Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Happy Anniversary

Today is our 2 year anniversary. In some ways, it has gone so incredibly fast! In other ways, it seems like it's been 5 years. :) We spent the day working at our jobs, doing side jobs, working on Mary Kay, making banana bread, doing laundry, and the night is still young. It hasn't been the most romantic day, yet it has been full of love and gratitude. How I love hearing my hubby tell me how much he loves me and that I make his heart beat kind of funny!

Here is our list of the top 10 things we've experienced, learned, etc. in the past 2 years of marriage:

1. "They" were right...LOVE DOES CONQUER ALL!!!
2. When God is involved, life is so much easier, and love is so much better.
3. Having 3 kitties really is like having 2 kids. Sometimes 1...sometimes 4. Depends on the day.
4. Sometimes the littlest things make the biggest difference.
5. Patrick makes the BEST biscuits and gravy. Ever.
6. If you need something fixed, something heavy picked up, or a wise-crack, just call Patrick.
7. Alison can communicate with ducks via fart. And she gets Patrick. Both very rare skills.
8. We love Redbox.
9. Dreams keep you moving. We both have big dreams, and truly support each other in reaching those dreams.
10. Two years is just the beginning. We're looking forward to the rest of our lives and eternity together.

We want to thank our family and friends for their support over the last almost 3 years of knowing each other. Through thick and thin, your support has helped us to grow, and for that we are grateful!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

The Spirit of CHRISTmas

We've had some great in-depth conversations about Christmas in our home lately.

Patrick has fond memories of Christmas as a young child, when the simplest things captured his imagination.

I have fond memories of delivering boxes of little presents, a turkey, other fun food items including baked goods my mom helped us make, leaving them on the doorstep of a family that needed a little extra something, knocking on their door on Christmas Eve, and running away before we could be discovered.

Christmas has its own unique memories and feelings for every individual, and quite often, as adults, the commercial gift-giving aspect of Christmas can taint what this holiday is all about. It begins with all of the stores setting up their Christmas displays in the middle of November, if not earlier, and continues on through Christmas Day with the frustrating traffic and business at stores, the impatience of other shoppers, the list of presents to give that cost more than the allotted budget, thousands of commercials telling us to buy-buy-buy, etc. Christmas can easily become a huge list of wants presented to Santa accompanied by the expectations of society, the media, our social network, and our family. The simple need of feeling and expressing pure love to everyone we encounter is often overlooked, or overshadowed by the superficial flurry.

As a young couple planning on starting a family very soon, we have discussed what we would like Christmas to be all about in our home. Our hope is to make sure that the Spirit of Christ is greater than the Spirit of Christmas. Simplicity and Service will be our focus.

I've heard some great ideas over the last month from other families and my own in how to refocus Christmas.

My parents have expressed that they would like their children and grandchildren to come up with some act of service and love to do for someone this season and to write them a letter expressing what we did and how we feel about the experience. I love this idea, although it can be a challenge to choose what we want to do. :)

An older couple from church shared that this year they aren't giving gifts to their children or grandchildren, and aren't accepting gifts from them either. As a family, they are going to pick names from and Angel Tree, find gifts for those individuals who are in need, and give as a family to someone else.

A guy who eats at the restaurant where I work has 2 little boys, and he and his wife have taught their boys that Santa isn't a person; Santa is the Spirit of Giving. So, the boys can make a list of 3 things that they want, and they broke it down into categories that I can't remember. I think it was something along the lines of a necessity, something bigger that they really want, and something educational. They also make sure they participate in volunteering at a homeless shelter, donating food to the food banks, and anything else like that. He did say that in theory it sounds simple and easy, but in practice, it can be a challenge. Especially when the grandparents want to spoil the kids rotten. :)

Patrick and I talked about limiting the number of gifts that our kids can ask for as well. I think of the first Harry Potter movie where on Dudley's birthday, he gets upset that he has one less gift than the huge number of gifts he received the previous birthday, so his parents tell him they'll get him 2 more gifts that day. Frivolity. At its worst. And I'm pretty sure we all laughed and thought, "what a spoiled little shit!" Yet, for just about everyone, it's easy to have that same attitude without even realizing it. You can say, "Nuh-uhhh!" but chances are, you probably enable that attitude in someone else, too. :)

My ex-husband was alllll about getting a lot of gifts. I'd end up buying a lot of little gifts for him so he would feel good about unwrapping a lot of presents. Why did I enable that attitude??

When I was a kid, I remember asking Santa for a pink bike with a white basket and ribbons hanging off the handle bars. I was actually pissed that the bike I did get was purple, and I can't even remember if it had a basket or ribbons. So silly.

I heard a story years ago about a family that would open their presents Christmas morning, and each of the children would choose one of their brand new presents to give to a family in need. They would wrap them back up and deliver a box full of presents to a family with kids that wouldn't otherwise get much. I love that idea!

So, this year, we may or may not get a tree, and we probably won't exchange presents as a couple. We'll focus on giving to others, especially giving our love, time, service, and anything else that we can give.

Recently Patrick and I read in The Book of Mormon, Mosiah chapter 4, which talks about giving. Verse 26 always stands out to me:

Mosiah - Chapter 4

26 And now, for the sake of these things which I have spoken unto you—that is, for the sake of retaining a remission of your sins from day to day, that ye may walk guiltless before God—I would that ye should impart of your substance to the poor, every man according to that which he hath, such as feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, visiting the sick and administering to their relief, both spiritually and temporally, according to their wants.

What a beautiful reminder. :)

I am so grateful for the comfortable life that Patrick and I are able to live. We have most of our needs met, and we try to be aware of our many blessings and that the origin of our blessings is unquestionably our Heavenly Father. Without Him, we would have nothing; be nothing. Fortunately, He is a loving god, and everything about us is evidence of that.

I hope you all have a special Christmas and that you feel the Spirit of Christ, not just this month, but hopefully daily. Life is beautiful, and there's plenty of wonder and goodness to go all around!


Sunday, October 25, 2009

Review of Food Storage Analyzer

I was raised in a family where food storage was important, and not only did we have food storage, we used it in preparing our meals for a large family of seven. As an adult, I haven't been the greatest about building up my own supply of food storage. It's been on my to-do list...a very neglected to-do list.

I played around with Emergency Essentials Food Storage Analyzer, selecting items that I think Patrick and I would actually eat, and it was a lot of fun! It really wouldn't cost toooo much money to have a 30-day supply of food, but the plan is to buy something every week and transition into having a decent food storage supply on hand.

If food storage is something you are interested in, or are already doing, you should check out the analyzer and see the exact content and nutritional value, as well as how long it will feed you. Pretty stinkin' awesome! Have fun!!

Gift Card Giveaway

Monday, September 28, 2009

$10 Gift Card Giveaway for Emergency Essentials

Just add one of their buttons to you blog/website and they'll send you a $10 gift card. Easy.

The deadline is Sept. 30th, this Wednesday, so don't delay!!!

Here's the LINK.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Our recent adventures

Patrick and I have been spending a lot more quality time together. Sure, we still sit in front of the boob tube WAAAAY too much, but at least we're getting outdoors more often and going on actual dates where we try to look hot for each other. It's been great. Here are a few of our "outings" lately:


My fractured elbow is still pretty sensitive, so I had to bowl left handed. Well, it turned out surprisingly well. I bowled 98 the first game!!! And kicked Patrick's butt! (I made him bowl the first game left handed, too.)

Alison: 98, Patrick: 76 or something

Don't mind my big bootie - the picture is of my terrible form bowling left handed.

Patrick was challenging himself to beat his speed. I can't remember if he hit 24 mph or 27 mph, but it was funny how sore he was the next day!


We spent a few hours hiking around. There's usually a river there, but it was all dry. We hiked downstream a bit and found WATER! It was freezing cold, but we got in up to our knees anyway. It was a fun day hopping around from rock to rock.

Isn't he handsome??!

We rode Patrick's Triumph up Parley's Canyon, which was fun all by itself! Then we went to the reservoir and hiked around. We had a contest throwing rocks at a big log in the water. Patrick won. :) We had a boat race with pieces of bark, tried to catch a trout, and had a lot of laughs. It was a lot of fun.

We drove up to Antelope Island on a drizzly day. I had never been there before. We drove around the north part of the island, then took the east coast road down to the ranch that is still there. We both enjoy walking around historical sites and checking out all of the old stuff. Patrick got devoured by some bugs. Either I'm not as sweet as he is, or wearing pants and shoes rather than shorts and sandals was a smart move. :) We drove back up to the north part of the island and walked out to the water, skipped rocks, and caught brine shrimp. Other than the wind, rain, and my allergies, it was a great time. Carl's Jr. afterward was pretty great, too.

Patrick looking for more rocks to skip.

I've been taking pictures with my phone, since I can't find the battery charger for my camera. They're not the greatest pictures, but they'll do. And since I'm the one taking the pictures, they're all of Patrick. :)

But here's one of me before a date where we ate at an amazing Mexican restaurant in Murray then wandered around a bit.

Going on dates and spending active quality time together has been such a blessing for us in strengthening our relationship. I highly recommend it! :)


The cats keep putting their toys in their food dishes. It's pretty strange, yet incredibly adorable and funny.

I'd like to think it's their way of saying, "Thank you for feeding us. You are the best parents of 3 kitties ever!!!"

***I forgot I had already posted about this, but I did have 2 new pictures...they keep doing it!!! So, repeat posting with some updated photos. Sorry. :)***

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Thank you for the yummy food!

I keep finding our kitty toys in the food bowl and finally decided to take a picture. I can't figure out which of our cats is doing this, but I think it's pretty stinkin' funny!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Mmm, bread.

Here is a picture of the bread I made a week or so ago. It's not my favorite white bread recipe I've ever used, but it was easy. I thought about making bread again this last week, but it is a bit time consuming. I think I'll add bread to our grocery list and make this a monthly habit to make home made bread. I need to get the few ingredients I didn't have to make the recipe my mom always used. It's much more moist.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

We're Home!

Patrick and I have officially moved! We are now in a 4-plex a few miles from our old place, still in the Liberty Park/Sugarhouse area in Salt Lake City. I love this area.

We finally got our kitchen put away last night. That cleared up a TON of space to have everything put away in a cupboard or drawer. Patrick is hilarious...he would tell everyone, "There are 25 cupboards and 10 drawers!!" When I first heard him say that, I didn't even doubt for a second that he had really counted. And now that everything is put away, we still have empty cupboards and drawers. Awesome, really.

The bathroom is put away, too. We have a ton of storage in our hallway, so the bathroom is clutter free. Also, the bedroom has a vanity area where I will do my hair and makeup, so that stuff isn't in the way in the bathroom, either. It's a good thing - the bathroom isn't very big.

I have an office, too, which will also double as a craft room. There are 2 windows, one which is quite large, so the room is well lit. I love it! It's not even close to being organized or unpacked, though.

The bedroom is almost done being put away. We have a walk-in closet and a ton of storage space around the vanity area, so we don't even need a dresser. I love it.

The living room will be the final mess to clean up. It is still FULL of boxes, decorations, stuff that will go in the garage, and who knows what else. Which reminds me, Patrick has a one-car garage at his disposal! That means all things vehicular (as well as our camping gear) will be out of the house. YEAH!!!! :) Can you tell that makes me happy???

So, it's wonderful to have a new place with plenty of room for all of our randomness. I'm sure we'll have to purge and reorganize if we ever decide to have a baby. Where will my office go? Or we'll just have to move to a 3-bedroom place. I hear homes are pretty cheap in Arizona. :)

My next assignment is changing our address with every account we have, so I better get on to it...

Monday, May 25, 2009


Our yard sale Saturday was a success. We made about $250, which was awesome. I had to go to work, so Patrick was the lucky guy who got to put out the FREE sign, get rid of more stuff, then take the rest to DI. It feels AMAZING to have all that clutter out of our house...yet it is still a little cluttered, or just messy from trying to pack.

We have decided that we are not moving into the house we were going to move into. Too many not-cool things have been already happening with the landlord, so we'll just bypass what could be a year or more of irritation. Now we're looking for another place. It might be this month or next that we move, but it's all up in the air right now. This causes much anxiety for me. Especially because we gave our couch away, so it is not comfy AT ALL to be in the living room watching TV. Bummer. Tomorrow I'll be doing a lot of cleaning to make our half-packed home feel a little more livable, since it may be another month in this place.

Maybe we should just pack it all and go to Denver and live by Kosette. :)

Frogs Legs for Memorial Day

Patrick had me try frogs legs tonight. :) We decided to go to the grocery store to grill some grub, and we decided on frogs legs, shark, and scallops. Oh, and portabella mushrooms with spinach and mozzarella cheese. It was a fine feast, and I actually liked the frogs legs. They have a chicken-seafood-ness to them. Interesting.

Now we need ice cream cones.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


The books are all packed, our stuff is sorted for the yard sale Saturday, and I bought paper plates and plastic utensils so we can start packing up the kitchen. It's slowly coming along, and I am hoping that we can start moving stuff into the new place in the next few days.

When Patrick and I first lived together, we used plastic utensils and paper plates allllll the time. It took a lot of work to convince Patrick that we should use normal plates and utensils, and not having a dishwasher for the last year has almost made me regret making that change. Fortunately, the new place has a dishwasher. Yeah!!!

I just want to settle in. I feel so unsettled and chaotic right now with everything turned upside down in the house, all of our sweet decorations off the wall, and a big change ahead of us.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Photos from our stop in Boulder City, NV

My handsome hubby with deep dam thoughts...

Wild desert flowers. I figured out how to use the super macro setting on my camera! :)

More desert flowers

and more

and a desert plant in bloom.
I'm so happy I got to see some desert plants/flowers at their prettiest stage.

Our stop in Boulder City was really nice.
We stayed at La Hacienda for $20, went 4-wheeling in Patrick's Jeep,
ate a lot of food, explored the dam and nature,
got a shower and some good (much needed) sleep.
It was our first time staying in a hotel
doing a random little adventure together.
Crazy, huh?

It was way overdue. :)

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

It's Official!!!

We're moving!!!

Now before any of you living in Utah panic, we're not moving far at all.

Those of you in Phoenix (or anywhere outside of Utah), we're not moving there. Sorry.

We're going down to 27th South & State Street area into a nicer 5-bedroom house. Patrick's friend, Chris, is moving in with us, so we'll all be saving a bit of money. I'm excited to plant flowers, a garden next year, decorate, and use a dishwasher again. Ahhhhh.

I'll send an email with the new address when I figure out what it is. ;) We'll officially be in our new place on June 1st.

Monday, April 27, 2009


Happy Birthday to Patrick yesterday!!!

Patrick is a spoiled man! His mom is supporting his hot rod habit with a generous donation to the cause. He got taken out to 2 sushi dinners, got breakfast made for him, went out with friends (and me) to see a band play, watched a movie of his choice, Quarantine, (I thought it had a stupid ending, but I guess I just like happy endings...), and is getting the vast majority of our tax return to devote to getting all of the parts together for his hot rod. I'm excited to see this car brought to life. So, overall, my sweet hubby had a great birthday.

And, he trimmed up his beard...he's so handsome! I'll have to sneak a picture of him soon.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Grosgrain: Swanki Hats GUEST GIVEAWAY!!!!

Grosgrain: Swanki Hats GUEST GIVEAWAY!!!!

I think Patrick would drool, seeing me in one of these cute hats! :) Check it out and maybe you will win a Swanki Hat!!!

Sunday, April 19, 2009


Yes. I am. But so is Patrick. :) We had biscuits and gravy this morning. I was on biscuit-patrol and Patrick was on gravy-duty. He makes the best gravy!! So, I made some biscuits and put a little creativity into it:

And he called me a dork. :) Well, I'll be as dorky as possible if it tastes this yummy!!!

Sunday, April 12, 2009


Before I forget, I wanted to post a picture of Patrick's car that he (THANK GOODNESS) sold a month or so ago. He is now the proud owner of a '89 Jeep Cherokee Pioneer. It's much nicer, and we can go 4-wheeling and camp in difficult to reach places. Yeah! :)

In case you can't read it, it says "General Wee" above the passenger side doors. Patrick's buddy, Dirty, spray painted it one day. Needless to say, our neighbors don't like us much. Oh well. :)

The guy that bought the car from Patrick said he liked the paint job, and "any girl that won't ride in it isn't the girl for me." While I think that is adorable...I wouldn't ride in it post-paint job. I'm all about being an individual, but that was a little too much for me. Patrick sure got a kick out of that car, though, and that's what matters.

My baby

Here is the picture of Patrick before he rode off in the rain on his motorcycle last Thursday. Isn't he cute with a plastic diaper?? :)

Happy Easter!

Just wanted to wish everyone a Happy Easter! Patrick is currently in Las Vegas for the Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Car Show. He's having a blast, and I'm sure he's loving the warmer weather. He's so crazy, he left with a caravan of hot rods Thursday morning. Patrick was riding his Triumph, and it was raining....HARD. So, my darling manly husband put a black plastic garbage bag on like a diaper to keep his butt and crotch dry, since his chaps don't cover those areas. I'll update this post with a picture, because, YES, I did take a picture. :) I'm so nice, I know. He said it was a cold ride in the rain, especially on his hands, but it was a fun adventure, which he greatly needed. He'll be back sometime Monday, so in the meantime, the kitties and I have the house to ourselves. :) Aaaaaaaaaahhhhhhh. It's so quiet!

Anyway, my Easter will consist of lots and lots of homework. I might make a nice dinner for myself, but we'll see if I get that far. It is 3 am, after all.

So, all the rest of you with normal schedules and such, have a wonderful, peaceful Easter.

Love ya!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Spring is awesome

I don't know if the green moss will show up very well,
but It's absolutely gorgeous on a tree in front of our house.
Super vibrant green, especially with the rain We're having.
Love it.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Come What May

I had wonderful conversations with family members today, and got to spend some time with Patrick's mom on Saturday. I love times in life when I can bond with family and share growing experiences with them. What a blessing our family is to us!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Stable Bow

I just wanted to share my sister-in-law with the other readers of this blog. She's freaking amazing in so many ways. She just posted some great thoughts on her family blog, Outnumbered 4 to 2. You should check them out. :)

Somehow, I lucked out and I have the greatest siblings ever. Jeremiah and Jonathan have married remarkable women who are the greatest moms ever. They both have the most adorable families ever.

My parents did a great job raising us. I know they're not always happy with our choices, but I hope they go to sleep at night knowing that they taught us well. As one of my favorite authors, Kahlil Gibran said in his book, The Prophet:

And a woman who held a babe against
her bosom said, Speak to us of Children.
And he said:
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's
longing for itself.
They come through you but not from
And though they are with you yet they
belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not
your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not
their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of to-
morrow, which you cannot visit, not even
in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek
not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries
with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your chil-
dren as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path
of the infinite, and He bends you with His
might that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer's hand
be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.

Thank you Mom and Dad.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

an overdue update...

It has been far too long since I last posted something on here...

Patrick's dad, Ken, and his wife, Paula, came into town for Patrick's sister, Lissy, and her husband, Dan's going away festivities. Wow, that was one CONFUSING sentence! Lissy and Dan went to Mexico for the Peace Corps. Ken and Paula make it out to Utah once or twice a year, so they came out for the party. They stayed with us for over a week while Patrick did some work on their RV. It was absolutely wonderful to spend that much time with them! I am so blessed to have amazing in-laws!! So, needless to say, I didn't do ANY blogging during that time. I pretty much sat around, ate the bountious amounts of food that Ken cooked for us, and listened to Paula do the dishes. This was a daily routine. And I loved it. :) I miss them already.

So, I guess we're back to normal life. I've been fighting a cold. Patrick is selling his little beater (anyone want an old Corolla that runs well???) and getting an old Jeep Grand Cherokee that we can use to go 4-wheeling and camping. Yeah! The weather is finally warming up a bit, and I can't wait to start planting flowers, tomatoes, and anything else that suits my fancy. Patrick can't wait to ride his motorcycle without getting all decked out in his leather.

We're both caught up on LOST. That's pretty cool, because now we can watch it together and talk about it without blowing anything cool that happened. :) Silly, I know, but it's still an update.

Monday, February 23, 2009

How Do I Love Thee?

Just a little (yet vastly important) thought:

What great food for thought. :)

Sunday, January 25, 2009


This picture makes me happy. Patrick is so handsome, and I love his smile. Whenever I need a bright little "pick-me-up" I look at this picture.

I love you babe!

Alison's Work Christmas Party

It's hard to type with a kitty sleeping on my lap...oops, she woke up and is off to find a more accommodating pillow.

It's snowing again. This is a double-sided coin. I miss the beautiful white coat over everything and the clean air. I don't miss driving in it or being cold all the time. Still...it's winter, and it's cold. Therefore, there better be snow to make me feel like I'm freezing for a reason!

I thought I'd post some pictures of Patrick and me from my work Christmas party a couple weeks ago:

Apparently we blinked at the wrong time....both of us! :) I cut Patrick's hair. Doesn't he look fabulous?? Okay, hot is a better word.

Better picture. (other than my blasted double chin!)

It was a fun party. We held it at Sky Box at the Gateway, and everyone got a $50 card to play games in there arcade. That was a blast. We ate pizza and nachos and some awards were given out. I love the people I work with. I think that's why I still enjoy my job after 1 1/2 years. And Patrick gets along with all of them, so it's great.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Yummy hubby!

What a sweetheart...

I came home from work a little early tonight, and Patrick was in the middle of making a surprise for me...

He made some AWESOME chocolate chip cookies. I ate 2 (I want another one!) and they were delicious!

Isn't that sweet of him?!?!

Thursday, January 1, 2009