Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Approaching My Late 20's

Today is my birthday. I am 26. Does that make me in my late 20's or I am still mid-20's? Well, whatever part of the 20's I am in is irrelevant. It's my birthday!! If you know me at all, you know that I love birthdays! I make a very big deal out of them. I love to celebrate and go all out. Josh can certainly attest to this. My parents always did a great job when we were growing up to celebrate our birthdays. Especially mine, because I was the first child. Typical birthdays included a few years at Chuck E Cheeses. Parties at the park. Sleepovers. Pool parties. So much fun and so many memories.

As I reflect on some of my past birthdays, I would like to share three that really stand out to me...

The first one was my 16th birthday. Of course everyone remembers this age. License, dating, freedom! Well, my 16th birthday was a momentous event thanks to some of my classmates. Allow me to explain. As I have mentioned in past posts, I was kind of a dork in high school and just plain awkward. But somehow, people still liked me. In my math class sophomore year, my teacher found out quickly that I wasn't able to date until I was 16 and made a countdown on his whiteboard all school year, he called me the "class project." On my actual birthday, I was surprised to find that my classmates had decorated the whole room, ordered pizza, and had a birthday cake waiting for me when I came to class. It was such a great little party we had and so meaningful to me. That same class period, my mom picked me up from school and took me to the San Clemente DMV where I got my license!! I didn't end up going on a date for two more years!!

My second birthday I'll never forget was my 21st. I already had my mission call and was leaving exactly one week later. I had found out that Boyz II Men were going to be playing at the House of Blues at Downtown Disney. I went with Darci and Melissa. While we were waiting in line, they were coming around with wristbands for those who were underage and would not be drinking that night. The one time where I can finally show my ID! They got to me and asked for my ID. I quickly blurted out, "Oh, I don't drink." They slapped a wristband on me so quickly I couldn't even reach for my wallet if I wanted too! We still had a lot of fun and sang our little hearts out!!

The third birthday that stands out is my 22nd (yes, just one year later). I was on my mission and had been diagnosed with Endocarditis. I had already been in the hospital for five days (went in on Cinco de Mayo). But on my birthday was when my dad came and we started the longest daddy-daughter date that has been recorded (is that a fact?...sure!)! We had a lot of fun together...we watched movies and 24, were woken up at all hours of the night so my vitals could be taken, he bought me the ugliest thank you cards in the gift shop and never lived that down, bought me the matching puzzle to my ugly thank you cards, kept my family back home updated on everything, shared the gospel with nurses, he got to visit my areas and have dinner with some of the members, met a lot of people that came to visit me in the hospital, was loaned a truck for the entire time he was there by someone in the ward I had been serving, all while he slept in the tiniest chair next to my bed for two weeks! He is by far, the best dad ever!! Thanks Dad for all those wonderful memories.

Yesterday was a great birthday and here is how it played out... I went to work like normal and around 11:30, Josh came by and surprised me with balloons and cupcakes from "The Chocolate." It was such a great surprise. I love that he is so thoughtful! I introduced him to a couple people at work and then he left to go back to work. At 1:00, I met up with Jordan at Good Wood. We enjoyed a delicious meal and then more dessert...a brownie sundae (compliments of Good Wood)! We decided to run over to the mall real quick. Let's just say we weren't done shopping until 5:00!!!! I only came out with $10 sunglasses! Then I went home and opened my birthday cards and gift from Josh. It was a beautiful gold watch that I have had my eyes on lately. Thank you to everyone for the gifts! After presents, we went to dinner at Carrabbas. Oh my goodness it was soooooooo good!! I got the Pork Tenderloins wrapped in bacon with garlic mashed potatoes and Josh got a chicken pizza (left overs for lunch today). The bread they kept bringing out to us was so soft, they even gave us a loaf to go! Then they brought us out MORE DESSERT! It was vanilla ice cream with carmel syrup and cinnamon roasted pecans. YUM! When we were finished eating, we went to Tahnee and Tyler's where I opened a gift from them. A really cute sun hat for when I am laying out at the beach this whole summer!! Around 8:00, friends started showing up for a little get together. We had cake and ice cream and blew out the candles. When Josh and I got home, we plopped down on the couch to watch two episodes of LOST. We were going through withdrawls since we didn't watch any on Monday. It was a very fun day and I loved every minute of it!!

*I will post pictures soon as I get them!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

1 year ago...

I know I'm a little late, but this past weekend Josh and I celebrated our one-year anniversary! Boy, am I one lucky girl to be married to him. This past year has been one of learning, continuing to get to know each other, and endless love. Many of you may not see Josh's "sensitive" side or his hilarious sense of humor, but let me tell you...it's there! As Josh's mother puts it, he has a very "tender heart." I am so grateful to my Heavenly Father for leading us to each other. I couldn't ask for a better match for me.

So for the weekend (April 28-May 2)...

This past weekend we went down to California. The whole purpose was to finalize the twins adoption, seal them to my parents, and bless them at church.

We left Wednesday night around 6:30ish with a stop in St. George. We had a woman that wanted to look at my ring (that I had posted on KSL to sell). She fell in love with it. Who wouldn't?? She decided to talk to her fiance and meet with us when we were returning to Utah.

We ended up getting to my parents house around 3:00 am. We got up pretty early, went to work out and then to the beach...where I got fried!!!

Friday- we all went to the courthouse in Orange and the judge declared William and Lillee, Neilsons!!! It was crazy in there but it all worked out. That night, Josh and I went to Downtown Disney and spent a couple hours together and got an amazing dessert at Rainforest Cafe.

Saturday- It was our ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY!!! We went to Laguna Beach and had breakfast at Las Brisas. It was gorgeous weather and we sat outside. The food was yummy and being with my Joshy was so fun.

Later that day we went to the Newport Beach Temple to seal the twins to our family. Boy was that an interesting episode. Let's just say, the temple workers have forgotten what it's like to have little ones around. It was a really nice day and we really appreciated everyone that came for this special event. It was fun for Josh and I to be at the same place we were exactly one year ago on that day. After the sealing, we took a ton of pictures and then went back to the house where we had food catered. All of our friends and family from the sealing came over as well. Later that night, I really wanted to get Red Velvet cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory. We ended up going...along with Tahnee, Tyler, Mom, and Paige. We had lots of fun stealing stale bread and playing mind games with the poor waitress. We sure had a good laugh!!

Sunday- We got up really early and went to church for the baby's sealing. Both of them were very good and didn't make a peep. It was probably due to the bag of Cherrios they each were holding! Lillee did try to reach for Tyler and when that failed, she tried for Josh...neither of them took her :) After church, my grandparents and Robyn came back to the house and we made Monte Cristos, a family favorite. Then after sitting around visiting all day, we went to Laguna Beach and then took Paige to the airport. It was really fun having her around for the weekend!!

Monday- we got up and left really early. We stopped in St. George and sold my ring!!!! I couldn't believe it!!

Ever since we got home, I have been looking for a ring. I knew what style I wanted-thick pave-and I thought I knew which one I wanted, but I ended up getting this honkin' beauty:

Thank you Josh for my gorgeous ring and a great first year!! I love you!