on creating a home

My motto when we first moved to Utah was kind of depressing. It was something along the lines of, “Do what you can with what you have.” We didn’t have very much, so I didn’t do very much with it either. Since then, what we have hasn’t changed as much as I have.

We had a fireside last Sunday, and it focused on womanhood. It stirred something within me, and I came home inspired to be a better woman, a better me. I came home wanting to do more than just do my best with what I had, not just with our apartment, but with my life.

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I’m obsessed with this little corner.

I realized that our home, however small, is also our kingdom, and I intend to make our little kingdom the very best it can be. I don’t just want for our apartment to be the place we live while we wait for something better to come along. I want for our home to be a place where we can feel safe and where we can most be ourselves. I want for it to be the place where we are encouraged to dream our biggest dreams.

Homemaking is more than a hobby or a game. It can be an act of creation, a work of art. It’s elevating a place from a geographical location to a refuge for the soul. Lately, I’ve been looking around our little apartment and thinking, “I think my soul can find refuge here.”

I want for that inspiration and that longing to create to spread to all areas of my life, not just where we live. I want to focus less on what I don’t have and more on what I can do to make everything around me beautiful. That’s a better motto, isn’t it?

pioneer day 2013

We celebrated Pioneer Day this week, a holiday I knew nothing about before we moved to Utah last year.

After work and a micronap, we went to a little fair at the park. It was 97 degrees at 8 pm and basically what nightmares are made of. Luckily, we found some cotton candy as soon as we got there, and all was well with the world again.

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A few hours later, it was time for Tyson’s favorite part of Pioneer Day: the fireworks. I was kind of cranky because I was so ready to go to sleep by then, but Tyson convinced me to go watch the fireworks with him. Even though it wasn’t the most spectacular show ever, I’m glad we were there together. I never want to become the kind of person who values sleep, or anything else, over making memories with my family.

Lately I’ve been thinking about why I started this blog in the first place — as a way to document our adventures as newlyweds in a new place. We’re technically not newlyweds anymore and Utah is no longer a new place for us, but I still want for this to be a place where I write about our adventures.

20130724_194415This means that we need to start having more adventures to document : )

After all, we can always watch reruns of Storage Wars when we’re retired.

facebookversary

Three years ago today, Chantrelle convinced me to go to an FHE where there would be some physical activity involved. I wore some blue shorts with a pink unicorn on them and my Voxtrot shirt. As soon as we got there, I sat on the stage that faced the basketball court and took out my phone. A boy came up to me. I had talked to him a few times, and I thought he had the prettiest blue eyes. He took my pink Blackberry out of my hands and added himself on my facebook.

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making a move in 2010

I like to believe that our love story was set in motion before this, but I still consider this day to be one of the special ones.

I don’t want to sound like this girl:

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but I believe in celebrating beginnings, regardless of how silly they may seem.

Happy three year facebookversary, Tyson! If facebook had a top 8, you’d be my #1.

cheap dates and being a student’s wife

Tyson and I went on a date yesterday. Even though, I guess when you don’t have kids, any time you’re out and about together is kind of a date? (Debatable.) Anyway, we went on a date yesterday. We walked hand in hand on my beloved Main Street because there was a tent sale and then shared a cherry vanilla Diet Coke from the Dream Machine at Burger King. The day was perfect, with the air blowing just right and a light sprinkle that made rainbows appear everywhere. The best part: it cost less than $3!

I’m a cheap date. It’s at the top of the list for “things that make me a great student’s wife.” Also on the list:

  • I’m a great bargain shopper. If you tell me you like something I’m wearing, I will probably answer, “It was $6 at Target!”
  • I didn’t major in flashcard-making, but I might as well have.
  • I’m a pretty decent editor. Give me your 12 point font, double-spaced paper and a red pen, and I will go to town on it. #grammarnazi
  • I understand the importance of study snacks. And class snacks. And finals week snacks. And snacks in general.

Now that I’m done patting myself on the back, I have to add this:

When we were about to get married and join the ranks of poor married college students, we heard so many stories from older couples that had experienced what we were about to experience. After they had finished telling us their stories of poverty and privation, they ended with them saying something along the lines of, “Those were the happiest days of our lives.”

I didn’t understand that mentality then, but I’m starting to. Don’t get me wrong, I’m looking forward to  being able to have J. Crew shopping sprees (and is it sad that that’s my idea of luxury?), but for now, this is my life, and I’m so glad that I get to share it with Tyson.

As we walked up to our apartment yesterday, past the dumpster with the lid that is eternally open and eternally stinky, I said to Tyson, “I would rather be poor with you than rich with anyone else.”

And I actually meant it.

I miss you, I’m going back home to the West Coast

First off, I need to mention that my husband is a rockstar. He drove 2,000 miles during our road trip and didn’t complain once. I drove maybe an hour in California, and then got too scared by the wind and shrinking lanes. Husband is just French for hero, right?

During our drive, we drove past more than a few temples, including some that were under construction, but these two still hold a special place in my heart:

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Newport Beach, CA

We were sealed in the Newport Beach temple, so it’s extra special for us. We also got to spend some time in there with our family. It was exactly what I needed.

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San Diego, CA

The San Diego temple is my favorite. It looks beautiful even through a dirty car window.

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bonus cute picture

I’m pretty lucky that I get to spend eternity with this guy, right?

And it’s been almost a week since we’ve been back, so I promise to stop talking about our vacation now ; ) Back to reality!