once upon a time, there was a loving wife named Crystal who got a special fortune in her fortune cookie. "Keep your plans secret for now," it read. There was also a husband named Justin who was having a birthday in five days. Being the loving wife that she was, Crystal was planning something special for her sweet husband, something that she had wanted to do since before they got married, which at this time was more than three months ago.

You see, Justin and Crystal had a lovely courtship, full of significant events that led up to their recent marriage. Some of their late nights together--when they got the chance to be together during their extended, long-distance courtship--were spent reminiscing about how they met and all of the wonderful happenings that played a part in their relationship. Crystal wanted to compile all of these events in some printed form to give to Justin to forever remember how it all began. She decided to put all of these events together with pictures in a calendar. This would not be a normal calendar of future dates as most people use, but a calendar of the past. It would spread from the first day they saw each other (April 14, 2008) to their wedding day (April 25th, 2009) and cover every significant event in between.

Crystal had been working on her project for weeks already, and now, more than ever, was determined to make it a great birthday surprise. It had begun slowly at first. She had been fitting it in here and there when she had the time. When Justin would come home from work and asked what she had done that day, she sneakily left out all of the details. ". . . and some other projects," she would add when she felt the need to fill in the gaps. However, the day of Justin's birth was quickly approaching and so first thing Monday morning when Justin went to work, she went to work as well. It was now just a few short days before the due date (and her gift was most likely going to arrive late as it was), so she spent all day finishing the work she started weeks ago. Every picture had to be in place and all 365+ days had to give an accurate account of their love story.

It was nearing five o'clock and Justin would be home soon. She had to finish those finishing touches and make the order now if she were avoid letting another day pass by. That's when the call came. Justin was on his way home. She made her order with one click of the mouse, and then it was out of her hands. She waited, fretting that her beautiful calendar wouldn't finish uploading by the time the unsuspecting Justin walked in the door, and that the evidence would be out in plain sight on the computer screen to ruin the surprise. It was a race. She felt like she was in a movie scene. The status bar was loading and the bad guys were coming. . . But just like in the movies, the order was completed just in time.

Upon arriving home from a hard day at work, Justin got a glass of ice water and sat down at the computer to check up on things in cyberspace. Crystal was in the next room gleaming with triumph over her secret online purchase when she heard a shout from Justin. "Oh, did you order that book?" With a hint of confusion in her voice and panic in her heart she replied back, "No, not exactly. . . " He was referring to a book that they were planning to order in the same fashion as the calendar. But did he figure something out? How could he have known? As she peered around the corner to the computer screen she saw what she could not hide. An email had just popped into her inbox in plain sight stating that her order had been received and Justin was unknowingly reading all about it! By this time he must have seen that it was a calendar and like a dear in headlights Crystal froze and could not think of a way out. "It was supposed to be a surprise!" she blurted out. If he didn't know before, he knew now, and there was no recovering.

Justin, tried to console his wife who was kicking herself for not coving all of her tracks, while at the same time sinking deeper and deeper into the depths of despair. He didn't even remember his birthday was coming up! It would have been such a perfect surprise. As he held her in the living room not knowing what to do, he innocently let his hand slip into the back pocket of her jeans. There was something in that pocket. Something that had been put there and then forgotten a moment later. It was the fortune from the fortune cookie she had serendipitously received a few days before.

The morning after Justin's birthday, the package came and of course he loved it. Although the calendar was expected, each page was a surprise to see the many significant events as they really happened. Then they both lived happily ever after.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

An ode to Justin on his Birthday

This is the greatest, sweetest, most wonderful guy I know. He is my best friend. I am so lucky. Even when he's sick he is still so good to me. I hurt when he is sick. Pray that he gets better soon. I love him.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

A Camping Adventure

This was about my reaction when a couple in our ward invited us to go camping with them a couple of weeks ago. You see, it's not that I don't like the great outdoors, because I do. It's just the whole part about sleeping on the hard ground that gives me that not overly excited face. Let's just say that I've had some bad experiences.

We did, however, end up going camping. We were able to borrow all of our gear (except a flashlight, pillows and bug repellent) from various people, and it wasn't that bad. I prepared some tin foil dinners before we left and we were also in charge of bringing stuff for s'mores. Dinner was great (the best Justin has ever had, I might add--thanks Tiff!), the company was fun, and the ground was tolerable.

In the morning we had some breakfast and then went on a little hike. I'm not a huge fan of hiking either while I'm doing it, but I do like getting to the top. Who doesn't, really?

Then we hiked down,
ate lunch,
went home.
The end.