Wednesday, February 29, 2012

St George

The other weekend we decided to take a trip to warmer weather...St. George! Woohoo! A long weekend of much needed R&R! The St. George crew included myself, Dustin, Ashley, Andrew, Marcie, "Kid", Tony, Marcus, Greg, and Rusty! Marcus's parents have a house down in St. George that they were nice enough to let us stay in! Highlights if the vacation include: sleeping in, hiking, spelunking(love this word), splattering glow sticks in a cave, the laughing game, climbing though "the crack", Ichibons all you can eat sushi, Barkies, cream sodas, yummy Mexican joint, boys playing football, boys jumping over streams, boys being boys;), and spending quality time with Dustin and friends! Love St. George! It has given me spring fever which is horrible now that winter has decided to arrive in Salt Lake! Oh well, great vacation and I can't wait to go back to St. George!
"Love is what inspired our Heavenly Father to create our spirits; it is what led our Savior to the Garden of Gethsemane to make Himself a ransom for our sins. Love is the grand motive of the plan of salvation; it is the source of happiness, the ever-renewing spring of healing, the precious fountain of hope. As we extend our hands and hearts toward others in Christlike love, something wonderful happens to us. Our own spirits become healed, more refined, and stronger. We become happier, more peaceful, and more receptive to the whisperings of the Holy Spirit."
- Deiter F. Uchtdorf
The first step to getting the things you want out of life is this: Decide what you want.
- Ben Stein

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

God's Perfect Love

“Though we are incomplete, God loves us completely. Though we are imperfect, He loves us perfectly. Though we may feel lost and without compass, God’s love encompasses us completely. …
“Regardless of our current state, there is hope for us. No matter our distress, no matter our sorrow, no matter our mistakes, our infinitely compassionate Heavenly Father desires that we draw near to Him so that He can draw near to us.”
-Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

There are “apps” for everything—and also ways to stay spiritually grounded in a digital world.

This Ensign talk was a really good reminder and wake-up call for me. Dustin(my cute boyfriend) has a favorite saying when others or myself is on our cell phone too long and that is "get out of your digital world"! So true! How much time do people spend in the same room and they don't even talk to each other because they are all on their phones, in their own little worlds! I am going to try so much better to set aside designated time to get my "technological" things done or surf the web. I am going to call people more often than text them...or so I'm going to try. I think that this technology hurts peoples communication skills, I think that it has for me in some ways. I am going to try and "unplug" a lot more!

They can keep us in touch with loved ones far away—and isolate us from those in our own homes.

They can save us time in paying bills and reading the news—and consume it in answering e-mails and posting status updates.

They can help us study and share the gospel—and cause us to idle away our time and drive away the Spirit.

They can mobilize us to serve others—and keep us self-absorbed, focused on an unending stream of meaningless minutiae.

They can educate, energize, elevate, and inspire us—and they can distract, enervate, addict, and destroy us.

Using Internal Filters and Seeking the Best
By far the most important and effective type of filter is inside the mind and heart of the user. These five filter questions can be a good first step to staying in tune and in balance:
1. Am I using this technology to learn or to teach?
2. Am I using it to build faith and testimony in myself and others?
3. Am I using it to entertain in uplifting ways?
4. Am I giving enough undistracted in-person time to family and friends?
5. Am I devoting enough time to work, school, Church callings, and physical exercise?

10 Signs of Digital Overload
1. Slipping away from activities with people to check e-mail or social networking sites.
2. Checking the same sites repeatedly within a short period of time.
3. Spending little time outside.
4. Finding it hard to complete a task such as writing a report without frequently breaking away to check e-mail or unrelated websites.
5. Spending little time in face-to-face interactions with friends.
6. Going online or using a digital device when you feel stressed or want to avoid an unpleasant task.
7. Family members spending most of their time at home in separate rooms interacting with screens.
8. Frequently using digital devices to entertain a child instead of talking, singing, playing, or reading with him or her.
9. Checking the computer first thing in the morning, or getting up during the night to use digital devices.
10. Spending long stretches of time surfing for content, often viewing content that is inappropriate or borderline.

10 Ways to Cut Back
1. Check and answer e-mail only once or twice a day, at scheduled times.
2. Use social networking sites only at scheduled times and for a set number of minutes.
3. Practice a “digital Sabbath”—setting aside one or two days each week to “unplug.”
4. Leave your cell phone in another room during time with family or friends.
5. Call instead of texting.
6. Invite children to help search the house for supplies that can be used in nondigital activities: children’s books, board games, art supplies, and equipment for outside play.
7. Organize a talent show, art show, or service project with family or friends.
8. Use Internet-blocking software to keep on task while working.
9. Limit recreational surfing; watch TV and videos selectively and intentionally.
10. Keep a gospel-centered perspective, using technology to uplift yourself and people around you.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Operation undercover

So you know how guys usually drop the ball with valentines day?!(this might be stereotyping, but that's ok) Well so happens that I dropped the the worst way this year! Ill save myself re-living the horrible details! Not only did I not do anything for Dustin on valentines day I really hurt his feelings, which crushed me! Which leads me to "operation undercover"! For valentines day we watched "the vow" which gave me the following idea(and actually a lot of this idea came from my little sister Abby)! There's a part in the movie where she is at work sick and there is a box left for her by none other than the ridiculously good looking Channing tatum!, anyway he puts sticky notes on all the items he got her explaining what they were for...Tylenol: this is for your head. Cough drops: this is for your throat. Picture of him: this is for your heart, etc! So that is what I ended up doing! Dustin was playing in a curling game tonight and so I decided to surprise him by decorating his car and leaving his "I'm sorry package for him"!!! And I think he liked it!!!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

"Giving each other the benefit of the doubt"

“Perhaps the greatest charity comes when we are kind to each other, when we don’t judge or categorize someone else, when we simply give each other the benefit of the doubt or remain quiet. Charity is accepting someone’s differences, weaknesses, and shortcomings; having patience with someone who has let us down; or resisting the impulse to become offended when someone doesn’t handle something the way we might have hoped. Charity is refusing to take advantage of another’s weakness and being willing to forgive someone who has hurt us. Charity is expecting the best of each other.”
-Elder Marvin J. Ashton

"Finding Harmony as we struggle to juggle"

“I am aware that life presents many challenges, but with the help of the Lord, we need not fear. If our lives and our faith are centered on Jesus Christ and his restored gospel, nothing can ever go permanently wrong.”
-President Howard W. Hunter

When the primary focus of our life is to become a disciple of Jesus Christ, everything else—employment, home, and church—falls into place. Sheri L. Dew taught, “Coming unto Christ means walking away from the world. It means placing Christ and Christ only at the center of our lives.”

“We have to forego some good things in order to choose others that are better or best because they develop faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and strengthen our families.”
-Dallin H. Oaks

"With Faith in God, I am Never Alone"

“He loves us because He is filled with an infinite measure of holy, pure, and indescribable love. We are important to God not because of our résumé but because we are His children. He loves every one of us, even those who are flawed, rejected, awkward, sorrowful, or broken. God’s love is so great that He loves even the proud, the selfish, the arrogant, and the wicked.

“What this means is that, regardless of our current state, there is hope for us. No matter our distress, no matter our sorrow, no matter our mistakes, our infinitely compassionate Heavenly Father desires that we draw near to Him so that He can draw near to us.”

-President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

"Today, although I would still prefer to be married, I have come to enjoy the quiet. I listen to the ocean waves and watch the sunset. I literally stop and smell the roses. I listen and act according to the guidance of the Spirit. I am not afraid to be alone because I am not alone as long as I believe in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I see the Spirit of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ in most everything I do."

“Through faith in Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father, you are not alone.” Those words have a new and profound meaning deep in my heart today, and I know without a doubt that I am never alone. I am His daughter, and He loves me.

-Donna Hollenbeck

Moments I want to always remember

(picture captions left to right, top to bottom)
1. Dustin bringing me homemade strawberries.
2. Eating spicy wings with Dustin...realizing how addicting spicy wings are!
3. Trying out my new camera flash on Dustin.
4. Christmas lights with Dustin.
5. Dustin being "a fat guy in a little coat".
6. Dustin's work Christmas party.
7. Valentines day carriage ride with Dustin

Sunday, February 12, 2012

To be happy, we must not be too concerned with others.
- Albert Camus

Friday, February 10, 2012

Tis' The Season...

Tis' the season!...well at least two months ago it was! I realize I am really behind on this post, but that is just how life goes sometimes! It takes so long to go through all of the pictures, find the ones to edit, actually edit them, and forget uploading them....blogger upload takes a lifetime and a half (slight exaggeration;))!!! But here we are and about time...took me two and a half days to finally get this post published! Enough of my pointless, yet very satisfying, venting! Christmas this year was a blast! With everyone being home this year, the house was busting at the seams! Christmas highlights include; the munchkins, Kris Kringle Kafe, Snow shoeing in Leavenworth, Ice Skating, Shot gun shooting, Talking to our Brazilian missionary (Seth) over Skype, Yummy hot chocolate in Leavenworth, DDR, running in the morning with my family, and this list could go on and on!
Above Jax and Kai are the funniest, cutest, most adorable munchkins in the whole wide world! Might be a little biased as I am their Aunt, but how can you not fall in love with these two!? One of my favorite memories was when little Jax got a little bit sick and we cuddled and played "uh-oh" for a couple of hours in my parents office. This was a real treat because Jax is such an independent little guy, so he really isn't one to cuddle!
Another highlight was shooting guns! I am a horrible aim by the way....there goes all my dreams of being a secret agent! It sure was entertaining for my brothers though!
If there is one thing you should all know about me it's that I always host (and by always I mean the last several years;)) Kris Kringle Kafe! Kris Kringle Kafe is an elaborate meal my sisters and I are in charge of with decorations and all! This year my lovely sister-in-laws were here to help out as well!
Second thing you should know is that I have the most beautiful sisters in the entire world, as evidenced by the above picture! (Karen, Me, Rachel, Mike, and Abby)
Christmas morning was awesome! We were able to skype with Seth in Brazil. He has the best 'rico suave' accent, that I wish he would keep! I forgot how funny Seth is, and can't wait for him to be back in the States come April!
The family Christmas morning with their BYU hats!

Every year our family re-enacts the story of Christ's birth....
...and every year it gets a little irreverent!
Our Christmas was magical and amazing! I loved every minute that I was able to spend with my family! I am so grateful for the many blessings that I have in my life! XOXo

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Turn your wounds into wisdom.
- Oprah Winfrey