Sunday, November 29, 2009

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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Pre-Wedding Partying in Wyoming!!!

I love this jacket!! So comftorable and cute!!!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

You learn things about yourself...

So you know how people say you learn things about yourself when you get married... I thought it was deep emotional stuff, I didn't think they meant stuff like this.

JJ pointed something out that I never knew I did. Subconsciously, I cross my toes.

He says its cause I have jacked-up feet; I say its just another one of my many talents :)

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Engagement Pictures

Nickell Blair did our photography and as you can see did amazing. But the best part is not only how much I love her shots and editing, but it was a steal of a deal. Visit her website or her photo blog to see more of her work.

Pho Noodle House

So I have another awesome find in the Orem/Provo area that I just found and had to share. I have been having some massive cravings for some ramen (good ramen) since leaving California and some local Korean and Asian restaurants that got me hooked on noodle soup. Last Friday, JJ and I passed Pho Noodle House (just North of University Mall on State St.) and decided to try it, hoping that it would at least be good enough to calm my cravings a bit. Fortunately for us, it was better than anything we could have guessed. The noodles are great and the meat is fine, but the broth is absolutely amazing!!! We went back last night and both times, both of us walked away with very very full tummies, as we had to slurp out every last drop of the broth. If you go, I recommend steak for your meat, the chicken is rather dry.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

The Sweet Tooth Fairy

I finally stopped in at The Sweet Tooth Fairy (a way cute little bakery in Provo). I had heard about this place from a friend at work and she mentioned that their double fudge cake bites were featured on the Rachel Ray show. When I popped in, I obviously had to try the cake bites, but everything looked so good I went a little crazy. I bought a white chocolate/cranberry outmeal cookie - which was fabulous!! I also had to try one of their key lime cupcakes. The frosting was a little too tart for me, but once I pulled that off, the key lime flavored cake part was super good too.
Now to the cake bites. Sinking my teeth into those little gems was complete bliss. I was expecting just chocolate covered cake, but the inside is this really moist and heavy chocolate wonderfulness. It had a little hint of what tasted like Oreos and it was all covered in delicious chocolate that was hard enough to not get your fingers chocolatey, but soft enough to not crack when you bit into the little bites. SO SUPER GOOD! If you are anywhere around the provo area, you must stop in and try them!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Right of Passage

If you know my mother, you know she sends the best letters ever. She always includes stories from magazines and great quotes and lots of good stuff!! In the past package she sent me, there was a great little story, I just had to share.

Do you know the legend of the Cherokee Indian youth's rite of passage?

His father takes him into the forest, blindfolds him and leaves him alone. He is required to sit on a stump the whole night and not remove the blindfold until the rays of the morning sun shine through it. He cannot cry out for help to anyone. Once he survives the night, he is a MAN.

He cannot tell the other boys of this experience, because each lad must come into manhood on his own. The boy is naturally terrifed. He can hear all kinds of noises; wild beasts must surely be all around him. Maybe even some human might do him harm. The wind blew the grass and earth and shook his stump, but he sat stoically, never removing the blindfold. It would be the only way he could become a man.

Finally, after a horrific night the sun appeared and he removed his blindfold. It was then that he discovered his father sitting on the stump next to him. He had been at watch the entire night, protecting his son from harm.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

More on the Redwoods...

Before JJ took me to see the Redwoods, he had told me about them a number of times. He had been there once before with a group of friends on a fishing trip and told me he thought that I would love it there.
And he was right!! As soon as we drove into the park I was breathless. The trees, their color, their size, everything combined to make just an incredibly beautiful scene.

Lots of fun touristy stuff too! There was a house carved from a single log, trees you could drive through and lots of photo ops... too bad they all cost money. But its worth it to do a few of them.

We seriously don't have enough pictures of just the two of us. And every picture that we do have with both of us in it is an arms length self taken picture. Ehh - thats ok - some of them end up looking pretty darn cute.

I climbed up this tree and stood in the crater to get this shot. This is just the stump of one of the trees that fell over!! The stump is bigger than lots of other kinds of trees at their full maturity.

This was one of our favorite trees we saw. The roots pulled out of the ground as the tree fell over. You can't really tell by this picture, but where the roots used to be, is a big crater in the ground.

They were so big!! Big and beautiful!!!

This is my little car driving through a tree!! Good thing JJ was driving, because it isn't that big of a hole. Kinda made me nervous.

And this is the view from inside that same tree (hollow all the way up). JJ took this right after he asked me to marry him!

Monday, August 10, 2009

My "Bucket" List

When I was in High School, I started this a list called "100 Things", kinda like a so called "Bucket List". That may sound wierd, because it is usually people that are close to kicking the bucket that make these lists, but I thought its never too early to get started. Currently, this list is at about 173 items and is growing by the year. It includes little things like "Milking a cow" to big things like "Learning sign language" and I even have a some that I have been able to cross off like "Celebrate New Years Eve in New York" "Visit Florence and Paris" and "Swim with dolphins". My #1 thing on my list is "Visit Angel Falls". It is located in Venezuela and is the tallest waterfall in the world!!!
Much to my excitement, I noticed some very similar aspects between this waterfall and the waterfall in the movie "UP". I had never thought of it as a possibility - but maybe balloons will be my mode of transportation.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

It's unBELIZEable

Last night I was watching HGTV and there was a show about this couple who was buying a house in Belize. I was jealous for many reasons (one being their price range was 1- 1 1/2 million) - but mostly it just made me miss that wonderful little country.
If you have been to BYU-I in the past two years, this picture may look familiar. They used it on some of the advertisements for the MesoAmerican Tour. You may notice that on the posters there is just the two of us on the left, but if you look closely, there are three shadows. The girl on the right (Monica!!) got photoshopped out, to keep the picture symmetrical.
We spent most of our time in Belize on Caye (pronounced "key") Ambergris. It is a great little island where everyone drives around in golf carts. And by little I mean little - you could probably walk the perimeter of the island in a day. Tabu was where we had lunch and it was fantastic. This is where I was introduced to grilled pineapple on a hamburger. And while I am recommending places if you ever go to Caye Ambergris you HAVE to go to Monellys and get their coconut ice-cream. It is the most fantastic ice-cream I have ever ever had.

This guy was super friendly and just sat right next to where a couple of us where sitting in the sun and started singing great songs about love and peace and Rastafari.

Howler monkeys were everywhere (but lots of times you couldn't see them - you could only hear them)!! While driving to the coast while we were on the mainland in Belize, we saw a ton of these howler monkeys up in the tree, right on the side of the road. They make this incredible howling noise - something about the way they move their jaw allows the sound to be really cool sounding.
Belize was so fantastic and I would definitely go back in a heartbeat. But the best part was not caught on camera... the snorkeling. Off the coast of Belize (and only a short boat ride away from the Cayes) is the second largest reef in the world. Warm, clear water and guides that make you conch salsa for a snack, PLUS shark ray alley, where tons (maybe 30-40) small sharks and huge stingrays let you hand feed them while they chill right next to your boat. Did I mention you are in the water with them??? Ahh - what more could you ask for?

Saturday, August 1, 2009

What was that?

So I was reading what I wrote on my latest post (P.S. those of you who haven't seen it - look now!!!) And i thought to myself... what was that? where did that come from? It seems so poetic and stuff - which I am not. So where did it come from? Some may say I am an adult now (I say no way), some may say its love (ok - so I am a little twitter-pated (sp?)), but I say its just I was up late when I blogged... whatever it was - WE ARE ENGAGED!!! October 10th could not come fast enough.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Once upon a time...

Our story is long and involved (19 months of dating and we lived in 13 states and 2 countries between the two of us during that time). But even though the distance was hard, it was worth it. He was worth it. And now this story that at one time seemed so long, is now just the beginning of a story that will never end.

And we will live happily ever after...

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Garner reunion: 20 and counting...

20 you ask? 20 what? 20 members in my immediate family - thats what. Between my siblings, their spouses, kids and my parents, there are 20 of us. SO FAR!!! 2 are on their way and I am sure in the coming years there will be a bunch more added (there is still four of us that aren't even married yet). Following is a brief glimpse at what happens when these 20 people (the adjective crazy could definitely be used to describe these people) get together for a weekend.

What do you do when there are twenty people that need to get ready in the morning? Get up early so that we can each take a turn? - o no - we all cram into the nearest bathroom and hope the fuse won't blow with two hair dryers going at the same time. You can't see it, because I am taking the picture, but I was in there right along with them.
There we are - with the exception of one brother who couldn't make it (but his wife still came - now thats awesome). I think we are a pretty good looking bunch... but I may be a little biased.
Here is my twin. Well technically we aren't twins, but we get asked if we are on a pretty regular basis. We think its funny because we also get alot of people that say "you guys don't look anything alike."

I called it!!! Just ask Riley, I said that we would definitely have competitions while at the reunion. I walk in the door and one of the first things I see is a bunch of brackets on the pantry door for family competitions - fuse ball, pool, ping pong, wii. Below is Dacia and MaryAnne beating JJ and Brody!! The funny thing is not only that we have so many competitions, but how competitive we are. Randomly you will hear yells or screams or someone will boisterously walk into the room announcing their victory.

We are a super lucky family. Our uncle and aunt (Uncle Paul and Aunt Jenny are amazing!!!) let these crazy 20 people stay in their gorgeous river home for the weekend. White water rafting and kayaking were just a few of the many things we got to do at their incredible home. Below we are looking for gold in the American River in Coloma, CA; where gold was first discovered in California in 1848.

With so many people in your family, its hard to see each other often, especially when we all live, literally, across the US from each other. But, I am thankful I have a family that puts family first. We all do what we can to visit each other on a regular basis. And two years from now we will have our next Doyle Garner family reunion... I'm already counting down the days.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Nieces and Nephews

My nieces and nephews hold a very special place in my heart. Looking at these pictures, you will understand why. JJ will become an uncle for the first time in about a month and I can't stop telling him about how wonderful it is. I decided to blog about some of the reasons being an aunt or uncle is the best thing ever (ok... so I do not have any kids so I cannot compare being a parent).

Babies... need I say more???

(This is Evie; my brother Chad's first)

(This is Cache; my brother Thayne's first)

Learning to Walk... Look at that look of consentration - how cute!!!

(This is Aeriana; my brother Brett's first)

(This is Alyssa; my sister Dacia's third)
Reading Stories...

(This is Bryson; my sister Dacia's first)

Everything is so magical when you have nieces and nephews.

(This is Kaitlyn; my sister Dacia's second)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

I'm getting old

Ok - so I am not that old, but I flew to Montana this weekend and couldn't fall asleep on the plane. :( This is very unusual for me, because I am used to being able to sleep anywhere - planes, trains, automobiles, you name it... I've fallen asleep there. A good example of this was in Europe, while on a train from, I think it was Vienna to Budapest, I propped my foot up against a rail, put my head on my knee and fell asleep for a good hour or so. But this weekend, on the plane to Montana, I was exhausted and couldn't sleep. I tried laying against the window, laying down on the tray tables - nada. I guess I will have to get used to this "sleeping in a bed" all the time.
P.S. This picture is my niece Alyssa. She is so darn cute, isn't she?!? I get to see her, along with all my other nieces and nephews (o yeah - and my parents, brothers and sisters) in two weeks!!!!

Monday, June 1, 2009


I think Jelly Fish are incredibly cool and beautiful creatures. They are always my favorite thing whenever I go to aquariums. No different this time. I seriously could have watched these things for hours (fortunately I was pulled away so I could enjoy other San Francisco wonders like clam chowder in a sour dough bread bowl and my new favorite place - Chocolate Heaven - on Pier 39).