Thursday, December 25, 2008


My parents had a blizzard and therefore no power this morning, making it a rough morning for my grandmother, who needs the heater and her oxygen to feel well. I also have not felt well, although my day has been great and Jared has taken such good care of me. I watched Anne of Avonlea and Jared gave me the beautiful earrings that match my necklace from two Christmases ago. Tyler and Carisa slept over and Chris woke us all up at 6. I went back to bed at 8 and slept till 11:30. I love lazy Christmas days with the family.

Thursday, December 18, 2008


This is a very touchy subject, and I understand that there are widespread views, feelings, and thoughts on abortion. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, of which I am a member, opposes abortion except in certain circumstances (incest, rape, health reasons). With the election of Barack Obama, many people are beginning to criticize his belief that women should be able to choose what happens with their bodies. With the passing of his proposed law, it would be easier for women to get abortions and it wouldn't be required for parents to approve or be notified of an abortion by their minor daughter.
As many of you know, my family often struggles with infertility. It took my parents six years before getting pregnant. Jared and I have been trying for just under two years. I have several cousins, aunts, and friends who have also been given this trial in their lives. Every time I hear about an abortion, I feel sick inside. It makes me so sad to think of all the people I know and love who would make wonderful parents and would love to care for that baby. I do believe that abortion is murder, and that it would be so much better if that baby were put up for adoption to a loving, wanting, deserving family.
All of this being said, I believe that abortion should be legal. I know that this seems like a catch-22. On the flipside of the coin, I have known many girls who found themselves pregnant, whether they planned to or not. I have known the girls who were overjoyed and so excited, I have known girls who were scared, I have known girls who were disowned by their families and kicked out while still minors. The fact remains that, like the prohibition of alcohol, if abortion were to become completely illegal in the United States, it would merely go underground. Desperate girls have, in the past, and would again, take desperate measures to abort an unwanted pregnancy. Some would find doctors who would do it after hours, but some would find people who claimed medical competency but actually knew nothing and some would try to do it themselves. The latter two end up suffering from injuries that could render them infertile for life, or they could end up dieing.
I believe that abortion is murder, with all of my heart. I believe that (except in a few circumstances) every woman is entitled to a choice. That choice is whether or not to have sex in the first place. If a baby results from that act, and it is not wanted or the mother feels that she cannot care for it, then I believe that adoption is the best (and only) course of action. I believe that the baby is, in fact, a living human being from the moment of conception, and I don't give any credit to all this embryo/fetus development stages crap that people use to justify abortion. However, I still believe that abortion must remain legal. It's a very conflicting position and I am fully aware of that - but it's how I feel.
I would just like to close by saying that none of us is capable of judging another's actions. Whenever we are given a set of choices or trials we are all subject to our own beliefs, agency, and understanding to make it through the test that we are currently living in - mortal life. Like my grandmother always said "If we were to put our troubles up on a clothes line next to our neighbor's, we'd immediately choose ours back again." Please, I'm not saying you should abandon your personal beliefs, but choose to treat others with kindness and love, trusting that the Lord will take care of the rest.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas Tag!

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? I love wrapping paper! I love opening presents and watching others open them - bags are less fun.
2. Real tree or Artificial? I like artificial trees best because I like to keep them up for the whole month of December and as far into January as Jared will let me.
3. When do you put up the tree? The day after Thanksgiving
4. When do you take the tree down? See question 2
5. Do you like eggnog? Yes, but only diluted half and half with milk. I don't know if Phred likes it though, I haven't had any this year. Jared hates it.
6. Favorite gift received as a child? Probably my Samantha Parkington doll. She went everywhere with me.
7. Hardest person to buy for? Jared
8. Easiest person to buy for? Jennie
9. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes, I have a willow tree one, a simple wooden one that I got from Young Women's, a plastic one that I had when I was little, and an olive wood one from Jerusalem that we got for our wedding.
10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail - It's so much more fun getting Christmas cards in the mail
11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? I don't think I've had one.
12. Favorite Christmas movie? Depending on the mood I'm in, it's either It's a Wonderful Life or the Muppet Christmas Carol.
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Whenever I start getting ideas for people. This year I was done by Thanksgiving.
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Nope
15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? I don't know, I like food in general :)
16. Lights on the tree? We currently have white lights on our tree and I like them. They have to be solid though, I don't like flashing lights on trees.
17. Favorite Christmas Song? I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day
18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? stay home
19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer? Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donder, Blitzen, Rudolph
20. Angel on the tree top or a star? I like stars best.
21. Open presents on Christmas Eve or morning? Definitely morning.
22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? The snow, it makes travel miserable.
23. Favorite ornament, theme or color? I love having the hodgepodge Christmas ornaments on our tree that we've collected over the years. We have ornaments that our moms bought when we were little, ornaments from vacations we've taken, ornaments that mean things to us, and ornaments that I've made with my class.
24. Favorite food for Christmas dinner? I really like chicken cordon bleu right now.
25. What do you want for Christmas this year? I already have Phred - I'll probably be getting a lot of good books :)
I tag: Carisa, Meg, Martha

Thursday, December 4, 2008

an ABC book

My friend Janice has a great blog that has ideas and great items listed for moms with young children. At a scrapbooking night my friend Christine was making a Gospel ABC book for her daughter. I thought it was a great idea and wanted to make one myself! Of course, since I don't have kids that's not very practical, so I made one for my nephew, Thomas. I took the ideas from a source that she posted, but the link doesn't work anymore so I won't put it on here. Just know that they are not all my own ideas, although some of the letters I didn't like and tweaked them myself.
A is for Angels - "When Jesus appeared to the people in the Book of Mormon, he blessed the children. Then angels descended and encircled the little ones and ministered unto them. -3 Nephi 17:18-25"B is for Baptism - "When we turn 8 years old, we can be baptized just like Jesus was baptized. When we are baptized, we become members of His church. -Matt 3:13-17"C is for Church - "I always have a happy felling when I go to church. -D&C 59:9-10"D is for Daddy - "-Malachi 4:6" (could also use disciple)E is for Eternity - "Mommy and Daddy were sealed in the temple for time and eternity. That makes us an eternal family. -D&C 132:19"F is for Family - "-3 Nephi 18:21"G is for GrandparentsH is for Heavenly Father - "When Joseph Smith went into the sacred grove to pray, Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ appeared to him. Heavenly Father loves each of us verymuch. -JS-H 1:14-17"I is for I am a Child of God - "I am a child of God, and He has sent me here. Has given me an earthly home, with parents kind and dear. -Hymns #301"J is for Jesus Christ - "Jesus loves us very much. He has made it possible for us to someday live with Heavenly Father again. -D&C 14:7"K is for Kneeling - "Jesus showed us how to pray. When we kneel down to say our prayers, it shows Heavenly Father that we love and respect Him. -Luke 22:41-44"L is for Love - "Jesus loved the little children, little ones like me. -Children's Songbook #59 -Mark 10:13-16"M is for Mommy - "-Alma 57:21" (could also use marriage)N is for Noah - "Noah was a prophet. He tried to get everyone to be good. He built an ark and put two of every kind of animal on it. They all lived on the ark while it rained for 40 days and 40 nights. -Genesis 6-8"O is for Obey - "Obedience means doing what we are told to do, as long as it is right. Even the wind and the sea obey Jesus' commands. I will obey his commandments, too. -Mark 4:36-41"P is for Prophet - "We have a prophet on the earth today. He tells us what Heavenly Father and Jesus want us to know. He leads our church. -Amos 3:7"Q is for Quiet - "One of the ways we can be reverent in church is by being quiet. When we are quiet we are listening and the Spirit can tell us what to do. -Children's Songbook #27"R is for Resurrection - "Jesus was crucified, but three days later, he rose again. He made it possible for all of us to be resurrected. -John 11:25 -Alma 33:32"S is for Sacrament - "Every week we take the sacrament at church. When we eat the bread and water, we promise Heavenly Father and Jesus that we will try to be like Him and follow His commandments always. -D&C 20:75-80" (could also use scriptures)T is for Tithing - "We pay 10% of the money we earn to the Church. This money helps build temples and churches all over the world. -D&C 119:4" (could also use temples)U is for Utah - "The pioneers left their homes and went across the plains in wagons and handcarts to settle and worship the Lord in the state of Utah."V is for Vision - "A vision is a dream from Heavenly Father. Lehi and Nephi had a vision of the tree of life, the iron rod, and the straight and narrow path leading to it. -1 Nephi 8:11"W is for Word of Wisdom - "We can take care of our bodies by eating good food and staying away from strong drinks, tobacco, and other bad things. -D&C 89"X is for eXaltation - Exaltation is eternal life, the kind of life which Heavenly Father lives in the highest degree of the Celestial Kingdom. Forty days after His resurrection, Jesus left his apostles and ascended into heaven in a cloud to be exalted by the right hand of God. -Acts 1:9-11; 2:32-33"
Y is for You - "Heavenly Father made you special. There is no one else like you. He loves you very much."
Z is for Zion - "Zion means the pure in heart. It is how Heavenly Father wants us to be. I can create a Zion in my home by listening to my parents, sharing with others, and making sure that I am always trying to be like Jesus. -Moses 7:18"

For any of my siblings who are now whining because they want one, don't worry, I have the materials to make you one, I just only had time to do one before Christmas. I'll definitely get you one sometime over the next year. Pictures will be uploaded later tonight.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

This weekend we had a great time! We spent a bunch of days with my family in West Jordan and Salt Lake. Thanksgiving we ate at Grandma Z's with the whole crew - there are so many of us now! Friday and Saturday we spent shopping, although we don't do the early bird thing. We left the house at 10 both days. We ate at The Cheesecake Factory - it was soooo good and I didn't even get cheescake. Since I'm done Christmas Shopping, it was fun to just enjoy the atmosphere of the mall rather than rushing to find the great deals. Sunday we were back at home and we scrubbed the front room and then decorated the house for Christmas. I love our tree! It is so random and has such a hodgepodge of ornaments, it's great. I am especially grateful right now for the support and caring of my friends and family. I know I've not been the easiest person to live with right now, but especially to Jared - thank you so much!

Monday, November 3, 2008

2 Wonderful Years!!!

Today is our 2nd anniversary. That's right, we've been married now for two whole years. I can't believe the time has passed so quickly, but at the same time it seems like Jared and I have been together forever and our wedding was just a big party we threw a few years back. Jared got me a set of scriptures with my married name on them and a pretty blue dress with brown flowers and leaves on it. I got Jared a new set of temple pants (and, he says, the suit that I got for his birthday is still counting for gifts). I know, we're sooo romantic, but hey, that's what we wanted! Also, Jared got me a lovely card, which is something I didn't expect. (Jared thinks cards are pointless and talking or a phone call works just as well, but he knows that I love them). We went to dinner at Red Lobster using our "free" gift card that we got through our credit card points. Then we wandered around and did a little bit of shopping and rounded out the night with ice cream at Macey's. We were both too full from Red Lobster to consider anything more than a twist cone a piece. Here are some things I have learned over the past two years:

-Nothing is really as grim as it seems
-Sometimes belching contests are really funny
-Sleeping with a teddy bear save Jared from a lot of bruises (apparantly I'm a violent sleeper)
-Happiness is something that you create together and share with each other
-Marriage truly is ordained of God; I can think of no happier thing than coming home each day to my best friend
-Jared is my best friend
-Always be willing to talk about things, even if they're just random stupid questions
-Share the simple things that make you happy
-Share things that make you sad so that you can help each other through them
-Don't open your mouth in the temple if you can't come up with an appropriate answer (for a more detailed answer, let me know and I'll give you the story of our sealing)
-Things don't always go the way you want them to, but that's what having your best friend is for
-Football is actually a fun sport, if you understand what's going on
-God invented irony

Monday, October 27, 2008

5 Things

Okay, tagged by my sister Carissa:
5 things I was doing 10 years ago:
1. in junior high - ninth grade, I think. We had a very strict dress code that year and I was refusing to comply.
2. Reading Ender's Game as a school assignment.
3. Reading Gone With the Wind and loving it! (Fell in love with Rhett Kinnicut Butler)
4. Staying up late at night watching old episodes of Zorro and Wonder Woman and eating massive amounts of otter pops. (seriously, my record is 53 in one sitting - I ran out or I'd have kept going).
5. Still playing barbies with my eleven year old sister, who would make me play them to this day if I hadn't gotten "old and boring."

5 things on my to do list today
1. go to the gym
2. cook dinner
3. read my scriptures and write in my journal
4. finish updating grades for my junior high students
5. watch Heroes!

5 snacks I love:
1. Ice cream - God's gift to women to make up for child birth :)
2. popcorn with lots of butter
3. hot cheetos
4. Old fashioned donutes
5. grape leaves

5 things I would do if I were a millionaire:
1. buy a house
2. make sure that all of my college loans and my sister's college loans are paid off.
3. Go on a very extended vacation with Jared - probably back to Kauai.
4. Pay my grandmother's medical bills.
5. Save most of it for our future

5 places I've lived:
1. West Valley, UT - from when I was born until I was in high school
2. West Jordan, UT - from high school to college
3.Heritage Halls - Freshman Year
4. Glenwood 154 - Sophomore and Junior Year
5. Our little apartment southeast of campus for 6 months until we moved by the library where we've been for the last year and a half.

5 jobs I've had:
1. First I started working for my mom filing papers at her office and then in the summers I would work there as a receptionist. During school I'd do weekends as janitor there.
2. Early morning janitorial at the UPC during my freshman year of college.
3. Records office at BYU.
4. High school special education teacher at Riverton High. I loved the kids and the friends I made at work, but it was an hour away from home and I just couldn't handle the commute. Also, the insurance didn't cover our current health needs.
5. Junior high school special education teacher at Orem Jr High. 15 minutes from and a great environment to work in. I love it!

5 people I tag
1. Marth Birk - you need to update your blog :)
2. Mirimuffin
3. Meg Larsen
4. Michelle Palmer
5. Bryce Gandy

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Four Squared - Tagged by Karissa

My friend Karissa tagged everyone who read her blog to post the fourth picture in the fourth album in their pictures folder. Since I have photos both at work and home, I'll put both up:
This one is from Megan's baby shower. She looks freaked out because a few of her friends were discussing the details of home births without drugs. I almost kicked them out of my house. They really scared Megan and pissed me off, too.
This one is from Christmas 2006 in Idaho. Aunt Cyndi made all of us matching Santa slippers. Although it's almost impossible to tell, Mom, Dad, Jared, Tyler, Megan, John, Chris, Matt and me are all in this picture. Thanks Cyndi, they're awesome!

I tag Jenae Hasler, Aunt Cyndi, Carisa Brown, Aunt Cathy, Carrie Miller, Malarie Leao, Meg Larsen, Martha Harmon, Martha Birk, and Michelle Palmer.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Embarrassing moments

My friend Carrie tagged me to tell three embarrassing moments. I'm not sure what to write because I usually don't put myself out there enough to get embarrassed. Mostly I'm only out there when I'm on drugs.
For example,
I had to get a root canal and I was on loritab. I took the day off work and went to the dentist, then Jared drove me down to BYU so that I could apply for graduation. As we were wandering from our apartment to the McKay building so that I could meet with my graduation advisor, I started singing Christmas songs. But not just any songs - Scrooge from the Muppet Christmas Carol - complete with voices. I was singing and walking drunkenly across the middle of campus. I was too out of it to be embarrassed, but Jared, who was holding my hand so I wouldn't fall over, was pretty embarrassed.

Mostly Jared and I don't put ourselves out there in the first place. This means that we don't have embarrassing stories, but we don't have a lot of really good ones either. Also, once I open up to someone, I don't really care what they think of me because I know that they love me. This means that I can't get embarrased in front of them. Sorry to disappoint, folks.

Monday, September 29, 2008

My family

I had a friend ask me about my family, so here are pictures of them. Above is most of my dad's family, with my grandparents Ruth and Don Zaelit at the top in the white shirts.
These are my mom and dad, Peggy and Matt.
Jennie is my adorable little sister.

A fun one of Jennie.My Grandma, Lenore Webb, and my parent's dog, Elroy.
Mom and Dad Brown, Julie and Kevin.
Grandma Ann and Grandpa Heber Brown.
Carissa and Tyler, Jared's older brother and his wife.
Jared's little sister, Megan, and her husband John and baby Thomas.
My adorable nephew Thomas.
Matt, one of Jared's younger twin brothers. Matt is funny and smart and very sweet.
Chris, the other twin, and baby Thomas. Chris is funny and knows how to fix anything.
My sisters, Megan Brown Hutchins, Jennie Zaelit, and Mandy Martin

Mandy is one of my best friends. This was at one of the non-alcoholic pina colada nights (NAPC) that the girls often threw. Mandy is currently serving a mission in California and will get home in February.
Oh, and my favorite picture of my parents:


I'm so tired. I'm sick of crying and sick of being tired. I hate that I can't even make it three hours without crying. Jared says he's so proud of me and making it through 2 hours and 53 minutes of church, and he says that I'm the best wife he could ever have. But sometimes I wonder - if I'm such a good wife, how come I didn't spend my time this weekend cleaning the kitchen or bathroom? Both of which seriously need it. I'm very glad that I have some doctor appointments this week. Hopefully I can find out what's wrong.

Monday, September 15, 2008

I am grateful!!!

I was reading on my friend Meg's blog the other day about how stressed she was and what did she do? She listed some of the things that made her grateful. I have been feeling very low lately, not necessarily stressed; but more depressed than anything else.

I am grateful for:
a loving husband who cooks and cleans for me.....a supportive mother who listens when I call to complain or cry.....a sister who can always make me laugh.....fallen leaves that I can crunch on the season.....loving friends who call to make sure that I'm okay.....books.....the Ensign.....scriptures.....when the weather gets cool enough to wear jackets and sweaters.....decorations for holidays.....a loving Heavenly Father who answers my prayers.....a loving Heavenly Father who doesn't answer my prayers the way I want him to.....Raven, Lily, and Milo the guinea students who love and teach me daily.....the color green.....being married to Jared.....the job and friends at nephew mother and father in Idaho who are always willing to listen and give dad in Utah who can fix anything, and can light up the room with his smile.....happiness.....

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Books and Movies

I've had lots of people ask me what I thought of certain books or gone to movies based on my suggestions. I have therefore created a new blog that I will use to post book reviews and movie reviews. Also, there is a list of the books we own and the movies we own on this blog, so if you want to borrow anything, you know what we have. The link is just under our picture on the right.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Happy 24th Jared!!!

Today is Jared's 24th birthday. I just wanted to make sure that everyone knew that Jared is the best man ever! He is so sweet and always willing to help me with whatever I need. Jared will go the extra mile to make sure that his family is taken care of, including extended members. Jared is also smart and funny and can always make me laugh. I am so grateful to be married to such a wonderful man for the rest of eternity. I was thinking this morning of Jared and comparing him to other guys I know; everyone else fell way short of all that Jared is and all that he does for our family. I know that the Lord was looking out for me when he had Jared move into my complex, and I know that I am so blessed to have such a wonderful and supportive husband in my life.