Thursday, January 31, 2008

Ooops!

I forgot to tag someone else. Basically, since I am so new to the blogging world, I don't know who has done this before. I am hereby tagging anyone who reads our blog and hasn't done one of them. I don't know if that is cheating, but there you have it.

I've Been Tagged...Twice

I have been doing a TERRIBLE job of keeping up with my blog (sorry to everyone who is devastated by the lack of updates...ok I actually don't know how many people actually read this thing). I got tagged by Sara awhile ago (sorry it took so long to do it) and more recently by Emily. So here we go.
Sara:
My BIG FOUR...
4 Jobs I've had:
1. Cashier/clothing sorter and tagger at 2 different dry cleaners
2. Front desk clerk at 3 hotels
3. Server at 2 restaraunts
4. Special Education one-on-one

4 Movies I can watch over and over:
1. Pursuit of Happyness- yes it is spelled like that Mom
2. Mr. and Mrs. Smith
3. Any of the Oceans movies (11,12, 13)
4. Ice Princess (only because I think she looks like me, and it cracks me up everytime)

4 Places I've lived:
1. Thatcher, AZ
2. Flagstaff, AZ
3. Rexburg, ID
4. Stamford, CT

4 Guilty Pleasures:
1. BLOGGING
2. watching t.v. (but lets be honest, I think I am allowed since I lived without it for 7 months)
3. Making jewelry
4. Taco Bell Double Decker Taco

4 TV Shows I watch:
1. Friends (on dvd)
2. The Office (also on dvd-oh how I miss those guys)
3. America's Next Top Model
4. American Idol
4 Favorite Foods:
1. A good ole' bean and cheese burrito
2. Sweet and sour chicken (but only with breaded chicken)
3. Swedish meatballs if my mom makes them
4. Mashed potatoes

4 Websites I visit:
1. Blogger
2. Gmail
3. E-chords (trying to learn the guitar)
4. Myspace- I am with you Sara, not as fun anymore

4 Places I've been on vacation:
1. Disneyland
2. AZ- when we lived in Kansas
3. Bear Lake
4. I need to do more traveling


Then Emily:
Tag: Your Favorites
book: I loved the Work and the Glory series
movie: Pursuit of Happyness
color: lime green
T.V Show: Friends
guilty pleasure: Blogging
outfit: Since I am always chasing kids around in my job, jeans and tennis shoes. For me it is all about the accessorizing: scarves, jewelry, etc.
body part: Ummmm, this random guy we met on the street said I had nice child bearing hips, so I will go with that (For more information on Tony, look on the Wilkins family blog in September)
kitchen tip: hehehe, I have 0- feel free to give me some
life lesson: Spandex Is a Privilege, Not a Right
activity: making jewelry
food: Bean and Cheese Burrito
child raising tip: I'll have to get back to you on that one
pet peeve: I hate when people pick their noses in their car- do they not know we can see them??
game: Balderdash and Curses (thanks Brooke)
tattoo (imagined or real): a potatoe on the ankle (refer to Wayside School is Falling Down)
element: Fire- I love watching fires

Monday, January 28, 2008

He Will Be Missed


I don't want to write too much, I don't feel like I have the right words to describe what President Hinckley means to me. I had the opportunity to meet him when I was a teen when he set my Grandpa apart as a mission president. I remember 2 things more than anything. One was his spunk. He was so full of life, he seemed to skip into the room. I also remember that when he put his hand on my shoulder to talk to me, I could feel his love for me so strongly. I was amazed that someone could love me so much without even really knowing me. I could feel the Spirit testifying to me so clearly that he was a prophet of God. It is an experience I will never forget.

I know the world was a better place with him in it, and I know that I have become a better person by following his example and teachings.

Monday, January 21, 2008

My song

If you want to hear the song Mike wrote about me, click on the comments for Grateful Sunday 2. Mike left a comment with a link to the song inspired by yours truly! Sorry Mike, Brooke had tried to send it to me once (which is why I knew there was a song) but I could never get it to play, but it worked this time. I feel so famous!

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Grateful Sunday 2

First of all, I published the New Year's post, but for some reason it is down at the bottom of the page. Not sure why, but please feel free to enjoy regardless.

This week I have been especially grateful for my family. Maybe it is because I haven't talked to them as much as I usually do, so I have been thinking about them alot this weekend. Let's just state the obvious- my family is AMAZING! Here are a few reasons why:

Let's start with Orson. This is one of my favorite pictures in the world. Orson is my buddy and anyone who has seen us together knows we have a special relationship. He was born when I was 16, and I LOVE this kid!!! He is such an old soul (growing up in a world of adults), but when I am around him I turn into an 8 year old. He is one terrific guy. My 3 favorite things are his laugh (one of the most infectious I know of), watching him play sports (he is really athletic, but is always smiling when he plays) and the fact that he has forgiven me for breaking his arm 4 years ago- long story involving me giving him a rocket ride on my feet.

Janalie is one of a kind. I have really enjoyed how our relationship has turned into a friendship these last couple of years. She is beautiful (inside and out- I am only a little bitter she steals my thunder in my wedding picture, jk) and has a voice to match. We are trying to convince her to come stay with us so she can be on Broadway. My favorite memory of Jan is when she was little. I think it was Christmas and she stands up and says, "I can fly like a reindeer." She then proceeds to leap in the air, convinced that she can in fact defy the laws of gravity, and lands directly on her face. I love the picture of me and her sporting our foxy jellies, I really feel it accurately depicts our relationship.


Brooke has always been my hero, I used to torture her by imitating everything she did and wore. I don't know if I have as much fun with anyone as I do with Brooke. She also would do anything for anyone. She is an amazing mother and one of my best friends. The thing I admire the most about her is her ability to get along with everyone. She is one of those people you meet and can't help but like. Basically, she is one cool gal and I want to be just like her when I grow up.

I am also so grateful for Mike, my brother in law. He is a terrific husband and dad. He fits in perfectly with our family. I was so excited when he married Brooke, and became the big brother I had always wanted. He writes songs that crack me up, such as Marcharemos, we are marching on. I couldn't ask for a better brother in law.



I LOVE MY MOMMY!!!! She is an amazing woman, though all of you who know her already knew that. There is no way I would be where I am today if I didn't have her in my life. She has always been supportive of me. Whenever I am struggling with anything, I know I can call my mom. She knows exactly what I need to hear to get the perspective I need. She doesn't baby me like I think I need sometimes, she tells me the facts and lets me figure out things for myself. I have grown so much because of her wisdom, and she is the best mom a girl could ask for.


I love this picture almost as much as I love my dad. He is one of the funniest (is that a word?) men I have ever known. I love his laugh so much. I love that he tried to toughen me up in middle and high school by making me work out, though I don't think it worked. I love that he taught me how to work by making us do things I didn't think girls should do, like scooping dog poop, spraying weeds, etc. I know it is because of these little things that I have learned to be self sufficient (Jared thanks you as well). I am so grateful he has been the rock of our family, I have never questioned his faith. He makes me feel so special when he tells me he loves me, and I am so grateful for him. He has worked so hard to provide a good life for us physically, and cared for us spiritually by being a worthy priesthood holder.



Finally, my love noodle Jared. He is one of the best men I have ever met. He makes me feel special everyday. He is so patient with me, even when I am being a hormonal tornado of destruction (ok, hopefully I am not actually that bad). Jared is the best part of my day. I love the last picture, because I think it shows what our relationship is like. I am freaking out because my hair is messed up, and he is telling me how happy he is to be my husband. Always looking at the picture- What a GUY!!!! I love him so much!






Also, on a lighter note I am grateful I am getting used to my medications. About 4 times a month Jared gives me a shot in the stomach. Tonight was the first time I didn't cry- I AM SO BRAVE! I realize this is purely bragging, but I hate shots and I am grateful I am getting used to them- yeah me!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Grateful Sunday- a day late

For all of you who are holding your breath for New Years pictures, you may want to quit holding. When I mentioned to Jared last week that I had started the New Year blog, he said he wanted to do it together...romantic in theory, but so far it just hasn't happened. I will try to get it done soon.
Anyways, I have seen a couple of people doing this grateful Sunday thing, and I thought it was a great idea. So yesterday I had a grateful thought all day, and never got around to writing about it, so here it is a day late.
I am so grateful for the knowledge that my Heavenly Father knows me, hears my prayers and shows His love for me. During October's General Conference, Elder Condie's talk Claim the Exceeding Great and Precious Promises seemed to be directed at me. I felt like he was talking to me and Jared, something I don't think I have ever felt before. The ending struck me hard when he said, "In this age of one-hour dry cleaning and one-minute fast-food franchises, it may at times seem to us as though a loving Heavenly Father has misplaced our precious promises or He has put them on hold or filed them under the wrong name...When heaven’s promises sometimes seem afar off, I pray that each of us will embrace these exceeding great and precious promises and never let go. And just as God remembered Rachel, God will remember you." It was EXACTLY what I needed to hear, as I have been wondering for the past year and a half where my "precious promise" is. I know He WILL remember me.
I also had the opportunity, and challenge, to give a talk in church on Learning Not to Count by Sister Steffani R. Packer. I learned if we have a testimony of the Atonement we do not have to use our blessings as a "measuring stick" for His love. It helped me realize that just because we haven't yet been blessed with the baby we have so desperately wanted for so long, God loves me more than I will ever know. I never thought I would say this, but I am grateful for this trial that has opened my eyes a little more to His love for me (although I think I am ready to move on to my next trial, just kidding).
Sorry this was so long, but it is something I have been thinking about for awhile now. For those who have not read these articles, I recommend you do right now! They are amazing. Next Grateful Sunday will be a little more light hearted.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Christmas Highlights

Since a picture is worth a 1000 words, here was our Christmas in a nutshell. Orson, Dad and Jared are showing off their Christmas booty (as in pirate's booty-not a Destiny's Child song). Mom and Jan would have killed me if I posted their "booty" pictures, since Christmas morning is no beauty pageant at the Wilkins house. Here is Mom playing Curses (fun game- a little shout out to Brooke). And finally, as proof that I really was in Flagstaff this Christmas (just usually BEHIND the camera) there is Janalie and I trying out her new camera.





Only 20 Days Late

I decided to just do this since it wasn't getting done, and Jared did the proof reading.


So Jared and I decided that since we are foot loose and fancy free (aka childless) we should attend the New Year's Eve festivities on Times Square. Here we are at the beginning of the day, calm, clean, naive, sheltered from the harsh realities we were about to come face to face with:







Little did we know by the end of the night, we would be in this condition:

(despite appearances he is not intoxicated).





So I decided to write a guide in case any of you decide to attend this celebration; A Times Square Partying for Dummies, if you will.


1. Arriving at Times Square: Despite what we were told, you do NOT have to arrive in NYC at 11am. I would venture to say don't go until 2 maybe even 3 pm. Otherwise you will wonder aimlessly around for a couple of hours(having police officers yelling at you to keep moving). And when you arrive, do not attempt to ask the police where to go because they will intentionally mislead you and tell you the wrong thing. We asked about 10 police officers where to go, and got 10 different answers. We finally stopped at 43rd and Broadway and waited, which turned out to be the perfect spot to be.

2. I call this section The Human Corral: Once they opened up the gate, which was on the corner we were standing on (take note of the specific corner- very important!) we were herded like cows into the security area. This is not an appropriate undertaking for the clasterphobic. Here you get frisked for...I dunno, weapons of mass destruction? We had to open our coats, and you can't take any bags into the gated area. I am not sure what they thought we were smuggling in, but they were plenty thorough in their search!
Once you are in the gate, you can't go in and out... keep this in mind while partaking of food and beverages. Many people did not take this into consideration, and we ALL paid the price toward the end of the evening. Lets just say some people were more willing to give up their dignity than their veiw of the ball dropping...use your imagination, enough said! We had beef jerky, trail mix and water (which we swished around our mouths by the capfulls every couple of hours). You definitely need the food and water, just take into consideration that you may be reconsidering your decision to NOT wear a Depends by midnight!

3. Try to stand as close as you can to the gate, that is where all the action is. We got tons of free stuff since we were in the 2nd row. Check out this sweet balloon (also note Jared's stylish hat above).


Also, the closer you are to the fence, the more celebrities you will see. We saw Kid Rock, Damien from TRL (such a nice guy, he was so interactive with us), Wyclef Jean, and my personal favorite Ryan Seacrest (I LOVE THAT LITTLE GUY!!!!). We also had Carrie Underwood walk right by us 5 times, but she is a quick (not to mention tiny) gal so we never got a picture. Another little hint, if an entourage of burly men approaching on the other side of the fence, get your camera ready, because someone really important is about to walk by. Sometimes easier said than done when you have been standing in the cold for 10 hours! Did I mention I am a huge Ryan Seacrest fan?



4. Find the humor in everything around you. We could have been cold, grumpy, and totally grossed out by the germiness of our surroundings. Instead, we laughed about everything and it made it soooo fun. Instead of freaking out about the creative ways people were avoiding the discomfort of a full bladder, we laughed about this situation we willingly put ourselves in. HAVE FUN OR YOU WILL BE MISERABLE!!!!!!!! Also, this is a prime place for one of our favorite pastimes, people watching. Times Square on New Year's Eve brings a whole new meaning to the expression "the melting pot". I have never encountered so many different types of people, we were like kids in a candy store! Make the most of it, because while it is such a unique experience that I highly recommend, I feel safe saying it is something you will only do once.
Here are a few other pictures and a video of our adventure.


















video

Thursday, January 3, 2008

A Late Welcome

So this is a month overdue- oops! Jared and I have a brand new (at least she was a month ago) niece. Sweet little Ava Marie was born December 1st. She was a couple weeks early, so wieghed only a little over 5 lbs. She appears to be a tough little gal, since she was only in the hospital for a couple of days. We are so excited to meet her, whenever that will be, and we know Doug and Lori are going to be amazing parents. Feast your eyes on this tiny cutie:

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Hangin' with the fam

Jared and I were able to spend a blissful (and desperately needed) 8 days in Flagstaff with my family. We had tons of fun, which could have only been better if 1) Brookey and Mike had been able to come and 2) If we all weren't violently ill. Ok, #2 is an exaggeration- but all of us were sick at one point or another. Regardless, we had a wicked good time.

First and foremost to the Wilkins clan is the food. While we enjoyed an delectible assortment of homemade food from Mom (including my traditional birthday meal of Swedish meatballs), we also graced a few restaraunts with our presence. The first one was Casa Bonita...muy delicioso! A couple days later (sadly Jan couldn't join because of work) we went to Beaver Street Brewery, which was equally exhilerating to our tastebuds. However, the highlight of that was when the waitress explained to Orson how they brew their own beer, and told him to come back when he was 21 to try it. He got that look that only Orson can do (why would someone drink beer?!?!?!), and gave her the funniest courtesy laugh I have ever heard!




We also went bowling as a family, YEEHAW! Here are Janalie and I in our size 15 shoes, foxy huh!
A family photo, with Orson flashing a cool peace sign, of course. He is one tough dude!


Look at the sheer concentration on Dad's face. Pretty sure in his head was the song "Eye of the Tiger"
Here we have an overly competitive Orson with an unbreakable focus!

No special story with this one, I just think Mom looks ravishing in her new fleece sweater!



We also went to Sedona for a couple of hours. Orson was totally bummed we didn't go swimming at Slide Rock, even after he saw it was frozen over he thought we should just break through the ice because it didn't look very thick (a direct quote). I love the mountains in the background of this picture- those who have never been, they are a reddish color.


Lovely ladies (in a very un- Les Miserables way).



My handsome hubby and I about to get hit by a car.

Jan and I in front of some random Indian wood-man.



And finally, the joys of Bass Pro. We went there multiple times because there is so much to see and do. Here is Dad, Orson and Jared practicing their hunting skills.

They also had a Nascar race thing set up, so Jared and Orson raced Dad. Here they are getting pumped up for the race. Orson obviously has total trust in Jared's Nascar skills.


Don't be fooled, Dad is NOT asleep. He has entered a complete Nascar mentality- he is one with the racecar. Such concentration- its almost haunting, isn't it?

I just thought this was a funny statue, so had them take a picture by it. My favorite part is the stranger sitting on the bench. If you enlarge the picture, he is smiling and looking at the camera, like a picture hitch hiker.

I just like this one because Orson is so good at the scared look, Jared looks handsome and Jan is a hottie.


Well, I was also going to do Christmas and New Years pictures as well, but I am sick so I think I am done for now. For a mental image, my nasty cough sounds like a combo of a 98 year old smoker and a cat coughing up a hairball. I have self diagnosed myself as having pneumonia, whooping cough or SARS. Either way, off to bed!

As a little teaser for next post, we spent New Years in Times Square. Tune in next time for the details.