Monday, December 30, 2013

52 New Things: Bought 10 Boxes of Cereal and saved $30 on Groceries! (0 to go:)

Wow,  I went to Smith's and everything was on sale.  So I bought $86 worth of groceries, but I saved $30:)  And now I have a massive amount of healthy, delicious, nonperishable food.
Special K was on sale for $1.79,  come on.

Yum!  I love having food.
Well, there you go! 52 new things.  I liked doing it, but I think the most important new things I did were not the ones I blogged about:)  Here's to another year full of trying new things!!!

52 New Things: Saw Frozen (2 to go)

We went and saw Frozen.  It was so good!  The music was very "musical" style, not typical Disney.  There were a lot of life lessons, particularly about love and emotional health.  

Christoph.  He's a bit of a fixer-upper.:)

And of course, this guy was everyone's favorite character;)

52 New Things: Went to Mt. Fuji Sushi, Farr Fresh and Heard this Band (3 to go)

Awwww!  They're so cute:)
 We went to Mt Fuji!  It was during happy hour, so it was pretty crowded.
These guys were really good!
They were really great, totally not "sushi" music at all, but I loved them:)  We went to Farr's frozen yogurt after, that was delicious!  And yes, it was probably 12 degrees outside.

52 New Things: My Hair Adventure... (6 to go)

So.  Several new things. This week has been a hair adventure.  I attempted to put in some subtle ombre highlights.  They turned out pretty well, but the dye I used to tone it was actually a high lift dye, and it turned my hair suuper red!
"Hmm, I wonder what's happening under this cap right now.  Probably my hair's turning orange."
It was Sunday the next day, so I had to go to church with orange hair. (You're welcome.)
The sun'll come out...tomorrow! This is a fairly accurate pic of the color

I went to Salt Lake for Christmas.  I got my sister's hair dresser to do my hair.  She didn't think it was that bad (my first red flag).  She said she could still do the highlights and dye the rest back to the original dark brown.  Cool:)  But not cool at the same time, because it was still orange when I left.  Yes, I cried in the car on the way home.  Yes, like a baby.  Yes, for the first time I contemplated that I might have to live the next five years with orange hair.
So relaxed, just sending in sample pics to Sesame Street in case they like the eyebrow look on me.  Because yes, I bleached them out too.  Totally unaware that the dye would NOT hold at all and I would still have orange hair.

I made an appointment for a color correction at a really nice salon a few blocks from my house.  By nice, I mean expensive.  I read some mixed reviews, and I started to get a little worried that I would have a similar experience as at my last hair appointment.

So I had an idea.  This one was actually good.  I thought, why don't I just get a couple boxes of dye and toner and do a strip test.  If it turns out, money in the bank.  If not, I'll just go to the salon.  And you know what?  Money in the bank:)  After presents on Christmas morning (and no Christmas pics, sorry) Mom and I scrubbed up and did a little hair repair.  I conditioned it for an hour afterward (because my hair had been treated how many times by now???).  When I washed it out, ahhhhhhhhhh it wasn't orange anymore!

The roots were very, very dark. In my zeal to wash out the extra dye, I toned it down a little (It's still darker than before:/) but I really washed out the bottom right under the line of dark dye.

There is a distinct line between dark and light (symbolic?;)

The brassiness is probably the bigger problem.  It wouldn't be so noticeable if it wasn't so red.

I like the subtle highlights showing through:)

Line of red in the middle of my hair

And I just couldn't leave it.  I got the Revlon Frost and Glow Honey highlighting kit and light ash brown dye. 
I put in the highlights in.  I looked a little like Rouge from x men:)  

Then I toned them with the dye.  I also put some of the dye just lightly on the black part of my hair.  Guess what? It actually turned out pretty great:)  Not perfect, yes over-processed (ha) but luckily I have beastly hair that is thick and full of body and basically nothing can destroy it.  Of course I will be babying it for the next few months, but I think it'll be fine:) I got a purple toning shampoo to help balance out the slightly red and gold tones that are still in my hair.  Other than that, I finally like it:)

Ahh, so subtle, just the way I like it:)

52 New Things: Made this Afghan (12 to go)

I made this pretty afghan and just finished a few days ago.  I love it soo much!  I love how it turned out with the X.  I wish the light pink was a little darker.. you can barely tell it's different than the white. I wanted it to be more of a fade than light/dark contrast.  Oh, well:)  I have ideas of what I want to make, it's just hard to translate them into blankets with very limited colors at the craft store.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Braces Week Two

Merry Christmas!  My braces have been on for two weeks now.  I'm glad I'm doing these pics, because it makes it easier to see slight progress.  It's hard having these on, and I like to feel like progress is being made:)  The first pic is the day I got my braces on, the middle pic is today and the last one is from a week ago, just for comparison.
Wednesday, December 11, the day I got my braces on

Thursday, December 26, week two of braces
Wednesday, December 18 one week of braces

It's been worrying me a little that the gap between my front teeth isn't bigger.  Dr. Watson said it should gap really soon.  I knoooow it's only been two weeks... I just like to see progress.  However, looking at these pictures, I can tell that the angle of my two front teeth is changing in two ways.  They are less angled toward each other, and less angled in toward my mouth. Swollen gums are looking moderately better (I have some wax on my right side). It appears my left side has come down more, although it might just be the angle of the picture.  Yay, another week down!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Braces Week One

It's been a week, Hallelujah!!!
So, the good news is that my teeth are moving.  They already look straighter to me:)  That makes me really happy.  I just want them to move as fast as possible, I wish there was a way I could speed it up!
One bad news item, I had a bracket fall off on Friday:/  It was on a crown, and they used the regular cement, so they said it was a possibility that it would fall off.
I just covered the wire with some wax and they got me in first thing Monday morning to get it reattached.  This time, the roughed up my crown a little and put special adhesive on.  He told me he would repolish it and everything when the braces come off.
He reattached the arch wire to that side of my mouth and I was on my way in just a few minutes:)

I've gotten to the point just the last couple of days that I haven't been using wax.  I'm sure I'll use it again, but for right now, it feels okay without:)  I've also started eating regular food!  Which is awesome, because I love mashed potatoes and soup...but enough is enough.

I'm really happy to actually be seeing results.  I'm having a hard time being patient:)  He estimated 3-5 months of treatment, I hope it's only 3!  I've read that there's really no way to make it go faster though, the best things I can do is just have really good oral hygiene and stay away from problem foods. So, I will do that and have fun watching my teeth move.

I can tell my right side has come down to form a straight wire line, which is awesome. Also, I thought it might look weird with so much gum on top, but it looks like the tooth has pulled down further out of my gums, exposing more enamel rather than moving the gum down too. (That makes more sense; I don't know why I thought it would happen the other way around.)
My left side is coming down, although not as fast. The little tooth to the side of my big tooth is still pretty crooked, but to me it looks a little straighter.:) My front teeth are becoming less angled.  I can feel it on the back of my teeth, and also the bottoms of the front look straighter. They're still overlapping a touch, but they are definitely moving. The goal of the next few weeks is to get a gap going between my two front teeth. I'm getting a little chapped in both corners of my mouth.
Wednesday, December 11, the day I got my braces on

Wednesday, December 18, one week later

It takes forever to clean my braces.  Especially when I have to spend AT LEAST five minutes every night staring at them trying to see them move;)

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

52 New Things: Got Braces (13 to go)

Awwwwww, yeah.  Braces. 

So yeah, I got braces:)  Never thought that would happen, but it is happening.  I'm only supposed to have them on for a few months... I'm pretty stoked to get them off, obviously ;)
I got them done at Orthotime in American Fork.  Basically, I loooove this office.  They are so wonderful:)  They're fun and professional.  If you are anywhere in Utah Valley, get your braces done here, they're the best!
In the mean time, I have braces now, weird:) My mouth is exhausted from feeling them. I'm so stoked to get them off:)  They probably won't bother me as much, you know, after the first day I have them on.  I'm really excited to see my teeth move:)  I keep hoping I'll wake up in the morning and they'll look better. I'm so glad they're clear, they're really not super noticeable.
Using the wax is tricky, it's hard to put it on so it doesn't fall off:)  I'm worried about getting sores in my mouth.  I'm sure brushing and flossing will be a beast, so... not looking forward to that, but I'm definitely going to do everything I can to keep my teeth healthy during this treatment.

Today is Wednesday the 11th, I'll post a pic every Wednesday (unless it gets boring, let's be honest...) so I can chart my progress!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

What If We Chose How We Look?

I was ready to leave for work this morning.  I had gotten all packed up for Thanksgiving break so I could head straight for home right after closing time.  I was standing in the living room, eating my cereal mentally scanning for anything I forgot to pack.  The sun was coming up and soft morning light was coming through the windows, and I could see the frost on my car outside.

I have a big, rectangular mirror hanging on the wall in my living room.  As I was finishing my cereal I absent-mindedly started gazing at myself. I was having those rolling, dreamlike thoughts, the kind you're barely aware you're having.  I had my hair pulled back in a bun with no make up on except a little red lipstick.
I was thinking to myself, "Yeah, I look pretty good:)  I like the way I look.  I mean, if I were choosing, I'd probably have tweaked a couple things a little differently...." Then I chuckled at the thought of my spirit in Heaven before I was born getting toddler-excited and picking out a bunch of crazy features:)

But then I stopped and thought, "Well, why not?"  I'm pretty dang sure this is false doctrine, so most def don't quote me in general conference when you become a general authority, but I thought, What if we did?  What if, in Heaven, we got to choose how we would look?  And everyone picked out what their tastes truly dictated was the most beautiful to them?  And we didn't think otherwise until we came to Earth and society imposed false standards on us and we lost our ability to see all beauty?  What if we are all the most beautiful?  And some of us just forgot? What if we picked everything about ourselves?

Food for thought:)

However, we are all created in the image of God by a loving Father in Heaven.  Isn't that kinda enough to make you accept the beautiful gift of your body?

Thursday, November 7, 2013

52 New Things: Got a Kitchenaid! (14 to go)

Let's just say, Christmas came a little early this year and I am the happiest woman on the planet:)  I've already made cookies, pizza, bread, cinnamon rolls and frosting, and I can't WAIT to keep using this beaut:)  Baking just got better.
Ahhhh...sooo beautiful:)

Thursday, October 31, 2013


My cute roommates

Halloween is upon us and my rommates wanted to have an "apartment date night" and carve Jack-o-Lanterns!  It was more work than I remember as a kid....and a little less exciting;)  Lots of guts, and I happened to choose a pumpkin with remarkably thick veggie. That was kind of hard to cut through with our butter knives. 

I don't know why we didn't win the competition... was still fun!  There's something satisfying about participating in holiday traditions.  The smell of the pumpkin guts spread all over newspaper brought back memories of elementary school competitions and my determination to create the PERFECT pumpkin.  I would walk into the gym after school and see all our pumpkins lined up on the stairs of the stage and hope that mine had a ribbon pinned to it!  Being roommates with Molly and Mikayla, ("Always go for the W!!! (Which is the 'win' for those of you who don't know...)) alas, we didn't win this competition judged by our helpful next door neighbor.

Which, I don't know why because our Jack-o-Lantern was the epitome of Halloween-y traditionalism.  

Happy Halloween!!!

Monday, October 28, 2013

52 New Things: Ate and Made the Liège Waffle (15 to go)

Part One: Eating the waffles

I'm counting this one as two new things.  A couple weeks back, Chris' parents were in town. His dad had served and LDS mission in the Netherlands and wanted to get these authentic waffles in downtown Salt Lake at Bruges Waffles & Frites.

Bruges Waffles & Frites downtown Salt Lake

They were indescribable.  But let me try anyway.  The liège waffle goes by many different names: Brussles waffle, Flemish waffle, Bergische waffle, or simply, sugar waffle.  

It was like no waffle I'd ever had.  They were crusty and carmelized on the outside with a little hint of cinnamon. They were doughy, gooey, sweet deliciousness on the inside.  The flavor was complex and tasted nothing like any other waffle I'd ever had.  They were very sweet, but that didn't inhibit the flavor.  The texture was so variable, my mind was blown.
Chris and I went back twice in the next couple of weeks to have them. 

To Salt Lake. 
They were that good.

Okay, we were already in Salt Lake both times, but I WOULD have driven 60 minutes to taste these waffles.  I knew I had to create them myself.
Most of the ingredients in these waffles are common, except for the Belgium pearl sugar.
Belgium pearl sugar is different from Swedish or Swiss, because it easily caramelizes with heat, where as the others stay solid. Important, because you don't want crunchy chunks of sugar in your waffles, just crusty caramel.:)

Part Two: Making the waffles

As I have expressed, these waffles are VERY unique and VERY different from regular Belguim waffles.  I wanted to make them right.  I researched and read a lot about how to make them and compared a lot of recipes. I finally settled on this baby.  
Why?  Primarily because this guy has an entire blog, no no, not blog post,  an ENTIRE BLOG dedicated just to these waffles.  Yeah, they're good:)  This recipe was very specific and explained why each step was essential to creating an authentic liège waffle.  
This recipe starts the dough making process the day before.  It's quite specific about amounts and mixing times.  I was sooooooo happy when my dough balled up within 30 seconds of when he said it should!  Victory, part one:)  But I'm not gonna lie, I skimped a little on the 4 hour rising period to "develop the flavor."  Because I wanted to go to bed before 2:00.  Silly me.  Baking should always come first;)
     *Side note; the morning after rising, I made pumpkin pancakes with some leftover pumpkin from
pumpkin bread. Can I just state that I love fall and baking with pumpkin:)))??? But I thought it 
would be inappropriate to serve simple pumpkin pancakes along with these gourmet waffles, 
so we ate them all this morning.:)
Anyway, the dough sat in the fridge all day (under heavy objects of course, wouldn't want that dough getting all crazy and trying to rise...) while I was at work.  After work I came home and my pearl sugar had arrived!  I ordered it off Amazon.  Lars Own was the recommended brand, so that's what I bought. 
I mixed it into the dough, let it rise 90 minutes and threw them in the waffle iron.  I played with turning the iron off and on because it was hotter than the recommended fancy cast iron Liège waffle iron.
They turned out perfect!!!!!
After crouching with my chin on the counter watching them cook, I took my first bite and was literally jumping for joy.  They were just like the ones we had:)  VICTORY!


Hoppy Halloween!!!

Chris and me as a bunny and carrot for Halloween:)

Hoppy Halloween!  Okay, I know it's usually "Hoppy Easter," but I dressed as a bunny rabbit, so I think it's fitting:)  Chris and I wanted to do a couple's Halloween costume, but we weren't sure what we wanted to be until a couple days before our ward Halloween party.  He wanted to involve his green afro somehow (I mean, who wouldn't?)

We were sitting on the couch casually thinking of ideas, mostly being funny, and my roommate Beth suggested he be a carrot.  I thought this was hysterical for some reason, and Chris agreed that it would be an unorthodox and humorous costume. Then Beth suggested I be a bunny rabbit and our costume was born!

I found a little accessories set for the ears, bow and tail at Target for just $5!  I dressed in white with a pink tank top, and I think I was a pretty convincing rabbit. 

 Chis and I went to D.I. and found this TREASURE.  We were looking for pants, but orange pants are pretty hard to come by, so we wandered into the women's section and found this carrot orange sheath dress.  With an orange t shirt to go underneath, he's never looked so vegetarian:)  
Just being weirdos

Bunny tail!

Aha! They tried to catch us kissing and failed.  Because we are kissing ninjas.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Grandma Wilcox's Funeral

It was Grandma Wilcox's funeral.  I've been to services for various people before, but this was my first time being there from the viewing to the graveside services.  It was quite an experience.  I've never lost anyone so close to me.  There were a lot of emotions and thoughts.  I wished I'd been able to call her one more time, visit her one more time.  But then I realized I would probably have always felt that way.  

It was strange to spend a few days talking about life and death, reflecting over her entire existence, her posterity, her future.  It was hard to come home after that and face life.  To think I need to keep on keepin' on for 60 more years.  To think I'm already about 1/4 of the way through my life.  I think it's good to focus on the eternal perspective, but it was strange to think of life and death as so close that it seemed nothing in between is very significant.

In a way, I suppose that's true.  But the other thing that's been on my mind is how influential people's lives are.  I think of the way things happened, choices my predecessors made, and how they affect me. How my life would be different if they had chosen differently.  How my posterity will be affected by me and my choices are important; not just for me, but for them too. I need to keep on going, not just for me, but for all who will follow in my path.  Heavy stuff, but good to think about once in a while:) I'm just grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ and temple covenants.  I know I will get to see Grandma and all of my ancestors again:)

Me and Chris

Family is forever:)

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

General Conference!

Yay!  It's that time of year again, the semi-annual general conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints!

It was wonderful.  We got to go to the Saturday morning session.  What a great conference!
We were so close.  Like soooo close!  Just a few rows back!

Chris' parents got us great seats!

MoTab was amazing as always.  The acoustics in the conference center are unbelievable!

Monday, September 30, 2013

52 New Things: Indian Food (17 to go)

I went with my great ex-roommie Rosi to get Indian food this week.  It was soooo yummy!  I'd never had Indian food before.  We went to India Palace on Center Street in Provo.

It seemed really authentic. The entire staff appeared to be Indian.

We ordered some traditional Tandoori Naan.   It was soo delicious.  Like a really fluffy, light tortilla.  I ordered Chicken Coconut Korma, which was delllllicous. They brought it out with really flavorful rice. They brought our food out in these unique little bowls.  Everything was very unique and Indian in the restaruant.

I thought it was a little pricey and didn't look like that much food, but I had a lot leftover, so for two meals, it really wasn't bad.  You could easily split a curry dish and naan for $15.  And the service was superb:)  Now I love Indian food! Soo yummy.