Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year 2017

Happy New Year! I have been seriously neglecting this blog over the last few months. I've just come to terms with the fact that I am not organized enough to blog things in chronological order.
Today I am posting about the New Year and, per usual, I will post about Christmas into the first couple weeks of January.
But first...an important announcement!
 We are going to be parents! Our baby is due June 22nd. We find out the gender in February.
I am 15 weeks  and 3 days, and I am very lucky that I have had no morning sickness or nausea. 
What I experienced is extreme fatigue, and somewhat loss of my appetite.
I haven't really had any cravings, except for sweet and sour cabbage salad from a local teriyaki place...and according to Joel, "crisp lettuce and veggies" haha. 
I haven't felt the baby move yet (that I noticed) and I'm not really showing yet, although I think I may be starting to get a little baby bump (it's hard to tell through my chub--I'll just say it's a baby bump haha!)
 For New Year's Eve this year, we had hoped to have a few family members over to celebrate with food and games.,
 However, it snowed (not here) and kept them from coming over.
 So I'm sharing my cute decorations on here, because no one got to see them!
So Joel and I went out for sushi for dinner (don't worry, I had the cooked kind!).
Afterward we drove around town to look at people's Christmas light displays.
 Then we had a quiet evening at home. I fell asleep at 9:30 and woke up shortly before the countdown to see J-lo shaking her booty. Dang that girl can dance!
 Below were my top 9 "liked" photos on Instagram, and I'll give a little recap on the year :) 
-We lived our first year in our new house
-We vacationed in Las Vegas & Mexico (my first time out of the country!)
-We hiked and camped, and I lost my wedding ring on a summer adventure
-Joel's football team made it to the quarter finals for playoffs and I had fun going to all the games with my fellow coach's wife and crafting buddy
-We found out we were pregnant
-We bought our first new car
-We celebrated 5 years of marriage in Bend and Joel surprised me with a new wedding ring
-We enjoyed a lovely holiday season with family and friends!
So far my New Year's resolutions are as follows:
-stick to a weekly cleaning schedule
-organize all of our closets
-have friends and family over more often
-Read more and spend less time on my phone
-Finish our Mexico vacation scrapbook
-Get ready for the baby!
It almost still doesn't really feel real that we are going to be parents in less than a year!
As much as I prolonged making the decision to become parents, It's impossible not to be excited! 
Here's to new life in the new year!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Swan Island Daliah Festival & Hiking Saddle Mountain

The weekend before school started, my dear friend and I went on a little excursion to celebrate her birthday. We started out at the Daliah Festival in Canby. 
Oh my goodness we were in Daliah heaven!
Friends are the flowers of life!
From there, we went on our way toward Seaside to hike the Saddle Mountain Trail that has long been on my bucket list of Oregon hikes. Round trip, it is about 5 miles.
There were many beautiful sites along the trail. At the picnic bench pictured below, we found ourselves pondering a life question: How did they get the picnic benches so far up the trail???
Seriously, if anyone has an answer for me, please let me know. 
We kept going, up and up, and then we reached what we thought was the end of the hike.
A little perspective on how big our universe is...
God's creation is so amazing!
I was feeling on top of the world, and then, I looked to my left...
and realized we were not at the top.
This hill may not look that bad, but oh my word, it was the most difficult hike I have ever done. To put it in perspective, when you zoom in on this picture, you can actually see people hiking on the trail.
I thought it was never going to end. It kept winding up and up. It was so steep, there were chain link fencing put over the trail to help the hikers with grip. 
Getting to the top was worth it though. Look at the view! We could see the ocean too!
I am so glad for my dear friend Kate going on adventures with me! It was a grueling hike on the way up, but the way down was just as bad! I discovered that I, apparently, have a knee problem! My left knee hurt so bad only on the down hill that I couldn't bend it. I fell quite a few times from the awkward gait I had to take on to avoid the pain. Luckily, Kate is on the up from knee surgery as well, so we were both slow pokes on the way down.
We finished the day with some Taco Time and a Candy Man ice cream cone on the gloomy beach.
We earned that ice cream!!
I'm looking forward to our next adventure!
Happy Sunday!

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Autumn is Here

Well, Autumn is here and even though I am always sad to see Summer go, 
I guess I am welcoming it with open arms...literally.
It's officially time to get the leaf blower out.
 Oh and while I'm at it, please take in the glory of my new dress from Old Navy.
I've decided that on Sundays I am only going to wear dresses because I never get to wear them.
Currently, however, I am wearing sweats trying to gear up to clean the kitchen and the bathroom
before hubby gets home from his coaches meeting.
Buh-by now!
Happy Sunday & Have a great week!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

New School Year for Teachers

As the new school year begins, I find myself in contemplation quite often.
I feel myself rapidly approaching a new phase of life. 
I've been reflecting on the pasts 5 years since graduating from college and getting married, and I was thinking that sometimes I feel like I live in a dramatic T.V. series...not because my life is dramatic, but because it seems like each year I am greeted with a new challenge. Just like in a T.V. series, each season there is a new conflict to be solved. I start to adjust to life being one way and then a wrench is thrown in my path and everything is shook up. For the average person, these things that stress me out and give me anxiety would probably not be a big deal at all. 
One slightly unkind interaction with another human causes me to wish, quite often, that I could just disengage from society and go be a hermit in the mountains (with my husband of course). Unfortunately, life doesn't work that way. People are going to hurt you, change is going to happen. Sometimes it will be for the better, sometimes it won't. But one thing that is for certain is, that life goes on. I am grateful to have such supportive family, friends and co-workers in my life that God has gifted me to help me along this journey.
While most people tend to reflect and set goals in January when the official "new year" starts, to me, the new year will always be in September.
This year the word that is on my heart is Grace.
I have been given grace in abounds, and I pray that God would help me to show it to others when I am feeling spiteful or bitter, or hurt or angry. Because, ultimately, grace is what matters.

Happy New School Year!

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Yellow Bottom Camping 2017

Every year, Joel and I camp at Yellow Bottom Campground in Quartzville. 
This was our 3rd annual trip and the first time we have brought friends with us!
This is my happy place.
We only stayed a couple of nights this time. Our first afternoon there, we spent time doing one of my favorite things: floating under the sun!
There were so many butterflies! One landed on my floatie :)
We drove back a way (for cell service) to make a phone call, and we practically had to drive almost all the way back to Green Peter Reservoir, but look how beautiful it was! It was so quiet and the color was so pure!
On our phone stop, we got out and gathered some things for our Nature Mandala's. 
We also challenged our hubbies to find us some things. I so wanted a picture of the two of our guys picking flowers for us, but I couldn't snap it in time!
The idea for making mandala's came from the book "How to be a Wildflower" by one of my favorite artists, Katie Daisy.
Oh yeah, getting crafty!
Mine.
 Jeannine's
Van's.
Van's x2.
Joel's.
Joel found these fox gloves for me :)
Reading and playing games are a must when camping.
We may have brought to many sausages.
We experimented with melting glass.
I made my husband take some tent selfies with me before bed :)
All the extra sausages made for some delicious breakfast burritos!
Our glass experiments.
We left a floral arrangement for the next campers to come to our site.
Before we left, we floated and explored the creek one last time.
Some jumping happened.
Rock art.

One of the best views in the world.
Good times with good friends! 
Until next summer Yellow Bottom!
Do you have any favorite camp sites?
Happy Wednesday!