Wednesday, July 16, 2014


Today you turn three. Three.

Every day you make me smile with your grown-up sentences, polite nature, and your full-belly laugh.

I love the way you make friends with everyone you meet. I love our little watermelon-eating parties on the kitchen floor. I love how you have the best imagination.

You are my favorite little girl, and I am so glad to be your mommy.

Happiest of birthdays, my girl. We love you!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

My Little Model

So I got to do something super fun this week. Some of you may not know, but I do social media marketing for a nonprofit organization called Pearls with Purpose. Part of that job is blogging, so even though I ignore this little blog of mine, I still blog for my actual job. Best. Job. Ever.

Anyway, I wanted to host a giveaway to start driving more traffic to our social media sites and the blog. So I got in touch with the awesome peeps at Freshly Picked moccasins, and we arranged to give a pair of these adorable mocs on the PWP blog. I got a pair to have Maylie wear and then write a review on to go along with our giveaway. It was so fun.

I loved putting together an outfit around these super cute mocs and taking pictures of May. Here's a few of the ones I took for the post:

And our giveaway is still running and has very few entries, so if you want a pair of these awesome mocs, go enter here! They have tons of amazing colors and sizes to chose from for both little girls and boys. Seriously go check them out. 

Thursday, May 29, 2014

On Being a Has-Been

This week is always a little bitter-sweet for me. Every year sometime in early summer my Facebook feed is flooded with pictures from girls competing for Miss Nevada. For the past several years I have cheered from afar as friends have been crowned as Miss Nevada, but this year and last year I haven't really known anyone in the pageant, but their photos still make it to my feed through one mutual friend or another. I recognize a few faces from the Teen program or from a smaller pageant called Cinderella that I competed in for years, but I don't know any of them, not really.

In previous years I waited for the text or call to tell me which of my pageant sisters had won because regardless of the outcome, I probably knew the winner. Now I just wonder what it would be like to still be there myself. It's funny though because I'm still competing age. This year or next would probably be my last before I "aged-out." But I chose a different route. I chose to become a wife and a mom. Which I swear I do not regret. Not one little bit.

But half of my life I was a pageant girl. I was in my first pageant when I was eleven, and I continued to compete until I got married at twenty. Pageants were part of my identity. They made me a little different. And honestly I think that is what I miss. When I chose to get married and start a family I knew what I was giving up, and I was completely sure that is what I wanted to do. But I don't think I realized that I wasn't just giving up competing, I was kind of giving up part of who I was.

When people ask me what I like to do I can no longer say, "Well I like to read, play video games, and, oh yeah, I'm Miss {insert title here}." But when I could say that, I got the best responses. Some people would think it was super cool, and others would go on a rant about their idea of pageantry, but regardless, it always sparked a conversation. If you talk to me now all you hear about is how my kid refuses to nap or potty train.

But even though I'm no longer a "pageant girl," and I don't tell people immediately that I used to be one, it never really goes away. In the pageant world it is common to hear of the "pageant bug," which usually refers to a girl who competes in one pageant and just can't stop. It really is catching. But in the process of competing, you catch so much more than what meets the eye.

I became comfortable in front of crowds (enough to wear a swimsuit on stage), I learned public speaking, I gained interviewing skills, I became passionate about service. I'm never nervous when I have to present in class or go in for a job interview because, honestly, I've never been in an interview more difficult than a Miss America Organization interview. And I made relationships with some of the most impressive and dynamic women the state of Nevada has ever seen.

So even thought I am no longer able to introduce myself as Miss Something, I feel different, better for having been a pageant girl. And even though I'll never have the chance to walk on that Miss America stage, I am so glad for the years I got to walk on the Miss Nevada one.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

6 days.

I considered separating these out into neat and tidy posts, but then I decided I'd never get around to them if I did that. So stay with me as I jump around to the random events of the last six days.

On Thursday, May and I drove down to Mesquite to visit my parents for the weekend. I got a chance to catch up with friends and hang out with my parents. Always a good time.

We had to visit the angry ducks, of course.

We visited Papa at work and little girl stole his glasses. (Pretty sure my brother and I have a thousand pictures like this with our grandparents.)

And May was Gam's "Big Helper" in the kitchen all weekend.

Then we drove back home to make it back in time for Ryan's first downhill mountain biking race of the season. Monday we drove up the canyon to watch his race and it was so fun! Seriously, I had no idea what a big deal it was. People were camped out to watch the bikers all day. Next time we will be better prepared, but we had a blast.

Then today we got to be a part of Jackson proposing to Niki! He planned the whole thing at the Hogel Zoo, but needed a good excuse to be there! So we all went together. Seriously so cool to get to watch these two love birds get engaged! Congrats Niki and Jackson!

After the awesome proposal, we got to hang out at the zoo all day. Can't beat that.

Sorry for the all over the place post! Hope you all had a wonderful Memorial day weekend too!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

May's 1st Dance Concert

This weekend was Maylie's first dance concert. And by concert I mean FIVE concerts crammed into a two-day period. Considering all the craziness we put this little two year old through, I think she did great.

{I feel the need to give a huge shout out to my mom for years of getting me ready for pageants, 'cause seriously, this was no joke. Trying put make-up on a two-year old, forcing her to wear white gloves where she can't touch anything, and making her wear a little crown that seriously did not want to stay in her pixie cut hair was just asking for a stressful weekend for mom and baby. So thanks Mom! I know I was a bit older when you had to get me ready for pageants, but I know I was just as much a pain.}

Anyway, back to the concert. May performed five times and did great. The last two were a little rough, so naturally those are the ones I filmed. She danced at the first three pretty well, but the last two were a struggle. She lost her crown in the forth, which was kind of traumatic. And right before the last concert she was having a melt down backstage. The helpers back there told me they barely were able to convince her to go on. But it was almost nine, and her fifth concert, and she was just done. So she danced a little during the last concert, but she mostly bossed her friend Lucy around the entire time.

Overall it was so fun watching her dance! But by the end she was so over it. After the last concert she kept yelling, "I'm done!!" whenever we tried to take her pictures. Thanks May for putting up with us!

And thanks Rik for teaching little girl and being patient with her all year! You're the best!

Here's the video of May's crown falling off. Feel free to get a good laugh out of it. We sure did!
(Side note: ignore my loud laugh in the background. I just can't help it.)

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

So I'm a Grad... Kind of.

3 universities. 6 years. And I am finally done. Well, almost. I have a few electives to finish up over the summer to make up from the last transfer.

It gave my parents an excuse to come and visit, and it was kind of nice to have a ceremony that makes it feel complete.

I will be stoked when it is finally done, but I also will be a little sad. I have loved college. I have loved learning all of the time. Hopefully one day I will be able to continue my education, but for now I'm excited to have a little break.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Maylie Monday: A Visit from Gam and Papa

Wanna know what Maylie has been begging for for several weeks? Gam and Papa. I made the huge mistake of telling her they were coming to visit soon, and then she could not quit talking about it. First thing in the morning, "Gam and Papa here?" First thing after day care, "Gam and Papa coming?" Every day right before bed, "Gam come tomorrow in her car and bring Papa."

I felt so bad because every day I would have to tell her that it was x-amount of days before they were actually going to get here, and she couldn't quite grasp that.

Finally, though, they were here and we got to spend a whole fun-filled weekend with my parents. Little girl was so excited to have them here, but she has been really confused where they went when they left. She keeps saying, "Gam and Papa come back." Too cute. We will have to make a trip to Mesquite soon because I doubt she is going to make it very long.

Naturally I took only a few photos this weekend, and most of them were for graduation (which I'll post about later), so here's just an adorable one that my dad sent me this morning.

My parents took May up the canyon and they found some fish, which May was really excited about. She got to feed them and everything. 

Thanks Gam and Papa for the awesome weekend! Come back soon!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Life in Lists: What would you hire someone to do for you?

This week for the "My Life in Lists" link up we are talking about things we would pay other people to do for us if money was not an issue.

Here are my top 4 things I would pay someone else to do for me:

1. Personal Shopper
I struggle so bad picking out clothes. I would love, love, love someone to buy my clothes for me and put them into pre-made outfits for me. Seriously, this would be the best thing ever.

2. House Keeper
Guys, I'm kind of a slob. Anyone who has ever been in my car probably has an idea of how messy I can be. I have gotten loads better since Maylie was born, but still, I struggle. If money was not an issue I would totally pay someone to clean my house.

3. Editor
One thing I think I have undervalued during my education is the free editing that teachers do. Teachers and professors are not required to go through each of my papers, point out areas that could be stronger, and where I misplaced a comma, but they do because they want me to be able to improve my paper even if it isn't for their class. I have revised several old papers that teachers gave me feedback on, and one of those was even published in UVU's literary journal, Essais. I will miss the days when someone is carefully looking over everything I write and helping me to make it better. I would definitely pay someone to help me out with this if I had unlimited funds.

4. Live-In Nanny
I don't necessarily think I need a live-in nanny, but there are times when I just want to run to the store by myself. Having a live-in nanny would seriously make stuff like that so easy.

So that's what I would pay someone else to do for me if I had unlimited monies in the bank, which I don't see happening anytime soon. Make sure to check out Kelli and and Marci's cute blogs to learn more about the link-up and even join in yourself!

What kind of things would you pay someone else to do for you?

Monday, April 21, 2014

Maylie Monday: Easters

We had an awesome Easter. We hung out with the Laws and drove up the canyon for an "Egg Roll" (does anyone else think it's funny that my Asian in-laws celebrate Easter with something called an egg roll?) Overall it was just nice to have a chill holiday. But today we all woke up with massive colds, so enjoy a picture overload while I just go to bed:

Friday, April 18, 2014

Life In Lists: What Would I Do With a Million Dollars?

So just a few days ago I mentioned that I have been slacking in the blog department. I attributed that to being busy with school and what-not, which is mostly true. But also I just have a little writer's block. Which is why I was so stoked to find out my cute blogger friend, Kelli, and her sister, Marci have started a new link-up called "My Life in Lists," which is kind of perfect since it'll help me keep on blogging even when I'm kinda busy.

So here it goes: What would I do with a million dollars?

1. Pay my parents back for school.
My parents are awesome and paid for my first two years of college, and I really under appreciated that. I was seriously the biggest punk about it and wasted so much of their money. I eventually told them I would just pay for college myself, at least that way I could feel less bad about it. If I had a million dollars I would pay them back for the money they pumped into my college education.

2. Buy a house, duh.
Who wouldn't buy a house? But I don't think I would buy a lavish house. Just something comfortable our kids could grow up in, but I would probably spend a ton decorating it.

3. Take Ryan to Machu Picchu.
I think this has to be the top of Ryan's bucket list. He brings it up all the time. I would love to take him on his dream vacation.

4. Upgrade our cars.
We are seriously so lucky and blessed to have two cars that work and run well, but they are getting a little old and it's probably just a matter of time before they break down and become money-holes. So I would buy Ryan a nice new four-door Jeep or a truck, and let him pick out a cute car for me. Cause let's be real, I honestly don't care what it is as long as it's cute.

5. Pay for grad school and probably save for a doctorate.
I think eventually I will go back to school. I love the idea of having Masters, but it is so expensive and there is no guarantee that having an MA will increase my ability to make more at all. So that's scary. If I had the money to just pay it outright I would go in a heart beat.

So that's what I would do with a million dollars.

What you you spend it on?

Monday, April 14, 2014

Maylie Monday: Nap Time

As you may have noticed, I have been slacking in the blog department. Sorry. I have two weeks left in the semester, so I will be back in full swing once finals are over (hopefully).

Anyway, Miss May has been resisting naps like crazy, so I've opted for "quiet time." Every day when nap time is supposed to happen, little girl is required to go in her room and sleep or quietly play for the same time as she would sleep. At first I felt a little guilty shutting her in her room, but she doesn't seem to mind at all. In fact, she kind of seems to like it.

I originally did this because, guys, I need nap time. Nap time is homework, housework, and mommy sanity time. I was devastated when I thought I was losing her daily nap, but this arrangement has saved me. About half the time she still sleeps, but when she doesn't, she and I don't have to throw a fit about it. The only side affect I've really noticed is when she doesn't nap she is exhausted by bedtime. The other night she just went and tucked herself into bed and was asleep before I even knew she had gone into her room. Then last night, she got grumpy at Ryan and shut herself in her room. When I went to go ask her why she was mad I nearly squished her with the door. She was crashed out on the floor right by the door.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Maylie Monday: The Park

We have been to the park more times than I can count in the last few weeks. Seriously if I hear, "I wanna go to the park" one more time, I might lose it. I mean, I am stoked that I have a little girl who wants to do something other than veg in front of the TV all day, but going to the park five times a day just isn't practical.

Also, the weather here in Provo is bi-polar. One minute it is a beautiful day worthy of shorts and a t-shirt, and half-an-hour later it is overcast, or raining, or just plain freezing out. It makes explaining why we can't go to the park very confusing.

There have even been a couple of days where we have had to go to McDonald's or Chick-fil-A just to avoid the weather and to subdue the child.

We were having a pretend tea party here.
She made me cram into this tiny beehive.
But even though I complain about Maylie's new favorite activity, I am so grateful to have a daughter who loves to play, imagine, and get a little dirty. Once the weather is nice on a more regular basis I am sure I will be loving soaking up the sun while she plays at the park.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Maylie Monday: Tiny Adult

For quite some time now Ryan has called Maylie his "Tiny Adult." I don't know why he started calling her this, but as of late it has become a really accurate nickname. A lot of the time she talks in complete sentences and says these big words that I don't feel like she should know yet. There is something really comical about a little person saying grown up words, and she crack us up every day. She never knows why we think she is funny either. She just laughs at us laughing or looks really confused.

She says things like "this is fantastic," and "I love you very, very much." She is polite, and is getting good at saying sorry without being asked. Sometimes if we ask her to move or put something back she quickly says, "Oh, I'm sorry." So cute.

And here's a few pics of May and Daddy from this weekend, cause what's a blog post without some pics?