Monday, December 31, 2012


*My youngest nephew, Kalanster, and his band performed at the House of Blues last night.  I was so proud of him.  I know he had a good time and they've come a long way.  Good for them!   

*Tonight's New Years Eve and my family & Levi are going out to dinner.  We're going to an ol' family fave.  It's pretty good Chinese food, but nothing like my beloved Wing Wah.

*Last night, on the way to Kalanster's gig, Levi & I were caught in the rain.  We were trying to locate Nicky Rottens, but ended up going to Panda Inn because of the rain AND it was A LOT closer.  I wouldn't have minded walking to find it, but barely getting over a cold and walking in the rain, doesn't make for a good combination.  I REALLY like Panda Inn.  Just walking in made me remember our Halloween date, when we ate there in our panda costumes.  Oh such a splendid evening, which makes me like Panda Inn more!  Besides, the food is SO good!! 

*I'm not gonna lie, I'm pretty ecstatic to finally have my first NYE kiss at midnight.  It only took 32 years, but I'm excited.  

*Joz, my friend and previous Relief Society counselor-turned RS President, got her mission call to Florida.  I'm so excited for her.  I know that she will be a wonderful and uplifting missionary!! I will miss her greatly! 

*We went to watch Les Miserables.  I was a lil hesitant to see it because I had dreamed of finishing the book beforehand, but if its taken me a year and a half to try, I guess it would just be better to watch it.  Oh man, I wanted to cry.  Everything that Mr. Red had told me about it was true, it was beautiful...captivating and marvelous.  I loved it.  I wish there was more on the priest, because I loved reading about him, but Jean Valjean was magnificent.  I loved him.  All the songs make more sense and mean more now that I know the stories behind the songs.   I think the song I love the most is "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables".  When Marius sings it, you can just feel the loss and hurt in his voice--or maybe I can hear it more in the musical soundtrack.  I love that song, but I also love "Bring Him Home"!  So beautiful.  All in all, such a beautiful soundtrack! LOVE IT!!!!  I can't wait to finish the book now because I know there's so much to the story than what we saw in the movie.  

*Watching Les Mis made me miss Mr. Red.  I haven't seen him since my birthday and soon enough he'll be moving.  I miss our talks.  I miss hearing his enthusiasm for Les Mis.  Since Bugs has been extremely busy and I haven't seen her since summer, he's been the closest thing to a best friend.  I just miss having someone I can talk to about everything and anything, and knows my heart w/o any explanation.  I wish I knew what was going with Bugs.  Kinda sucks.  

*I'm excited for the new year.  I'm excited for a fresh start.  I've been thinking about a word/motto that I can focus on, for 2013.  There's some changes in my life that I need to make, things to improve and enrich my life.  I'm still deciding on my 'focus word', but whatever it is, I know it'll help better my {daily} life.  I'm optimistic on the good that this new year will bring.  

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Christmas, with the fam!

My sweet, dear niece!
Oh how they love her so much!
Simi and some of his gifts.
Christmas was pretty fun with the kids.  I love spending Christmas with them, and it was particularly nice to also share it with Levi.  I'm glad the kids were happy with their gifts! I was completely happy with their gifts as well.  They were all SO perfect!  Christmas was a lil different this year, but I'm glad that love and togetherness still abound.  

Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas gift.

For the last few weeks, Levi has been gushing about how AWESOME my Christmas present was going to be.  I begged for hints, secretly not wanting them but hoping for tiny hints....he didn't & wouldn't budge!  Every day, for two weeks, I would get a daily count down.  It was like throwing salt on a wound!  A couple days before Christmas, I started to get worried that my enthusiasm wouldn't match his enthusiasm. I didn't want him to think that I didn't appreciate his gift, but I was nervous over his excitement.  He gave me two gifts, one that I could open with my family, then one that I would open at his place.  With a box of chocolate turtles, I received a 32gb memory card.  I wasn't exactly sure what it could be for, so I kept an open mind.  
I was handed a small, yet heavy gift box, at his place.  I opened all of his family's gifts first, and kept his  last.  I was nervous. As I ripped the wrapping paper, I saw in bright red letters the word, "REBEL"...then I knew....
I immediately started crying.  How in the world could someone be this giving??  I just couldn't believe it!! I wasn't expecting anything like this, AT ALL!! Part of me was thinking it was going to be a tablet, but man, I was totally blown away.  I just (and still can't) believe it.  I've been wanting a new camera for a while and just haven't made it a priority.  
Later that night, we went to Coronado and I started to put my Rebel to use....

I couldn't be more grateful for Levi being so understanding of my love of photography.  Ever since our 2nd date, he's been totally supportive of me always bring along my camera to take photos of our dates and adventures.  My heart is so full love and adoration for this sincerely thoughtful gift.  I don't know if I could ever adequately express my appreciation for this gift.  I feel like I can explore my talent of photography again and I couldn't be more thankful.  
Thank you Levi for giving me the tools to express myself artistically again.  I love you so much.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Lunch date at Mimi's with Mama!

Yesterday, I went out to lunch with Mama McK, to Mimi's Cafe [super delicious, by the way].  Oh man, I love her so much!  It was so good to have her heart here with me.  I love, appreciate and cherish our sweet relationship.  She's the mother heart that I greatly desire to have in my life.  I love the conversations that we have.  I miss our times at the Institute....her baking in the kitchen and me playing the piano (which reminded her of home).  Those were some of my most favorite times, aside from our long Tuesday afternoon conversations in the kitchen.  I miss her when she's not here, but I'm grateful for her handmade cards and texts.  
I don't exactly know how or why we have such a beautiful relationship, but I couldn't be more grateful for it.  I enjoyed our lunch together and just the in depth, heart-to-heart talk we had.  She asked some hard questions, but reassured me that it's because she loves me. I know she does...but I also know that Heavenly Father loves me, because He sent her to me. 

Sunday, December 16, 2012

As of late, in mid December...

*Mama McK is in town. Oh how I love this woman! I'm so excited to introduce her to my sweetheart!

*I need to finish my Christmas shopping this week. Man, oh man.... and then start my parents' Christmas shopping, too.  Oh man...

*I went to see The Hobbit yesterday.  Kinda interesting.  Something I wouldn't have seen on my own, but I'm glad I went to see it.  Kinda makes me want to watch Lord of the Ring now.

*My ward Christmas party was on Friday. It was nice to share it with Levi.  I'm thankful for this past year of being able to become better friends with those in my ward.  They are great people with kind hearts.  It was hard to see that at first, because I had (still have) such a great love for my friends back at CVYSA ward.  I'm grateful for the friends I have in PB!  I couldn't be happier!

*My heart hurts for those families affected by the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. How very sad and heart wrenching that they have lost a loved one, during this time of year.  What a selfish and evil act by this heartless individual!

*Today in church, a woman shared her experience as an occupational therapist for the military.  She shared the downside of her job, and all the horror stories she hears from soldiers who come back from war.  Tears flowed down her face as she expressed the hardship of hearing such terrible experiences.  It made my heart sad and grateful for those willing soldiers who leave the comfort of home, family & safety so that we can enjoy our freedom.  

*While singing in ward choir today, I became more grateful for my Savior, Jesus Christ.  Sometimes, I have to concentrate a lil harder on not crying while singing, because I just can't help but be touched by the lyrics.  
I have a great love for Jesus Christ.  I have come to know Him as my Savior and my dear friend.  When my grandmother passed away, while on my mission, and I was far from home, I didn't feel alone.  I knew that I had someone that knew exactly how I felt.  That was when I gained my testimony of the Atonement and Jesus Christ as my Savior. I'll always be grateful for that experience and the way I was able to grow at such a low moment in my life.  I'm truly thankful for this time of year that we, as a world, get to reflect on our Savior's birth.  Because He lived, we can all live again.  This I know to be true. 

Thursday, December 13, 2012

The best part of coming home...

All I wanted for the entire week I was in Seattle, was to be home with Levi.  It was closing in on a month of being apart, and my heart couldn't stand it any longer!  I asked him to pick me up from the airport, and he was more than willing to do so.  He was the first person I wanted to see as soon as I landed in San Diego.
Never in my life had I ever wanted to be on a plane as badly as I did!  My flight didn't leave until 6pm this past Sunday and I wanted the time to fly by quickly!  My 2 hour and 40 minute flight was cut down to 2 hours and 9 minutes. My heart skipped a beat!! I was restless on the plane! I was so nervous, too!  It had been a month since we last saw each other and all the butterflies had built up.... "Would he still think I was cute?" "Did I look different since he last saw me?"  "Out of sight, out of mind?"  I have no idea why I had such crazy thoughts, the anticipation had built up so much!
Ideally, as soon as I got off the plane, I wanted to duck into a restroom to refresh myself.  However, as soon as I started to walk away from the gate, as badly as I need to use the restroom, I just wanted to see him!  My backpack was bulky and heavy and my purse seemed to be about the same.  As I passed security, I saw him leaning against the wall, at the end of the hallway.  I couldn't stop the huge smile from stretching across my face!! I was ecstatic to see him!  He looked cuter than ever!  My heart wanted to burst! I walked faster towards him and then threw my arms around him and hugged him ever so tightly!! Everything felt the same....and my heart felt complete once again!  We went to get my suitcase, then headed back to the restroom.  He was the perfect gentleman and carried my backpack, suitcase and peacoat.  We went to get a bite to eat, since I only ate breakfast that day, and then he dropped me off at my place.
I never, ever, EVER want to spend that much time away from Levi, ever again.  It was hard and at times, it seriously sucked.  I was blessed to spend the next evening with him & my family as we walked around Christmas Circle in Chula Vista and then bowling.  I always have the best of times with him.
I love him dearly.  I'm so glad that I could spend the evening with him and my sister's family.  I'm especially glad that I could finally be open with my parents about our relationship.  My parents can be a lil overprotective/crazy and I needed to time it just right.  I'm so grateful that Levi was understanding through it all.  My Dad just wanted to know that Levi loved me and treated me right.  As far as that goes, my Dad has nothing to worry about....I'm the luckiest girl in the world. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Starbucks City: Seattle.

Let's just be honest here....  Seattle's definitely NOT a place I ever plan on going back to.  I was NOT a fan of the weather.  I mean, I always heard that it rained and at one point, I had the crazy idea of moving up there.


I wasn't a fan of Seattle. The weather sucked. It was ALWAYS grey and the sun only came out twice, in the middle of the day.  Coming from San Diego, I was NOT use to that AT ALL.

I love airplane photos!

The view from the [office] suite @ the Westin Seattle. 

The view from my suite. 

I was in Seattle for an Association of Moving Images Archivist (AMIA) conference. I was helping some friends out, so I got a very small glimpse into what the conference was about.  In the course of the week, I had a few hours to see Seattle.  I had about 2 hours to check out Pikes Place, which reminded me a lot of Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia.  It was nice, but so damn cold.

Basically, Seattle was so damn cold!! I wore my pea coat 80% of the time.  I wish I packed thermals.  Who knew it would be so cold?!?!

All in all, it was kinda fun.  But the entire time, I just wanted to be home with my sweetheart who was away for 3 weeks and came home the day after I left for Seattle.

Monday, December 3, 2012

A letter to Levi

Dear Levi,
Happy 2 Months! I wish I could do something more special than this, but unfortunately I'm in Seattle and you are in San Diego....1,269 miles apart {yep, I mapped it}. I hope we don't spend our next anniversary apart, especially since it'll be your birthday! 
I am immensely grateful that you are patient and do so well at communicating, with me.  I tend to fail at those, but I'm glad you pick up the slack.  I always hope that I make you as happy as you make me. 
I can't wait to see you on Sunday! You will be the very best part about coming home! I've always wanted to be picked up from the airport, by someone special and I'm so glad you could be that for me.  Prepare to be smothered, because I don't plan on letting you go for a very long time!  
I love you so much.  You reassure me when I feel inadequate and make me feel special on so many levels.  I know it's only been two months, but I'm thankful for every single minute that you are mine.  


Saturday, December 1, 2012

A letter, to the North Pole!

Dear Santa,
My niece has been telling me that I need to put my Christmas wish list together.  I haven't done one of these lists since I was in the single digit ages.  It's not that I don't necessarily believe in you in anymore, it's just that I hardly get the Christmas gifts that I hope for.  In fact, unless I buy my own gift for myself, I'm usually disappointed.  In the last decade, I've stopped getting my hopes up for Christmas gifts, which has put a damper on my Christmas spirit.  I know that's not good, so I'm sorry Santa for not having the Christmas spirit as much as I should. 
So to comply with my niece's desire, here is my Christmas wish list for this year....

Isn't she pretty? Oh I would love to get my hands on a DSLR again!

I think this would totally help me enjoy baking more.
It doesn't necessarily have to be an Apple, but I sure love the camera option.

 I just love cardigans and I've been wanting a dark purple & mustard cardigans.

I've finally come to realize that Disneyland is the happiest place on earth! I can't help but grin, ear to ear! 

I just love the heart pendants from Tiffany, especially this one!
Well Santa, those are most of the items on my Christmas wish list.  I know some items are a bit much, but I'm pretty sure I've been a good girl, this year.  I won't be disappointed if I don't get anything on this list.  This past month, I've come to learn that gifts aren't necessarily something I choose, but something I accept as a token of love and consideration.  Santa, whatever I find under my Christmas tree this year, I'll be grateful, because I've already received the best Christmas present ever - Jesus Christ.


Friday, November 30, 2012

Leavin' on a jet plane....

Tomorrow, I fly to Seattle.  I'm somewhat packed--just trying to go through it and lighten my suitcase.  
I'm getting nervous and antsy.  But more nervous than antsy. 
My Meniere's has been kicking my trash lately, so I REALLY REALLY hope that Dramamine does its job tomorrow!
I'm trying to remind myself how much I love to fly, once I'm in the air.  I'm not the biggest fan of take-off, but once we're stable in the sky, I'm ok.  I didn't enjoy flying for such a long time, but I'm grateful that I was finally able to enjoy it, when I had to fly home from my mission, ALONE. 

I've got all that I need....
Red Vines.
2 magazines.
"Friday Night Knitting Club" book.
My journal.
My iPod.
and my fave....
Cranberry juice!

I like to only ever drink Cranberry juice, when I'm flying.  It's my favorite juice, so it's like a sweet treat I get to enjoy and calm my nerves, while I'm flying. 

AHHHHHH.... man, I'm nervous!  I'm sure that once I'm on the plane, I'll be ok.  Ugh... stupid take off.

Seattle, here I come....

Thursday, November 29, 2012

How you like them apples?

I'm going to...

I'm pretty dang excited!! I've been wanting to go to Seattle for a few years now, so I'm stoked that work will be taking me there for a week.  As in this next week.  

I leave a day before Levi gets home from his 3 week trip.  

Yeah, I'm bummed because I've missed him T-E-R-R-I-B-L-Y!  It's bittersweet, but I'm still stoked for this cool experience, of being in Seattle.  I'll be helping out some friends with their film archival conference.  Since it's a conference, it's full of people who LOVE this stuff. I remember meeting the lead film archivist from UCLA, who apparently is really big in this field.... yeah, I had to match his enthusiasm while he went on and on and on about archiving.  
Other than that,  it's a very sweet set up.... I get paid, a free plane ticket, my own room & board and get to do a lil sight seeing of Seattle.  I'm a lil bummed that my sister won't be going this year, as she did two years ago to Philadelphia. I'll also be missing my stake Christmas concert that I've been rehearsing with for the past 2 months.  I hope they do well!
I can't wait to see/do: Pike Place Market, The Great Wheel (I'm hoping to ride this, since it'll be my first time on a ferris wheel.), Chihuly Glass Museum, go to Starbucks [which I'm sure I'll be doing a lot of drink runs here] and eat an apple.  
However, I. CANNOT. WAIT. to fly home! My sweetheart will be picking me up from the airport and I couldn't be more pleased!! I've missed him so much and to be honest, I've always wanted someone special to pick me up at the airport.  There's just something more....special about it!  I can't wait to wrap my arms around him and just hold him tight.   I've never been this patient before in my life--3 weeks turned into 4 weeks.... and sadly, I'll be missing our 2 month anniversary.  I'm grateful that he's patient, because it kinda rubs off on me. 


Well, I gotta go finish packing.... Hello Seattle! Can't wait to taste your apples!


My cousin Kurt and his family was in town for the Thanksgiving holiday.
I was FINALLY able to meet their 9 month baby, who I've been drooling over on Facebook! 
Seriously, this baby boy is so deliciously cute! 
My cousin was amazed that Mase felt immediately comfortable with me and didn't fuss at all.  I seriously couldn't get enough of this baby! I just wanted to hold him and squeeze him and kiss him all over!! He was such a fun and happy baby!! Oh man, I just love cute, cuddly & chubby babies!!!

I can't wait for my own babies, someday! 
Have I mentioned how much I love this baby?!?!  I couldn't get enough of him!
Oh my poor kids....

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

His & Hers


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Phone calls.

In my first [mission] area of Medford, New Jersey, I met a woman who just got married and moved to NJ with her husband.  It was my first Sunday {August 18, 2002} in the Medford ward when I met Sister A.  I'm pretty sure we were about the same age and it was so nice not being the only new face in the ward that day.  Over the next several weeks, I got to know her and her husband.  He was in the Air Force and they were waiting for a spot in military housing to open up.  It finally did, and they moved down to McGuire AFB in the North Hanover Ward.  After serving for 3 months in the Medford area, I was reassigned to Bordentown, NJ, which landed me in her ward.  I was overjoyed! I was stoked to see my friend again and pleased to know a familiar face in my new ward. Over the next several weeks, she announced that she was pregnant and that her husband would be going to off to war.  
I remember one Sunday morning, she walked into the chapel and looked terribly exhausted.  Her hair wasn't perfectly coiffed, as it always was and her eyes were puffy and swollen.  I greeted her and asked how she was feeling.  She tried her best to smile, and told us how she had been looking forward to her one and only phone call from her husband.  She had her phone readily available 24/7 and even slept with both the house phone & cell phone, just in case he should call.  As she was getting ready, that Sunday morning, she took the phone into the bathroom while she showered - still no call.  She continued to get ready for church.  It was while she was blow drying her hair, that he called and she had completely missed his phone call.  As she retold her experience, tears welled up in her eyes.  She didn't know when his next phone call would be....a few days, weeks or even months.  She was heartsick.  I remember feeling so sad for her.  I just wanted to give her a hug because here she was, pregnant, disheveled and alone....longing and missing her husband.  
As Levi's been out of town these last 2.5 weeks, I've felt a very tiny portion of what she was going through that Sunday.   Since I've started going out with Levi, there's only been two days that I haven't talked to him--both of which occurred this past week.  I've tried to be a very patient & understanding girlfriend, but sometimes my impatience gets the best of me.  I just miss him so much.  I just want to see him, touch him, feel him next to me and hear his voice in person.  This right here, is exactly why I could never date someone in the military.  I don't know how military spouses do it.  My heart goes out to them.  

T-minus 6 days. . . .

Monday, November 26, 2012

Right now....

I'm eating some damn hot Filipino noodles...
while my mouth is on fire...
sitting around the table with my three nephews...
joking around like ol' times...
listenin' to U2 & Hilary Duff...
hoping that a lot of ward members come to FHE tonight...
and looking forward to Christmas & Levi coming home.

Now that I've lost all feeling in my mouth, I think I'll have some homemade banana bread.

Friday, November 23, 2012

For the love of fluffy!

This makes me chuckle.
True story.

Thursday, November 22, 2012


I'm so thankful for....

*Abundant blessings from my Heavenly Father, ones that are so specific to my life that end up being beautiful tender mercies
*My wonderful family who loves me and puts up with my crazy antics. 
*My sweetheart Levi, who makes me feel like the luckiest girl in the entire universe.
*The sweet association of dear friends; where time nor distance haven't altered our friendship. 
*A home, a warm bed and food in my cupboard.
*The beautiful sound of music, the talent to sing and the wonder to appreciate it.
*My sister, Bec, who is like a mother and best friend combined.
*My nephews who let me tease them and dish it back, because they see me as a sister.
*My dear niece who has a sweet and kind heart towards everyone.
*My king size down comforter that's like a warm hug every time I use it. (thanks StephyPooh)
*The beauty of the beach.
*Mexican food and the ability to appreciate other cultures.
*The opportunity of mortality, the reassurance of Christ's gospel and latter-day revelation.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Facebook Photo: Found!

Came across these two photos on my friends' Facebooks....

I love this one of the Angel Moroni, atop the San Diego LDS Temple.  

This is a photo of the labor missionaries in Laie, Hawaii, circa 1960.
My Dad's in the bottom right corner, front row.  
I love hearing stories of my Dad's labor mission!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Photo Booth App!


I'd buy an iPhone just for that app! 

Monday, November 19, 2012

At Last!

Last week, while having Thanksgiving dinner at my aunt's senior living apartment,  the dj's were playing a lot of love songs from past decades.  The first song played was, At Last, by Etta James.  I always joked that when I got married that would be my wedding song, because I was finally getting married, at last.  However, when I heard it that evening, the song was no longer funny to me, it started to really touch me...

At last 
My love has come along
My lonely days are over
And life is like a song
Oh yeah yeah
At last
The skies above are blue
My heart was wrapped up in clover
The night I looked at you
I found a dream, that I could speak to
A dream that I can call my own
I found a thrill to press my cheek to
A thrill that I have never known
Oh yeah yeah
You smiled, you smiled
Oh and then the spell was cast
And here we are in heaven
for you are mine...
At Last

I couldn't stop the smile that stretched across my face.  My heart and mind immediately thought of Levi.  This man makes me the happiest that I've ever been.  I've never had a man love me as much as he does.   He's just so unbelievably generous with his time, attention and affection.  I love this man dearly and I'm so thankful that this song is no longer a joke to me, but a true statement of my feelings.  

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Workin' some wood!

When I first started talking to Levi, he mentioned that he made wood toys with his Dad on the weekends.  They were gettin' ready for an arts & crafts convention in New Mexico.  At first, I thought he was making little wood toys that are found in dollhouses.  I didn't think much about it til I visited his Dad's house and saw him at work.  Man, I was blown away!!!  It was NOTHING like I had thought! Nothing remotely close!

I was completely wrong and I was taken back by the beauty of the wood toys he & his Dad had created.  I wish I had taken pictures of all the wood toys I saw that first night.  Man, they were just so....beautiful!  I loved each piece and in my heart, I was hoping and wishing my future children could have toys as beautiful as the ones I saw.  There were wood bulldozers, tractors, helicopters, airplanes...a lot of other farming and construction equipments that I can't recall the names of....but he had the whole lot of them.  Not only were they beautiful, but they were fully functioning and worked together.  Seriously, I was in love!
I've always marveled at the craft of woodworking.  I think it's such a beautiful art--to take a piece of wood and shape it into something, even more so, something beautiful.  I love the fact that Levi knows about this artform and has this talent of creativity.
As soon as he mentioned woodworking, I immediately wanted a box.  I wasn't sure how to tactfully ask him, but I did.  I cannot wait to see the box that he'll create for me.  I don't know exactly why I'm so enamored with the idea of having a handcrafted wood box.  Maybe it stems from when my friend was dating her then boyfriend, and he knew he wanted to propose to her.  So he went home to his Grandfather and they created a jewelry box for her, and he proposed with the ring inside of it.  I was completely captivated with that gesture of love and hoped that someday a special man would make a box for me, as well.
I'm so fascinated by this beautiful talent.  I just wish I could watch them cut, shape and sand the wood into the pieces that they create.  Thankfully, Levi & his Dad are perfectly okay with that and luckily, I had the opportunity to watch them work last weekend.  Trust me when I say that I've been making a mental note of ALL the things I would LOVE for Levi to make for me.  Let's just say I've already got a "HoneyDo" list of wood things that I'd like him to [help me] create.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Eternal Gratitude for Mama McK.

I love this woman SO much! She is the mother heart that I've needed for so long.   We are so similar in many, many ways.  She's adopted me as one of her daughters and I'm truly grateful for the relationship we share.  She loves me to no end, sets me straight when necessary and counsels me in the best way possible.  Even though 867 miles divide us, physically, I carry her in my heart every day.  I think about her often.  I think about her whenever I'm cooking.  Earlier this year, during one of her visits to her son here in town, we went out for Pho and she gave me ceramic tile with a quote from Pres. Hinckley.  In her honor, I placed it in my kitchen.  I cherish all of our times we spent in the kitchen of the Institute building, during her mission.  Many teaching moments went on there, as well as tender moments of listening and counseling.  These days, I enjoy our phone calls and her handmade cards she sends me.  {To be honest with you, she has NOTHING on Hallmark! Her cards are the BEST!}  
I love her dearly and I'm truly grateful for a Heavenly Father who placed her in my life.  I couldn't be more blessed to know her and be loved by her.  My cup runneth o'er...  ♥

Friday, November 16, 2012

Dear Friday...

Dear Friday!
I'm thankful you're here.  It's been a rather long week....yet in a way, not really.  I'm happy that you bring the weekend with you.  I've got a rather special friend flying in this weekend.  I'll tell you more about this special friend, later.   I'm also glad you're finally here because that means that my sweetheart will be home in about 2 weeks.  I miss Levi so much.  He's easy on the eyes and makes me laugh A LOT--my two favorite things about him.  What else..... I can't believe that Thanksgiving will be here in less than a week and that Black Friday is in one week.  Man, I can't stand that day, so forgive me if I'm not a fan of you next week.  Well, I've gotta get going, I need to go buy a phone charger and use my gift card at Kohl's.  

P.S. Have I mentioned how much I've enjoyed spending time with my nephew, Kalanster?  Man, he's been so dang funny lately! Plus, I love talking to him about music and listening to all the new music that he's written.  He's such a funny and fun kid.  I love him so!


Thursday, November 15, 2012

Thursday, too soon.

I can't believe that Thanksgiving is in a week! ONE WEEK!!! 

Where has the time gone?!?!  I feel like October went by in a flash and now November is flying by too!!  In a way, I hope November flies by quickly so that Levi comes home sooner.  In the same breath, I'm ok with it going by slowly.  I'm not ready for Christmas to be here....not at all.  

However, back to Thanksgiving..... 

I sure do love Thanksgiving. I love the togetherness.  I love Cranberry sauce.  I love the fact that it's so American.  I love it all!!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Just a bit bummed....

Yesterday was kind of a bummer day....more like, a bummer ending.

I thought it was a great day, when it started out with news from a cousin who'll be in town, with her family.  I'm still so excited for it because I haven't seen them for about ten years.  Plus, she now has 3 boys that are too adorable for words.  Her baby boy is deliciously cute and I just want to hold and squeeze him, a thousand times over.

Last night, I caught word that a good friend was going to be in my neck of woods.   In fact, right here where I live...cause she was going to be hangin' out with my oldest nephew.  I was bummed that I didn't get an invite to hang with them.  Eh, let's just be brutally honest here.... I was sad, yet again, that my nephew didn't feel the need to invite me to hang with them.  They're old friends from my YSA ward and I've missed them a lot over the last year.  I guess I was even more sad that this friend, who says we need to hang out more, doesn't even call or text when she's in my neck of woods (or in my very complex).  I guess some friendships change....  Out of sight, out of mind.

I thought my evening would have picked up, by a certain phone call.  But that never came.

Oh well.....

Let's hope for a better today.

Before & After.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Imagine Dragons....

I love this song.
A lot.
I hope you will someday love it too.

Enjoy ♥

Coveting... bad!
Tonight I was guilty of it....but just a lil bit.
I was shooting some pics of tonight's FHE, with Ame's Canon camera and man, I was LOVIN' it!! Photography is SO different behind the lens of an SLR, especially a DSLR!  I forget how much I LOVE LOVE LOVE photography til I'm behind the lens of a real camera, not just a point and shoot.  Photography is my love and my passion and I haven't been doing it much lately, which makes me kinda sad.  Hopefully, if the weather's nice this weekend, I'll go out shooting with Tat's Canon.
I'm a Canon girl, always have been, since my first AE-1 that I "borrowed" from my Mom.  My first photo shoot was when I was 10, and took several photos of Barbie's wedding with Ken.  There's just something magical about being behind the camera. I LOVE IT.
When I got home from FHE, I couldn't stop thinking about Ame's camera.  I know there's a difference between "Needs" and "Wants"--somehow, when it comes to photography, it's more of a "need" to own this beauty:

I know, I's not a Canon.  I feel like a traitor! But I can't help it! It's RED!! How many RED DSLR's have you seen?? Oh it's just so pretty! And I really really like the features! Oh man, I think I definitely need this camera!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Outta sight, [but DEFINITELY NOT] outta mind.....

Levi will be out of town for the next 3 weeks.  
I'm going to miss him. A LOT.  
(like: A LOT x 1000.)
I can't wait til December.

Service & Stake Presidents.

(typed on Sunday, Nov. 11)
Today, I attended my home stake's conference, in Chula Vista.  It was going to be a memorable one since Pres. Clove and his counselors were going to be released.  Before the conference started, I walked out to the foyer trying to put the finishing touches on the ti-leaf lei I made for Pres. Clove as well as the new stake president.  As I approached the chapel doors, I asked the usher for a program.  Before Bro. Dixon gave me a program, he first asked if I prayed today.  After I answered, he cheerfully gave me a program.
I didn't know that a few minutes later, he would be called to the stand to as our new stake president for Chula Vista.  Oh man, I was humbled as he approached the stand still wearing his white "Usher" pin on his suit coat. I couldn't help but think of...
"But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant"
Matthew 23:11

Who knew that the brother standing at the door, passing out programs, would be called and sustained as  our next stake president?!  (I'm thankful I had an answer for his question, considering he'll be the one to sign off on my temple recommend.)  When I saw Pres. Dixon walk up to the stand (I was already sitting on the stand, with the choir), and then approach the pulpit with his "Usher" pin, I was sincerely humbled.  I couldn't help but think of how we can all serve, wherever we are needed, no matter who we are and what we are.  

And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
Matt. 25:40

I'm sad to see Pres. Clove released.  He has been such a wonderful stake president.  I love him dearly because he has always been so kind to me, and got to know me on a personal level.   He wasn't a distant stake president, but felt more like a friend.  After I shaved my head, he even asked to rub it.  How many stake presidents do that?!   He always had such a big, cheerful smile which radiated and warmed others.  I'm truly grateful that I've had the opportunity to receive his counsel and hear his heartfelt testimony of Christ and His gospel.  I looked forward to every opportunity to hear him speak.  His stories inspired a goodly change.  I will surely miss hearing him speak.  It's been a wonderful 9 years of service.  Thank you President Clove.  

Sunday, November 11, 2012

The Winders @ House of Blues!

My youngest nephew, Kalanster and his band played at the House of Blues last night!! 
(That's him, on the far right) 
I'm so very proud of him!!! I think he's such an amazing kid!  I love when he likes to show me new music that he's written.  He's picked up the guitar so well and his voice is really smooth and mellow to listen to.  I'm excited that he was able to play there, last night....and more so that he'll be playing there again in a month!!!  I definitely think this kid is going places!!  I couldn't be more grateful to have a front row seat to his life.  I'm so SO ecstatic for his musical accomplishments!!!

Friday, November 9, 2012

My life....starting Nov. 12:

My 3 week plan, pt. 1:

I've never watched Star Wars.  I saw the one that came out in 2005 and a roommate had a Star Wars marathon, but I didn't really watch them.  I'm kinda excited to see what the fuss is all about.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Emergency Preparedness.

Lately, I've been feeling like my family needs to be more emergency prepared.  Since Hurricane Sandy hit, the feeling has hit home even more!  I served my mission in New Jersey and Sandy has affected those that I know.  I've been thinking a lot about what if a disaster struck here in San Diego....would I be prepared?  More so, are things prepared for my parents, as well?  It scares me a bit, because I know that I'm not as prepared as I need to be.
Late in 2007, when wildfires were popping up all over in San Diego, we had to prepare ourselves in case an evacuation notice came.  I was scared, because I wasn't ready to lose my home and be in the middle of an emergency situation.  I remember how scary the sky looked, because at high noon, it was a creepy shade of deep orange and grey.  My family quickly packed bags of clothes and important/valuable items.   We also emptied out our cupboards of food, into several huge containers.  My Mom had important documents in her locked, fireproof case, already in the van.  In an hour, we were ready to go, in case we received a reverse 911 call.  Our area was on high alert til the next morning.  I was relieved when the alert went down and we were able to relax, a little bit.
The fact that I've been having the feeling to be more prepared worries me.  I'm grateful for the feeling, because it's like a voice of warning.  Over breakfast this morning, my Mom mentioned that my Dad has been feeling like we should start working more on our emergency preparedness.  It hit me, when she mentioned that.  I need to act more on these feelings and get things going.  Luckily, I already have been extra food when I go to the grocery store, however, I know there's more things I need to get.  Thank heavens for the Provident Living website on  I'm so thankful that my church makes an important emphasis on being prepared for an emergency.

"...if ye are prepared ye shall not fear."
Doctrine & Covenants 38:30

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Warm my heart!

Yesterday, I was going through serious Levi withdrawals.  I know I just saw him on Saturday, as well as on Monday when I took him well as yesterday, when I took him some Kalua Pig & Taro for lunch.  Nonetheless, I was missing him oh so badly.  Especially since his 3 week trip is coming up this next Monday.  I told Levi what was troubling me and I tried to be hopeful and patient for our date this Friday.  Fortunately/Unfortunately, his plans with his Dad changed and his evening was we were able to spend sometime together.  I didn't care what we did, as long as I could see him and spend time with him, I would be as happy as a bee! (Are bees really happy?)
I arrived at his house and saw the light on in the garage, so I went over to see if he was outside with his Dad working on (wood) toys.  As I walked up, his Dad greeted me with a big smile and a chuckle in his voice.  Before I could finish saying, 'hello', Mr. B started to tell me that I'm always welcome in their home.  He said that he's noticed how happy Levi has been and knows that I make Levi very happy, so he can't help but be grateful for the change that I've brought to his son's life.  
Oh man, I cannot tell you how hard I had to fight back tears!  My heart was warmed and I felt an overwhelming sense of appreciation.  Mr. B went on to say that I'm more than welcome to come over to their house anytime I wanted, even while they were working in the garage, or if I wanted to come over while Levi wasn't there, I was more than welcome to....even if I wanted to come over to cook dinner for him before he got home from work, I could do so.   Mr. B was so happy that I made his son happy, but I just wanted him to know that it was a definite two-way street.  I told him that Levi makes me just as happy, as well.   I was just so touched by what Mr. B had to say and just the warm welcome and invitation I had in their home...that meant a lot to me.  I know how happy I've made Levi, but just having it confirmed by his Dad meant so much more.  
I love this man so much.  No other man has ever treated me the way he does.  He goes above and beyond to make me happy, without any expectations.  I know how busy he is, during this last week before this trip, but he gave up a free night of relaxing to spend it with me.   That meant so much to me because I needed it more than he'll ever know.   He puts up with my VERY tearful episodes with sensitivity and tenderness.  He communicates with me when I'm upset and explains things so I understand and see where he's coming from.  He's the poster boy....golden boy of patience.  I can't help but think of how incredibly LUCKY I am to have found him, but more so, that he could like & love someone like me.   Since the first day I met him,  I've never felt judged or inferior in any way.  I can be open and honest with him about everything, and I trust him completely.  Heaven knows that I am far from perfect, and unfortunately Levi's seen some of that this past week...but lucky for me, he doesn't love me any less.  I just want to make him unbelievably happy because he already does that for me.  ♥

Monday, November 5, 2012


I think...

I need to start wearing more broaches.
I should start wearing more skirts & dresses.
I need a new hairstyle.  

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Dia de los Muertos

On Friday night, we cruised down to Old Town to check out the Dia de los Muertos festivities.  

I LOVE this holiday.  I love all the sugar skulls and just what this holiday represents.  My sister and I are fascinated by it and enjoy it all.  This year, it was fun to share it with Levi.

Levi and I checked out several of the alters and some of the DdlM festivities that were going on around Presidio Park.  It was so neat to see, as well as all those who dressed up for the occasion.  

Alters, to remember dear loved ones. 
As we waited for our table, at the Old Town Mexican Cafe, my niece had her face painted
She was pretty excited for it!  I'm not gonna lie, I kinda wanted my face painted too! :)

I'm stoked that my friend Tat was able to cruise down as well
Dia de los Muertos is just one of those holidays that it's better to experience with a group of people.  Besides, it's Old Town, there's just a lot of cool things to check out!  I love it.  Dinner was FANTASTIC and I LOVE LOVE LOVE mariachis!!  Seriously, I think my heart is half Mexican!  I'll have to explain in detail why I love mariachis so much...but for now, I leave you with this lil gem:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...