Saturday, May 28, 2011

Mi Hermano, Hunter...

It's true... I am going home! Finally!

I haven't been able to be home since November, and I am ecstatic to see my family and attend Hunter's graduation!

Most of my very most vivid childhood memories are with my brother, Hunter. Through the years, we have gained more of a solid friendship instead of merely a brother-sister relationship. He, without hesitation, "facebook stalks" any boy I start to date and gives me the low-down on his take of them... To be honest, he is actually extremely accurate with his quick overall judgement of the men in my life. I seem to always get defensive when he tells me to drop the guy because he looks like a "fruit" or a "d-bag", but if only I would listen a little more, it'd save me much time in the dating scene... he thinks Alex looks "looks like a man" ha... don't know what exactly that means, but at least it's a positive accusation, right?

I think my very favorite memory of my brother is when I was in a certain situation in my life and was having a really rough time. I had called and talked to my mom and dad for a good couple of hours about it and asked for advice and shortly after hanging up, I got the sweetest text message from him saying he had over heard the conversation and went on to tell me how much he loved me and how he is blessed with such a great sister. I remember getting all teary eyed because if any of you know Hunter, he is a huge tease... He will never full realize how much that simple act helped me and how much strength it gave me to persevere through my rough time...
I should have framed  that text since most of his texts consist of him making fun of me... don't be deceived though, ladies... he's all tough and macho on the outside, but he is the sweetest, most caring and considerate boy I know!

With this being said, I am excited to go to his graduation this next weekend. I cannot believe he is already graduating high school! Insane! I do have to brag a little (not that I haven't this entire post), but Hunter is Chiawana High School's very first Valedictorian! Good Job! That's much more of an accomplishment than being Connell's Valedictorian! ha ha! I CANNOT wait for him to be at BYU in the fall! I look forward to hearing his graduation speech, and I hope I can figure something out to be able to hear his Seminary Graduation talk as well. How wonderful to be speaking at both! He is such a spiritual giant and I know that is why he has been so successful with school and his job. The Lord has blessed him greatly!

Hunter, I love you, little guy! :) You are such an amazing example to me and I hope one day I can be just a fraction of the person that you are! Congrats on your wonderful accomplishments this year! 

I can only imagine the anticipation you must have to realize you are going to be able to see me WHENEVER you want come Fall. Yep. I'd be stoked too ;)

Monday, May 16, 2011

Thoughts of the day...

To be honest, I have stopped blogging a lot because once I view my own blog, I often click on the links to the left of my posts and start browsing through all my married friends and see updates on their life and updates with their cute kids... and then I start to wonder why I can't enjoy that same happiness. I then get down on myself picking apart every thing that is wrong with me to try and improve myself to be a woman who would make a wonderful wife and perfect mother... I nit pick to the point where I get really down and discouraged wondering when the right time will be for me... or wondering when, how, or where I'll meet my EC as we call it....

As I wallow in my self pity, I think to myself.... what do I really have to complain about?! I am living in a BEAUTIFUL home with my sister, I have an incredible job with great pay and benefits, I just lost 15 pounds, just got back from Disneyland, and then a week in paradise at Lake Powell, I am going home in a couple of weeks, I am getting ready to book a cruise in January, I have so many solid, great friends who help me improve every aspect of my life and mostly, I can do whatever I want to whenever I want to and not worry about anyone's schedule and then I realize that I am only 22. How many 22 year olds enjoy all the blessings that I have been able to enjoy? How many people at my age have been able to taste all the wonderful real-life experiences including a solid career as I do?! Is it possible that I am getting so caught up in the "ways of the world" so to speak, that I completely lose sight of what's most important in my life and the entirety of my existence on this Earth?!

I suppose this week at Lake Powell, I had more than enough time to sit and contemplate life and evaluate where I stand and where I need to improve. I was talking to my friend, Alex, and he said regarding a certain situation "I can either be mad about this and not learn anything from it, or I can figure out how I can improve my life to avoid this situation in the future". I have thought about that non stop as I thought he handles stressful situations MUCH better than I and realized if he feels like he needs to improve in those areas, I should consider improving in many, many areas. I then spent the day yesterday with a close friend who is going through a rough split/divorce and it really hit me... I can sit here and be upset with where life is at, or I can improve my life with every situation that comes my way to become who I want to be before involving another person... I thought about that a lot and though I get down from time to time, I cannot dwell on those things, instead I need to figure out how I can improve my life. How I can improve the lives of other and how I can use my time/money/talents to help those around me.... I'm not put on this Earth to dwell in mere existence, but to DO. Do whatever it takes to help and bring up those around me!

.... and there you have blog in months, and now a weird/contemplative one that means nothing to anyone but to myself ha....

God is good, life is great..... I have absolutely nothing to complain about.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Updates on the Crazy life of Jenn....

Disclaimer: This post may end up being quite the post.... mostly extremely long!

Where to even start... I feel like there has been so many amazing and crazy events happening in my life right now. Let's just get started with my dad....

My dad is doing actually extremely well. I know that is because of all your prayers! His heart as a whole is operating at 25% instead of just his left side. Wow. What an incredible miracle! My father is a man of faith, and with his faith and all your support/prayers/fasts, I know he is being healed. His doctor has pushed his operation back and is hoping that we can completely avoid the surgery all together! Another amazing and wonderful blessing and miracle! He is going strong and I LOVED going home to visit him and my family for a few days. They are the cutest dang group of people I have ever met. I love my family so much!

Speaking of family, Sarah and Ryan are now PARENTS! I don't know how they did it, or if the nurses mixed up the babies, but Jack is honestly the CUTEST stinkin baby I have ever, EVER seen!!!!

Jack was born on 8.9.10. How fun. I can't wait to see him during Christmas time! Nichole and Mom got to fly out to visit but I have yet to see this cute little thing!

Also, I have been doing a lot more photography lately. I feel like I haven't even necessarily been looking for work, but people keep contacting me... people who have come across my website and have asked me to take portraits for them! What a compliment! I have definitely been busy with that and have even had to turn clients down because I simply do not have the time for the demand I'm getting right now. I am doing a wedding on Saturday and have done a few senior pictures, engagements and bridals... here's a few of my favorites:

And for the biggest and worst event of my recent life.... on Sunday, the 19th, there was an accident at Camp Williams with a machine gun and it started a fire. The fire was fairly small and the Air Force thought they could put it out themselves, but as the wind picked up, the fire went CRAZY! It completely lit up the sky, and as I was driving home from Salt Lake, it hit me that OUR house was right by the mountain that was lit up. When I got home, we were told that our neighbors were all doing a voluntary evacuation. We started to slowly pack up our bags when the mandatory evacuation sirens went off. We got out of the house really quick. At this time, we could see the flames very vividly as they were getting closer and closer... at this time, the fire was 3.5 miles away and coming closer. We were all quite nervous that our home would get torched, but as the wind picked up even more, it started to push the fire away from us, thank goodness. We were evacuated for 4 days and 3 nights and tonight is our first night back. Outside smells really badly of smoke and the mountain side is completely black, but inside out home, there is no nasty smell... at all... what a wonderful blessing! We are all so very happy to be back in the house and be no longer homeless! This has definitely made me a lot more grateful for the little pleasures of life that I enjoy daily and take for granted. It also helps me realize how blessed I am and what a great life I have. I have been given so much, and I feel like I hardly give anything in return. This was definitely a wake-up call for me, and no matter how miserable the past few days were, I am glad they happened because it was a big learning experience for me! I love my life! I love where I am and love all that I have been given. I even love my trials because though they are tough, I would rather have mine than anyone else's.... life is good!

This blog isn't as long as I thought it'd be, but that's always a good thing, right?! :) 

Carpe Diem!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Update on Dad

As many of you know, my cute little dad has been having a lot of heart problems lately. He went to his doctor a few weeks ago and they told him his entire left side of his heart was completely non-functional, and through the course of many hospital and dr visits, we have found out that he has Congestive Heart Failure.

His heart is operating on 20% now, and if it ever drops, even one percent, it could put him in cardiac arrest. He is at the very minimum operation level and we hope he stays there or improves (obviously). In September, he will be getting a pacemaker to help in case his heart ever does drop below the 20%. The pacemaker is only there to assist his heart if it ever stops functioning all together. The doctor wants his heart, with the help of medications, to hopefully become stronger- so we'll see how it all works out after his operation.

The downside to this all (not that any of this ISN'T a downside) is that we were told when he passes away, it'll be very sudden and without warning. We are hoping the pacemaker will prevent this outcome.

I don't know how long I'll have my father in this life. I don't know if Alisyn will grow up having a father throughout all her teenage years to tell her to fix her attitude and to be more kind as Sarah and I definitely experienced. I don't know if he will be there to witness my first child, or my children's lives at all.... but.... I do know that our Father in Heaven has a much greater plan. I know that His plan is perfect, and that our lives here on Earth are but a moment. I also know that our trials in our lives are but a smaller moment, "And then, if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high; thou shalt triumph over all thy foes". I have 100%, complete faith that everything will all iron out how it should.

It's hard being 700 miles away and hearing all of this when I'm already homesick, but luckily I will be able to go home in September to visit for a long weekend. I haven't seen my father since December and I am very excited to see him in a few weeks.

Please keep my Dad in your prayers. Heavenly Father is a Father of miracles. There is nothing He cannot do. We are rooting for another good 15 years of life as the dr said could possibly happen... until then...

"never let your praying knees get lazy, and love like crazy"

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

American Customs and Ways of Life

Have you ever wondered why we do the things we do? Or wonder who comes up with certain "rules" so to speak of life that we all follow and will continue to follow for generations to come?

Why do we walk on the right side of the hallway? Why do we jump as the elevator gets ready to stop to get that little thrill of butterflied filled enjoyment? Why do we kiss our hand, hit the roof of our car and yell "Prididdle" as we run through a yellow light? Why do we avoid stepping on the cracks of the sidewalk?

I sometimes think of these things and wonder who made them up. How they became habbit for Americans accross the country. There are so many silly jokes or games that elementary kids play that are definitely nation wide... where did they originate?! How could one go about making a legend for themselves? How could one go about creating a way of life that all American people live by? Just something weird I thought of this morning.

On a more up-beat note.... I'm going to be an aunt soon and am so excited for Sarah and Ryan to have a beautiful little boy in their home! He's going to be stinkin cute, I already know it :) I love you two!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Owl City.... Lights....and Fist Fights

I am sure you are wondering what in the world the title of this post means... although I didn't mean to rhyme, I'll take credit for a rhyming blog title ha!

I bought Kara Owl City tickets for her birthday, and we went to the concert on April 12th. When we got there, we were way bummed to see the line go ALL the way around the Great Saltair out to the parking we stood... in the pouring rain until we got to the door.... Smart me realized I had an umbrella in the car the whole sometimes I amaze myself with my brilliancy.

We get inside and got ourselves a tasty little hamburger and then realized we forgot our ID's in the car too SO now not only are we wet from forgetting the umbrella, but we can't go up to the balcony to David Archuletta's special booth to hang out with all the other "adults". Again, bummed, but oh well.

The band that opened for Owl City was called Lights. They were great! Since then I have purchased a few of their songs and let me tell you- their songs are great, but they sound much much better hearing them live. I love when bands are better live then on their CD's. I was very impressed with them; however, I was not very fond of the two in front of me dancing and going crazy to every song that they sang (Mind you, I am only centimeters away from the guy in front of own special little dance was not what I paid for) The people behind us told Kara and I to follow them and we literally pushed our way to the dead center of the concert.... about 7th row back. I definitely wasn't complaining...until these teenage little beebopers decided to make a huge scene swearing and yelling at the little girls besides us... it was super annoying, but luckily they finally left to go closer to the front. Only a few minutes later, I see a huge commotion and see this cute little 13 or so year old get shoved into the crowd and then immediately there's a massive fight between that group of girls and a handful of other girls. I look over to this guy standing next to me and without hesitation, we jump into the middle of the brawl. I start ripping girls off of eachother and just shoving them into the crowd so people could grab them... one girl, the main girl of the wolf pack, decided it'd be a fun idea to try to punch me and rip my hair out... she didn't get very far, but just as she came for her second huge swing, my adrenaline was up so high, that I wasn't even hesitant to knock her lights out and sock her in the face. I was pretty confident that I was stronger than her, and was anticipating the rough swift right to her nose..I would have no qualms in pummeling this little girl.... buuut just as you wake up to dreams as they reach their climax, kara grabbed me and pulled me out of the big group just as the thought crossed my mind. To be honest, I probably would have really punched this chick if no one was there to stop me.. ha! Thank goodness for Kara! :) My favorite part was when the guy next to me said "wow, you're strong, that girl was a feisty one. I don't know how you held her arms down for so long" haha! What can I say... I'mma farm girl ;)

We left about five minutes after all this settled down because if I even thought I was remotely sweaty and nasty before I jumped into the middle of that fist fight, I don't know how to even describe how gross I was afterwards! ha

I was filled with so much euphoria from those two minutes of crazinessness that I was hyper all night ... my three hour sleep that night was not a very good idea trying to drag myself to work and the gym the next day... I don't recommend it..

Moral of the story. Don't let tall skinny men bump and grind up to you at an Owl City concert. It causes a domino effect resulting in nearly beating drunk teenage girls to a pulp :)

Saturday, March 13, 2010


Wow- I haven't updated this in a couple months! I got back from the beautiful island of Oahu this past Wednesday. I wish I were still there. It was such a fun experience!
Kara and I arrived on Wednesday the 3rd and got into our rental car (of which I am more than grateful we had during this trip), and headed to La'ie  to stay with our friend, Ashley, who's going to school down there. It was SO nice to not have to pay for a hotel for an entire week! We got along with her roommates great, and felt soooo welcome which definitely helped make our trip that much better.

My favorite part was probably the Polynesian Cultural Center. That was way neat, and the show was amazing! I loved it! annnnndddd all the very attractive poly men DEFINITELY was the number one highlight of the trip! ha! you think i'm joking....

Tell me this is not a taste of Heaven! ha!

My second highlight was Pearl Harbor. Since both of my grandfathers served in WWII, it made everything more serious for me to think about. There are still parts of the USS Arizona above water. I sat and stared at them for a long time trying to reenact the event in my mind. I got choked up a little bit thinking of it all, but I'm very grateful for our soldiers that risk their lives for our country every day. So selfless, so brave!

Remains of the USS Arizona

USS Missouri 

My next favorite was the Dole Plantation... not because it was overly amazing or mind blowing, but simply because you could eat the best tasting pineapple you'll EVER have... I ate wayyyyyyy too much there! Pineapple ice cream goodness with chopped ones on top mmmm so good!

I also LOVED going to Ruth's Chris. I had never been there and though it was crazy expensive, it was fun to go to an extremely nice, sit down restaurant! :)

As for those who are wanting to go to Hawaii and want to know recommendations.... this is all you need to know:
1. Acai Bowls... if you see a sign for one, STOP- go buy one RIGHT THEN! ha.... sooo delicious, and healthy! 
2. North Shore and Lanikai. North Shore has great waves and is amazing to watch the sunset. 

Lanikai is one of the world's most beautiful beaches. You can see how blue that water is... soooo nice! the sand there was really fine and ahhh loved it! ha

I loved my quick week-long getaway, I wish I were still there as reality is NOT fun to come back to... Work, responsibilities, and dating... three things I could do without for a long time! :)