Happy Halloween!

Hope it's full of candy, spook, Halloween Pandora, good friends, chili & cornbread, costumes, and hocus pocus!
i LOVE this holiday!


Birthday Girl!

See this beautiful lady I am with? 
TODAY is her 23rd birthday! And we haven't been together on her birthday in 3 years! So I am quite excited that I get to see her for at least a little bit on this special day! I am also glad that she is back from her mission and back as my roommate again! Oh, how I missed her for the last 2 years in Provo! So, so happy!
Kate is such a loving and caring friend. Although my life is crazy with a new job and hers is crazy with trying to adjust back to school, spending hours in the library, boys, and friends... there will be days where we will just sit and have really great conversations for a long period of time. I always love the advice she gives me because I know that it is from her heart because she genuinely cares for me and wants me to be happy. After knowing this girl for 5 years, she really knows me and knows my needs. I can always trust her with anything that goes on in my life. I even think sometimes she is speaking through the Lord to me. It's amazing how in tune with the spirit this woman is. She really is fantastic and can make me feel better or give me some great insights.
Kate is a hard worker! She graduates in April (YAY!) so she is busy trying to finish up her schooling and student teaching next semester! She spends so much time on her school work, I don't know how she has time for anything else! All I know is that once she graduates, she will be a FANTASTIC teacher!
Kate gets distracted SO easily (ya, I know I said she's a hard worker but when she puts her mind to it, she can do it) But guess what? I love this about Kate. For instance, she'll be saying one thing while trying to do another task (like cooking for instance) and she will totally space that she was cooking food and in the middle of an intense conversation she'll stop, freak out, and run to the kitchen. it cracks me up! although sometimes i need her to stay focused, i can't help but laugh every time.
Kate is hilarious! I have totally missed her sense of humor these past few years! But when she is on one, she totally cracks me up. She is just so random, spunky, and has a contagious laugh! I know that I can always count on her to put a smile on my face and make me laugh with her randomness! She is currently in an acting class so even though she is trying to be totally serious in her monologues she practices, she cracks me up!
Kate is so loving. When she meets new people, she instantly makes them feel loved. I love that about her. She isn't fake either. She genuinely loves people and I have never heard her talk poorly about anyone regardless of any situation (ok, besides the boys that are jerks to me, but she's just watching out for me) People just love her and she loves them. It's so easy for her to make new friends and instantly feel comfortable around them.
Kate has gotten me into loving plays. We just went to one this past week, but I LOVED it! And so I think she will be my play date. :)
Kate will be up for random, spontaneous activities like riding bikes around Provo one afternoon. And she'll be a total dork with me. We would be making noises like we were on motorcycles while riding on the sidewalks passing by people. But it's okay. We are children. And not embarrassed.
Kate is GORGEOUS. How many people do you know, that are red heads, who are just naturally and absolutely beautiful? Oh ya, that's my best friend Kate. Seriously, she is such a gorgeous girl!
Kate is an example to me. She is one dedicated girl in this gospel. She served an 18 month mission in Palmyra, NY and I know that she misses it every day! But she was a remarkable missionary! She loved all the experiences she had and loved the people she served. Those people in New York were SO lucky to have her in their lives. She loves this gospel so much! She gets up early every morning to study her scriptures and write in her journal. She continually is studying and learning and serving and loving everything this gospel has to offer in our lives and I look up to her for that. I only hope I can be like her someday.
Kate is part of the freshman crew. Those people hold special places in my heart in and of itself. I couldn't have survived my freshman year without them, and Kate was a big part of that. I love them with all my heart and soul. I hope we never loose touch with each other because they are like my family that has grown and developed over the years.
Last, but certainly not least, Kate is my best friend. 5 years, going on 6 years, she has been a part of my life. While it was so hard not to have her around for 2 years, we still kept in touch over emails weekly and she even was genuinely interested in what was going on in my life. She would even lift me up during those long and lonesome months when I first felt alone when she left. She has been the one solid friendship I have had since I started my life in Provo back in 2006 and words can't even describe how grateful I am for her. I know it was by no accident that the Lord put her in my life exactly at that time in my life. She has done so much for and has been there for me through any kind of situation. I can always count on her for anything I need, I know she would drop whatever she was doing if I really needed her. She has helped me grow and become the person I am today. I am so lucky and blessed to call Kate one of my best friends. I hope we can always stay close as our lives will go different ways and change within these next few years. She is one in a million. I love everything that makes Kate, Kate. 

So my dear friend, I hope you have the most fantastic and special 23rd birthday ever! Thank you for being born and coming to BYU and being in my ward that year and becoming one of greatest friends! I feel so lucky to have you in my life! I love you! Have a happy birthday! :)


Dessert Nights and Weddings.

I love these two things so why not combine them into one blog post? Good idea, Ashley.

So, if I haven't mentioned it yet, I am on the dating committee in my ward (yes, laugh it up. i was already laughed at when I got the calling. can't say that's ever happened to me before) However, I LOVE my committee! They are all so fun and have great ideas so our activities aren't awkward. It's great though. We decided to kick off this committee with a little dessert party one Sunday night. Here we are, as happy as can be, cause it was quite the success. Lots of people showed up, treats were good, and there was flirting involved. Point Dating Committee.
After that little shin dig, we headed our way to this little misses birthday celebration! I haven't seen Deidre in FOREVER so it was good to have a little catch up time with this cute lady! I love her lots.
Later that week, this GORGEOUS lady got married!! She seriously looked SO happy and so pretty that night when I went to her reception! Congrats Mrs. Heather Gines!! 

And with EFY friends marriages, comes EFY mini-reunions. Only a few people were able to come, but one of the most important ones who showed up was Miss Kaycie Q Foster! It was fun to spend a little time with her and the hubby! I miss seeing her on a daily basis. Blasted SLC.
And of course, it's always a great time with these 2 pretty girls! Weddings are such a happy time so I love the chances I get to go to receptions with some great friends! Congrats to another friend on her happy marriage! :)


scary much?

On a beautiful and sunny day in Utah, I ventured up to visit the Reeve's in Alpine to pick up the rest of my belongings I stored at their house over the summer. As I am going along on the freeway, just singing to the tunes on the radio, going about 65 mph, in the midst of construction and a fairly congested highway, I could not see what was in front of me all of a sudden! It took me a second to realize that the hood of my car slammed up and hit my window, leaving me with no sight of what is in front of me. freak out a little? ya. remind you of the movie Tommy Boy? ya, I've heard that too many times while telling this story. And let me tell you, it's a WHOLE lot funnier when it's in a movie and not happening to you. just saying. anyways, somehow I calmly and safely was able to cross one lane and pull to the side of the road. cue breakdown. and this sweet man pulled over with his huge semi truck to secure my hood and make sure I was okay. 
honestly, i have never been so terrified in my life. i cried... ok, more like sobbed the entire way to the Reeve's house, just full of so many mixed emotions. all i had were my mirrors to look behind me and I hear this huge semi truck honking at me as he was coming close to my car because i was slowing down wayyyy fast. what else could I do?! It was honestly a miracle that I didn't hit anyone with how busy the highway was and how quick I had to slow down, not to mention the never ending construction going on. All I know was that I was definitely being watched over.

And even though I wasn't hurt, my poor Dora (my car of course) was hurt. :( The hood had to be completely replaced along with my windshield since the hood just smacked it! Luckily, my window had a crack from the beginning of this spring that extended half way across the glass so I had to replace it anyways (there just wasn't as many cracks as I now had) 
 if you look close enough, you can see all the cracks... especially the one on the top in the middle. 

But ya, it sucked and cost just a littttttle bit of money (ya right, it was a lot of money.) But Dora is fixed, I nor anyone else got hurt, and everything is great now! 
It only took me a few weeks to get the courage to back on the freeway again. NBD. 

dear little brother,

you can stop growing up now.

no, you can't drive on the roads. i'm taking away your license.
no, don't talk to girls. they still have cooties. 
and even though i know you have good looks cause we're related (duh), stop turning into such a stud.
But you can still crack me up with your temper in the sports you play. That's still fine. Just don't embarrass me too much.
and promise you'll stay my little brother forever, k?
love always,


Callie Cakers.

after 22 years of life, I have only missed out on ONE of her days of birth [until this year.] 
and i'll be honest with you, it makes me so sad that I am not with her today to celebrate! i LOVE celebrating birthdays so it's a little weird for me not to be with her for the first time in a long time. 
Each year, I have played the role of the Mom. Decorating, making her breakfast, getting all the presents from the family back at home and wrapping those as well as mine, and making sure she has the BEST birthday ever. 
This beautiful, caring, amazing, loving, funny, dedicated, talented, kind sister of mine is turning 22 today! I remember when just she turned 1 (well, thanks to our home videos, which are PRICELESS and I will ned to upload those bad boys some time.)

  I just think this sister of mine is FABULOUS! I have watched her grow over the years and has become this amazing woman and an example to me. She has such a loving heart and I know I can always turn to her for anything!
 Callie married her best friend, Brandon, back in May. She has sadly left Utah, but has begun a new adventure with her hubby out in Minnesota! Yes, I miss her every day, but I am so excited to see what the future will bring for these two lovebirds. I am so proud of my sister and so happy that she has married someone who is SO perfect for her.

Callie has been such a blessing in my life! I am so grateful to have a sister that I was able to grow up with and grow close with. She isn't only my sister, but my best friend. 
Let me tell you just a few reasons why I love this girl so much: 
Callie has been my support system. No matter what is going on in my life, she wants to know. Even in her new busy life as a married woman, she will be there for me when I need advice on anything. She is there to help, to listen, to provide direction, and most importantly, to love me. I couldn't ask for anything more than that. 
Callie LOVES to have fun! She has always been this spunky girl that is full of life! She can bring a smile to your face just by being around her. But if you are ever in the mood to be spontaneous and random, she will be there to join along.
Callie will put up with my dumb jokes. Sometimes (if I'm lucky), she'll join in on them with me and then we become these annoying girls who can't stop laughing at something so ridiculous. But those are the greatest ones. Or she'll just laugh at what I say and make me feel better. Bottom line: at least she thinks I can be funny.
Callie is a dedicated girl! I think we get that from my Mom's side of the family. Since she's been married, she has started working full time! This girl knows when it's time to work and when it's time to be lazy. I know she has to be the best employee because she likes to be busy and to get things done.
Callie will be as immature as me. Even though we are the 3 oldest, I sometimes think we can still be the most immature. We aren't embarrassed though. There is always a time and a place for it, and she will always be there ready to join in.
Callie is a loving wife. Every time I talk to her, she will say the sweetest things about Brandon. Their wedding day was so magical. You could see by looking at the two of them just how in love and happy they are to be with each other for eternity. She wants to always be by his side to care for him.  I am so happy they have found each other. 
 Callie LOVES the Braves. When we were both home this summer, we went to 3 games in a week. And, she and Brandon delayed going to Minnesota just one more day so they could go to one last game at Turner Field this summer. She will understand how I am feeling during a game, whether I am stressed, frustrated or excited. While watching the last game of the season, she called me towards the end because she "needed to be with me" during this stressful time. I'm glad she's as crazy of a Braves fan as I am. 
 Callie is part of my sister trio. I am so grateful and lucky to have 2 amazing and beautiful sisters in my life who are my best friends. I love spending time with these two. 
 Callie is GORGEOUS. I couldn't believe that was my baby sister walking out of the temple as a married woman! She is so beautiful inside and out! 
 Callie LOVES her family. It is always such a treat to be together these days so we like to make the most of it. She'll be there to support us in everything we do, whether it's at a swim meet, scrimmage football game, baseball game, or major events in our lives such as graduation. She loves to be with the family. You can tell it's one of the most important things in her life. 
 Callie loves to cook! I miss her around here because we would always make meals together. And now after being married, she has been cooking more than ever before! I can only imagine how good her food taste! Brandon is one lucky man!  
 Callie has good taste in clothing. But in all seriousness, this girl knows how to dress. She can pretty much pull of anything and look great. That takes skill.
A lot has changed since her last birthday. She got married and has moved to a new city! Although I miss her every day, I am so proud of the person she has become! I love that we still remain close to one another and will talk every day (sometimes thanks to email during work). But I am glad that she still keeps me in her life no matter how far away we live from each other or how busy her days will get.

I love you so much sister! I wish I could be there today to celebrate this happy day with you! 


just having one of those moments where i miss this incredible experience.  
and, might I had, this is a pretty sweet photo huh? props to one of my boys for being quite the photographer. 


time with the trio.

let's just start off by saying that i love becky renae and nicole erin. 
sometimes being a grown up stinks because we can't hang out as much these days with our busy lives.
but have no fear, cause there was actually one FULL week where we saw each other every day... and we LOVED it.

one night Becky, Nicole and I decided to invite ourselves over to my brothers to hang out and grill pizzas (clearly something we have never done before)
as we were driving, we thought the mountains looked really pretty so we stopped for the photo opportunity, but you can't even see it in this picture...i just like this one of the 2 of them. 
my friends are so hot. duh. 
we had fun pretending to be little chef's and pro pizza makers by tossing our dough up in the air. you can tell just by looking at our faces, it was a success. 
and once we added all of our ingredients, we put those bad boys on the grill and patiently waited for them to be done. 
and despite the weird bubbles coming from our pizzas, they were delicious! some of the best pizza i've ever eaten (but let's get real... I just love any kind of pizza)

And we got to spend a lot of time together over the weekend.
 We decided last minute to go to the Rooftop Concert series in downtown Provo and it just so happened that Mindy Gledhill was performing too! We met up with their HC from EFY in Provo, Mr. Ross White (aka Ross Cat) and just became the greatest of friends. The music totally reminded me of the south and I was just soaking it all in! We all loved it! 
 The next night I went with these 2 to the BYU Football Game. Clearly, they have been converted to Cougars. And thanks to Ross, we also were able to enjoy a delicious cougar tail. 
pretty much, i just love these two gorgeous ladies in my life. 


in case you didn't know....

tennis is one of my most FAVORITE things to do.
Sadly it's not as popular out west so not many people play.
But Nicole was a good sport and decided to come play with me for a bit. 
It was a good thing we decided to go on the last warm-ish day of the year. (better than never right?) i'm hoping I'll get a few more play times in before the weather really turns for the worst.
It's sad I haven't played in MONTHS, so I was extremely happy to get back on that court and play for a little bit before it got too dark for us to see. [Thanks Timp High School Track Meet for providing us with some light.] 
bottom line: it was a good time.
if anyone ever wants to play some tennis, call me up.