Words to Live and Write by

I am willing to fall Because I have learned how to rise.

I craft Love from heartbreak, Compassion from shame, Grace from disappointment, Courage from failure.

I am among the brave and brokenhearted, and I am rising strong.

(credit to Brene Brown)

Monday, August 10, 2009

Four Years and Counting

This week, Anthony and I will celebrate our 4th anniversary. It's a little crazy to think we've been married for four years already, and then that we've only been married for four years.

I love looking at our wedding pictures, in part, I admit, because I'm really not photogenic and our photographers somehow managed to make me look pretty good in almost every picture. This is especially impressive because I'm always next to my naturally photogenic husband. One of my favorite pictures is a candid shot where Anthony and I appear to be "gazing into our future.”

I wonder sometimes, what we would have thought if we could have known what even these four years, both long and short, would bring.

We’ve had more than our share of difficulties, including
• 1 year of daily migraines
• 2 ½ years of college each, and therefore 2 ½ years as starving college students
• 3 years of infertility struggles, including 2 miscarriages
• 1 year of intense puppy training
• 3 moves, 2 of which were between states
• 2 (soon to be 3) family weddings
• 3 new nieces and nephews and 2 more on the way
• 7 different jobs
• 10 church callings
• 1 lay-off
• 8+ months of unemployment

Now, I know what you're thinking: those are only the negative things! And you're right. But sometimes it is too easy to focus on the negative things—especially when they just keep on coming. It seems like we've never had an "easy" stretch of time in our marriage.

But with all the bad, we've had a healthy serving of good, too. I guess you can't have one without the other. Unfortunately, the blessings we’ve had are not as easy to list as the trials. We've been extremely blessed with a marriage full of love and kindness. In the four years we've been married we have never once had a fight, despite the ample opportunities you can see above. I blame that mostly on Anthony: he is the most patient and compromising person I know. And instead of life's misfortunes coming between us, we feel we are growing closer together.

So while it's hard to focus on the positive when there is so much else going on, I think if we'd been able to see these past four years before we got married, we wouldn't have traded away this much joy for anything.

Thanks for a memorable 1460 days, Love! I’m looking forward to the next 4,998,540 days with you!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Two birds with one stone

For any of you who have been following our blog, I am sorry. it has been a while since we have last posted anything. On the bright side, Hannah has found some employment and is working as a receptionist for an architecture firm near downtown San Antonio. I guess because of that there hasn't been a more recent blog posting until now! My only excuse is I have been a slacker.

In addition to being domestic by doing laundry, taking care of the dog, making the bed, keeping our room presentable, and other household chores, I have decided that I am now going to pick up the slack and start

to post blogs more regularly, at least a little.

Here are some pictures my brother sent. In the picture above is me, Mo, and then Angie(who wasn't having a very good day). In the picture to the right, right to left and

top to bottom, is my brother Mo, my mom Bonnie, me, and then my twin sister Angeline. In the next picture is Angie, Mo, and then Me.

I was very happy to get those pictures and I think I started to understand something about Hannah. She loves to look back at our wedding and engagement pictures and used to always ask me to look at them with her. Its not like I disliked them or anything, but I never wanted to look at them with her. I would tell her no, what do I need to look at those for? I was there. I remember what was going on. I guess I didn't see them as I saw the pictures my brother sent me, that caused me to reminisce over the memories of those events, or related events.

So, in addition to picking up the slack, this blog is also showing pictures to make my wife happier. I hope you enjoy them as well.








Monday, April 27, 2009

Simple Pleasures

Hannah as been the person posting our previous blogs with a little of my input, but lately we (when I say "we" I really mean Hannah) have decided that I need to take a bigger part in posting blogs as well. So here we go!

As many of you probably know (and if you don't, I am now telling you) I have been out of work for almost five months now. It is very frustrating and depressing when you have applied for more than a hundred positions only to only hear back from a handful and get interviews from about 10% of those who do get back to you.

Then on top of that it seems that the four years I spent at BYU earning my Bachelor's Degree were wasted because I am not seeing any benefits to having it. I think that if I had the choice, I would go back to when I decided on my major, and change it to something that would serve me better for work.

Because of these particular trials I feel that I have been grumpy and irritable about 75% of the time, and when I am not grumpy or irritable, those feelings are lurking just below the surface waiting for any opportunity to lash out. Fortunately, as I have been experiencing these mood swings of anger, irritability, and grumpiness I have found small and subtle things that seem to help me feel better for at least a little while.

1. Reading. I have been doing a lot of reading recently. I have just finished reading the Harry Potter series again. These books are highly entertaining and they make for a nice escape from my moodiness to a world of magic and adventure.

2. Ice Cream. It seems that since we have moved to San Antonio that I have been eating a lot more Ice Cream. After the kids go to bed, about three times a week I help myself to a nice cold bowl of Ice Cream. Not only does it make me feel better, but it helps me cool off from the insanely hot days here.

3. Entertaining Videos. The other day, while taking a break from the job hunt, I stumbled upon these two videos. I find them very entertaining and have watched them over and over again, feeling happier each time. I hope you enjoy them too.





I am not sure if those are Hobbits at the end of the Iron Man video, but I still enjoyed it.

Anyway.... So these are just a few of the things that have been making me feel better. I hope you enjoy them as well.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

IF

Our answers to "if" questions:

1. If you could be a super-hero, which one would you be?
Anthony: Spiderman
Hannah: Awesome Man

2. If you could choose how you were going to die, what would you choose?
Anthony: In my sleep
Hannah: Of old age and asleep

3. If you could hear what someone is thinking for a day, who would you choose?
Anthony: God, so I could understand what the heck is going on
Hannah: Ajax, our dog

4. If you discovered a new island, what would you name it and why?
Anthony: Anthony. Who doesn't want land named after them?
Hannah: Sweet! Cuz I discovered an island!

5. If you could solve the problem of hunger in the third world or repair the ozone, which would you do?
Anthony: Hunger, then I can move to one of those countries and not have to worry about food
Hannah: Definitely hunger

6. If you could stop a bad habit that you have, what would you stop?
Anthony: Biting nails
Hannah: Trichotillomania

7. If you could be famous (a household name), what would you like to be famous for?
Anthony: Video game skills
Hannah: Being everyone's ideal of beauty

8. If you could do any job, what would you like to do?
Anthony: Work for Marvel Comics or something involving video games
Hannah: Movie acting

9. If you found a suitcase full of $1,000,000, what would you do?
Anthony: Bury half of it because I don't know how banks will fare, and invest the other half; then do what I want during the days.
Hannah: Assuming it didn't belong to anyone, I would save it in several different banks and in my own safe, and spend it little by little.

10. If you had to choose between love and no money or money and no love for the rest of your life, which would you choose?
Anthony: Well, right now we have love and no money, so let's give money and no love a try.
Hannah: I want the love!

11. If you had to choose, would you give up your sight or your hearing?
Anthony: Hearing (I'd just read all the time)
Hannah: Hearing

12. If you were a candy, what candy would you be?
Anthony: the marshmallows from Lucky Charms cereal
Hannah: A creme saver--strawberries and creme flavor

13. What kinds of problems would you have if you had to always tell the truth?
Anthony: People would be offended by my comments.
Hannah: I can think some really mean things about people that I would never normally say. I probably would not have any friends.

14. If you had no need to sleep at all, how would you spend all your nights?
Anthony: Learning, reading good books, or playing video games
Hannah: I would still choose to sleep because I enjoy it so much. It's an escape from reality.

15. If you were a color, what color would you be and why?
Anthony: Green; who doesn't like green (except in food and water)?
Hannah: Crimson; it's deep.

16. If you could date a celebrity, who would you choose?
Anthony: Sandra Bullock
Hannah: Antonio Banderas

17. If the whole world were listening, what would you say?
Anthony: "Don't be stupid."
Hannah: "Will someone please hire us?"

18: If you couldn't think of anything to blog about, what would you do?
Answer "If" questions.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Week One: Going Crazy

It's week one of our "baby lust treatment program" (see previous post) and I think the week is best summed up by the words of a silly song we sang as kids:

"I am slowly going crazy. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, switch... Crazy going slowly am I. 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, switch..." (repeated faster and faster each time)

This little bit of video also captures the essence of it:
video


We've definitely had our fill of messes this week, from the grossest diapers we've ever seen to dinnertime fun.

Naps are not nearly frequent enough, and we need them just as badly as the kids. Plus, we have played way too much Wii; it's one of few things that will keep the kids endlessly entertained. I only wish it was as exciting for us...


Ciara is determined to play on her own. Just try teaching a 3-year-old how to use a Wii controller, I dare you. And then try one of those 2-player games like ping pong.


Ciara has also determined that during playtime, she's a lion named "Goliath," and will not answer to any other name. And Alan has a fascination with shoes, so we can never find them where we left them. Here he is starting a new one-shoed fashion trend.


Well, that's our life so far this week--at least the highlights of it. I don't even want to know how crazy we'll be after another week of this treatment!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Recipe for Baby-Lust-Be-Gone

Ingredients:

  • one boy with separation anxiety, 1 1/2 years old
  • one girl prone to frequent temper tantrums, 3 1/2 years old
  • two weeks with no parents.
Mix first three ingredients together and then gradually blend in the following:
  • mountains of dirty diapers (very smelly)
  • two parts screaming
  • one part Veggie Tales
  • a sprinkling of naps
  • oatmeal, applesauce, and cheerios to taste
Administer entire mixture to person or persons affected by baby lust. For best results, return person(s) to a quiet environment after application to let treatment sink in.
Works almost instantly! In no time, affected person(s) will be saying, "Do I really want this?" Guaranteed to work or your money back! (Sanity is non-refundable).
Caution: Relapses have been known to occur. In such cases, simply re-administer treatment.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Our move to Texas has taken us even further away from family and friends, and we are notoriously bad at keeping touch by email or phone. So we've decided to try keeping a blog. Hopefully, this way we can keep everyone updated on any big events, as well as any random thoughts or rants we feel like posting.

Adjusting to life in Texas has been interesting. Hannah's brother Ammon and his family have been generous enough to let us stay with them. Needless to say, life with two kids, 3 1/2 and 1 1/2 years old, is a bit different than what we're used to! But when they're not screaming, Ciara and Alan are adorable, and Ajax sure loves having a peer group to play with.


The job search continues, and gets more frustrating all the time. We are going on three months of unemployment, and starting to wonder if having B.A.'s really entitles us to higher paying jobs or just over-qualifies us for the lower paying ones. Hopefully, something will turn up soon. We appreciate your prayers and help as we deal with this trial.

On the plus side, all the free time has given Hannah the chance to come up with an idea for a novel, tentatively named "Star-Crossed." It's not currently past the brainstorming stage, but anyone who wants to call or email to toss around ideas with her is welcome. What remains to be seen is whether she possesses the skill to write it out, having never written anything beyond college essays before. Who knows? Maybe it will turn out to be a smash hit and we won't have to worry about unemployment ever again. :)

We'd love to hear what's new with everyone from time to time. We'll do our part and try to keep up with this blog--just don't expect every post to be full of excitement.

Best Wishes from Texas,

Anthony & Hannah