Friday, October 18, 2013

A Little Update...

It has definitely been a while since I've posted anything because things have been a little crazy!
In August, we moved from our trailer home in Logan to South Ogden so that I could begin teaching 6th grade at a school in Downtown Ogden. 

Teaching has been a huge, new, somewhat overwhelming adventure but it's also very rewarding when my students understand a difficult concept. Cam is working at a branch in North Ogden and driving to school in Logan at USU for his last 2 semesters. His classes are going well and he's doing a really great job at balancing his busy schedule. He is so good to me and our little family! 

Speaking of our little family... It is going to get a little bigger in March! We're expecting our first little one and we have our 20 week ultrasound next week. We're so excited to find out if this baby is pink or blue! It's so crazy to think that we're almost halfway through this pregnancy even though my bump [and our baby] is still teeny tiny. 

8 week ultrasound - It's just a little peanut!

We found out we were expecting the day before we left for Moab and told our families later that evening. I felt fine for couple weeks after that and then it all caught up with me... Every evening was definitely a challenge! The evening sickness finally went away for the most part around 16 or 17 weeks and I'm feeling so much better these days! 

14 weeks-ish

15 weeks-ish

16 weeks

18 weeks

19 weeks

I don't have too many cravings, but I do have some food aversions. Chicken is a serious struggle as is most meat. I LOVE chocolate milk and have at least 1 large glass a day, preferably more. Now that I'm not so sick, I'm cooking a little bit more and that makes Cam much happier than he was eating chicken patties every night. It's so much fun to be hanging out at home together and Cam will put his hand on my belly and tell our baby how much we already love it. It's exciting to look down and see a teeny little belly that's holding something so near and dear to me already even though we haven't exactly met yet! 

Friday, July 26, 2013


Cameron and I were able to take a few days off and go on a little vacation. We had planned on leaving Saturday but had some hiccups with our trailer brakes so we didn't end up leaving until Sunday morning.

On our way, we stopped at the Manti temple and had a picnic. I'd never been to Manti before and it was absolutely beautiful!


We made it to Moab later that evening, set up camp, and went for a drive in Arches National Park to see what we could before it got dark. If you've never been, I recommend it. I have never seen anything like it in my entire life. It's amazing.

The next morning, we slept in, ate breakfast and decided to do a little off-roading to a place called Gemini Bridges. The trail wasn't nearly as washed out as I was afraid it would be [long off-road adventures make me car-sick] and it was really fun! These natural, rock bridges, span a really deep canyon. You can't drive over them because too many people have tried and died.. Yikes.. But you can walk right up to the edge and look down. It's really neat! It kind of made us dizzy looking down at the canyon below us, but it was just so amazing to even realize that all of this was made by water... Accident? I think not.

Afterwards, we were driving back and were almost back to the highway when I smelled gas. Not really a good thing. So Cam climbed out and looked under the truck. Sure enough, it was dripping. So we took it to a shop in town and had them look at it while we walked in 100 degree heat to a nearby Maverik. We drank our water, bought some frozen yogurt, and waited. We made our way back to the shop and discovered that it was going to be very expensive to fix our truck. On vacation. I was not a happy girl. We went back to our campsite and ate lunch while we tried to figure out what to do. We needed to get it repaired since a fuel leak is never a good thing and we can't really just buy a new truck these days... but it was still a really hard pill to swallow.

To try and help me feel better, Cam put me in the car and drove me back to Arches. We spent the rest of the afternoon/evening driving around looking at all the really impressive rock formations formed by wind, water, and earthquakes. It was the perfect way to get my mind off of things and the truck did fine. As long as we didn't sit in the car with it idling, we couldn't smell any gas and if we did, we just got out and went for a little walk. Arches is fairly small, you can definitely see everything there is to see in 1 day, which was perfect.

the 3 gossips
balanced rock

sand dune arch

skyview arch

the rock that fell out of skyview arch in the 1940s that made it twice the size it was originally

Once the sun began to set, we made our way to the trailhead for Delicate Arch and hiked the 1.7 miles up the side of a mountain to see what all the fuss was about. It was a harder hike that took some time and a lot of water. There are several points where you think "ok, it has got to be just over this ridge" and then it isn't which make it very disappointing for a moment. Then, when you turn that final corner and its right there in front of you, all those hard climbs and disappointing moments are definitely worth every step.
Some people say that seeing Delicate Arch is a spiritual experience for them, or a life-changing moment. When I first looked up at that gigantic arch, I felt very much in awe. It felt familiar, but at the same time, like nothing I have ever seen or experienced before. Now that I've had time to reflect and think about that day, I see how it can be a spiritual experience for some. I think about how huge and perfect and impressive this arch is and wonder how anyone can believe that this Earth and the life on it was created by accident or just appeared out of nothing. It's just one more beautiful manifestation to me of how much my Heavenly Father loves me and wants me to experience things in this life to help me grow.


That night, we climbed in bed, hot and sweaty and I thought about all the amazing things I've been blessed with in this life. I've been blessed to find a handsome, loving man to spend eternity with, an amazing family that loves us both, a career that I've been studying a very long time for, and so many other things. If I continued listing them all, we'd be here all week...

The next morning, Cameron woke up and took our truck to the shop to be fixed and rode his bike back to our campsite. Sadly, that would be the only biking he even did in Moab which he was pretty disappointed about but we're planning another trip back to remedy that. We spent the morning lounging around, thinking about what else we wanted to do, and I took a very long nap [even if it was crazy hot outside and I woke up sweaty and gross].

After the truck was finished, we went for a drive up to the La Sal Mountains to get away from the heat. We pulled over because I needed to visit the port-a-potty. It rained and the wind blew and the thunder clapped and the lightening flashed, all while Cameron slept in the drivers seat of the truck and I listening to cows "moo" on the other side of a ridge. Once it started to pour, I woke Cameron up and we headed back to our campsite to make sure things were okay. Turns out, the wind was blowing in town, too. And we had left some windows on the trailer cracked. Which equated to a fine layer of red sand all over every single surface of the inside of the trailer. I'm just glad we'd purchased a broom earlier that day and figured out how to "ghetto mop" with water and paper towels... Classy, right?

Cam grilled us up some hot dogs and we ate inside our trailer and watched a show while the wind blew some more and it tried to rain. We went to bed to try and get a good sleep before we had to pack it all up and leave in the morning.

The next morning, the noisy scout leaders woke us up bright and early with their loud laughter, so we decided it'd be ok if we got going anyways and we were on the road before 8:30 that morning.
Once we got home, we had a family party with my mom's side of the family at my parents' house and it was great to see everyone again. [and eat my dad's food...]
Then we did fireworks with Cam's family for a little bit. The best part was watching Ava get so excited about all of it!


Happy Pioneeer Day!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

weekend in review

ps. I forgot to actually post this when I wrote it. And I'm posting it anyways even though its now Thursday and we're closer to the next weekend than to this one. Oops.

This weekend was a fun one full of friends and family.
Friday night, I got home from work to dinner being shoved in my mouth so we could get going. Where? He wouldn't tell me. All I knew was that I had to eat fast, put on "real" shoes, and get in the truck. [Cameron says my cute gold sandals aren't real shoes. Rude.]
He grabbed his gun as some friends of ours were pulling into the driveway. Still, no real idea as to what the plan is. We stopped at the dollar store and bought some balloons and plastic cups, then drove to Providence Canyon. We set up the plastic cups, then the balloons, and each took turns shooting them.
I actually hit things!! I was quite impressed with myself since I was afraid I'd hit nothing and then be embarrassed. But I did it!
Afterwards, we went to a little improv club kind of thing that was kind of funny and kind of silly.
It turned out to be a fun surprise date night!
Thanks, Cam :]

The next morning, we headed to Ogden to look for a new apartment. We toured 2 different places and like 1 more than the other but we've still got some time to keep looking around.
My diploma also came in the mail! I'm officially a college graduate!

 Then, we headed to the airport to welcome Sister Marissa Smith home from her mission!! She spent the last 18 months serving in Kirtland, Ohio and was undoubtedly the best sister missionary I've ever met. It was the weirdest feeling having her come down that escalator after not seeing her so long! I cried a couple happy tears and gave her the biggest hug I've give anyone in a very long time. I'm so glad she's home!!!

After the airport, we went to Rubio's for food and to play a little catch-up with her family. It was so good to see all of them after such a long time.
Cam and I spent a little bit of time with each of our families, said goodbye to everyone, and headed home.

The next day, we went to Tony Grove for an afternoon picnic and to test out my skills [or lack thereof] on a mountain bike around the parking lot & campground. I didn't fall down, but I did cry. Twice. And we weren't even on an actual trail.

At one point as we were heading down a hill, Cam looked at me with a huge smile on his face and said "Look at you! You're mountain biking!" I looked right back at him with tears in my eyes and said "No, this is mountain braking..." I'm terrified of going downhill since I crashed 2 summers ago. I am pleased to report no injuries this time. And I got to pet a gorgeous Aussie-doodle in the parking lot as my reward.
We took the very long way home and went to see Old Ephraim's grave and then went home.

We were both a little worn out from our weekend and fell asleep before 10 that night. It was lovely!

I hope you all have a great week!

Friday, July 5, 2013

happy 4th of july!

This year, we had the 3rd and 4th off from work so we packed up the car, picked up some friends, and headed to Island Park for 2 days.

My Uncle Jim has a beautiful cabin that he lets us use that's about 30 minutes from West Yellowstone. It is amazing!

We spent some time checking out this tiny little cabin a German immigrant built in the 1930's named John Sacks. He was only 4'11'' so all the doorways inside are pretty tiny... We also looked for giant fish at Big Springs [but there weren't any.. it was weird]. 

Right as Cam got bit by a deer fly...

There are normally HUGE fish here, but there weren't any that we could see.

Then we decided to go into Yellowstone for a couple of hours.

This is the Firehole River. Its decently warm because of all the hot springs that contribute to it.

Michelle on the left, me on the right. Wading. :)

Firehole Falls

Mama and a baby bison!
We waded in Firehole River and checked out Firehold Falls. I love how warm the water is. A lot of people actually go swimming there and if we had known, we totally would have brought our suits!

Then we visited some stinky paint pots. I really dislike the steam from these, especially when the breeze blows it right at your face. It's humid, hot, and smelly. Gross. But they are really beautiful.

This bright orange comes from the bacteria that live in the hot pots. Don't mind the shadows. haha

Cam said this is his favorite hot pot in all of Yellowstone because of how blue it is.

Another view without my handsome man in front of it.

Ryan, Michelle, and Cameron had never seen Old Faithful erupt before so we went there to wait. We only had to wait about 25 minutes or so, which wasn't too bad at all. It is pretty cool. It's even more fun to listen to all the people that have never seen it before "ooh" and "aah."

We then grilled some hot dogs in the woods for dinner. I was a little nervous that a bear would smell our food and try to eat us the whole time, but it was fun!

We wandered around part of West Yellowstone and pondered souvenirs. Like these amazing bison hats that made me feel Russian. Awesome.

My family came up to the cabin later that night. We hung out, chatted about our day, and the part where I locked the keys to the cabin inside it. Oops. Thank you to whoever forgot to close a window so that we could pop out the screen and I could climb through it.

The next day, we spent most of the day floating down the river in our sweet canoes while my family fished from a rowboat.

Michelle sang us some Pocahontas and America songs while we canoed.

It kind of looks like we're canoeing into the bushes, but we're not.
There's an inlet that we paddled up in hopes of finding a moose or 5.
No success.
But we do have sexy arms from paddling upstream for so long.

It kind of looks like they're all ready to fall out... But they caught 9 fish! Family record!

This beautiful moose was drinking and eating the bushes along the edge of the river.
I LOVE moose! Isn't she beautiful?
  I am sufficiently sunburned but it was a blast! There is just something about being in the water all day that is so exciting but just drains all the energy right out of you.
And even though it's tiring,
we can't help but want to come back for more...
We ate sandwiches for dinner and headed home since Cameron, Ryan, and I all had to work today. We took the scenic byway and stopped at the Lower Mesa Falls to pee and stretch our legs.

On the way home, we stopped to buy more water and treats and witnessed several different fireworks shows. 
It made it okay that we didn't have one of our own.
 Happy 4th of July!