{holiday}: gifts

I was just reading in my Martha Stewart magazine and they had asked readers what the best gift they had given was. Then a friend of mine had this song post on FB and the memory just couldn't help but flood back...

I was living down here in St. George and Jon was back home in Idaho Falls. It was December and I had plans to go home and visit him. I'd led him to believe that I wasn't going to be there until right before Christmas but luckily I was actually able to take off from work a few day earlier than he thought. At the time I didn't have a car-I was just buzzing around on my scooter so going home meant finding rides or flying...but this time it meant Greyhound. I hadn't ever ridden on a Greyhound bus, and I honestly can't recommend it. I remember so clearly my roommates and our friend Patrick dropping me off at midnight at McDonalds with my bag and my snowboard. We stopped in Cedar at the station where I paid for my ticket and headed on our way. I ended up sitting next to a nice looking black guy-and woke up in Salt Lake-my head on his shoulder and arms curled around his. lol. I'm a friendly sleeper.

I called Jon from Salt Lake and told him a long story about being called into work early and not being sure if I'd even be able to get home! I remember him asking me how I was even planning on getting up there and telling him I'd figure something out. It was awesome. This is when the fun really began. I got onto another bus and unfortunately the only route from SLC to IF meant stopping in Logan-making a 3 hour drive a 6 hour one. And we stopped at every single little town on the way. I had no idea. There was a really random station out in the middle of nowhere-this is where a nice man from the back of the bus tried to sell me some weed. Then we got back on the bus where everyone in the back proceeded to smoke said weed. I also got to see some magazine porn for the first time. lovely. Did I mention they were passing around whiskey as well? And the funniest story from one of the guys about how his wife is abusive and he only married her so she could get citizenship and he was travelling cross country to see her so they could divorce....it was a colorful trip. A lot of the details are blurred at this point, I just remember I never really wanted to ride on a bus again...

Finally at noon, 12 hours after leaving St. George I arrived to my parents in Idaho Falls! We ran home and I called Jon to find out where he was and what he was up to. I explained I was on break at work (while actually driving in the car to his destination). He was clear across town at Wal-mart so I drove there as fast as I could. I remember asking him as I headed in the door where he was-he was in the Christmas card aisle with Gayle and they were picking out cards for his family. So I found him, ran up to him and kissed him under his ear. He froze. Surprisingly he looked at Gayle first and she stood-mouth wide open-gaping at me, which I think freaked him out worse. He finally turned and looked at me...Oh I loved his face!! He mumbled and mumbled that he was just talking to me and that I was in St. George....

And that's the best gift I've ever given. I finally surprised him...and he surprised me over that Christmas break by proposing. And here we are...

Oh, and the song? I listened to that on repeat for the entire 12 hour drive...you know, when I wasn't being offered weed or porn...lol.



Soooo...I am with child.  I've been dying to talk about it (mostly so I can complain, I'm awful) but I wanted to see the critter first and the heartbeat and there is definitely a baby in there!!  Hopefully this child will be debuting mid-June, making me 10 weeks along. 

I think I'm actually more sick with this one that I was with Paisley.  I don't know if it's just that I have a 2 year old to chase around, or if I'm actually sicker, but it's been a rough 4 weeks!  My fear is that I will continue to be sick the full 9 months like I was with Paisley-so pray for me!!  I've turned into this sad monster that mopes around crying and puking everywhere-but thankfully not as much as I could be, thanks to my magic friend Zofran! 

We really are super excited, but if this continues to be as rough as it's been I'm thinking this may be our last natural child...I don't know.  I'm not a fan of the person I become when I'm so sick all the time.

And to those sweet people who have been loving on me and taking care of me through all of this...Thank you so much.  ♥


{read}: go have a laugh...

Go read this: http://thebloggess.com/2011/06/and-thats-why-you-should-learn-to-pick-your-battles/

I promise, it's a good laugh.  My friend Stevie posted it a year ago and then again a couple of weeks ago and I've been meaning to repost it for a laugh and today is just one of those days...



{holidays}: halloween

 Soooo...I was super lame this year and really didn't get a lot of good pictures of anything for Halloween.  These are really the 2 best of Paisley...I should have gone out during the day or something, but it just didn't happen.  She was Cinderella!!  We hadn't put her shoes on yet for the bottom picture, but she wore glass slippers too (I found some sweet sparkly jelly shoes at DI!!)    She was so excited to wear make-up, but not excited to let me curl her hair so we mostly just got the bangs.  She was so darling Trick or Treating!!!  She would go up to the doors and say "Please?" or "Treat?"  The next day she grabbed an orange pail we have and headed out the front door to go "treating!"  It was so funny.  She LOVES candy and is constantly asking for some now that she knows where it is!! 

My sweet little Cinderella


{organizing}: bills, budgets, and a binder!

So I've been working on a project for the last couple of weeks and I wanted to share.   My new love is Pintrest and I'm happy to say that I feel like I spend as much time working on projects that are inspired by Pintrest as much as I spend time on Pintrest...so its ok, right?  I might be a little bit addicted...Anyway, a recent blog I got to from there had ideas for a pantry revamp, including a family binder revamp.  AMAZING!!  I have yet to revamp the pantry (it's in the works), but I loved some of the ideas for the family binder so I took some of what she suggested and made up a lot of my own...and it became this!!  My new Bills Binder:
 Something that she suggested was the dividers with pockets-super brilliant idea!!  I used to put my bills in a bin and sort through them twice a month or so.  Jon has never been involved in the bill paying and it's something I've wanted him to be involved in for a long time.  With this system, paying the bills could be done by Paisley!!  I made a tab for each bill that we have with a cover sheet with the logo and following information and due date.  This way ANYONE (which is a little scary) could log into any of our accounts for any of our bills and pay them.  This way when I forget which password is which, or I have customer service on the phone I can readily reference all my information quickly!  I also plan on keeping all the bill stubs for the year behind the tab for records and comparison (normally they go into an accordian file, but I hate filing them so sometimes it just ends up being an endless pile!!)  So ideally* the bill comes in the mail or e-mail, I place it in the tab folder, I sit down to pay bills once a week (or Jon or Paisley, lol) and I have EVERYTHING I could possibly need to sit down and pay everything.  I mark whats paid, place it behind the tab and continue on with my life!!
Another thing that I've wanted is a clean cut "which bills are due when."  I hate having all of that on my normal day to day calendar (it's full) and if the two of us are going to be paying bills I really wanted a visual to show when, who and what has been paid.  I actually have an app on my phone and so does Jon that was supposed to help with this, but so far I really just like having things on paper.  So I put together this worksheet.  This way if something gets paid, or doesn't we have a quick reference at the beginning of the binder.  I added EVERY bill that is a possiblility-some we don't actually always have to pay (like my Victoria's Secret card), but this way if I do have a balance I have a note to check and pay it on time. 

And lastly, the Budget worksheet.  This layout is stolen from "One for the Money," but I split it into 2 groups because we get paid twice a month.  This way I have a general idea how much spending money I have versus bill amounts in the 2 pay periods.  I'm debating on using the cash method for this...we tried it for a minute-it's just super hard because I hate going to the bank!!  (we don't have a drive thru on our side of town and I'm SUPER lazy).  Ideally too I can watch these and add in the actual as we go to see how we're really doing.  Once again, I have an awesome website that make pie charts and everything (mint.com) BUT it updates too slowly and I have to go categorize EVERYTHING that we spend if we want it to work properly.  ug.  So I'm hoping with this revamp that Jon and I can be on the same page, and that we can be more organized and aware when it comes to bills and budgeting!!
I share because I hope this works!!  Jon and I have struggled our entire marriage with bills, budgeting and staying organized and I hope so much that this helps us get on the same page!!  I really want him to be involved-to help relieve some stress and so he can see more clearly where his hard earned money is going!!  What things have worked for you in your budgeting???