December 29, 2009

Santa Baby. . .

Apparently I was a lot better than I thought I was this year, 'cause Santa decided to deliver the mother load to our fortunate stockings. Photoshop Elements 8 and a Canon Rebel T1i with telephoto lens and 4 GB SD card. (Ok, the camera is technically mine AND Dallin's, but I have been having fun with it :)) I seriously got choked up when I opened my camera. I am so. stinkin. excited. You have no idea. I have been toying with photoshop and have been having soo much fun. And the pictures that my new camera takes are amazing! I will share a few on here with you, just cause I love em so much. :) Oh yes, and Dallin got a 1 TB external hard drive for our laptops (hallelujah!) which is MUCH needed now that I have lots of new pictures and ps elements to hog all my hard drive space. :) I just want to thank my Mom and Dad and Jeff and Valerie for their AMAZING generosity to us. We truly feel so blessed. We are the luckiest kids on this planet. For sure.

Jeff took this right after we opened our new camera. See those smiles? We were just a little excited. :)

I took this with our telephoto lens and every time I look at it, my stomach does flip flops. I've got the best looking husband. Ever.

December 15, 2009

What was that? A complaint?

Yup. A complaint. I'm not the happiest camper right now. Any guesses as to why? Oh, could it have to do with the fact that I am packing up and moving for the 5th time in 12 months? Perhaps.

Now, class, why would that make Ashley mad?

*raises hand*

"Yes, Ashley?"

"Is it because Ashley's questioning her sanity right now?"

"That is a great answer! Yes! Anyone else?"

*another raised hand* Oooh, ooh, pick me!

"Yes, Ashley?"

"Is it because it's a really big inconvenience??"

"Another great answer! Yes! Any last guesses as to why Ashley hates moving?"

*raises hand, jumps out of chair* PICK MEEEEE!!!

"Yes, Ashley?"

"I KNOW!! It's because she's a huge klutz and ends up tripping and bruising herself and cutting herself and breaking all her nails!"

"Very good! And why would this be a bad thing?"

"Because then she looks like an abuse vicitim?"


Yes. Losing my mind. Right now. And throwing myself an enormous pity party while I am at it. But you know what stinks? Every time I think "boo-hoo, poor me", then this thought simultaneously enters my head.

"At least you're not your amazing sister-in-law Staci who had to do this every summer when she and Nate were first married and they had at least one kid almost every time she did it. And they moved cross country. Every time. With kids. In a car. WITH KIDS."

And then another thought will pop into my head. "At least you're not your other amazing sister-in-law Hillary who moved cross country with a kid. Yes. Again, a KID."

And yet another thought pops into my head. "At least you're not your amazing sister, Tara, who had to move cross country with kids. In a van. With kids. And minimal stopping. With KIDS. Yes, there it is again, WITH KIDS!"

And then this last thought pops into my head. "You've got an amazingly wonderful fabulous husband who is stressing big time over final exams and final projects. The last thing he needs is his silly wife complaining about something else and making him stress out over yet ANOTHER thing."

Seriously? Perspective and maturity totally kill a pity party. Can't I just wallow in my self pity for like 5 minutes? Oh wait. I've already done that. And packed up 1/4 of the house because I was fueling myself with the anger. I guess that was productive in a sense. Oh well, I suppose I'll grow up and be a mature adult about this whole moving thing. It's an adventure, right? One that I will look back on with fondness and humor and think, "those were the good ol' days!" Yeah. . . not likely.

P.S. Writing all this significantly improved my mood. Thank you for letting me rant. *Sighs* Much better.

December 9, 2009


I tend to take stock of my life around this time of year. Everything about the Christmas season just seems to make me more reflective, and somewhat sober. (In a non-alcoholic kind of way :)) And lately, it seems I have had some seriously sobering things thrown into my path.

As I was getting ready for work yesterday, I had the news on and it showed the procession of those police officers in the Seattle area who were shot and killed about a week ago. My heart ached for those families. What a difficult thing to face, especially at this time of year.

Then, later that day, while at work, a family came in to find suits and dresses for everyone because their son had recently passed away. It wasn't until a little girl came in later and told me he had killed himself that I realized it was a suicide. Once again, my heart ached for that family. They came in again today to get their respective suits, ties, dresses, etc. The daughter, who couldn't have been more than 15, and is just younger than the son who passed away, was trying on a dress for the funeral. As she looked at her mom, her eyes welled up with tears and she asked, "mom, do you think he'd like it?" In reference to her deceased brother. I stumbled across this scene by accident, just wanting to make sure everything was working out alright for them. I quietly slipped away and tears sprang to my eyes. The pain and sadness in that young girls eyes just tore me apart. Then, as the mother went to pay for all of their purchases, her eyes turned red, filled with tears and she said, "thank you for all you did for us." I almost lost it. I wanted to just hug that woman and tell her it was going to be ok. I wanted to do something, anything, to take the hurt out of her eyes. But, I just stood there, nodded and said, "you're welcome".

As I reflected on the recent events that have afflicted our nation, and on a smaller scale, affected a community and family, I thought about the first two commandments we are given. The first is to love God and have none else before Him. The second is to love our neighbor as ourselves. As those two commandments went through my head, I thought, "If everyone followed those two commandments, every problem that afflicts this world, would be solved." If we all were less selfish and more loving, if we cared more for others and thought less of ourselves, if we put our Heavenly Father's will before ours, wouldn't all the other problems just disappear? As I thought about this, I realized I have errors in my own life that need to be corrected, things that need to be changed. I want to be so much better than I am. And I want all the hurt and the pain to be vanished from this world. I know that won't happen, but I know that if I can be more selfless, and if I teach my future children to be selfless, won't that make a little difference? At least in a few lives?

As this beautiful season fast approaches, I pray that we can all feel our Saviors love for us and that we can strive to emulate His life. What greater gift could we give to our dear Savior than to love our brothers and sisters? May we all strive to be a little bit better in this coming year.

November 23, 2009

God Bless America

I don't know these people, but I feel like this is a fantastic idea and feel like we should all unite and do this. It takes so little effort.


My wife and I are firmly convinced that our elected politicians are incapable of representing the will of the American people and incapable of adhering to the Constitution of the United States of America which they took a solemn oath to uphold and defend.

We are among the millions of U.S. Citizens who are at our wits end sending e-mails, faxes, telephoning, meeting with elected officials, demonstrating, rallying and hoping that those representatives will do the will of the people. They have failed. Have we, as well?

The United States of America is a choice land, a nation that was founded by our forefathers who were divinely inspired by God the Father Almighty.

This choice nation has been the defender of freedom throughout its relatively short history. We have led in the fight for freedom against many tyrants and dictators who have plundered and pilfered their citizens and have subjected them to great sufferings through blood and horror.

The people of those nations who suffered such great injustice knew that they could always depend upon the goodness, power and righteousness of the United States of America to extract them from their plights, and it was done many times over. It was not done without expense -- the expense of the blood and sacrifice of the members of our armed forces and the suffering of their families.

As the year 2009 soon comes to a close, we the citizens of the United States of America find ourselves facing many of the challenges those nations suffered at the hands of their political leaders. We are being attacked from within!

Who do we turn to? To which great nation can we turn to help us keep and maintain our freedom? We do not have the same hope of those nations to whom we were benefactors.

We MUST turn to our Savior. If we are a righteous people, we will be deserving of, and receive of His blessings as He has promised. He suffered and died for us; He atoned for our sins --each of us, individually.

We know that, as a nation, we can once again be the choicest of lands. However, we cannot achieve that blessing without our willingness to please our Lord and Savior.

We are asking that all who read this message, who have faith in Christ, designate Sunday, December 6, 2009 as a day of fasting and prayer for America.

You do not have to march on the nation's Capitol or attend a tea-bag rally. From the comfort of your home, you can get on bended knee, and with broken heart and contrite spirit, petition the Lord to bless this nation generously according to His will. Then keep the fast for that day. Make that Christlike commitment to our Heavenly Father. He will listen, He will answer. That has been promised.

"And whatsoever ye shall ask the father in my name, which is right, believing that ye shall receive, behold it shall be given unto you." (3 Nephi 18-20) "And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive." (Matthew 21:22)

Joe and Janice Hagen, St. George, UT."

November 20, 2009

10 Reasons Why Today is a Good Day

1. We're OUTTA HERE!

2. Family

3. Turkey. . . oh Turkey.

4. No work for a WEEK. HALLELUJAH!

5. Family

6. Turkey

7. Pumpkin Pie

8. Skiing

9. Stuffing


We're so excited for our week off to play and laugh and eat and eat and see lots and lots of family! Goodbye Rexburg, Hello Ellensburg and Pasco!!

November 10, 2009

"Love, it seems like only yesterday, you were just a child at play. . ."

Anyone who can name that song and what movie it is on will get 10 points. :) I'll give ya a hint. It's a Disney animated movie. I almost made that too easy. Oh well! Good luck!

So, Dallin and I decided on Sunday that we wanted to take a drive up to Mesa Falls. It's about 45 minutes from here and is where he proposed to me last fall. September 20, to be exact. It was really neat to go back up there, just me and him, and think about that day. It was such an exciting day. A day that will forever be burned into my memory. I remember thinking that I was the luckiest girl in the world that day. I still think I am the luckiest girl in the world today. And I am pretty sure I will always feel that way.

Here is my favorite picture of us on the day we got engaged.

Do we look different now? I kind of feel like we do. Not REALLY different, just. . . a little different, I guess. :) (Wow Ash, way to stun em with your eloquence!) Needless to say, I feel a lot different, on the inside, from that day. I have learned a lot. I have faced a lot. And I have grown a lot. We're coming up on our first year of marriage, and I have to admit, it's been a pretty dang good ride. We've had our moments that were hard, most definitely, but it has been such an awesome experience that I would not trade for anything.

Now, here are our pictures from this trip. We didn't have anyone there to take pictures of us this time, except each other, so we just worked with it. :)

This next picture was from last year at the lower falls, and when we were there Sunday, there were guys who were kayaking off of that! It was insane! We watched two guys go down the falls and, thankfully, resurface a couple seconds later. It was totally insane. I have made little markers to show you how/where they went down the falls. Just click on the image and it will enlarge, then you can see everything better.

Pretty crazy, eh? We thought so!

November 1, 2009

Things I've Learned About Me. . .

. . . In the past 22 years of my life. Two days ago, I turned 22. For some reason, that little fact is exceedingly weird to me. I don't know why. I just don't feel 22. 22 is supposed to be a mature age, right? Not so. At least in my case. Maybe when I am 30? Maybe. I'll let you know in 8 years. Anyhow, although I don't feel oh so mature, like I thought I might when I turned 22, I do feel that I have learned a few valuable lessons in my life. Some of them very recently.

1. Life is fun. There are twists and turns and craziness and days where I want to pull my hair out, but it's exciting. You just gotta roll with the punches.

2. Life is also just life. Things happen. Circumstances come about and it can be hard, but you live and you learn and you rely on the Lord. You REALLY rely on the Lord. And He helps you. Every time. Thank goodness.

3. Baking/cooking may be my calling in life. Just ask Dallin. I LOVE to be in the kitchen creating, discovering, trying out new recipes. I get so much satisfaction out of hearing a compliment on my cooking/baking. Makes my day!!

4. Having said that, I am such a meat and potatoes kinda girl. I was born to eat meat. I believe it is safe to say that I will never be a vegetarian. Ever.

5. I love my rose colored glasses. Things may not be ideal in the world, but I will always look at it with my rose colored glasses. I am my Father's daughter. I am an optimist.

6. I'll always be a kid at heart. I love the excitement of Christmas and Santa Claus, I love Halloween and costumes and dress up and Disney Movies. I love make believe and the endless possibilities that a child's perspective holds.

7. I was born to be a mother. I have a mothering instinct for just about anyone I meet. Which probably explains why I love to cook so much. I relate cooking to mothering and showing love to those I care most about. I love children. I cannot wait for little ones to be running around our home.

8. I am the most independent dependent person you will ever meet. Oxy-moron? Yes. I can be stubbornly independent and do things on my own, but when it comes right down to it, at the end of the day, I love that I have my husband to protect and love me. He will always be the one who I am completely and hopelessly dependent on. And I am 100% ok with that. :)

9. I am totally and completely in love with my husband. He is amazing. He spoils me and loves me and would do anything for me. And I feel the same way about him. I will spoil him and love him and do anything and EVERYTHING for him and be 100% happy about it. He's my help meet, my azer cnegdo(Hebrew, I'll explain it later), my corresponding opposite. And I love him.

10. Family is all that really matters in life. That little tid bit didn't hit me fully until I went through the temple for the first time. I walked into the celestial room, and every single member of my immediate family was there, radiant and beautiful. I was overwhelmed by the sight and by the feelings that coursed through my body. I had never felt so loved and so whole in my entire life. And then I turned and looked at my husband-to-be and REALLY felt loved and whole. After that moment, I knew that family (and those amazing friends who pretty much are family) was all that mattered in life. Loving and serving and doing all that we can to return to live with them in the here-after. That's what it's all about.

So, that's what I've learned, in a nutshell. There's more, obviously, but those are the things that really stick out to me. I am so grateful for all that I have been given. For my amazing family, for Dallin's amazing family, for Dallin, for the Church. I am so blessed. And so, so lucky.

Here are a few pictures of the cake and me with the cake and me with my husband and the cake. Please, enjoy. :)

The side view

Top view (yes, it was devilishly delicious.) Ooohh, say that five times fast!

The Birthday girl with her birthday cake

Showin off the birthday cake!

Aawww, ain't we cute?? :)

P.S. for those of you who want this recipe, hop on over to this lovely lady's blog! It's delicious. And super healthy. . . hah! SIKE! :)

October 21, 2009

Just One of Those Days

Have you ever just had "one of those days"? Where not everything is going wrong, but it most certainly is not all going right? Where you kind of feel like you're in a funk? Nod with me if you have. That was today.

I woke up with a little more of a sniffle than usual and that annoying sore throat. You know the kind where it's not enough to really hurt, just to bug the heck outta ya? And then once you get some food down into your stomach you feel better? Well, for some reason lately, in the mornings, I am never hungry! In fact, my stomach almost feels nauseous if I DO eat anything. (Nope, not pregnant, promise.) Anyway, so to remedy my annoying sore throat, I tried to eat something. Only to feel even more crappy than I had originally. Yes. Today was starting wonderfully. Then, I took my shower, and got dressed. I was running a tiny bit behind, so I grabbed the skirt I wanted and thought, "sweet, it's not even wrinkled, doesn't need to be ironed!" and went about hair and make-up.

I got to the store at 9:31, so I was only a minute late, opened her up and started on all the daily "opening the store" chores. As I walked to the front to unlock the door, I saw myself in the large front mirror and realized that my skirt, which I had previously thought didn't need to be ironed, really DID need to be ironed. Thank goodness we have a steamer in the shop, huh? This is where you all groan, knowing something really bad is going to happen, right? Right. So, being impatient and not really having any other options, I started steaming/ironing my skirt. While it was still on my body. Now, I am also the kind of impatient person that will, on rare occasions, iron a little wrinkle on a shirt, while on my body, but I try to be careful. Knowing the heat that little steamer produced, I tried to be quick about the steam going on to my skirt. Well. . . I wasn't fast enough. All the sudden, my thigh was searing hot and I ripped the steamer away and threw it back on the ironing board, while muttering under my breath, "MAN that HURT!" And it did. But it got worse. It was giving me enough pain that I decided I needed to go into the bathroom and check it out. (I was wearing really thick brown tights, hence the need to go to a bathroom to check 'er out.) As I pulled down my tights, about 4 inches above my knee, it looked like I had gotten sunburned. "Ok", I thought, "not as bad as I had anticipated!" I went about my day not thinking too much of it.

MEANWHILE. . . my sinuses started filling with lots of delightful fluid. I felt like sneezing was my new calling in life. Seriously. It was wonderful. If you enjoy sneezing more than breathing. But, I kept at it, thinking, "this too shall pass. . . right? Please? PLEASE?" With intermittent thoughts like, "swine flu. . . crap." After lunch, I decided I needed to check on my little sun burn again, but this time I got a sweet surprise! A BLISTER!!! YAY! Only about the size of a dime. No big, right? Wrong. Blisters like to get bigger. By the end of the day, it was roughly the size of a quarter. And puffy and puss-y. Sorry for that visual. You'll get to see a picture in a little bit. Except it just popped, dang it. Oh well, you still get a picture.

So, now I can feel my heartbeat in my jaw, in true sinus infection fashion and my nose is dripping like a faucet. Oh, and my eyes are puffy and red. I love being sick! Upside: I made myself a little chicken noodle soup and a pepperjack grilled cheese sandwich for dinner. I know. Super healthy. But it was comfort food and I was in need of comfort food. Needless to say, the day at the shop was uneventful as far as customers went, for which I was supremely grateful. So, it's just been one of those days. Not the worst day of my life by any means, but definitely not the best either. Because, lets face it, who likes quarter sized blisters on their thigh?

Isn't it lovely??

October 17, 2009

"It's Saturday, Can You Feel the Thrill of It. . .

. . .Saturday! Never get my fill of it! Time to play, on the best day all week looooonnnggg!!"

So, when I was in 5th grade, we did a wonderful little play called, "It's Saturday". That was the title song of the whole play and I still have it run through my head every now and again. I really do love Saturdays though. Especially when I don't have to work, because that means I have one full day to just do what I want to do. And this Saturday, that meant three loads of laundry, baking bread, making cookies, and finalizing a talk and a lesson for tomorrow. Busy, busy day. But so wonderful! It was beautiful out today too. It was between 65-70 degrees and sunny with blue sky. Just my kinda day. I had the windows open all day and anytime I went outside, I would come back in greeted by the smell of freshly baked bread and cookies. Talk about a weight gainer there! I think just by inhaling I put on a few pounds. That and eating half the cookie dough raw before I even baked it. . . Ok, not half. Just a few snatches here and there. But still. . .

So, if any of you follow my wonderful cousin, Emily's blog, you might have this recipe for bread, but if not, you need to get it. It is the best homemade wheat bread I have ever had. Dallin loves it. We are spoiled now and rarely eat anything but this. Store bought bread just doesn't cut it anymore. So, it may require a little more time, but it saves money, since I get most my ingredients in bulk, and it's more healthy. (No stinkin high fructose corn syrup!) Anyway, if you want this AMAZING recipe, then click HERE! Happy Baking!

Oh, and one last thought. HAPPY BIRTHDAY CORY!!! 29 years young. Hope your day was all you ever dreamed of and more. :)

(Ain't he just a handsome fella?! Well, just a handsome couple, if I do say so myself!)

October 12, 2009

Heaven. . . In a cup

Have you noticed how at about this time of year, everyone starts busting out their pumpkin and eggnog flavored what-nots? I have. And I love it. I am a HUGE fan of pumpkin pie (or pumpkin pie flavored anything). It is one of my favorite desserts ever. So, it would definitely make sense that everytime I see that Arctic Circle has their over the rim pumpkin pie milkshake back in season that I about faint from excitement, right? Right!

I kid you not, this heavenly treat tastes like cold pumpkin pie with an ice-creamy flavor that is to die for. I decided tonight was the night to indulge in this yummy amazingness and I was not disappointed. If there is an Arctic Circle near you, go get one! At least one time this season, 'cause I promise you it is sooo worth it! And tomorrow I will do extra cardio to make up for the wonderful caloric intake. Yay for Above-The-Rim Pumpkin Pie Milkshakes at Arctic Circle!!

October 7, 2009

New Church Building

I realize I already did a post today, but Jeff has been asking Dallin for awhile to take some pictures of the new style of Stake Center that is being built around here and he decided to take some pictures today of one that is currently being built. We already have one that is totally devoted to married students here at school. That is where Dallin and I attend church. It has two chapels inside it, one on the north end and one on the south end and a HUGE gym. Apparently it is supposed to be two stories, but Dallin and I haven't had time to investigate whether or not that is true. We obviously don't have any classes on the second story, if there is one. This new stake center that they are building is literally a 1/2 mile from another huge stake center that is behind the Rexburg temple. If any of you are somewhat familiar with Rexburg, then coming up 7th south, you hit this new stake center, then a BYU-I married housing complex, some rugby, soccer and softball fields, another stake center and then the temple. If you blink, you'll miss everything. It literally is all right there. Just more proof that Rexburg (or rather BYU-I) is growing so fast! The stake center we are in now was just completed like a year or 2 ago and already they are adding another one, the same size, that will be totally devoted to married students. Insane, isn't it? I love this place, it's so awesome!

Ashley's 2009 (22nd Berfday) Wishlist

**Disclaimer: This is for my mother and husbands sakes. Just FYI. And in case you are really curious as to what I want for my 22nd Birthday. :)

The 30th day of October is rapidly approaching. And then I will be 22. Weird, isn't it? I remember when I turned 16. I thought that life was amazing. Couldn't get any better! I could DATE! Holy schmoley! And then, after my permit had finally been valid for 6 months, I could drive! (That wasn't until March though. . . I wasn't on the ball like I shoulda been.)

And then when I turned 18. Oh goodness. I got an awesome hot pink rose from a dear friend, and the freedom I had so dearly wished for. (Among other things) My curfew was finally midnight. (Yup, I didn't get it extended to 11:30 til I was 17. Sad, isn't it?) But I remember feeling so much more grown up. And at the same time, I felt like I was still a total kid. In my mind, I had thought 18 meant you were suddenly thrust into adulthood and you were mature and ready to take on the world. Oh, my dear friends, not so. I still don't feel like an adult who is ready to take on the world. Take on a new recipe? Sure! Take on a new school adventure with Dallin? Why not! But the world? It still scares the heebie-jeebies outta me!

Then 21. (You thought I was gonna say 20, huh? :)) My 21st birthday was spent mostly in the BYU-Idaho Library doing a research paper on the marriage and courtship culture of ancient Egypt for my religion class. SOOOO interesting! (I'm being totally serious when I say that) I loved that paper. The fact that I spend about 8 hours in the Library on my 21st birthday, I didn't love, but oh well. I spent it with the man I love and a subject I was very fond of, so it all worked out. And once again, I thought that 21 might mean I was somehow more mature and more apt to deal with whatever was thrown my way. Looking back now, I realize that if anyone would have told me the challenges and joys and sorrows and the hurt and the awesome that I have had to deal with since then, I wouldn't have been so thrilled. Which is why Heavenly Father is wise and doesn't let us see the future like Alice does in Twilight.

So now, as I am approaching this 22nd birthday of mine, I feel just the same. I am finally learning that I am growing older, a little bit wiser, but I am not dramatically different than the year before. Life is just life and it's going to throw major curves and ridiculous trials and it's going to be hard. But, it also is going to be wonderful and amazing and fabulous because I have the best families a girl could ask for. And the most incredible husband that ever walked the planet. And an all knowing Heavenly Father who helps me through all the trials and tribulations that I go through. Thank goodness. So, all in all, life is gonna be alright. No, life is gonna be great!

Wow, that wasn't supposed to be that long. I just got a little carried away. Sorry. So, (Drum roll please. . .) The birthday wishlist you've all been waiting for!

1. Invisibelt. I need one of these baby's cause I hate belts but I need em. They make me look bulky around the middle and I already have a non-existent waist, so it just adds to the wonderfulness. This little invention is the solution to all my problems!

2. Curling irons. I have a 1/4 inch one and it's just too small. I need a 1/2 inch and a 1 1/2 inch for sure. Con-Air's are my favorites. They're like the Dolce & Gabana of curling irons in my book. :)

3. Since working at a bridal and tux shop, I have become very familiar with steamers. And I have decided I definitely need one of those. Oh yes. They're amazing! But, I want one with an iron. That's the only way to go. Trust me.

(This isn't exactly the one I want, but just an example. . . in case you were wondering, Mom. Hint hint.) :)

4. The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl. Any of you that are Pioneer Woman fans, behold the goodness. I have wanted this cook book ever since I found out she was having one published! She is amazing and I love all her recipes. And I love cooking/baking, so this just makes sense, right? :)

5. And last but certainly not least. Michael Buble's Crazy Love Album, set to release October 9th. I love Michael Buble. He is amazing. His voice is wonderful and I love all his music. I own every album, including his Christmas album. Like I said, love his voice!

So, Dallin, Mom (hint, hint, wink, wink, stomp, stomp) and my dear friends, those are my 22nd berfday wishes.

October 3, 2009


I've kind of been neglecting this whole blogging thing lately. Sorry. I'm busy and there are just moments when I think, "I would rather read Twilight than blog right now." Which is what I have decided to delve back into. Reading the Twilight series. And I am realizing I am falling just as much in love with the book this time around as I did when I first read it. (Notice: I said in love with the BOOK, not EDWARD. Edward is great and all, but stinkin Robert Pattinson has absolutely ruined my mental image. Ugh.) Anyhow. I am thoroughly enjoying that little outlet right now.

Work is awesome. I have, with the help of others, as well as single-handedly, sold 5 wedding dresses thus far!! I am so excited! More excited for the girls wearing them than the fact that I actually sold them, though that feels awesome as well. There was this one little red-haired gal that came in about a week ago and tried on a dress. . . Oh. My. Heavens. Talk about natural beauty/model status. It was a mermaid shaped dress with a lace overlay. And it just looked AMAZING on her. (When I started typing lace overlay, suddenly the words of Mr. Bennett entered my mind, "No lace! NO lace!" And I smiled) Anyway, the price was the deal breaker. She just couldn't afford it. So I talked to my bosses, we worked the price and bada-bing! She's getting the dress! It was one of those moments where I thought, "I would donate money to the cause just so she could get that dress. Because, let's be honest. It would be a disservice to that dress if anyone with less of a flattering figure wore it." You think I am kidding. No. I am not. So, I love my job :)

(This isn't the gown I sold, just one that I am loving lately from our shop. Venus Bridal rocks my socks lately. So gorgeous.)

I dyed my hair today. Dark. Perhaps too dark. I feel kind of weird. But Dallin loves it. I am waiting to get used to it, but everytime I look in the mirror I jump. Seriously, it's dark. And I am not yet ready to post a picture. I will next week. Maybe. Or I might just wait until I see you in person and then you can see it and jump too 'cause it's just dark. And when I say dark, I mean black. Except it's not technically black. It's the darkest brown I could go. But I didn't know Black was the new Brown? Apparently it is. Who knew? (Obviously not me. . .)

Dallin and I spilled some diet Pepsi on the floor today (I think that was a prompting telling us it's a bad thing to be drinking diet Pepsi while watching general conference. . .)

But Oxi Clean saved the day. I love that stuff. It is my miracle worker. And while I am doing laundry and adding that to my detergent in the washer, I can't help but have Billy Mays voice running through my head, "It'll make your whites whiter, your brights brighter! OXI CLEAN!"

And once again, I smile. I enjoy smiling. But really, folks, if you have not been converted to the wonderful Oxi Clean, get on that band wagon. You'll love yourself for following my advice. I pinky promise.

And last but not least, conference. Did anyone elses heart just soar when they heard President Monson announce the 5 new temples? I will admit, I cried. While smiling like a little kid that just got their favorite piece of gum. I was so happy for all those people. Especially for all those members in Japan. I don't know why, but that just touched me to the core. I much too often take for granted the fact that I have a temple literally up the road from me in this sheltered wonderful place I am calling home right now. I love that temple with all my heart. I literally saw it be built right before my eyes. I was able to go through it last year before it was dedicated (in 6 degree weather with Jen and Cory and Marcus and Ashley no less!)

And I have neglected it lately, I ashamedly admit. But I have made a new resolve to make temple attendance regular again, just like it was last semester. But, back to General Conference. Has anyone noticed a theme? I surely have. And it has hit home. I need to strive to make the spirit more present in my life. I need to center my life around things that will invite the spirit and strengthen my testimony. I love it. I love the gospel. I love all that we are being taught and can't wait to pick apart Dallin's brain when he gets home from Priesthood. (Honestly, they get the best stuff in Priesthood session, I love listening to it later and reading it in the Ensign.) But most of all, to all you readers out there, whoever you may be, whatever religion you may practice, I want you all to know that I know it's true. This gospel is true. And President Monson is a true, living Prophet of God. I know it with all my heart. And I know the Book of Mormon is the true word of God. And that the Bible is true. That Jesus did come to the earth and that He atoned for everything; our weaknesses, our sickness, our sins, our joys, our griefs, our pains, our sorrows. I know that He knows me and loves me. And for all of this, I am truly grateful.

I hope this post finds all of you healthy, happy and enjoying this beautiful, colorful, cold season. :) Lots of love to you all.

September 29, 2009

Big Favor!

My wonderful and talented cousin Alicia, over at Corners of My Mind has made a request. For those of you who are Twilight fans and live in the Tri-Cities area, she's got a proposition for you. She can get you in to see New Moon a day early. November 19th at either 7 pm or 9 pm at Fairchild Cinemas in Pasco. But, she needs at least 100 people to be at the showing. So, including herself, 99 others. If you are interested, head over to her blog, leave a comment, let her know you want in! I would totally be there except I am still gonna be in Rexburg. With thousands upon thousands of single 18-25 year old girls fantasizing about Edward. And I hated the first one Twilight movie. So, I have this internal dilemma as to whether or not I really wanna see the second one. But who knows, maybe I will cave and my traditional movie after Thanksgiving will be New Moon. Guess we'll see. :)

September 15, 2009

Workin' Woman

Printer Paper- $2.83

Ink Cartridges- $21.46

Gas used on handing out 40+ resumes- $40.00

Finally getting a job after 2 weeks of job hunting- Priceless.

Circle of Love Formal Wear
, here I come!!

September 14, 2009

Great News!

Two items of great news that I just have to share with you. One, I have Dallin's first day of school picture. Aren't you all so excited?! :) I know I am. So without further delay, here he is, my handsome hubby all dressed and ready for his first day of school. (Insert awws and sighs here).

So, funny thing about this photo. I think I first promised a picture of him on Wednesday, cause that's when I thought school started. But it actually started Thursday. So then I found that out and he didn't have any classes on Tuesday/Thursday, so I promised a picture of him Friday. Well, then he added a few classes to Tuesday/Thursday, so I actually took this picture Thursday. Yup, only those of you who are detail oriented (like myself and my sister Tara) would have noticed that. Everyone else probably thinks, wow Ash, you might be OCD er somethin'. . . And I reply, shaking my head in shame, I know, I know.

Onto item of business number 2! There is this great blog that I LOVE called Or So She Says. You may have seen their button on my sidebar. Anywho, they're awesome, I love them a lot, and they are having a fantabulous giveaway and you should totally visit them here and enter yourself in, 'cause the prizes are 100% AWESOME. So, hop your little buns over to that site and have fun!

Oh, P.S. another great blog, if you're looking for some great laughs and just all around awesomeness is this great blog. Holy smokes, everyday is an adventure with Ree and Marlboro Man. You will enjoy it. I promise. And she has awesome giveaways too. Like KitchenAids, and Lucchese Boots and $500 giftcards to and lots of other really expensive fun things. :) So, go and enjoy her story!

September 9, 2009

Big Thanks

I just want to thank everyone for their sweet words and support over the last few days. I feel so loved and I am incredibly grateful that I have so many people out there who are very supportive and kind. I am truly blessed.

I also want to let everyone know that we are doing great. Every once in a while I do get a little twinge of sadness when I see a sweet little baby or a pair of really cute tiny shoes or something like that. :) But overall, I am fine. The day we found out was the hardest. And the Dr. we had just kinda laid it all out on the table; no softening of blows or anything. Which was probably the best way for it to be put out there for me. After he told me they hadn't found a heartbeat, he said, "I think this is just God and Nature's way of telling you that this baby wasn't developing right and it could place on you a burden you might not be able to handle." As those words sunk in, I thought, "yeah, that makes sense." And it felt right.

I was proud of myself too. I didn't cry when he told me. I didn't cry when he told me my options for losing the baby, whether I wanted a D&C or just to lose it naturally. I didn't cry when he told me that we needed to wait at least 3 to 4 months before we should try again. But then, the ultrasound tech asked me if I wanted the picture of the baby. And then the floodgates opened. And it hit me. Hard. And I cried. And it hurt. But then, I regained my composure, took the picture of our little peanut, and we went and scheduled for the D&C. And then I called my mom and once again the tears were a-flowin. But with each person that I talked to throughout the day, the tears dried up and didn't come as easily. I came to terms with everything. And I felt good. Except for the cramps that magically started. And got excessively worse over the course of the next couple of days until by thursday morning about 1:00 am I was in full blown labor (well, it felt like it at least :)) I no longer called them cramps, but contractions. They were horrible. And I wanted to die. And my D&C wasn't until 7:00 am, so 6 hours from then. But I made it there, they gave me sweet pain meds to relieve me, and before I knew it, I was asleep and awake in the blink of an eye. And feeling OH SO MUCH BETTER! I felt like everything was done. I was done with everything. It felt great.

So now, here I am, a little over a week after I found out, and I feel good. It still kinda stinks when people tell me congratulations and I have to tell them, "oh, I actually just had a miscarriage." And then they feel bad (which they totally shouldn't, they didn't know!) But, it still kinda stings. So, we're going on with life, we'll try to start our family again when the timing feels right and when we feel the Lord thinks its a good time and for the time being, we'll focus on school and work. By the way, did I mention the best news ever? Dallin is done after this semester! Hallelujah! That light at the end of the tunnel is getting so much brighter. It's right there. We're so excited! For those of you who are curious, he is graduating in Agricultural Business and he wants to continue on to get his MBA. Hopefully at University of Oregon, Oregon State or Willamette University. All three are within like an hour of each other down in Oregon. So, it'd be pretty awesome if we could go down there. Plus, Marcus and Ashley are down in Willamette going to Law School and Jen and Cory are thinking of going to U of O for Cory to get his MBA. So who knows, we could get the whole fam damily down there! :) It'd be a blast, whatever happens.

Anyhow, sorry about all this information, this is kind of my journal of life events, so all you cyber-readers get to know me way better than you ever wanted to. :) Dallin starts school Friday, so I'll post his cute back to school photo on here and you all can stare at my "eye candy" husband. :) What can I say, I have a super hot husband! Enjoy your evenings, thank you once again for your love and support and God Bless every single one of you!

September 7, 2009


This post is going to be one of the harder posts I have had to write, so I think I'll just come right out and say it. I lost the baby. I went in to my first appointment, everything was fine, and then they wanted an ultrasound to see how far along I was. I went to get the ultrasound the next day and the doctor found no heartbeat. I cried. It was hard. But it's not so bad now. We're feeling a lot better about everything. And, like our amazing doctor said, at least we know we can get pregnant. And I also have decided there is absolutely no way I am ever giving natural birth. Holy smokes, bring on the epidural. Please. :)

Anyhow, on a much happier note. We did get to see Wicked in Seattle. Any of you who live close to the Seattle area, please do yourself a favor and go see it. Elpheba is amazing. Like insanely good. I was almost brought to tears when I saw the scene where she sings Defying Gravity. It was just that amazing. So, you all should go see it. Like right now. :) It plays til October 4th. So hurry!! More updates to come. Maybe I'll post a cute first day of school picture of Dallin on Wednesday. Wouldn't that be a treat? :)

August 25, 2009

I've got BIG news. . .

. . . After 3 1/2 long years, the moment has finally come. I have, in my possession, two tickets to the most amazing show currently on Broadway. Oh yes, you guessed it.


I am incredibly excited. Like ridiculously excited. Like I am counting down the days and just wanting the 2nd to be here NOW.

But wait a second. . . that wasn't the BIG news I had. I mean, that's big, but this is kind of a lot BIGGER.

What do you get when you're dog tired all day, can't eat enough food, and randomly get sick all the time?

A Baby.


You read that right.

The Calaway family has just gone from 2 to 3.

And we're extremely excited.

Tentative due date? Mid-March. YAY FOR MARCH! :)

August 23, 2009

The Happiest Place on Earth

Ok, finally. The post you have all been anticipating. (Or not.) :) The long awaited pictures. That for some reason aren't showing up on my computer, so I am hoping they show up on yours. And, since I can't see the pictures, I can't add the captions. So maybe they'll explain themselves. :) But here's the run down of the week we had (3 months ago. . . I suck at this game.) We got to Florida late Saturday night and then spent all day Sunday driving around Florida on the A1A (Beach front Avenue! Name that song!) to St. Augustine. It was beautiful. Then we headed to Gatorville, aka Gainesville and spent Monday morning checking out the University. It was an amazing place. That afternoon, we headed back down to Orlando and then our journey to the happiest place on earth began! Monday was spent in the Magic Kingdom, which it was just that, totally magical. I was in heaven. If I was about 15 years younger, you better believe I would be decked out head to toe in princess gear. Heck, what am I saying, I still wanted to be decked out head to toe in princess gear! Disney music was playing all throughout the park, I saw princesses everywhere, and all things Disney were present at every corner. I felt like my childhood had just been re-opened. Suddenly memories came flooding into my mind and I thought how much Disney movies had been apart of my growing up years. Anyway, it was just fabulous. Next day was animal kingdom. Holy smokes, if you have a son or daughter who is in love with dinosaurs, that is the park to go to. There was a whole section of the park that was totally devoted to dinosaurs. So cool. And there was the roller-coaster Everest. Oh my amazing. Backward, forward and yeti. Need I say more? Needless to say, that was a sweet day. I did have some bloody feet by the end of it, but I survived. Nothing that a couple of band-aids wouldn't fix! Wednesday was Epcot. It was so awesome. Very different than the rest of the parks. I got to see Mary Poppins there and took a picture with her. Loved every minute of it. We saw a bunch of the different countries around the world, rode a space shuttle ride, felt crazy amount of G's, took a ride over California and smelled the oranges and felt the breeze at the ocean. I loved Epcot. I highly recommend it. Thursday was our beach day. We spent the better part of the day at Cocoa beach and had a blast. A few of the boys felt they needed accelerator instead of sun screen and paid dearly for it (especially Bradly. Oh my blistering back. Poor kid. . .) But we all loved it. That night we hit Hollywood Studios for a couple hours and rode Rockin Rollercoaster and Tower of Terror (Did the twilight zone music just start playing in your head?) This was my favorite park, I think. We spent all of Friday at Hollywood Studios and it was awesome. We saw a very cheesy Beauty and the Beast production, watched American Idol, got to play in Andy's room from Toy Story, saw backstage Disney, watched an insane car chase play out in front of us, and saw High School Musical 3 characters dancing and singing through the street. It was so much fun. Saturday we went to this amazing outlet mall and got some fun things (among our purchases were crocs, which Dallin and I are now in love with and wear everywhere) and then headed to the airport where we chased the sun back to Seattle. Needless to say, it was an EXHAUSTING week, but it was just amazing. Jeff and Valerie, THANK YOU! I had the time of my life and I am so grateful for all you two did for all of us. We had a fabulous time and it will be a vacation that will not soon be forgotten. When they say it's the happiest place on earth, trust me, they're not kidding. :)