Luke’s First Halloween

I’ve never really been into Halloween.  I hate scary things…movies, houses, costumes, etc.  I stopped Trick or Treating early into my teenage years.  Maybe 12? 13? Never had the desire after that.  But, every year, I feel pressure to get a cute family costume together, even though we never go anywhere and it usually ends up being a normal day at work/school.

This year was no different!  In fact, I felt even more pressure to get a cute family costume together with such a cute little one in our midst.

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So, after many weeks of agonizing over what cute little plush outfit I should spent $30 dollars on for him to wear once, we settled on the last Jack-Jack costume from the extremely picked over Target Halloween aisle.  I liked it because it was $15 instead of $30 (he still only wore it once…ugh), and we could get some cheap t-shirts from Amazon to match.

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He was really, really cute.  We sat in our house and passed out candy in our costumes and watched Hocus Pocus.  A Halloween well spent.

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Maybe Halloween will be a little more exciting for us with more kids…and the excuse to go Trick or Treating without it being weird.  At least there’s always pumpkin carving, which really brings out our personalities.  Guess who’s is who’s?

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Kauai 2018

Maybe a year or so ago, I found some cheap tickets to Hawaii on Google Flights.  We literally took an online quiz called “Which Hawaiian Island Would Be Best For You To Visit?”  That lead us to Kauai.  We trusted the quiz, and I’m SO glad we did.

In October, we flew with 6 month old Luke to Kauai.  Colton woke up the day of the flight with a nasty cold.  It was actually his birthday the day before we left as well.  We always go somewhere during Fall and Spring Break.  Unfortunately, that means planning far in advance, and we weren’t about to cancel after having a baby and a cold at the same time.  I was determined…and really, really excited.  Neither of us had ever been to Hawaii, and we had always talked about going together.  When we found out that it would be affordable for us to go, we hopped on the opportunity.

Luke was amazing on the flight.  Colton felt awful, but Luke cooperated and slept most of the way.  Nursing during take off and touch down really works wonders for the little’s ears.  We landed in Kauai late.  I love landing in a new area at night because waking up and seeing the views the next morning is incredible.

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We were staying on the North Shore (in Princeville).  I would stay there again in a heartbeat.  It was much quieter than the east, close to the Napali, and much more lush and green.  We were about a mile away from the Queen’s Bath hike, which we ended up doing three times during our stay.  We are pretty experienced hikers, but hiking in these conditions was much different.  I LOVED IT.  Give me alllll the Hawaiian mud on my feet. It’s like a free spa treatment.

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Colton and I gifted ourselves a day on the Napali Coast.  We rode on a raft (similar to the ones used by Navy Seals) for 5 hours along the coast, swam in the clearest water I’ve ever seen, and snorkeled.  The pictures don’t do it justice.  The water was clear and turquoise blue.  The mountains were incredibly majestic, tall, and bright green.  The conditions were harsh, but the ride was so therapeutic to me.  I felt so much gratitude.  I felt so small, but so grateful for this beautiful world God has given us to live in.  I have climbed to the top of Angel’s Landing in Zion National Park, staring down 1,500 feet into red rocks and rivers.  I have stood at the tip of the Iberian Peninsula in Gijon, Spain, looking out into the ocean and green rolling hills.  I have hiked through El Yunque National Rainforest in Puerto Rico and marveled at the wildlife and luscious greenery around me.  I’ve been a lot of places and seen a lot of beautiful things, but I have never been to a place more beautiful than the Napali Coast.

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It was the perfect day.  I love Colton because he’s always willing to adventure with me.  He and I connect the same way: experiences.  Being able to travel and experience the world together is the best gift I could ever receive.

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Waimea Canyon…like the Grand Canyon of Hawaii.  Such an amazing view!  I wish that I understood the geology of this scene more than I do now.

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Our last day in Kauai, we spent our time relaxing and snorkeling at Poipu Beach.  Colton and I swam with a sea turtle.  A real, live, wild sea turtle.  It was incredible.  I get chills just thinking about it.  It was the perfect way to end our trip.  Luke ended up loving the water and sand.  We all loved the calming sounds of the ocean that we never get to experience living in Utah.

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Yeah, we are going back as soon as we can.

3 Years

On August 15th, Colton and I “celebrated” our 3rd anniversary.  Celebrating, for us, mostly consists of dinner and a good Netflix show in bed (on a fancy night).  I’m grateful for someone who shares my love of being pretty low-maintenance.

I can’t believe that three years have come and gone so quickly, yet it feels like eternity since I met and fell in love with Colton.  Life has changed so much since we got married, but Colton has stayed the constant positive force in my life.  I’m so grateful to share this life with him.

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I’ve loved Colton’s wit and creativity.  He makes me laugh every single day (I know that makes him proud).

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This was his idea.

I love that we share a love of adventure and spontaneity (within reason…).  Colton is the best travel companion.  Traveling is a huge priority in our lives.  I can’t wait to see and explore more of the world together.

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I love Colton’s love of the little things.  Like a good nap, hike, Chick-Fil-A run, or checking things off of our list.

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One of our proudest moments.

I love our mutual love of nature.  I love discovering God’s beautiful earth with my best friend.  I’m grateful to have someone who can help me pass down my love of the earth to our children.

We have been hiking together ever since I can remember.  I would rather go on a hike together than anything else.   We’ve taught each other new skills and explored so much of our beautiful state together.  I’m grateful that being active has always brought us together and always will.

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From new additions (both human and animal), MS battles, moves, 3 years of college together, job changes, and everything in between, we have grown together.  I love that, even though we’ve grown so much in the past three years, we are the same people that we always have been.  Our relationship has only gotten stronger, even though it hasn’t always been perfect.

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Life is best with you!  Thank you for always being you and allowing me to be me.  I’ve never felt anything other than empowered by being your wife, because you allow me to do anything that I dream of doing.  I’m so grateful for our marriage.  It’s better than I could have ever imagined.  The past three years have been wonderful, and so will the next three (and 33, 53, 103…etc.).

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26

I’m 26 today.  That much closer to 30.  WHAT!!! Let’s pretend that’s not happening.

I’m pretty grateful for life as a 26 year old.  My life is nothing that I ever imagined, but is everything that I’ve ever wanted.  Every year is better than the last, and that’s why I love my birthday.

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Life, lately

Summer is always busy for me at work, but I’ve really enjoyed the time that I have with my little family.  Luke is growing up so quickly, and I enjoy every second of time that I have with him.

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Luke LOVES water (although that picture doesn’t reflect that).  We took him swimming for his first time, and he wasn’t so sure.  It’s grown on him.  Thank heavens for pool floaties for babies with shades on them.  It saves us from having to shade him ourselves! Who knew that you couldn’t put sunscreen on babies??  But seriously, Luke loves water.  I’m get the feeling that we will be spending a lot of time in the water with this kid.

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We tried putting Luke in the carrier front ways…I thought he was ready.  Definitely wasn’t tall enough yet.  Maybe next month!

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As always, we love hiking together.  It’s a sure way for Luke to fall asleep and for us to get some good exercise.  We’ve started documenting our outdoor adventures on Strava, if you’d like to follow along.  Seriously, that’s one of the best apps ever.  If you are at all outdoorsy, Strava is your jam.

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At the beginning of the summer, Colton and I bought road bikes from a local company called Fezzari.  We’ve loved experimenting with road biking.  Huntsville has some of the best road biking that we’ve seen so far.  Good thing we have some good connections!  I’m always grateful to get outside and exercise, especially in Huntsville.  I’m super grateful that Colton and I have really similar interests and can do all of these things together.

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I’m so happy in the summer.  It’s a busy time of year for us, but it also feels like such an amazing time to sit back and enjoy all that the world has to offer.  The sunshine makes me happy, and I love the never-ending activities that can be done outside.  Good things are coming for us in the next couple of months, including some warm vacations, which I am super excited about! For now, I’m soaking in all the time that Colton, Luke, and I have together before school starts back up again in three weeks (Seriously.  Three weeks!).