Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wedding Wednesday: The Colors

1. how it all began: how you met, first date, first kiss, how long did you date? first picture together.....etc.
2. when you knew he was the one: self explanatory.. but how and when did you know?
3. proposal: how it happened, how long were you engaged for? was it a total surprise? pictures of that... etc.
4. the ring: tell us about it! did you pick it out? did he? pictures! tell us about his ring too!
5. engagement/bridal pictures: let's see em!
6. the colors: show some of the flower and colors you used
7. the dress: was it what you always imagined? did you have it made for you? white or ivory?
8. the little accessories: you know, veil? shoes? jewelry? what did your bridesmaids wear?
9. the reception: where was it at? show us some pictures! what day did you get married?
10. the cake/food: i love food. so tell me about what you had at your wedding!
11. your song and/or the first song you danced to at your wedding: share a music video or lyrics if you can!
12. favorite part of the day and least favorite part of the day: can be anything.
13. honeymoon: where did you go? was it good? ;) haha...jk.
14. thoughts on marriage: what is the easiest/hardest part? if you could change anything, what would it be?
15. first place that you lived together: pics if you have them!
16. kids: do you have any yet? if not, when do you plan on it? how many do you want? any tips on good/bad birth control?
17. most recent picture of you and your significant other and what you love most about them :) and any other thoughts.


When I was younger and people would ask me about my future wedding colors (why do people ASK that??), I would always respond, "turquoise and fuchsia." I wasn't kidding. But, as the task of planning my own (real) wedding came up, I decided that my 10-year-old hunches were not always spot-on. I could only imagine what my family would have said at the prospect of wearing blue and hot pink.

So then I was thinking that I should do a red, white, and blue color scheme---not like patriotic red, white, and blue, but more like a china-bowl bright blue and a berry red. That idea was instantly shot down by my mother, who said that she was not going to be decorating with flags anytime soon (although I told her several times that a patriotic theme wasn't the intention).

By the time I got to the wedding decorator's business, I had tentatively picked out navy blue and yellow. But, when I saw the colors together, I actually really didn't like them. I did, however, really fall in love with a "peacock blue" table she had on display by the door. And thus the idea for doing a peacock-inspired wedding was born.

Since peacock feathers can be kind of intense, I decided to lighten up the table arrangements a bit with lemon slices inside the vases. I half-heartedly toyed with the idea of making all the women in the party wear peacock feathers in their hair (like in an old-fashioned saloon), but decided against it. (You can thank me now for that, family).

So here are some of the pictures of how it all came together (pictures courtesy of Valor Photography):







I thought my florist did an inspired job with my bouquet: she was a bit nervous about using peacock feathers in the arrangement, but I love how unique it turned out. I chose three of my absolute favorite flowers to go in it: lilies, peonies, and tulips. Spring flowers are my favorite, so I sure was glad we got married in the spring!!


I really didn't want to have formal "bridesmaids" at the wedding (partly because there were so many women that would be included!), so I just let everyone pick out their own outfits based around the color scheme. One of my biggest regrets from my wedding day is that we never did get any pictures of our families all dressed up in their wedding attire before the reception started (people were just enjoying the luncheon too much!). But luckily, we did get some pictures up at the temple after the ceremony, and I really love how those turned out. Here' s some candid shots of the kids that I think showcase their awesome outfits:



And then here's a couple more (from Chelsee Hanna Photography):


(we did actually get matching ties for all the men though. Here I am with my 2 brothers)

Overall, I'm happy with the colors I chose. If I was to do it all over again, I might have gone with something more subtle (like ivory and rose, with hints of pale green), but that's okay. I would never, ever want to plan a wedding again. Too much stress. But you've got to do it once, right?

Thanks for reading, and happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Tell-All Tuesday

*Well folks, it's here: the new semester, complete with new pens, new textbooks, and a not-so-new 5-subject notebook. School is a glorious thing.

*2 of the 3 classes that I actually have to show up for (my 4th class is online) are classes that are entirely about how to assess students (aka how to write tests). I bet you all wish you could come with me, dontcha??

*My supervisor at work bought a humongous bag of Tootsie candies. Bad idea. Tootsie Rolls are my one vice--the one sweet I can pretty much never say no to. Must. get. willpower...

*Speaking of work, can I just say how MARVELOUS it is to only work part time? I was bouncing all around at my job yesterday, I was so happy.

*I might as well be taking another two math classes--between tutoring Matt in his class every night and tutoring my friend's husband in precalc twice a week, I am assured to never lose the math ability I gained from being a math major for two years. You all just wait---I WILL end up teaching math in high school, degree or not. Mwa ha ha!

*Matt said to me this morning after looking around at our kitchen, "I have a feeling we're not going to have a clean house for much of the semester." Sigh. I got spoiled during the summer with Matt being home so much during the day...

*Last night I made a scrumptious made-from-scratch layered banana pudding for family night. It was like banana cream pie, minus the crust. Be jealous people. Be jealous.

*I think that, despite my enthusiasm for the new semester, I am slightly insane: 12 credits, 32 hour regular work week, plus another job that kicks in four times a semester that will add about 15 hrs/week during the weeks when I have to do it. Oh, and I'm doing math tutoring every night. Anyone want to place any bets on when I'll have a minor breakdown?

*Okay, I'd best get responsible and do some homework for my online class. It's been fun catching up. Later!!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Change It Up - Closet Redesign


I have had the same closet design since I was 12.

Color-coded. Skirts in the corner. Stuff I never wear on the right.

This design works just great for a 12-year-old who just cares about finding something that's clean and semi-matching.

It doesn't work so well for a 24-year-old who was thinking to herself every morning, "I feel like I have nothing to wear," even though I had plenty. Too much, probably.

It was then that I realized that the problem was probably not in the pieces themselves. It was probably in my organization of them (or lack therof). You see, a closet design where the sweaters are put right next to the t-shirts which are right next to the cardigans which are right next to the dressy shirts is probably not the most effective in finding a good outfit. In fact, it is a rather pitiful excuse for an organizational scheme that almost had me reduced to tears of frustration every morning.

Yes folks, tears of frustration from poor closet design. It happens sometimes.


I've never tried any other closet organization in my life. I had no idea where to start. So I just kinda went for what seemed to be a semi-logical separation of shirts (which you can all admire in the photo above). This is roughly my train of logic: obviously, I should no longer have long-sleeved shirts mixed in with short sleeves. Since I'm always searching for my cardigans, those should be separate. And I probably should have learned something from all my What Not to Wear reruns, so I separated all the prints out too. These are the different "categories" I came up with:

-cardigans
-plain solid-color shirts
-long-sleeve shirts (solid-color, cotton or light material)
-sweaters
-collared shirts
-"fancier" short-sleeve shirts
-blazers
-shirts with a print (but not collared)


The sad thing? The fact that the five shirts above are my only printed shirts in the whole collection.

Man, I am BORING.

New goal: no more buying solid colors until I feel a little less bland in my style.


And here's the final results, folks---lots of mismatched-looking fun.

We'll see how long it lasts. I'll let you know how it goes.

Wish me luck.

I need it.

In case this whole scheme doesn't work out though, what works for all of you? Do you even have a closet design? Or am I the only organized-chaos-in-your-closet freak out there?

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wedding Wednesday: Engagement/Bridal Pictures

1. how it all began: how you met, first date, first kiss, how long did you date? first picture together.....etc.
2. when you knew he was the one: self explanatory.. but how and when did you know?
3. proposal: how it happened, how long were you engaged for? was it a total surprise? pictures of that... etc.
4. the ring: tell us about it! did you pick it out? did he? pictures! tell us about his ring too!
5. engagement/bridal pictures: let's see em!
6. the colors: show some of the flower and colors you used
7. the dress: was it what you always imagined? did you have it made for you? white or ivory?
8. the little accessories: you know, veil? shoes? jewelry? what did your bridesmaids wear?
9. the reception: where was it at? show us some pictures! what day did you get married?
10. the cake/food: i love food. so tell me about what you had at your wedding!
11. your song and/or the first song you danced to at your wedding: share a music video or lyrics if you can!
12. favorite part of the day and least favorite part of the day: can be anything.
13. honeymoon: where did you go? was it good? ;) haha...jk.
14. thoughts on marriage: what is the easiest/hardest part? if you could change anything, what would it be?
15. first place that you lived together: pics if you have them!
16. kids: do you have any yet? if not, when do you plan on it? how many do you want? any tips on good/bad birth control?
17. most recent picture of you and your significant other and what you love most about them :) and any other thoughts.


I already did a pretty big picture post all about our engagement pictures here, but I'll include a couple more here just in case :)

We had my good friend Chelsee Hanna do our engagements, and we really loved how they turned out. The thing I liked the most about the session was that Chelsee didn't over-direct us---we weren't put into awkward poses or told to keep turning our chin more and more and more to the right or put back to back like we were by our bridal photographer (who I still loved, but who just had a very different take on some things). You all should 'like' Chelsee on facebook, cuz she's seriously amazing. She did all the photography for our wedding day too. Here's a few from that day (that I don't think I've posted here before):





Then, my uber-talented father (check out his webpage here), who's a calligrapher for Hallmark, designed our wedding invitations using Chelsee's pictures. The announcements were one of my favorite things from our wedding!


A couple months later, we did our bridal/groomal session with BP Designer Portraits, whose facebook page can be found here. I didn't have too hard of a time deciding whether or not to have Matt come with me, because I hate taking pictures with lots of people around and I didn't want to do a lot of pictures on our actualy wedding day, so the choice to have Matt come along and do sort of a bridal/groomal thing (yes, they are actually called groomals) was an obvious one for me.

The day of our session was so windy and cold that we almost had to cancel and reschedule, but it was literally the only time we had that worked for both of us and the photographer (we took these over spring break, although it was hardly warm---it started snowing for about the last hour and neither of us could feel any of our limbs by the end). I have left out some of the more unfortunate poses we were put in (like of me attempting to climb an electric tower, of Matt's head in my lap, and of Matt "sneaking up" behind me, even though we told the photographer we hated that pose). But, although there were some awkward shots, we definitely had plenty more that we really liked.

I have so many favorites from this session (which we shot in Salt Lake), but I'll try and narrow it down to a few of my favorites:














Yes, that was, in fact, me narrowing it down to a few.

Well, if you're not sick of looking at us yet, I guess you never will be. Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Tuesday Tell-All

*I have been almost too busy at work to blog lately. That is NEWS, people. BIG news. Let's CAPITALIZE things news.

*School starts in six days. AAAAAAGGGGGHHHHHH!!! :) :) :)

*(I think I'm feeling so hyper due to the Diet Dr. Pepper I'm allowing myself to indulge in while I type)

*The only reason I have said Dr. Pepper is because we have no bathroom at work at the moment, so every time I find myself wanting to heed nature's call, I need to make a beeline over to the Maverik on the corner to do it. And being surrounded by all sorts of quick fixes that promise to help keep me awake at work (like cheap caffeinated beverages) overpowers my willpower surprisingly easily. Plus I think the cashier hates me every time I come in to just use the bathroom instead of buying something. She just gives me this look like, "You bathroom free-loaders disgust me."

*Today we got our textbooks in the mail. Best. Day. Ever.

*We finally inherited a new-to-us t.v. The t.v. that we've been using since getting married (which my mom claims is mine from before my mission but is clearly not) has no working volume. That's right, folks---if it's too soft or too loud, you can just forget about adjusting it. So sorry neighbors for the fact that for some reason, The Big Bang Theory always blasted out at ear-splitting decibels and that as a result, the stupid theme song was probably in your head all day...la la la WE BUILT THE PYRAMIDS!

*I'm going to take a moment to brag about my hubby: he passed his math placement exam and got into exactly the class he needed to! Considering how he's always complaining about how math is not his best subject, both of us were anxious about him testing into the right one. I knew you would do just great, honey :)

*A second shout-out to Matt: he does the dishes literally every day. And makes our bed 99% of mornings. The man is AWESOME.

*I went for a run for the first time in two weeks last night, and it was great and terrible. Great because there's nothing like a good run to clean out your lungs and your head, but terrible because my body obviously has gotten used to not doing it in the two weeks I took a vacation from it. Silly body. You should just be in great shape all the time, even when I take breaks from going to the gym.

*Now that my first ten pounds have been lost (and I'm much happier with where I'm at), I'm easing up on my weight loss regimen, so it might be quite awhile before my second weight loss post comes up. But that's okay. I'm much less cranky eating 300 more calories a day :)

*K, I'd better go figure out what I'm making for dinner. Mmm....food...



Friday, August 19, 2011

Book #14: The Help

Title: The Help
Author: Kathryn Stockett
# of Pages: 544

It seems like about once a year, everyone's buzzing about some hit book. Last year, it was The Hunger Games, before that, there was Twilight, The Da Vinci Code (which I still haven't been able to convince myself to read), and, of course, Harry Potter. Generally the reading population at large isn't too far off the mark--most bestsellers are, in fact, highly pleasurable and worthwhile reads. There have been notable exceptions to this, obviously (but if I have to write down the dang series again, y'all don't know me very well). But there I go again, off on my usual tangent. The point is, this year, the literary buzz was all about The Help, and, as usual, I didn't want to be left out of the tight-knit reading club of America (you didn't know it existed? Well it does people. It does). I got an email one day telling me that Christmas had come early (Barnes & Noble was offering 50% off all bestsellers and free shipping), and my own copy of Stockett's novel arrived an excruciatingly long and torturous five days later.

Sometimes when I start a new book, I'll play a "getting-to-know-you" game with it---I'll put it out on the most prominent shelf to look at or even (if there's already a good relationship forming) straight on my nightstand. I'll thumb through the pages, read the book jacket several times, and then take a few good whiffs of the new paper. Then I'll start in slow, reading only a few pages at first, shaking each character's hands and staring at them for awhile in my mind before continuing on. Then, when I feel like we've gotten to the point where I'll remember their name the next time they walk up to me (unlike that one coworker who I can just never recall his name), I start to spend more time with them; I start to get emotionally attached.

My comfort level with Aibileen, Skeeter, and Minny (the main characters of The Help), didn't take long---a few chapters at most. For any who have not integrated themselves into the tight-knit reading club of America, The Help is set in Jackson, Mississippi in the early 1960's. It tells the story of a town that is sharply divided between the middle-class white and the working-class black---a town sharply segregated, despite advances in civil rights everywhere else in the country. The story revolves around one pivotal idea formulated by Miss Skeeter--an idea that would enrage the city and be potentially life-threatening to those involved. Miss Skeeter decides to write a book about the black women who wait on the white families, who dedicate their lives to raising up and caring for children who will never be their own, and who might even grow up and mistreat them. Skeeter's book starts with an interview of one brave maid (Aibileen), who makes the decision to speak out. But, as Aibileen and Skeeter start to convince more and more scared maids to come out and speak, they encounter fierce opposition---opposition that could not only cost them their jobs, but even threaten their lives and the lives of those they love. But the women still speak on.

I really was impressed by this book. I was impressed by the well-rounded characters, I was impressed by how the plot made me sad to put the book down at night (and, since I didn't sometimes, I sure went to work tired more than once), and I was especially impressed that this was Stockett's first novel. The book had a distinct message, but it didn't direct it at you in an in-your-face way, which I liked. Something Stockett does that is truly impressive, though, is that she makes a very heavy subject matter into something that is inspiring, yet likable and even funny at times. It takes a very skilled writer to do that, in my opinion. By the time I was about a third of the way in, I already loved it. And that's saying something.

If anyone is looking for a compelling read that isn't just "fluff" but manages to entertain at the same time, then this is it. Tight-knit-reading-group, you were right again. This time, at least.

My Rating: Five Stars. For sure.



Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wedding Wednesday: The Ring

1. how it all began: how you met, first date, first kiss, how long did you date? first picture together.....etc.
2. when you knew he was the one: self explanatory.. but how and when did you know?
3. proposal: how it happened, how long were you engaged for? was it a total surprise? pictures of that... etc.

4. the ring: tell us about it! did you pick it out? did he? pictures! tell us about his ring too!

5. engagement/bridal pictures: let's see em!
6. the colors: show some of the flower and colors you used
7. the dress: was it what you always imagined? did you have it made for you? white or ivory?
8. the little accessories: you know, veil? shoes? jewelry? what did your bridesmaids wear?
9. the reception: where was it at? show us some pictures! what day did you get married?
10. the cake/food: i love food. so tell me about what you had at your wedding!
11. your song and/or the first song you danced to at your wedding: share a music video or lyrics if you can!
12. favorite part of the day and least favorite part of the day: can be anything.
13. honeymoon: where did you go? was it good? ;) haha...jk.
14. thoughts on marriage: what is the easiest/hardest part? if you could change anything, what would it be?
15. first place that you lived together: pics if you have them!
16. kids: do you have any yet? if not, when do you plan on it? how many do you want? any tips on good/bad birth control?
17. most recent picture of you and your significant other and what you love most about them :) and any other thoughts.


Unlike most girls, I never dreamed about my wedding ring when I was younger.

I never went into jewelry stores with my friends to ooh and aah over diamonds.

I didn't even really ever take the time to look over the jewelry advertisments that came in the mail.

So I found it funny that when I knew deep down that Matt was the one, I dragged him into a ring store on the spur of the moment to pick out one that I liked. It was just so not me.

I did know three things, however:
(1) I did not want a ring that stuck out at all. I've never been a fan of wearing any rings period, and the thought of having a ring that could potentially snag my eye out was just more than I could handle.
(2) I did not want my ring to cost a lot, and I did not want a big diamond.
(3) I liked how my Mom's wedding kind of had a swirly design--smaller diamonds in a curved band.

That was it. But it was enough.

So I randomly dragged Matt into Kay Jewelers one night as we happend to be walking through a mall. The seller looked eager as we stepped in. A little too eager. I was immediately embarrassed by his questions, esp. as we hadn't even set a date or even formally decided to get married. That's how spur-of-the-moment it was.

The overeager salesman (we'll call him Jake) seemed intent on making me fall in love with the biggest rock in the store. He had no idea who he was dealing with. Matt stood off in the background, trying not to laugh, as I explained over and over again, "I don't want a big diamond. I don't want anything that sticks out. I've never wanted an expensive engagement ring."

I think my ring was the second one I tried on. After that, I had eyes for nothing else. After trying valiantly to keep in his frustration at my lack of girly desire for expensive  jewelry, Jake gave up and had me keep returning my favorite ring to my finger so that I could get used to seeing it on (or at least that's what I supposed). He hinted to Matt that there would be a sale in two weeks, but I figured there was no way Matt would have the guts to buy the ring so soon, esp. when we hadn't decided anything.

I was wrong.

Matt bought the ring on sale (smart man!) and kept it hidden for two months until he proposed. I absolutely adore my ring--it's everything I ever wanted, and I still find myself studying it sometimes, watching it sparkle. I love putting it on every morning and knowing that it's a constant reminder of the fact that I can be with the man that I love forever.



Matt was decidedly more picky with his ring.

With me, we only had to go and look in the one store, for maybe twenty minutes (it would have been only five, if Jake had been a little less persistent and thinking a little less about his commission). With Matt, we went in store after store, and we couldn't seem to find a band that fit what he wanted: simple, silver, a certain thickness, and, of course, within my price range. We found a few that were "all right" by Matt's standards, but I wanted him to really like his ring. We decided to go back into Kay Jewelers to see if we couldn't use the deal on men's bands they'd given to Matt when he bought mine.

Finally, after weeks of searching, Matt found the one he liked. Tungsten, medium-width, comfort fit, and at just the right price. And, as a bonus, we used the wedding band deal to get some cuff links thrown in too. Matt wanted to wear his wedding band right away (so all the girls in his classes would stop trying to hit on him), but he managed to hold off until we were pronounced husband and wife.

I still love looking down at our intertwined hands, seeing the rings that remind us of our love.

(And I love looking at this picture that was taken at our wedding reception by Valor Photography!)(check out her site here).

Above photo by Valor Photography

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Tell-All Tuesday

*First off, thank you to everyone who offered me consolation/support/a shoulder to cry on/etc. after my terrible, no-good, awful workday(s) last week. I have since survived until yet another Tuesday, and things have been overall going better (at least to the point where I think that I can hold out for another few months)

*I get to order my textbooks this week. And now I get to order Matt's too! It's like Christmas has come early :)

*You wanna know what's really weird though? For once, Matt's textbooks look more interesting to me than my own. So honey, if your Fit & Healthy textbook all of a sudden goes missing, don't say I didn't warn you...

*Listening to Harry Potter on audiobook is awesome. And I mean awesome. I all of a sudden have a million reasons why I need to go drive my car somewhere...

*I went on a 10-lbs-down, mini shopping spree last week (using lots of coupons, of course). I'm obsessed with all the new jewelry I got from Vanity (check out the earrings I posted on my Pinterest page), and there's just nothing like a few new pieces (like the awesome coral cardigan I featured in my 10-lbs-down post) to make me feel all cute and girly and ready for school to start :)

*Even though I'm elated by my weight loss success, I'm starting to hit my first hurtle--the dreaded plateau. Granted, I haven't been working out quite as much (okay, not nearly as much), but even with the simple calories in/calories out, I still should be losing steadily. But no. I've circled around the same pound marker for almost a week now. And I'm also starting to get to the point where I just want to eat a normal amount again--nothing like I ate before, but still, something more than 1200 calories a day. But hopefully I'll be to where I want to be in about a month, then I can just work on maintaining. I've just gotta stick it out.

*I don't know why I always start to write these right before lunch, because then all I can think about is food. Of course, that's half of all I ever think about anyway, so...

*I WILL finish The Help in the next two days. I am determined. And I just can't stand the suspense any longer.

*Okayit'slunchtime. Bye!


Sunday, August 14, 2011

Change It Up - Before/After 10 Lbs.

Well folks, here is the post I've been promising for so long: the before/after post of my first 10 lbs. lost on my new get-healthy plan. I've done a lot of Change It Ups by now, but without a doubt, I'm by far the most proud of this one. You see, this Challenge has been a long time in the making.

I think everyone (except the perpetually fit who can eat whatever they want and never have it show *cough* my husband *cough*) has a weight story. Mine was pretty positive actually, until I hit college and packed on the dreaded Freshman 15. After my freshman year, I went in for a doctor's appointment and discovered I had high cholesterol. I was shocked, to say the least. I'd always been pretty skinny, and I'd never dreamed of finding out I'd have to deal with a health problem so young.

Then began the yo-yo dieting: the drastic cut-out sugar, cut-out everything diets that lasted about a month before I started binging on everything sweet in sight. The weight would go down, then up, then down, then up (but higher this time). I had never gotten to the point though, where I really felt that bad about myself. Until my mission.

When I went to El Salvador for 18 months to serve a mission for my church, I somehow managed to pack on 25 pounds, despite hours of walking and continous sweating every day. And even though all the Latinos had been telling me that I was looking a little "gordita," I was in denial about it until a companion's health scare landed us in a doctor's office, where I stepped on the scale for the first time in a year. I was SHOCKED to see how much weight I'd gained, and even more shocked (and sickened) to find out that I was officially now in the "overweight" category for my height.

I tried cutting down on eating so many greasy pupusas, but I still came home 20 pounds heavier than when I'd left. And, despite a couple hours every day at the gym and some more crash diets, I'd only managed to lose about 5 pounds more since getting home. For the first time in my life, I felt self-conscious about having photos taken of me, and I felt like my prettiest days were over. It's hard to admit all this out loud, but my weight really started to affect my self-image. Even on my wedding day, when I should have felt the prettiest, I still didn't feel quite like the "me" I wanted to be on that day (not that I dislike the pictures from that day, because I actually love most of them--it was just hard to get used to this "new" me in pictures).

And then I had a life-changing experience.

After gaining five pounds back after getting married, Matt and I were sitting in church, and the speaker was talking about promises. He was talking about how promises used to mean something to people---that a person's word was all it used to take for complete trust to exist between two parties, even two hostile ones. He cited scriptural examples, and I remember being struck so clearly with a thought just then: I thought of the book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens by Sean Covey that I had read so many times when I was younger. There's a part in there that talks about a relationship bank account---when we make "deposits" into our bank account with other people, our relationship is healthy and grows. If we make constant "withdrawals," we deplete trust and the relationship is left emotionally bankrupt.

But the part I remembered in that moment is when Covey talked about the personal bank account---the relationship we have with ourselves. Quoting from the book, he says, "We should treat the commitments we make to ourselves as seriously as those we make to the most important people in our lives. If you're feeling out of control in your life, focus on the single thing you can control--yourself."

I realized that I'd stopped trusting myself because I'd made constant promises to myself that I'd broken. Promises like, "I'll lose my mission weight as soon as I get home" or "I'll finally get my cholesterol down to a healthy range" (my New Year's Resolution for this year). And then it struck me: the only way to start trusting myself again was to keep the promises I made to myself. And to not wait any longer to start doing it.

The very next day, I came across a blog that was talking about how a website (www.myfitnesspal.com) had helped her to lose almost 15 pounds in a couple months. I logged onto the site, entered my stats and my goal weight, and was delighted with the site right away: it gave me a daily calorie goal to reach my weight loss goals, and calculated all my calories in and calories out for me. Earlier in the year, I'd tried writing down my calories (check out that Change It Up here), but the habit had not stuck because it was too time-consuming to look up everything myself. This site made it so easy that I had no excuse.

Over the past month that I've been doing this, I've become much more conscious of what I'm eating and the choices that go along with being healthy. I learned that I don't have to cut out all sugar to lose weight---but I did learn that when I did eat sugar, it would mean that I might be hungry later or that I'd have to put in extra gym time (since I made a firm resolution to stay under my calorie goal every day). It sounds silly, but I finally feel free when it comes to my eating---before, when I was so unhappy about my weight, I would feel guilty about everything that went into my mouth. Now, I realize that it's all just about choices---if I make the choice to eat that piece of cheesecake now, it will hold consequences for me later. And I've often made the choice to simply not eat it, since it's easier some days to do that than to work out or eat less later on.

After a month, I've lost ten pounds. I have no secret, except commitment to the promises I've made to myself. I still have almost another 10 pounds to go until I hit the weight I was at before I put on the Freshman 15, so I'm not done yet. And my biggest realization? This isn't just about now. This is about forming healthy habits that will last me the rest of my life. This is about never letting myself get back to the old, out-of-control version of myself. This is about feeling great about myself again.

And for the first time in a long time, I really believe myself when I say that I will do all of that.

Change It Up Breakthrough: I've learned to trust myself again! SUCCESS!!

***P.S. Most of my "fattest" pictures were deleted immediately by me, but I still had a few. It's really hard for me to post these, so be nice please!

BEFORE



(It was this picture above, taken about a month and a half ago on one of our photo walks, that really pushed me to finally make some changes).


 AFTER



(And don't make fun of my modeling skills, ha ha)

***Oh, and if anyone wants to be my "friend" on myfitnesspal.com, just look for torriemeidell :)

Finally!

Finally! A weekend that actually felt like we were on summer vacation!
Kayla and her friend Sam came up from Bountiful.

Petrice and her family came by to join us for dinner.

We enjoyed king ranch chicken, chips and salsa, cheesecake, and catching up. All three of us grew up together and have been friends since we were children.
Saturday, after we helped Petrice and Caleb move to their new digs, Matt and I took a short detour over to the county fair, where I got a picture of me and the Texas Roadhouse armadillo.

Then we came home and snuggled.

Matt and me, that is, not me and the armadillo.

A perfect weekend!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Wedding Wednesday - The Proposal

1. how it all began: how you met, first date, first kiss, how long did you date? first picture together.....etc.
2. when you knew he was the one: self explanatory.. but how and when did you know?

3. proposal: how it happened, how long were you engaged for? was it a total surprise? pictures of that... etc.

4. the ring: tell us about it! did you pick it out? did he? pictures! tell us about his ring too!
5. engagement/bridal pictures: let's see em!
6. the colors: show some of the flower and colors you used
7. the dress: was it what you always imagined? did you have it made for you? white or ivory?
8. the little accessories: you know, veil? shoes? jewelry? what did your bridesmaids wear?
9. the reception: where was it at? show us some pictures! what day did you get married?
10. the cake/food: i love food. so tell me about what you had at your wedding!
11. your song and/or the first song you danced to at your wedding: share a music video or lyrics if you can!
12. favorite part of the day and least favorite part of the day: can be anything.
13. honeymoon: where did you go? was it good? ;) haha...jk.
14. thoughts on marriage: what is the easiest/hardest part? if you could change anything, what would it be?
15. first place that you lived together: pics if you have them!
16. kids: do you have any yet? if not, when do you plan on it? how many do you want? any tips on good/bad birth control?
17. most recent picture of you and your significant other and what you love most about them :) and any other thoughts.

Even though we went looking for rings back in early October, we had decided not to get married until May. Since we didn't want to have to have an excruciatingly long engagement, we put it off as long as we could.

But, I did make one stipulation: every time Matt asked me what I wanted for Christmas, I said, "Oh, you well know what I want."

A ring.

Then he would just smile and say, "Yeah, I know that. What ELSE do you want?"

So I knew it was happening before Christmas.

A couple times before the night it actually happened, Matt faked me out. He would do something extra nice for me, then reach into his pocket real slow, like he was about to extract a small velvet box. I freaked out every time, even going so far as saying a few times, "You'd better not be proposing to me right now. My mom said that you couldn't propose while sitting on the couch."

You see, my mother had all her own stipulations for how we "needed" to get engaged. She said that it had better be romantic and planned. She said that he could not propose to me in a car. And she said that, under no conditions, could he propose to me in between episodes of The Office. Of course, Matt being Mr. Mischief when he wants to be, faked me out on every single one of those counts numerous times.

But deep down, I knew it wasn't going to happen that way.

We had tickets to go see the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas concert (featuring David Archuletta) on the 18th of December. We made plans to go early to meet up with his family and maybe check out some of the lights on Temple Square, enjoy the concert, then go to Leatherby's afterwards. I just knew it was going to happen that night. I knew because it was too perfect to pass up: almost exactly two years before, after seeing the MoTab Christmas concert, we had also gone to Leatherby's and we had held hands for the first time in public (at least I think it was the first time). Also, a couple weeks after that (and a couple weeks before I left on my mission), Matt had fake-proposed to me in the parking lot of Leatherby's.

Yes, you read that right. He had fake proposed to me before. We had eaten at Leatherby's, having a jolly old time as usual, and I knew that although he fully supported me on my decision to serve a mission, he didn't want me to go. I knew that his friends and family had been telling him to just propose to me and make me stay home. But I knew he would never stand in the way of something I knew I had to do. But he did scare me pretty good that night of the fake proposal: after we got into his car, full from fresh-made whipped cream and hot fudge and french vanilla ice cream, he got real serious--he told me how much he cared about me, then reached into his pocket. I kid you not when I say my heart stopped and then seemed to fall into the pit of my stomach. I couldn't believe he was going to propose two weeks before I left for my mission, when he clearly knew what the answer would be.

He pulled out a small velvet box, and, without a word, he opened it. Inside was a small slip of paper rolled up into the shape of a ring. I pulled it out, and read:

"Torrie Lynn Fedor, will you....go to the movies with me?"

I wanted to kill him.

Flash forward two years. There we were again, in the parking lot at Leatherby's. I wrote in my journal that as we listened to the sounds of the choir on Temple Square that night and were surrounded by Christmas lights, I looked into Matt's eyes and kept falling more and more in love with him. I wrote how I'd never felt so sure of myself and definitely had never felt so sure about a relationship. I knew how I felt, and I knew what I wanted.

(picture taken earlier in the year of Matt at Leatherby's)

I knew it was going to happen right then because Matt had turned the music off before we went in to Leatherby's (a fact I hadn't noticed 'til we got back in his car). I could also tell because Matt was a teensy bit nervous. He grabbed my hand and, looking into my eyes, said, "If I remembered correctly, it was in this exact parking spot two years ago that I fake proposed to you. I wanted so much to have done it for real that time, but I know what you wanted, and I wanted to be behind you on it 100%. I have never stopped loving you since then, and my desire remains the same. You are, and always have been, my perfect girl. You are My Torrie. But, you and I both know that your mom would NOT be happy if I proposed to you here in the car. So let's do this proper."

He got out of the car. I got out of the car.

It was raining--a misty, light drizzle.

And right there, in the middle of the Leatherby's parking lot in Salt Lake, Matt knelt down on one knee and asked me to marry him.

I was bawling before he even opened his mouth.

After I ecstatically said, "Yes!", I threw my arms around him and we stood there kissing, as raindrops streamed down our faces.

We were too giddy to take any pictures then, but we did take the picture below when we went to go tell our families.

We were engaged almost five months.

The longest five months in history.





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