Thursday, December 1, 2011

A Christmas Letter for My Honey

So, my hubby has been on tour for a few weeks now, and I decided to write a blog to show him all the awesome Christmas decorations on our house now :)  This could not have happened without the help of my amazing family.  Ryan helped with the outside and my mom and sisters rescued me from a nervous breakdown after the lights on the tree I just spent 5 hours lighting went out.  Twice.  All is good now (except for a mysterious un-working outside outlet that needs to be replaced somehow).  I miss you, sweetie.  May these pictures bring a smile to your face and hold you over until you can see them in person. Merry Christmas.

Oh--and first some pics of our "Thanksgiving Dinner"(we celebrated early, since he wouldn't be home for Thanksgiving).

Yummy--both the man and the food :)

The tree I chose to cut down with the family!

And finally, the piece de resistance:

Home :)

PS:  I've saved a special ornament just for you to hang :)

Friday, November 4, 2011

Question of the Day

Okay, so this has puzzled me for years.  Maybe someone who knows more about styling hair than I do can answer this:

WHY are there so many levels of heat on curling irons?  This applies to crimpers, straighteners, and any other heating device.

I mean, I don't know about you, but if I'm going to put the time in to change the way my hair naturally looks by curling it, I want it to stay curled.  It's not like I'm going to say, "Well I only want my hair to be barely curly for an hour or so, so I"ll put the heat setting on 5--maybe 6" or "I'm triple-barreling ALL of my hair.  It's gonna take about 2 hours, but I think I'll put it on low so I only do it half way."

I mean, WHAT is that about??  All of my heating appliances are on the highest setting, plus the turbo button.  And if I could make it hotter,  I would.  I don't want to mess around.  My hair doesn't hold curl all that well anyway, so when I make the effort I want it to last.  I understand that there is is  "beach wave" look--but don't you just use a larger iron?  I mean if you are going for shirley temple, you use a 1/4 inch and if you want sexy waves, use a 2 inch.  But they should all be piping hot--otherwise its just a waste of time.

Does anyone actually use the lower settings on their irons?  If you do, PLEASE tell me what would possess you to do this.  I really want to know.

Oh...and I hope you all had a great Halloween!! Pics to come from the Bluth's!!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Second Anniversary!

So....Jordan and I have been married for TWO YEARS!! Our anniversary was on Sept. 25 and we did a little celebrating that day, but then we went to Newport Beach this last weekend for scheduling purposes.  Here are some amazing pics!
So our anniversary was on a Sunday, so I decided to make dinner.  I made three cheese Gnocchi, caprese, and spinach, pear, feta, blueberry salad (not pictured).  For dessert I made mini cherry streusel pies.  I have to say, it was one of my best meals ever :)

So forward a few weeks and we got on a plane to Newport Beach for a fabulous weekend of relaxation and romance!!

We stayed at the Marriot Vacation Club resort in a beautiful room.  The weather was amazing and the company was even better :)

The grounds at the resort.
On the pier on Balboa Island.

A leisurely afternoon :)

The sunset outside of Duke's restaurant on Huntington Beach.

I had an AMAZING filet mignon, garlic roasted asparagus, red potatoes and sweet miso corn sauce.  It was as incredible as it looks and sounds.  We also had mango bbq ribs as a starter.  Jordan had parmesan-herb crusted opa fish.  

Balboa Peninsula

On the pier!!
just the two of us walking on the beach :)

We arrived here, at the Beachcomber at the end of our beach walk.
Apparently, I was starving when I got to the Beachcomber, because I stuffed myself with French custard Brioche French Toast.  Yes, it was amazing.

The Tide Pools

So, Maserati's are kind of an inside joke with Jordan and I, so when we drove past a dealership for them, we HAD to take a picture or two.  That's just a really pretty car.
On our balcony, overlooking the ocean!

I really dig this picture Jordan took.  The colors are beautiful!!
So later that night, Jordan's parents joined us.  They were staying for the whole week, and they were kind enough to let us crash the party for about a day.  Thanks!!

So, while loading up on food supplies Saturday night, I became temporarily obsessed with these pumpkins.  I had never seen them before, and I particularly thought that the Fairytale pumpkins were the most beautiful things I had ever seen.  So, I asked my mother in law if she wouldn't mind bringing me home one by the end of the week, if they weren't available in AZ.  Luckily, I found some at my neighborhood Trader Joe's (love) for even cheaper.  I LOVE my fairytale pumpkins!!!

On Sunday, after church, we walked around the Newport Temple.  So beautiful!  

It was so nice to see the temple, but I'd love to actually do a session there someday.  It looked awesome!  I felt so grateful that Jordan and I were able to feel the Spirit of the temple as we celebrated our 2nd Anniversary of being sealed there.  It was great.

After the temple, we (my in-laws and Jordan and I) went to look around Roger's Gardens, a beautiful and huge home and garden store with beautiful plants, flowers, and home decor displays to wander through.  Obviously, we weren't going to shop, but we did go to look at everything and it was SO amazing!  There were of course, hundreds more fairytale pumpkins, which further cemented my need for one, and a very cool Halloween boutique.  After looking at the Rose Garden and many other sections, we ended our trip with a glorious Christmas display with at least 12 trees in full splendor and glory.  It was a wonderful afternoon.
How cool are these?  My mother-in-law went back during the week and got me one.  She is so nice :)

Did you know!!?? Disneyland has an official rose.   I might need one of these too.  (btw this picture is for my penpal)

the boys at the grill at sunset.
After napping, a great BBQ dinner, games, and a movie, we all went to bed exhausted but happy.  Jordan and I had spent a quick, but relaxing weekend in Newport and it was wonderful.  I love him so much.  I am continually amazed at how blessed my life is, and how lucky I am that Jordan chose to marry me.  Happy anniversary, sweetheart.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Why September is the Best!!

Happy first day of Fall!!!  And yes, that's one of the reasons I love September so much.  I can't say that September is my favorite month, because I love Christmas so much---but it is REALLY close.  September has so many wonderful things in it for me.  As a kid, September marked the beginning of school (we lived on the east coast) and so back-to-school clothes and activities were all very fun, crisp, and fall-like.  There is an excitement in the air around going back to school, seeing your friends, going to football games, wearing cute autumn sweaters and jackets...  Okay I know that that stuff doesn't really happen here in AZ, but old habits die hard and that's what I remember from my childhood.  I remember walking home from the bus stop through HUGE piles of leaves and picking out 3 or 4 of the prettiest ones every day to bring home to my mom.  My mom LOVES leaves--and she passed that love to me.  Every year when I was a kid, we would collect fall leaves for a few weeks and press them in phone books.  Then, when we had enough, we would use glue adhesive to create a beautiful fall collage of leaves in a picture frame.  Every year it was a new piece of art for the wall in our living room and I loved it.  Since the leaves don't change here in AZ and aren't really big enough to create one of these leaf pictures, my mom has kept the last one we made in New Jersey on her wall--even though the colors have faded over the years.

I also love September because my birthday is on the 14th!! Yep, just a week and a half ago I turned 25!!!!!  I can't believe it.  I am a quarter of a century old.  I'm not upset, but it feels weird to not be in my early twenties any more.  I am just in my twenties.  Weird.  However, this birthday ended up being one of the best I have ever had, thanks in large part to my adoring husband.
 The day went like this:

-I woke up in the morning, got wished a Happy Birthday and then was told to wait in bed for awhile.  I could hear Jordan messing around with the wrapping paper stuff down the hall and then doing something in the kitchen.  I quickly deduced (with my new 25 year old sleuthing skills) that Jordan was making me breakfast in bed! That's never happened before and I was very excited.  But no matter how excited I was, I should have been more so, because about 40 minutes later, Jordan came in singing "Happy Birthday" with THIS:
ummm...its okay to be jealous.
Yeah.  I was thinking "eggs and toast." But no...Jordan recreated one of my favorite dishes and made it even better!! Pumpkin chocolate chip french toast with caramelized bananas and nuts.  And can we talk about presentation?!!  It was gorgeous and freaking delicious.  I don't know how I got so lucky but I had perma-smile on my face immediately.  I was super impressed, needless to say.  Then he brought me some funny, thoughtful, and extremely generous gifts before his first voice lesson of the day.
yeah that's Disney princess stuff...what do have to say about it? :)

eating my amazing breakfast

I went to Michael's to spend my $25 dollars Jordan had given me on Fall Decor and pretty much had a ball.  I talked to wonderful friends and family who called or stopped by and then it was Mystery Birthday Date time!! Jordan had planned a date for that evening to go to Brio Tuscan Grille!  It was DELICIOUS and very romantic.  Then we walked around San Tan mall and I found the nude peep toe shoes I have been searching for!! I am very picky when I spend money on shoes and these were not only perfect, but on sale!! We finished the date off with Sea Salt Caramel gelato at Frost and it was pretty much the best day ever.  Thanks to everyone, especially Jordan for making it amazing.  I LOVE HIM!! (below he is at the restaurant--I wish you could have seen his whole outfit--he looked hot.)

So that was my birthday.  Next on the list of awesomeness in September would be the first day of Fall--Today!!!  I have been waiting to decorate my house for the season (Halloween will follow) and here is some of what I've done:

For some reason, I can't add captions today anymore, so go figure.  Pretty self explanatory though.  Very exciting for me.  Plus--my desktop is new, and, as you know, so is my blog background :)

The last thing that is wonderful in September is Jordan and I's anniversary.  That happens this Sunday, the 25th.  This year marks our second year of complete wedded bliss and I am so happy.  I'm sure I'll have more to say on this later, but I couldn't be more grateful to be married to my best friend and to the most perfect man for me!!!!

So there you have it.  September, I hope you appreciate all the love I've just thrown your way and continue to be awesome.  But I know you will :)