Gratitude + Life Lately

Things from the past few weeks:

*Because of my job, we had the opportunity to attend a really special Christmas program last week. It started in the temple doing sealings as a group and then off to an amazing dinner and music program at a nearby home. On the menu was cranberry and rice stuffed chicken, salmon, spinach salad with feta cheese and cranberries, mashed parsnips, basil carrots, and whole wheat rolls. I'm guessing that was probably better than the scrambled eggs I would have made at home but I guess the jury's still out on that. We also had little chocolates at each place setting, and each couple got to take home one of the floral arrangements. Derek and I ended up sitting in the corner of the really big table and we had a blast just talking and gushing about the food together. I like that even at big group things that we still like to hang out with each other. There was also a dessert bar (yeah) with these little things that I don't know the name of but apparently are very popular. It was basically like eating the crust of a pie (aka the best part) so I was all about that. There were also fruit kebobs and Derek had a chocolate pudding with brownie inside and I think there was salted caramel too. Whoof.

*Derek came home one night and said it felt like a Christmas movie watching kind of night. I had already been listening to Christmas music throughout the evening so I very calmly said "Sure, sounds cool." ***

***=Started jumping up and down.

We made homemade turkey burgers that same night and Derek had the brilliant idea to put egg on top. He's basically a genius. We watched Christmas with the Kranks, and while it was a little bit cringey (that HAM scene) it ended up having a good message.

*Derek went and had a guys night with some of his buddies, and I was supposed to get together with one of my old roommates but plans fell through. I had a clean the house/watch Gilmore Girls/spa night and it went very well. I painted my fingernails without getting into a frustrated huff for I think the first time ever so I'm calling it a success. :)

*Derek and his brother talk about how they don't like Gilmore Girls because it is too fast paced and not realistic. I don't understand how someone could not like Gilmore Girls (seasons 1-3 specifically) but pick your battles, right?

No that is not my evil twin brother next to Derek....ponytail probs.

*On Sunday, we both fell asleep while watching the Christmas Devotional on tv. (Not because it was boring but probably because we both felt headachey after fasting throughout the day.) We finished it on Monday night for Family Home Evening instead.

*Derek's shoulder has been in a bad spot since he got hurt a few weeks ago, but he finally got cleared to play basketball again. Yay! He has a game tonight and I am already planning the snacks I will bring while I watch him play.

*It is cold where we live. Like, -4 degrees cold. That may be wimpy to some people but it is always a shock how quickly my ears get numb when going outside. That being said, I have strangely been loving the beauty of winter lately. I am an autumn girl all the way, but all the snow has been so beautiful to me. Maybe it's because I never drive in it and Derek always does. Hmm.

*Our favorite grocery store has started having samples. People are taking notes from Costco and it is a very good business idea. The other day we sampled mini pancakes with three different kinds of syrup and it is what my dreams are made of. Also, this meme below. I didn't know other families did this!

*We have both had the future on our minds lately, mostly career and family wise. Derek is close to graduating and is feeling uncertain about what he wants to do (aren't we all?) I've got a little while left but I feel so unsure about my declared major. I'm studying English/History education, but I think about changing it back to English with an emphasis in professional writing. I still think of little ideas for scenes in a book sometimes and I know I want to be a mother, but I know that if I don't have something (project, job, etc.) outside of that I will go plum crazy. Cabin fever, anyone? All this worry is probably just a rite of passage in this time of life. I wonder where we will be in 10 years.

* We sent cookies to my friend who just got engaged and sent a batch home for my grandpa since he requested some. Love those faces! Can't wait to see them at Christmas.

*I've been thinking about health lately and how my mom was right about so many things. She always told me that keeping all my feelings bottled up will make me sick and I always thought it wasn't true or that it wouldn't effect me somehow. But it does, and it catches up to you overtime, and I've seen those effects manifest themselves in our marriage at times. I hate complaining so sometimes I won't confide things in Derek because I don't want to be a stress to him. He reminds me that taking care of my feelings is kinda his job, and mine is to take care of his. I've heard it said that marriage is the best environment to overcome any manner of selfishness, and I've seen how that is true. I certainly have a long way to go in the self-improvement department, but I feel that marriage is molding me into a less selfish person. I like that change, even though it stings and hurts and bruises my pride a bit at times.

*We honored Derek's sister Holly yesterday. I loved hearing stories and listening to memories people shared about that special little girl. I thought of Holly often while Derek and I were dating/engaged and I have felt her close before. We closed the night looking over the poem Derek wrote about her and singing the third verse of Away in Manger (the song sung at Holly's funeral). Read Derek's amazing tribute here.

Just finished reading....Mind Games by Kierstin White.
Currently craving....still Thai Peanut Sauce. Weird.
Currently excited for.....Derek's basketball game!