so sad that Bryan's parents are gone
ecstatic that Chad and Katie are here in Provo with us
relieved to have a day off tomorrow
excited for it to cool off finally
happy to have a clean kitchen
wishful that we also had clean clothes
nervous to go back to another week at school on Tuesday
thrilled to see Lisa and Bryan tomorrow
proud that the Cougs pulled off a win yesterday
still praying for the cute Nielson family
annoyed that we'll have church at 1:00 from now on
craving a Jamba Juice
missing Virginia and my favorite 6 that live there
grateful for life and all that it brings


Come, Come ye Saints

Once upon a time I arrived in Provo, Utah for my first year at BYU. Every hour, on the hour I heard those magnificent bells chime the classic hymn "Come, Come ye Saints." In that first week I thought that this hymn was chosen specifically for that time when people seemed to be gathering to Provo. Later, I realized this song was played every hour on the hour every day of every year. But, I still like to think of it as a gathering hymn for the beginning of a new school year.

This year it is with mixed feelings that I proclaim "come, come ye saints." This has been my first summer living in Provo and I have reveled in the greatly decreased amounts of traffic. I love being able to get to work in 10 minutes as opposed to 20. I love not having to wait in line for 2 hours at the grocery store. I love that the Redbox still has good movies all the way until 8:00 on Friday nights. I love not having to dodge pedestrians as I am driving. I love that the line at Movies 8 doesn't go past the first row of cars in the parking lot. I have loved the peace of summer.

But, I am looking forward for the excitement of another year. I'm excited for old friends to come back, and most of all I'm excited for Katie and Chad to get here!!! (Even though I know our food supply will soon be struggling under the weight of 4 instead of 2!)

So, hurry up my friends, the bells are calling.
welcome back everyone!!!


A quiet, blissful weekend

After a hectic week of work and school Bryan and I opted for a quiet weekend. On Friday we went to Mimi's for a delicious triple chocolate brownie (yum!) then we hit up the good old Dollar Theatre to see The Incredible Hulk. I can't tell you if I liked the movie or not because I slept through the first half! On Saturday we slept in and played tennis. Bry beat me, as usual. I cleaned the apartment (took surprisingly long for how small a space it is!) and Bryan worked on homework for his online class. We made a Costco run which was very disappointing due to the lack of sample choices. We made pizza together which was amazing then watched Harry Potter #5. Sundays are always wonderful. We just got home from church, so after a few more meetings we will be free to eat dinner, take naps, write to Elder Martinez, talk to our families, go on a walk, and read. Weekends like this give me the energy to take on another crazy 5 days!


Things I've accomplished in the past week:

- Finished Breaking Dawn (I caved and bought it)
- Watched approximately 5,000 hours of Olympics
- Didn't die while four wheeling with Bry and some friends
- Survived 3 days of school
- Kept 2 boys in from recess (already)
- Haven't made dinner since Saturday
- Re-fell in love with violin music at a Jenny Oaks Baker concert
- Made my bed every day (mom would be proud)
- Come home with sore feet and throat every night
- Talked to my mom every morning and every night so she could help me de-stress
- Fell in love with 27 darling fourth graders

My life is great.

Please pray for the Nielsons. If you don't live in AZ or UT, you can read about them here. I teach their adorable little niece and I know this is a really tough time for their wonderful family.


It's that time again

The summer days are slipping through my fingers. Tomorrow starts four days of rigorous meetings and frantically getting ready. Then school starts one week from today! This summer has been wonderful, and I'm not sure that I'm ready for it to end. Since today is my last day of freedom, I'm sitting here in my pajamas watching the Olympics. I might shower and actually be productive today, or I might just enjoy sitting in my pajamas all day long. What I really wish I could do is sit here in my pajamas all day reading Breaking Dawn. I desperately need to get my hands on a copy of that book. I'm losing my patience with the Orem Public Library, they're too slow! The library has 12 copies and each person should finish in 2 days. By these calculations, Person #45 (me) should be getting the book TODAY. Oh library, please make my last summer wish come true today!



I'm sure you were all wondering how my shopping trip went. Well, you'll be happily surprised to hear that I actually stuck to my $2.75 budget. Here's how: I bought some pants, but I put them on my gap credit card, and the bill still goes to my parent's house. I know this sounds bad, but they were only $13 and my mom gets all the reward coupons from my spending, so that's kind of fair right? I also got a cardigan from gap, but the lady forgot to ring it up (don't ask me how you forget to ring something up when someone is only buying 2 things!) But, lucky for me, my grandma was the person in line behind me, and she insisted on adding it to what she was getting and would not take any money from me. For dinner I split a salad with my aunt, so I only had to pay $2. I did buy sunglasses, but they were a need for the well-being of my eyes, not a want, so I don't count them :) Thus, I still have $.75 to spend and it feels good.


Just call me Rachael Ray

A few months ago, Bryan's cousin left for California for the summer and gave us all of her left over food. Included in this gift were cans of tomato paste, tomato sauce, and diced tomatoes. My first inclination was, 'what am I supposed to do with this???' Bryan informed me that some people actually make their own spaghetti sauce. Woah. Last night I was feeling very ambitious so I decided to pull out those foreign cans and put them to use. I found a recipe for marinara sauce that I used, and kinda did my own thing with it. And, wonder to behold- it tasted really good! I would say I'd never go back to store-bought spaghetti sauce, but I don't have that much patience. The good news is that since I had no idea what I was doing I made a TON of sauce, so we'll be eating it for weeks. And, if you're in driving distance and would like to try some of my excellent homemade sauce, come on over! Here's the recipe:

1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup finely chopped carrot (I used a lot less because I thought it was weird)
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1 28 oz can tomatoes, cut up
1/2 of a 6 oz. can (1/3 cup) tomato paste
(I used a combination of diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, and tomato paste because I had all of them, and I'm not sure how much I used of each!)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed (I didn't have any oregano, so I just used Italian seasoning)
1/4 tsp salt (I just realized that I forgot to add this!)
dash pepper

A second thing to be excited about today-
I get to have a girls night with my grandma, aunts, and little cousins. I'm so excited!! We're shopping in Park City, so watch out Tanger Outlets, here we come!! Bryan has given me a $2.75 budget, but I was never good at the whole finances thing, so we'll see how that goes. Happy Friday and Happy 8/8/08!!


A Night at Our House

Last night Bry and I watched Pay it Forward. I knew about it, but had never seen it before. I really liked it and thought it had a cute message. I feel like now I have to find 3 people to do nice things for so I can pay it forward. (Beware, I'm about to give the movie away.) But, I never knew that the little boy dies at the end! It was like he was my son and he had died. I was crying my eyes out and couldn't stop. Like, I really couldn't stop. So Bryan went into "stop Rachel before this place turns into a swimming pool" mood. We tried watching some episodes from The Office, which should have solved everything, but it was to no avail. I didn't stop crying until I was brushing my teeth. Bryan told me that you should sing happy birthday while brushing your teeth and that is how long you should brush. I believed him of course and looked completely ridiculous humming happy birthday while brushing my teeth. Well, in case any of you have husbands who tell you things like this, it's not true! I finished singing long before my teeth were clean. Turns out he made it all up, but it did the job. I was laughing so hard that my tears finally stopped. Bryan saves the night.

On a completely different note, I finally have carpet in my classroom after waiting all summer. Hooray! That means I'm back to my second home, getting ready for school to start in 11 days- AHHH!