Friday, December 5, 2014

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

This household is all about waiting till AFTER Thanksgiving to start Christmas.  So you better believe the day after Thanksgiving, we started busting out the Christmas spirit!!
Tyler was bound and determined to get a Christmas tree, even though we'll be gone for Christmas. So we bought a life one from SAMS for like $20.  I have one happy husband! 
Christmas lights are so magical! 
Here is our tree before decorations. It's got character. :) 

My cute snowman light

Our Christmas mantle decorations 
We LOVE candles around here, and Balsam and Cedar might be our favorite scent. Mmmmm! Between our live tree and this candle, our house is smelling pretty good these days! 
 To wrap up the month, we got to celebrate by teaching the combined YW/YM 5th Sunday lesson on Eternal Marriage! Woo! Haha.  Let me tell you, co teaching with your spouse is not easy. It was hard to plan it together, but I think it came together well. I used Barbies as part of the lesson, and I think they were a hit! Haha

For Family Home Evening, we decorated our Christmas Tree!! Every year growing up, my parents bought us a new ornament to put on the tree so by the time we grew up and got married we would have ornaments of our own to put on our tree. I have to say, I got pretty teary eyed pulling out my ornaments out of their boxes.  I have a lot of memories from growing up and playing with/finding my ornaments, so I'm glad to have them on my own tree <3 

We had YW activity of decorating ginger bread houses.  I got to decorate one with Keasha. We had a lot of fun! 

I decorate my door for the holidays.  Since my students don't all celebrate Christmas, I decided to do more of a winter theme.  I had my students help cut out the snowflakes too. 

Tyler loves looking at Christmas lights, so we drove around one night and looked at the lights in our neighborhood.
This one was our favorite:

Poor Frosty is feeling overwhelmed by the season ;)

People in Ohio love Ohio State!

These last two cracked us up. The struggle is real. 
I think their rope lights fell down or something. 

This tree looked like they spun a web in the tree of lights. Looks cooler in the picture than in real life. It's still cool though. I mean it's still cool, it's a glowing bush. And it's Christmas. And we love Christmas! 

Thanksgiving 2014

Since Michael's wedding was so close to Thanksgiving, we didn't do anything crazy for it. We originally thought we would spend Thanksgiving in Utah, but because of work and school and such we had to come back.  So Tyler's parents ended up going to Florida for Thanksgiving (which sounds so much better than Ohio).  Luckily, Elizabeth and Andrew live so close so we got to spend Thanksgiving with them.
Thursday morning, we slept in a little bit and watched the Macy's Day Parade. Then we started cooking.  We really underestimated the amount of time it takes to make the food we were supposed to make. So by the time we cooked everything and then drove to Columbus, we were a little later than planned. But it ended up being ok. (I think. Right, Elizabeth? :))
 This is all the stuff we brought just to spend the night.  Haha. Have to be prepared.

Tyler improvised to keep our food warm during the drive. It worked! 

I didn't get a picture of the spread, but there was a ton of really good food!! 
After we ate, I got to hang out with 3 cute little boys! Serious cuteness in one room. 

After everyone left, we realized we forgot to take pictures. So Elizabeth and I decided to take some by ourselves. 

Then the others decided to jump in and take some pictures with us. 

After pictures, we watched Free Birds.  It was pretty cute. Dumb, but cute :) 

Poor Tyler burned his arm on the oven making his dressing. (Which is different from stuffing. Which he did an AWESOME job making!! It's a family tradition for him, so he really wanted to make it and he did his family proud!) 

The next morning Clark and I got to hang out together.  He is SO smart! He is starting to read, he knows his letters, and his numbers, and is just so fun to be with! I love spending time with him!! We also did some Christmas shopping, which I cannot post pictures of until AFTER Christmas of course! However, I am VERY excited about the presents I am giving! 
I can post this picture I took while shopping at Old Navy on Black Friday- 50% off baby!! I didn't buy it, but it's true! I feel loved and very blessed this Thanksgiving!! 

I have so many things to be grateful for!!! I am grateful for my wonderful husband who works hard at school and takes such good care of me! <3 I'm also grateful for the rest of my family! It was so fun to spend time with them in Utah for Michael's wedding! (And I'm excited to spend time with them again at Christmas!!)  I love having the Sanders close so we could spend time with them on this holiday! They're so great! 
I've also been feeling really grateful for my job lately. It's been really crazy lately, and kind of stressful, but I just really enjoy working with kids and the kids I work with are so sweet and I get to see them in small groups which helps me get to know them all really closely and it's really fun to me! And I feel really blessed to have a full time job, which is not easy to come by these days. Really blessed! 
I'm especially grateful for Jesus Christ! The knowledge that comes from knowing His plan of happiness brings such peace and joy, and I feel blessed to have the knowledge of that in my life! I love Him and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints! It makes life so much fuller and happier! What a blessed life I lead!! 

Monday, November 24, 2014

The Happy Wedding

Well, it's officially official.  My little happy brother tied the knot! It was kind of different for our family to be on the groom's side of the wedding, but it turned out so great! There was a lot of emailing, calling, texting, photo streaming, and pintresting, but it all came together in the end! I had to take a picture to document all of our coordinating efforts. 

Lots of outfit options and we didn't go with most of them. Haha

I decided to get some Jamberry Nails for the wedding, and I did them in a really big hurry before we left so they didn't turn out the best, but they were a fun little detail. 

Once all the (attempted) planning was done, we hopped on a plane to go to the party! Tyler and I drove to Columbus the night before and spent the night at the Sanders' house. We woke up bright and early to make it to the airport because A. Elizabeth's ticket was accidentally put in her maiden name (oops!) so we had to go early to make sure they would let her on! and B. so we didn't wake Clark up and make him sad that we were leaving.  SO we started the trip off a bit tired.

The lady who checked us in got Elizabeth's information changed and we didn't have any problems, the first miracle of the wedding!! 

Do we look tired?

The views from the plane were beautiful!! 

We also entertained ourselves with pictures. The lighting was really good ;) 

We finally landed in Utah!  Greg landed about the same time we did, so we hitched a ride with him in his rental car. We grabbed some lunch at the Red Iguana in Salt Lake.  I have to say, I enjoyed it more this time than I have on previous visits there.  Greg is always expanding our taste buds.    

Gotta love those mountains! (and inversion....not as much)

Just a cute shot of the brothers catching up. 

Then we had to hit the malls to figure out what we were going to wear for the wedding! AH! Kind of crazy! The people at the mall probably thought we were crazy, but whater. 

We also saw these hilarious little driving animals you could ride around the mall! SO funny!! 

Sister selfie :) We missed Emily the whole weekend, but we were sure to Facetime a lot to help us not miss her quite so much. 

The Provo City temple is getting close to being done! It looks so beautiful!! 

A selfie with Emily- don't mind her freezing face. Hahaha. Her heater wasn't working. 

The night before we had a dinner with Laura's family at the Sander's house, which was so nice of them to host us!! We really like bonding with not only our sibling's spouse, but with the rest of their family! So it was fun to get to know Laura's siblings! We did that for our wedding and I loved it! It was fun to have both of our families know each other better. 

Re-enacting a picture from our wedding :) 

Then after the dinner, we hit the mall again to figure out what we were going to wear. We didn't end up wearing this to the wedding, but how fun are they?? :) 

After we figured out our outfits, we went back to our hotel and I got to see my good friend and past roommate, Lindsey (Benham) Bruer! (Emily Fitzpatrick was going to come too but she had the flu :(  ) 
We had some issues taking pictures :) I'm looking a little rough seeing as I'd been up since 3am Utah time and didn't really get a nap. 

THEN! The big day came!! We woke up early to get ready then had to drive up to Ogden, where they were going to get married. 

Checking out the place where the luncheon would be. Michael giving me some bachelor poses.

It was seriously the most perfect weather for a November wedding!! Not a cloud in the sky and the sun shinning bright and warm! Another miracle!! 

The next and biggest miracle was that Baba was able to seal Michael and Laura for time and all eternity! Such a blessing!!! His health hasn't been very good the past couple of years, and he was diagnosed with Leukemia about a year ago. When his hospice nurse told us a month before she didn't think he would make it 2 more weeks, we all got on our knees and prayer our hearts out that he would be able to seal them, and our prayers were answered!! Such a beautiful sight to see! 
I was so emotional during the whole marriage! I was so happy to be in the temple with my family, to see my little brother marry his sweetheart, to see the miracle of my grandpa, and just being in the temple in general! Just overflowing with happiness!! 
He was pretty wiped out afterward, but what an amazing thing to see and such a legacy to leave his children and grandchildren! 

Had to take a Guy sibling selfie

The new Mr. and Mrs. Erekson! 

Kissy kiss! 

Look at those happy faces! 

Look at that married stud! 

More sister lovin! 

The groomsmen looked really sharp! I loved their bowties! 
Bro lovin! Gotta love good friends! 

With Sandy and the Thomas' (who flew to Utah JUST for the wedding!! Such great friends!) 

Our happy family! (minus Emily, spouses, and grandkids) 

SO much love!!! <3 

Silly face awesomeness

Erekson siblings

With Emily via Facetime :) 

The long awaited and much debated bridesmaids outfits!! Laura's sisters had their outfits picked out way before us, but I think it turned out really nice!! Good fall wedding colors! 
I really liked Laura and her sisters! 

Our bouquets, which we didn't get many pictures with, but they were so beautiful!! 

After the wedding we had a luncheon at a nearby hotel with the Blue Lemon catered. It was all fantastic!! 

The beautiful table settings

The food! I just can't even! SO delicious!! 
I like this picture because I think Michael looks so grown up! When did happy boy turn into happy man?? Haha
Laura's little sisters sang a song that was so adorable! They also wrote a really cute poem tribute! 
My Mom, Dad, Laura's Mom and Dad, Greg, Chelsea, and Nana all gave Michael a toast. They were all great! 

My Mom with her siblings. 

Dad with his brother Kent
Michael with our friends from St. Louis, the Wooley's.  They're so great and supportive! 

Then we got a small little rest and then the next party started up! Talk about a whirlwind of a trip! (P.S. I am a firm believer in weddings and receptions being on different days, just in case you're wondering :) )
Their reception was at a place in Lindon called Wadley Farms.  It was SO magical and beautiful!! The Adamsons did an INCREDIBLE job decorating!! Seriously!! I thought the decorations were provided by the vendor they were so good- oh no! all home made!! 

This may have been my favorite part! This amazing wood structure hanging above the desserts! So intense and beautiful! 

A peek into the take down.
I also got to see my dear friends and former roommates, Chelsea and Alice!! I haven't seen them in FOREVER, so it was so fun to see them again!! And Alice is prego. So crazy!!! But so exciting!! 

Trevor, by request of the bride, brought his Doctor Who gear because I guess it matches the bow tie? I don't watch the show so I'll have to take his word for it. 

AND THEN. The wedding stuff was over.  And we were all exhausted!! SO fun and beautiful and so many miracles!!! Miracle Michael lived up to his name with this wedding!

The next morning we went to breakfast at Village Inn with my Mom's siblings. (Don't mind Kristen's sunglasses, she was having some eye troubles :(  ) 

I loved looking at those mountains for 4 years.  They warm my heart <3 
AND the REAL reason we all wanted to stay in Provo. THAI RUBY!!! Sticky rice and peanut sauce. Heaven in a side dish. We literally have been coming to this place for YEARS! And it still holds up. 

Oh man. I want some more!!! If this place ever closes, there will be some serious depression in the Erekson family. 
After lunch Trevor drove us up North (thanks Trebor!!) We stopped by to see Nana and Baba for a little bit.  They are such great people and have always been loving and kind grandparents! I'm so grateful for their examples!! And I'm glad Tyler and I got to spend time with them.

Then we made our way up to Jen and Scott's house!!! We're really glad we got to see so many family members in one trip!! We hadn't seen the Blackfords for a YEAR!! Way too long! The kids are getting so big!! And another little one on the way! We skyped with Grandma and Grandpa in Ohio. 

Look at those cute and happy faces! 

The next day we went to church with Jen and Scott. 

Then we took some family pictures, inhaled some lunch, and made our way to the airport. I don't like flying on Sunday, but with our work schedules it just worked out better for us to leave Sunday afternoon. 

We flew from Salt Lake to Baltimore, then Baltimore to Dayton.  Kind of a crazy itinerary, but whatever's cheap! And we are lucky to have good friends who were willing to pick us up from the airport in the middle of the night! Thanks Frandsens!!! After a cram packed weekend, I was SO tired at school Monday!! But I made it and I even got a nap! 
I'm SOOO grateful I got to go and be a part of this happy celebration of marriage!! Michael is such an amazing person and I'm glad he found a great person to spend eternity with!  I wish every happiness to the both of them!