Saturday, November 5, 2011

Date Night!


One night we decided to have an extra special date night. We both really like steaks, but Aaron thought I needed to taste a high quality steak that was NOT overly cooked. I always order mine well well done.

He converted me. I will never order my steak well done again. It’s SO much better medium well! Delicious! Below are our pictures from the event…It was so much fun! I have such a sweet and awesome husband.

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The next day we also went to the LPGA tournament that was being hosted in the neighborhood next to us. It was pretty awesome. We got to see some of the best women golfers in the entire world. It was well worth it. We weren’t allowed to take any pictures, but we did take a picture of the massive amount of stuff we got for free just for showing up! The event is hosted by Wal-Mart and P&G, so that is where most of our stuff came from. We had a great time!

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Girl’s Camp


So I completely forgot to post about Girl’s Camp back in June!

I was called as the assistant girl’s camp leader for our ward. I was a little worried about it because it was quite a bit of work to get done before hand, but I was called the month or so before camp. Also, I was going to have to take four days off of work and I only have 12 to begin with. I knew we were going to China this year. Not to mention all the other holidays I wanted to take work off for.

LUCKILY…my boss is a member of our church and understood that it was a calling, and that it was really “vacation.” He let me make up two of those days by just working extra hours in the office. The other day I got for free because as a manager we get to take one day off a year if it is for community service. The other day I had to use a vacation day for, but I felt pretty lucky to only have to spend one vacation day on Girl’s Camp!

Here are a few pictures from our AWESOME week with the Girls.

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This was my tent. I put it up completely by myself! I thought it was quite the accomplishment…

We had quite the miraculous story while we were at Girl’s Camp.

One night a really severe storm blew in. It was probably around 11PM that I woke up to terrible wind and girls yelling. We evacuated all of the girls out of their tents and up to the lodge. Once we were there I stayed with the girls while the other two leaders went down to secure the campsite and check on things. We ended up putting the girls to bed on the floor of the lodge. Eventually I fell asleep too. In the morning we awoke to a bright and sunny morning.

I didn’t find out until later that day that a member of the Priesthood (we always have to onsite at all times) had felt the impression to remove all of the girls from their tents and take them up to the lodge. It wasn’t even storming that bad when he got the impression, but he followed it anyways. Soon after we were all in the lodge, lightening struck a tree and split it down the middle. The tree fell straight onto two of the tents completely crushing everything inside. If the girls had not been in the lodge, they definitely would have been severely injured or killed. We are very grateful for the blessing of the Priesthood and for worthy Priesthood leaders who are in touch with the spirit.

Below are a few pictures of the damage. I didn’t take many because they worked to fix most of the damage before the girls left the lodge. They were worried of the shock value the damage would have, and they didn’t want to upset the girls.

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Our food tent put a great big scratch across our Young Women leaders SUV.

It was such a great experience, and I left camp feeling very blessed for the opportunity I had to grow closer to the girls in our ward and to be able to experience their sweet spirit for a whole week.


Thursday, September 15, 2011

Thankful for Eternal Families

First of all, let me give you fair warning...
None of these pictures are all that glamorous of us, but I felt it was really important to take pictures over the course of this week in July, so that we would remember the moments. Two months later...I am thankul that I heeded that prompting.

Aaron's Grandma Bettye Drake passed away in July. It was a really rough time for all of us, but I'm really glad I was there to experience it with Aaron. We spent a lot of time just sitting together and holding each other. I'm also really thankful that we only lived three hours away and were able to be in Mountain Home, AR within hours of his Grandma's passing.

We were also there for the funeral preparations. Aaron was asked to make a slideshow of his Grandma using her HUGE collections of photos. Massive amounts of photos from all times her life. It was so fun to look through the pictures. Aaron scanned the pictures into his computer and made a really, really impressive slideshow. It brought so many people to tears, and I think it really comforted people to celebrate her life that way. As you can see below...we made quite a mess of picturs in his Grandma's living room!

Aaron's mom and her sibblings decided that it would be fun for all the grandchildren to look through Grandma's jewelry, and pick out some of their favorites to keep. I picked out quite a few, but my favorite was a real pearl necklace from Hong Kong. Jan picked it out for her mom on one of her trips to Asia. It's beautiful, but I've never worn it. I guess I'm saving it for a special occasion.

This is the two of us after the funeral... I think we spent a fair amount of time with teary eyes before this pictures. Ok lets be honest....I spent a fair amount of time burried in Aaron's shoulder, which left both of us not quite put together and very wet. :)

Like I said... not very glamorous, but worth having to remember what we were thinking and feeling that day.

By the way, it was one of the most beautiful funerals I have ever been to. It was held at our church - The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints - and was so wonderful, second only to perhaps my Aunt Marci's which was also a beautiful occasion.

Losing someone close to you is always hard, but I'm so thankful to know that families can be together forever. One of my favorite songs to sing at church is the song below, which kept running through my head that day.

I have a family here on earth

They are so good to me

I want to share my life with them through all eternity

Families can be together forever

Through Heavenly Father's Plan

I always want to be with my own family

And the Lord has shown me how I can

The Lord has shown me how I can

While I am in my early years

I"ll prepare most carefully

So I can marry In God's temple for eternity

Families can be together forever

Through Heavenly Father's Plan

I always want to be with my own family

And the Lord has shown me how i can

The Lord has shown me how I can

The Sibblings

Sibblings and Spouses

I think everyone had a really good time being together. It was really stressful for me to watch Aaron go through something like this, but like I said before, I'm so glad I was there with him. It was really overwhelming to me to be surrounded by so many people that I didn't know well and to be thrown into a devestating family situation like that so soon after being married, but I would do anything for Aaron. I love you, honey.


Sunday, July 10, 2011

Independence Day Weekend

The 4th of July is one of our very favorite holidays. This year we just stayed at home to save our vacation days because in September we are using a ton of vacation days to go to CHINA!!!

We went to a friends house for a 4th of July party...complete with great people, great food, and a HUGE firework setup! Travis was the host of the party...he is the one in the left in the picture below.

Fireworks are a big deal at Travis' house. He has a list of all of the fireworks he bought, and then he rates each one as it is shot off. I thought it was pretty hilarious.

It was so much fun to have Travis' kids around. I love the fun spirit that kids bring to any holiday.

The only safety incident we had was that a firework tip over on it's side and just about kill all of us... or so we thought. Luckily no one was hurt. I still can't believe that firework didn't do any damage!

All in all, it was SUCH a great weekend. We had so much fun relaxing and just hanging out together. We watched movies, played games, shopped, and enjoyed each others company. It was SO hot and sticky the whole weekend. We are feeling the heat in these pictures, but always still manage to have fun even with the hot weather of Arkansas!

(Someone Stole My Camera!)

We can hardly wait until next year's celebration! -SL

Memorial Day Weekend

Shortly before Memorial Day, Aaron's Grandma Drake fell and broke her hip. We had really been wanting to go visit her once she was well enough for visitors. Memorial Day weekend was our first opportunity. Grandma Drake and her son Randall and her daughter Robin and their families all live in Mountain Home, AR. Aaron's mom and dad (Jan and Don) were able to be there as well as Aaron's Aunt and Uncle (Lynette and Clark). We were able to take Aaron's Grandma for a drive out to the cemetery so we could place flowers on her husbands grave.

It was an awesome experience. This was also the last time we were able to see Grandma Drake before she passed away on July 10, 2011 (yesterday). I don't have any pictures of Grandma Drake in this post because she stayed in the car as we were placing the flowers on the grave due to her hip injury.

Grandpa Drake's grave site: Jan and Don & Lynette and Clark

Aaron's Mom: Jan

Great Weekend! -SL

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Sam's High School Graduation

In May, my brother Sam graduated from Lincoln High School! Aaron and I drove up for the weekend, and we had an awesome time.

I guess I should back up and tell you that when my family was here for Easter, my brothers (Sam & Nate) were introduced to two super cute sisters (Cailyn & Shannon) from our church here in Arkansas. They hit it off pretty well ... SO ... naturally... we decided to bring the girls with us from Arkansas to Sioux Falls, SD.

We think they had a fun time...we sure did! Right before we left for Arkansas we ended up closing the deal on buying a car that we had been looking at for awhile. We absolutely LOVE it. It's technically my car... we drove my yellow VW Bug back to South Dakota and gave it back to my parents. Aaron and I both have Hyundai cars now.

It's a pretty hott car, and I LOVE driving it! Aaron likes it too... I think he's thankful to not own a VW Bug anymore. He wasn't too fond of it...

The graduation ceremony was GREAT. It was short, sweet, and then we were out of there!

Here are a bunch of random pictures from the weekend.

We love you, Sam! And we're super proud of you! -SL