Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Currently reading...

Sitting at work today I realized something.  I am currently reading 3 books and I couldn't decide which  one to pick up and read.  This made me smile.  I love books.  I used to read like nobody's business.  I mean, I was ALWAYS reading.  Now I never read.  Largely because the past 2 1/2 years have been consumed by a baby girl and every time I have a moment to myself I fall asleep.  Or the past 10 months or so, spend it with Kyle.

I have missed reading.  I need it in my life.  I feel like a better person when I read.  Reading also makes me want to write.  Reading beautifully written words that mold my thoughts and my actions makes me want to do the same for someone else.

These are the three books that I am having to choose from:

Catching Fire.  By Suzanne Collins.  The second book of The Hunger Games games.  If you've read this trilogy you know that they are practically impossible to put down and you're probably wondering why it's even a question whether I should be reading this one or not.

The Giver.  By Lois Lowry.  I first read this book years and years ago in school.  In fact, I believe our teacher read it to us and we had a copy that we followed along on our own.  This book changed me.  I have read it approximately 10 times and I still want to read it about once a year.  And even though I have read it so many times, I still want to pick it up and continue reading it.  (Even when Catching Fire is sitting right next to it.)  If you have not read this Newbery Award winning classic, pick it up.  You won't regret it.  I recently bought a copy for my boss.  The text I got about it said this, "The Giver was amazing!  Thanks!  Kids need books like this."  (Two exclamation points in that text.  This from a guy that I never see use exclamation points.)

Believing Christ.  By Stephen E. Robinson.  This book is assigned reading from my bishop.  This one I have a hard time reading at work because every time I pick it up, within minutes, I have tears streaming down my cheeks.  I highly recommend it to everyone.  Especially those who feel they are lacking on the spiritual side or struggling with their self-worth when it comes to the gospel.  
"The good news of the gospel is good news to me not because it promises that other people who are better than I can be saved, but because it promises that I can be saved--wretched, inadequate, and imperfect me.  And until I accept that possibility,... I have not really accepted the good news of the gospel."
"I am particularly fond of the way the Lord says this in Isaiah 1:18:  "Come now, let us reason together, saith the Lord:  though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool."  I would like to expand upon this scripture just a little bit to make sure the significance of it doesn't get past us.  What the Lord is saying here is this:  "It doesn't matter what you did.  Whatever it was, no matter how horrible or vile, is not the issue.  The issue here is that whatever you sin was or is, I can erase it, I can clean you up and make you innocent, pure, and worthy, and I can do it today; I can do it now."

What books are you currently reading?

Friday, March 16, 2012

Wedding Organizer.

After the excitement of being engaged wore off a little bit (JK IT'S NOT WORN OFF AT ALL!)  I decided that I wanted a wedding organizer.  You know, one of those neat planners that you can buy at the bookstore that is full of ideas and checklists to keep you on track with planning your wedding.  So my dear friend Carissa and I headed to Barnes and Noble.  We gathered all of the best options and sat in the children's section to go over them while Ayla ran around like a kid in a candy {book} store looking at all of the books.  We finally settled on one that was giant and blue and had lots of places to write things, great ideas, and so many lists to check off.  I couldn't wait to get home and start filling it out.  

But... the more I looked at it the more I couldn't bring myself to even write my name in it.  It didn't seem right.  I mean, LDS weddings are so different from the standard wedding that this organizer catered to.  I wouldn't even be using half of the stuff in this book!  So as excited as I was to have it, I decided to return it and see if I could find something better and more suited for me.  I couldn't.  As I stood there looking at all of these great organizers and keepsake journals I had an idea.  I COULD MAKE MY OWN!  So I headed over to the journal section.  There were so many beautiful journals. Simple ones, ornate leather ones, Harry Potter ones.... I seriously considered a Harry Potter one for a good minute or two!  Then I saw the Moleskines.  I have a thing for Moleskines.  Well, I have a thing for all journals.  The empty pages that are just begging to be filled up with words and doodles...  But Moleskins especially.  I love the compactness and the smell and just everything.  And the red one was practically jumping off the shelf at me.  I picked up  my journal and made the exchange.  Even though Molskines are pricey, it was still over $10 less than the wedding organizer!  Bonus!

I will fill this little red journal with all of my thoughts, ideas, decisions, lists, and just everything having to do with planning and executing our wedding!  Here is a quick peek at some of what I have so far...

Thursday, March 15, 2012

September 8th, 2012.


I have a memory involving my cousin Bevany.  As a child, I idolized my cousin Bevany.  She was older and gorgeous and funny and stylish and she had perfectly pouffy bangs.  I wanted to be just like her.  On one of our trips to Utah I remember going with Bevany to 7-Eleven to get nachos.  In the car the song "Going to the chapel and we're gonna get ma-a-a-rried!" came on the radio.  Bevany cleverly sang, "Going to the TEMPLE and we're gonna get ma-a-a-rried!"  I don't remember much else from that particular trip, and Bevany might not remember that at all, but it has stuck with me ever since.

My whole life I knew that when I grew up I was going to meet the man of my dreams and that we were going to be married in the Temple for time and eternity.  It's what my dreams were made of.  I even remember a wedding dress that I tore out of a catalog and kept in my room for years.  (I still remember exactly what it looks like and I still love it.)  As I grew older and as I found myself in relationships with people who did not have the same goals for the future, that dream slowly started to fade away until it seemed unreachable.

Then along came Kyle Lee.

Oh, Kyle.  This cute, terribly shy boy that I worked with but never spoke a word to.  One day we started playing "Words With Friends".  It's a scrabble game on the iPhone.  Super fun and super addictive!  It also has a chat feature which allows you to have conversations with the person you are playing.  I'm pretty sure this is where we had our first conversations.  And then we started texting.  And emailing at work.  And before I knew it we were constantly texting.  And we were constantly emailing.  But we still didn't talk in person.  I even borrowed his Criminal Minds DVDS and when he dropped them off at my desk I don't think he really even looked at me.  He was so shy and it was so adorable.  And a little known fact about me... if I really like a boy, I also become incredibly shy.

This cute, shy boy that I was talking to (texting) every waking minute of the day told me that he was leaving to Alaska for the summer.  My heart did a flip-flop.  WHY?!  There was no real reason for me to not like that idea, I could still text him while he was in Alaska, but I still tried to talk him out of it every day.  I tried everything that I could via text and email, short of begging, to get him to just stay.  But he didn't.  So the week before he left, we decided we should hang out.  He came over and we watched Criminal Minds.  And we basically sat on opposite ends of the couch.  I.  Was.  Terrified.  Of.  This.  Boy.  But he came over again.  And eventually, we sat closer.  We even kind of cuddled!  And then... this incredibly shy boy who couldn't even make eye contact with me at work KISSED ME!  I was over the moon.  So, so giddy!  But, even though he kissed me and it was wonderful, he was still leaving in a couple of days.

The day before Kyle left to Alaska I drove to his house and delivered him 24 FunDip Lik-A-Stix.  Just the sticks.  I had carefully taken 24 from their packages and wrapped them in a cellophane bag for his trip.  (He once mentioned to me that he wished he could just buy the sticks and not the powder.) We hugged good-bye and I drove away.  Leaving his house I was fighting back tears and I didn't even know why.  I hardly knew this boy.  I hardly knew him, but I sure knew that I didn't want him to leave.

The month that he was in Alaska was basically the longest month ever.  I texted him constantly.  I still emailed.  I missed this boy I had only spent a few short hours with like crazy.  Luckily for me, Alaska didn't work out the way he had planned, and he came home early.  He flew in from Alaska the same day that I flew home from a trip to Washington.  The next day he was on my doorstep and when I hugged him I did not want to let go.

Over the next few months we spent more and more time together.  At first we would see each other every few days outside of work.  Then every couple of days.  Then it was hard to not see him every day.  I wanted him to always be around.  Those months were tricky with introducing him to Ayla and really getting to know each other.  We took things pretty slow.  But by the end of the summer we both knew that there was so much more there than either of us was willing to say out loud.  Looking back I can really pinpoint when I first remember thinking to myself, "I love him."  I had gotten into a particularly ugly argument with someone and I was a wreck.  He met me in the Orem RC Willey parking lot at like 3 AM.  With Ayla sleeping in the backseat of my car Kyle stood there and hugged me.  That's all I needed.  I melted into him and nothing else mattered.  I didn't even care about things that made me feel so completely hopeless just minutes before.  I loved him.  I felt safe and I felt comfort and love.

I eventually got to meet his family.  I was scared that they wouldn't like me and really scared that they wouldn't like Ayla.  I already struggled with the fact that Kyle was willing to love me AND Ayla, I thought that he deserved better than a girl with a child, and if I thought that, why wouldn't his family?  But I pushed those thoughts aside and I did the only thing that I could do:  be myself.  And I slowly fell in love his family too.

Jumping back to September 2011.  Kyle went to Green Bay.  He got to go see his beloved Green Bay Packers play the opening game of the season in Wisconsin.  How amazing is that?!  If I thought having him in Alaska after just spending a few days with him was hard, having him gone for 4 days at this point was torture.  I didn't know how I would possibly survive!
Sent to Kyle while he was in GB.
When he was gone he sent me these lyrics:

What if I told you that I think you're perfect?

Beautiful sky in your eyes, it's so worth it.
I know you make me feel alive.

What if I told you that I'm in forever?
Nothing to hide, yeah, I'll go wherever you go.
You make me feel alive.

And I'll be hanging on every word you say to me.
Hanging on a feeling that I get,
Cause you make me

Laugh a little louder
Love a little harder.

And I feel alive when I'm with you
Every time it's something new.
Never knew what love could feel like
Until I walked away the first time.
And I feel alive when I'm with you.
Deep inside it's something true.
You're the only reason I fight,
You're the best thing in my life

When he came home we hugged and hugged and again, I didn't want to let go.  We listened to this song and he told me he loved me for the first time.  And even though I had felt it for so long I was always too scared to say it out loud.  That was September 10th, 2011.

Fast forward to today and I think about all of the great experiences that we have shared so far.  We have had so much fun!  Everything feels so complete with Kyle around.  I can't even think about him not being in the picture, I don't know how I was ever without him.

This past weekend Kyle took me snowboarding.  I had never been before.  I've never had the desire to go.  I'm not sure how eager I am to go again... :)  I went with him because he hadn't had the opportunity to go this year and I thought, why the heck not, I am willing to learn for Kyky!

Long story short- I need professional help.  I mean really.  I couldn't even stand up on the board!  After taking the lift up the mountain and trying and failing over and over I was in tears.  My tailbone was killing me!  I was sure that the next fall was actually going to break my back!  I was holding my board and walking down the mountain with my goggles on, silently crying.  I told Kyle to just ride down the mountain and that I would meet him at the bottom, but he refused to leave me.  He held my hand and walked with me while I cried and walked slowly.

Part way down Kyle suggested that we sit in the shade of some trees and take a break.  I didn't fight this because it was SO HOT on that mountain and I was hurting!  We sat and talked and laughed about how ridiculous I was and we drank some capri suns.  While getting ready to trek back down the mountains I heard Kyle (who was sitting slightly behind me) say:  "Can I ask you a question?"  I, of course, said yes not thinking anything of it.  I was putting on my gloves when he started talking about a ring.  I turned around and saw a black box in his hand and I instantly started to cry.  He asked me to marry him and I cried even harder.  I said yes (I actually think that I said "yeeeeah" through sobs).  He gave me the most beautiful ring that I have ever seen in my life.  I put it on my finger and then made him put it back in the box and back in his pocket so that I didn't lose it in the snow!  I hugged him and cried and kissed him and told him I loved him.  People on the ski lift above us yelled at us to stop making out!  We made it back down the mountain as a newly engaged couple.  I don't think I've stopped smiling yet.  Every time I look at my beautiful ring or my amazing fiance I think about how blessed I am.  I found the man that I am going to spend eternity with.  Ayla and I get to have Kyle forever.

This morning I booked the Salt Lake Temple for September 8th, 2012 at 10:20 AM.  It's official.


(Be prepared for so many more wedding planning/love-filled posts to come!)