Monday, January 31, 2011

Can't help lovin' that man of mine...

As previously mentioned, when I'm sick I get super whiny and out of it. It feels good to be getting back on track with my new years goals, catching up on my correcting and being able to think again. Now that my brain is thinking clearer, I feel a bit remorseful for not acknowledging some big news about this guy...

He is pretty amazing and one of the hardest workers I know. He really is a go getter. He really wanted an internship, so he went out and searched and found an amazing one with Honeywell. He worked his tail off all summer so that he could get a job offer. I'm a pretty lucky girl to have a husband who had a great job offer before his senior year even began!

Now having worked less than a year , he's going big! He applied to ASU for their MBA program which is in the top 10 in the country for his area. We worked super hard to get impressive GMAT scores and good contacts and references. And...he was ACCEPTED!

So just when I thought paying tuition was over, we are sucked back in! Woo hoo! Just the same, I'm very proud of that husband of mine! I need some good time consuming hobby ideas for those evenings he has classes...

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Come What May and Love It

I found myself waking up today (Sunday) groaning that the next time I woke up it would be Monday and I would have to go to work again. I couldn't believe that I was letting myself think that. It was very clear that I needed an attitude adjustment. Boy, am I blessed that I was able to go to church today and have some great perspective reminders. The real thought that came to me over and over through the day was from Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin's talk, "Come What May and Love It." There's a great summary of it here and you can listen/watch/read the whole thing here.

"I know why there must be opposition in all things. Adversity, if handled correctly, can be a blessing in our lives. We can learn to love it.

As we look for humor, seek for the eternal perspective, understand the principle of compensation, and draw near to our Heavenly Father, we can endure hardship and trial. We can say, as did my mother, “Come what may, and love it."

I guess that can include Mondays... :)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


"I cannot go to school today. Said little Peggy Ann McKay. I have the measles and the mumps. A gash, a rash, and purple bumps."

-"Sick" by Shel Silverstein

Definitely one of my favorite poems still. And definitely true for little me today. I wish I didn't have to go to school tomorrow. I am so congested and foggy. I got hit with a cold and I so do not like it. I'm so bad at being sick too. I'm whiny and dramatic like little Peggy Ann McKay and I don't care who knows it.

Sad thing for me is that my poem does not end in it being Saturday and me going out to play. It doesn't even end with me not going to school. Because the real truth is that as a teacher it is far easier to go to school than it is to call in sick. Teaching isn't a job that you just "call in sick." You have to write sub plans which depending on the sub means that you basically need to script out your entire day so that your class still learns something- hopefully. You also need to include as much as you can about your students so that the class behaves well. You need to get your copies all ready. All of this with a head that feels like a watermelon is on it? I don't think so.

Here's hoping this is gone by Saturday.

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Spontaneous Life

I forgot to tell about our way home from break. We made some lovely stops in Orem and Springville to see the Hardys and Pricketts. We saw our old house and the sad, Provo Tabernacle. Then we got on the road for real. We got to St. George and decided to stop for lunch at in 'n out. When we pulled off, I joked that we should stop at Tai Pan Trading and Michael actually said ok. Weird event #1.
Weird event #2 occurred when we actually got to In 'N Out after our Tai Pan detour. It's crowded- of course- and I found us a table for two so I sat down but Michael didn't. He was still kind of looking around the room which I thought was so odd and a bit frustrating because it's not easy to get a table.
Then weird #3 happened when Michael finally came over to me and said that we needed a bigger table. What?!
Well, luckily I looked up before I got frustrated with Michael's confusing behavior, because Keith and Tricia were standing right there! They had been driving back to Salt Lake from San Diego. So I guess they had been texting Michael back and forth since Beaver and found out we would both be in St. George around the same time. It was a fun surprise. So after we talked forever, we decided why don't we just stay and hang out?
At first, all of us were thinking the adult way and thinking that we should get back on the road and get home. But then, we thought- seriously? When would we ever be able to do this again without having to worry about kids? finances? you name it. So we found a fair priced hotel room, checked in and headed out for our St. George adventures. We went bowling in probably the oldest bowling joint I have EVER been to.
*Seriously- Acknowledge the ball return on the side of this picture of my husband's amazing bowling form...

We went out to dinner at Texas Roadhouse- my first time ever. We enjoyed the hotel's indoor pool and hot tub and I got a new swimming suit since I hadn't packed mine. I guess that's a nice perk. And we enjoyed a red box movie from the comfort of our hotel room. When we woke up, we ate breakfast and got on the freeway going opposite directions. It was a short, incredibly spur of the moment trip, but so much fun.

PS It's 80 degrees here as I type so if anybody wants a spontaneous trip to visit, let me know!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I'm spoiled...

When we first found out that we were moving to Arizona, more than one person talked about how awesome Arizona is. One of the most frequently used reasons was because if you get a bike for Christmas, you can actually go outside and ride it. Unlike wintery places like Utah. (This was never a real dilemma for me growing up in Utah because my birthday is in May.) But still, this year, I have been able to experience what bike rides in January feel like. And let me tell you they feel great. Especially since I get to cruise around on this totally awesome, vintage, 50s cruiser that Michael's dad restored and gave me for Christmas! Me gusta!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Absolutely adorable

I read the book, "Flipped" by Wendelin Van Draanen a few years ago and I thought it was so charming. It's a darling story about a boy and a girl who were neighbors. Each chapter or so flip flopped sides of the story. One chapter from the girl's point of view, the next from the boy's. I thought the author did a good job keeping the story flowing. It was cute.

Now, I know I am not a true movie critic but I like movies. I do. I do. When I first saw that they made a film called, "Flipped," I wondered if it was the book. And if it was, I was VERY skeptical about it being as sweet as the book. So I didn't really pursue viewing it. Luckily, Will gave it to me for Christmas. I absolutely loved it. They changed it from the book to be set in the early 60s. I actually liked that it added some old school charm. It is just an endearing feel-good movie.

I encourage anyone who needs an enchanting movie to watch it. Let me know what you think of it.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Holiday...part ii

Having TWO weeks for Christmas break was a nice amount of time. We spent Christmas Eve with my family so we could have our traditional big dinner and our family's talent show around my mom's Nativities Christmas Tree. It was definitely nice to have Annie back for that this year since she and I play the most songs. I'm definitely glad Will and Melanie are getting better at the piano too. It makes the program a lot more varied. I don't have any pictures, but it is a tender tradition.

Christmas morning we woke up at the Shields house and opened up our presents. We were super spoiled this year by our families. We liked seeing Brycen open his presents this year. Opening presents is so much more magical with little kids.

The rest of the break we spent staying warm by the fireplace, eating, sleeping, Michael played WAY too much Mario Kart with Will and Victor. And, of course, what would visiting my family be if we didn't have some sibling's sports games to watch.

Mel-Mel is really good and fun to watch. I just think it is so funny that an Ostler girl is on the high school basketball team. We aren't exactly known for our height. But, Mel breaks all the similarities the rest of us have. She's awesome.

We also got to go on an awesome double date with these two...

and see these folks play...

It was so fun and I'm glad people will still double with us even though we're married.

We had a lot of fun over the break and although it went by in a flash, we loved every second we had. And now that I am thawing out in my warm state, it feels good to be back in AZ.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Fare Thee Well

New Years 2010

Valentines Day Surprise- Vegas

Annie home from Romania

Michael Graduated from BYU

Chesterfield, ID

Home Owners

Leaving Provo

Awesome baseball games

Huntington Beach

Teaching at a New School

Chicago & Utah for fall break

It really was a great year last year and we are blessed that we enjoyed it with family and friends.
2010 has been nice to us. It's going to be hard seeing it go. 2011? Already? Really?

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


The Tim Tam Slam.

Dear Americans,
You have been missing out. Never fear! In honor of the beginning of my New Zealand adventures exactly 4 years ago today, I am here to educate you about one of the finer things in life.
While I was in the beautiful country-

emphasis on BEAUTIFUL, they introduced me to the amazing biscuits (cookies) called Tim Tams. Obviously essential to the Tim Tam Slam. Normally, the fact that they are cookies in New Zealand would pose a problem to us in the states almost 7,000 miles away. Fortunately for us, Pepperidge Farms has made it possible for us to own without having to pay for international shipping. Woo hoo!
And now, for your tasting pleasure.

Step #1: Acquire said Tim Tams at Target. Santa also put a few packs in my stocking!

Step #2: Normally you would need

But, Hot chocolate can be substituted.
Step #3: Bite off a little bit of the cookie at each end.

Step #4: Suck the hot chocolate through the Tim Tam cookie. This melts the amazing goodness inside the Tim Tam. And makes it an awesome chocolate-y straw.

(I know it looks questionable, but it's worth it.)
Step #5: Slam the Tim Tam cookie in your mouth before it melts apart.
Step #6: Repeat and savor each Tim Tam Slam!

Fellow Americans, I have felt it my civic duty to enlighten and sweeten your lives with a little piece of heaven. Enjoy!

Respectfully yours,
The Kiwi American

PS While looking through New Zealand photos, I came across evidence of my very first Tim Tam Slam ever!

Awwww! Precious! I can't wait to see your Tim Tam Slam photos!