Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Texas celebrations!

what a glorious weekend we have had! we traveled to texas and met up with the WHOLE schroedter family in honor of Elder Taylor Schroedter's return from Romania and mom's 50th bday (and chase's 23rd bday on the side!!!) it's the first time we've all been together (ever since millie and andrew were born and chase joined the fam) and besides that it's still been about 3.5 years for all the siblings! my favorite thing about this weekend = we all got along. i was nervous but it was for nothing! we had such a relaxing, delicious (food), fun (games- indoors and outdoors), and loving time! the laughs were loud, the smiles were big, the tension was minimal, and the memories are everlasting! it was just what chase and i needed- to get away!! it makes me even more excited for christmas now- even if it's still some time away! texas is where it is at!! 
being back with taylor was awesome!!!! i had numbed myself to how much i missed him and how big of a hole was missing from my life!! he's back and in january, he will really be back in PROVO!! with me!! and chase, garr, kristi, millie, and taryn!!
now for some pictures to tell you the stories of this weekend!
this is millie and me at the SLC airport. i ran around the terminal with her for an hour before our flight. i was trying to tucker her out- it didn't work. she was still a lively little toddler on the plane.

chase and i sat right behind her, garr, and kristi. we just got toys chucked at us over the seats the whole time. the poor man who was sitting next to me. hahaha. he never got hit in the face but i'm sure he was nervous the whole time to even fall asleep with the toys flying. she was really quite good the whole flight 
and julie had driven us to the airport and given us a goodie bag of halloween stuff for her- it kept her entertained! i just love millie to pieces and we really are just best little friends! the airport in SLC was even a fun reunion because my grandparents were there to fly out to texas with us, too. 
so we have the ross grandparents, me, chase, millie, garr, and kristi! all on one flight!
we didn't get off the plane right away when we landed because medics had to come on and assist someone- my grandparents were in first class and the medics went straight to first class- i thought "Oh heavens!! this weekend will be a hospital visit!" but luckily for us and unluckily for the ppl sitting right behind my grandparents- it was them and not gramps and grams who had to be wheeled off on a stretcher!

the first of many reunited pics. the classic "tii" wave.
we then went to La Finka (sp?) for a delicious mexican feast. the louds from california met us there and our family was officially together! and dad had surprised mom with a couple of families from the ward, too. it was quite the gathering! we sang happy birthday to mi madre multiple times and just had a good old time! being with andrew and aubrey again was fantastic! (even if andrew had the most massive blow out and me and taryn volunteered to change him! naked chunky baby getting a bath in the restroom!) hahah. i love being an aunt!
 yes the nieces look a little transfixed or sleepy- but i take what i can get when posing with two toddlers. and i look fine so i'm posting it :) classic!
does she not melt your heart? i loved playing all weekend with aubrey! chalk sidewalk. trampoline. four square. wall ball. knock out. play grounds. hide and seek. duck duck goose. etc.!!
another blessing = millie warmed right up to everyone. she just voluntarily plopped down next to taryn in this photo and it was adorable!
we didn't play as many boxed games as i thought but we still were full of playful games. we had a contest who could do the most push ups. grant won. but taylor did do the one handed push ups which was just as impressive. i could only do 14 (man push ups) and i've been working out my arms. aka i still have a long way to go. grant did over 50. this is chase and i airplaning it up! it takes abs- be impressed. we also had leg wrestles. normal wrestling. 
you know. the normal routines of a big family.
this lovely present from my grandmother to my mother. you see my mom has a little fetish for veggie/fruit animals. and frankly- i hide them, switch their order, etc. 
it drives my mom crazy but it's our little tradition. however, i do quite like this tomato pig. it's cute and clever. the cutest one so far.
there will be a whole post for fam pics to come but this a little preview. it's hard to get children and adults of this number to smile and all look good. but it was fun! and good memories will be remembered in these photos!
and some cake for the birthday boy! taylor gave a great homecoming talk on sunday, too! we enjoyed church and family/friend time after church! happy birthday, my love!
 then monday, chase and i walked these kiddos to the park! we needed to enjoy the houston weather (no sarcasm for once!) and just get some kiddo time! 
my dad showed up later with andrew and it was a precious time! like i said, i love being an aunt. it gets me so excited to be a mom!
one of our many game nights! lots of people! crazy times! man, i miss these clowns already!
 also, we went to chick-fil-a. DELICIOUS. and stopped at this park. well there was a little swamp nearby (in the middle of the neighborhood) and we saw two alligators and two turtles! a good find in the middle of the city! the kids were loving it. i was terrified that they would be a scooby snack for the gators!
the whole trip was such a success! the only sad part was my mom and grandma's new york trip got cancelled cuz of hurricane sandy- but that's selfish considering how many ppl were actually impacted in their own homes on the east coast!
so on the airplane back chase and i got bumped to first class. i traded with garrett. 
millie and i had our own row! we had tons of fun and she was an angel!!! they came around with drinks. i filled her cup up with apple juice, told her to lay down and stare at the buttons on the ceiling ---> BOOM she fell asleep! i'm a magician. then i got some shut eye, too! a perfect ending to a perfect weekend!
also last night, chase and i went to his parents house for another birthday celebration! delicious bday dinner for chase, desert, carving pumpkins, and hot tubbing! all smiles here! my pumpkin carving skills need to be majorly improved. i tried to spiral around my pumpkin- it broke all up so i ended up having a huge hole where i just put a littler, painted pumpkin inside. it was a fail and i didn't even want to take a pic b/c it was so lame. but the rest of the crew did a great job. especially chad- you see that giant quasimodo pumpkin eating the baby pumpkin with the brains coming out. impressive! 
 family time is precious and we are so grateful to have our big, loving, crazy, caring, fun families!

and today is the great holiday of halloween! Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

love songs (aka some are really hate songs! hahah)

one of my favorite things about taylor swift is that she really writes what she knows! i admire her courage to put herself on paper and on a melody for the whole world to hear OVER and OVER again on the radio. she knows millions will be singing about her life- that might be too vulnerable for me. but blogging is not. i really love taylor swift. that is why i spent an hour in the car today driving to the radio station to pick up her new cd.
you see yesterday i was driving home from the gym and they said call with the answer to what year "dust on the bottle" came out and so i looked it up on my phone, memorized the phone number to call, and called them! still managed to be first! i still have the jingle of 866-551-1015 in my head for memorizing their number! that's the number for 101.5 (my fav utahn country station) in case you ever need to call them up!
so i won!
they put me on hold after they told me i won and i sped home hoping to catch it on the radio with chase! i busted through the door and started screaming his name. poor guy was sleeping and he woke up with a jolt- thinking i was endangered. then a couple minutes later we heard me answer correctly on the radio! that's enough fame for me. i've never been keen on the idea of being a household name- too much for my little heart and shoulders to handle i imagine! anyways. so we danced around the room! chase really like taylor swift, too, surprisingly- has since his high school days! new songs to fall in love with!!! and i probably only saved $3 rather than just buying the cd......when you think of the gas i spent to get the free one! but it was worth it! i enjoyed a relaxing drive, picked up my first radio win ever, and drove back reflecting! jamming out to RED!!!
it made me reflect on what my songs would sound like if i wrote about every boyfriend i ever had. i actually haven't had that many boyfriends. i'd say i really have only had 3 but technically i've probably had 5 (i say 5 because if i told my parents they were my boyfriend then i guess that's legit.) but only 3 bf that had real romance.
and how many boys have i "dated"??? (whatever that loose term means- i'm not even going to try to count that.) I was really great at flirting, dating, and reeling boys in. but (in college especially) i wasn't so great at making that leap to label someone my boyfriend. it was hard to narrow down when byu had such a plethora! when i did have a boyfriend- the reason they ended up being my boyfriend were hardly ever bright, courageous, loving reasons.

Boyfriend #1- how did we take that leap? jealousy
we had been best friends for a while and he started dating this girl. i didn't like him with another girl. so i said i'd rather date him then see him date her.  that's what love is about. (8th grade- jokes) hahaha. but over time i did actually develop some romance but really..... our friendship was just really strong. it wasn't love, but it was a good learning experience.

Boyfriend #2- why?  revenge and loneliness.
well remember boyfriend #1? well, boyfriend#1 and i dated for a couple years. then i moved across the world away from him. we tried to do long distant for like 1.8 seconds when he "cheated" on me. it wasn't a big shocker. i knew we were over when i moved away in the first place. but it was still a shot to my pride so i jumped into another relationship with boyfriend #2 to stick it to boyfriend #1 when he was trying to get me back. why did i try to live in a dramatic soap opera? oh my.
and i was lonely at my new high school- so there you go! it lasted a couple weeks. shocker!

Boyfriend #3- why? revenge.
our first date was actually to stick it to his ex-girlfriend [we both had beef with her for our own reasons.] then it took off from there. hahaha. all healthy you see! 2 years and one big heart break later- he's dunzo!
my one and only real glimpse at "love" until Chase walked into my life and blessed it like no other!

Boyfriend #4- why? sympathy.
the biggest mistake of my life thus far i'd say. he was a big jerk. but his sister had just been murdered. we were co-workers. i was there. that was the craziest month of my life. you can't change people. you can't heal people. leave that to Deity.
good riddance. 

Boyfriend #5- why? i was broken. he was there for me.
this was the best blessing of my whole life. this is my husband :) Chase! he helped me find my anchor in Christ, understand the pain of Boyfriend #4, helped me smile again, and was the best friend I coulda asked for! he was an answer to my prayers! my parents prayers! God truly was merciful and so amazing to give me the best blessing in the world right when I was so down in the dumps! We started dating- i was vulnerable, broken, and my heart was ready for him! I was through with the Provo buffet dating style for a while and my heart was ready for someone as caring, sincere, and incredible as Chase.
Like I said, it's hard for me to give my heart away- but i'm grateful for everything that happened to me to be available for Chase! All the boyfriends and friendly boys- all sunk costs that paid off- "God blessed the broken road that led me straight to you!" I'm undeserving and so grateful! I was ready and experienced enough with jerks to know that i wouldn't EVER take him for granted! Chase going on his mission was hard but it helped me really stand on my own two feet! Helped me realize that being in love with your best friend is the best way! and i plan to continue to always remember who and what we have!

This is tmi but that's what i want my blog to be here for! a blog is enough for me! i can't imagine putting it on the radio.
p.s. i'm listening to "The Last Time" and i think it's one of my new favorite songs. i love duets! i'm obsessed with them- i think dallin pointed that out to me and lauryn once way back when. we LOVE duets!
now if i could just get chase to sing a public duet with me :) hahah jk..... it's enough that he belts duets with me in the car and at home!
Being a wife is the best chapter yet and I finally know what true love is! real, unconditional, eternal, enveloping, overwhelming, strong love!!!! I love you, Chase. 
Oh T swift! you inspire me to embrace my life: past, present, and future (she is T Swift: I can't say Taylor because the real Taylor is back! i'll be seeing him tomorrow!!!) It's been great skyping him and talking to him on the phone and on facebook and etc! Any WAY till i can really talk to him in person!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

ctr 5 & bday week

 Today was our grand primary program! Our kids did a splendid job. This is our petite class and they are so awesome. We had a lax sunday school lesson because the program and singing time was a lot! Some funny one liners from today: 
"A" grabbed Chase's arm and starting humming the wedding march song. hahaha. I think she has a little crush. 
"A": I'm going to draw a baby Jesus in the manger with shepherds standing on the camels. 
some of their masterpieces
"T": You know this boy in my class at school has a crush on me. Correction- two boys in my class have crushes on me. Don' you dare tell anyone or I'll.... I'll.... do something.
"G": you look so beautiful today. so beautiful with your hair. 
hahaha they're funnier in person and with their sweet little voices. Kids say the darnest things. 
I asked what school's mascot is the cougar and they knew- BYU. they are smarties and make good choices. We did a survey in our class: who likes byu? EVERYONE. 
chase couldn't even brainwash them.
We'll miss them next week when we're in Texas! but they'll be just fine as a butterfly, witch, and superman trick or treating around!

Last night was wonderfully fantastic. We started celebrating Chase's birthday week!  Here are some celebrations we want to share with you 
some sidewalk chalk done by yours truly and garr and millie!
up to SoJo for a most delicious thai meal! leftovers for us to enjoy, too! 
great company and great service! xoxox   

we were supposed to  go to the haunted forest
but birthday boy chose to get some choc molten cakes from chili's and relax at home instead of going to the haunted forest. he works hard and was so tired. so we took a break from my busy planned night for him. so here are ! food to go! delicious!

then we walked up to campus for "humor u" and it was sold out (we got there 30 minutes early? what!) . i've never been! crap! and who knew byu was so popular on a saturday night? i guess we'll go next time they put on a show :) but hey! we got a late night walk out of it. 
i feel so blessed to have chase all to myself and love all of his love. it is overflowing with blessings and so amazing oh this life of mine! happy birthday week to the most loving husband that i love!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

taylor's returning soon!!!

hip hip hurray!!! jump for joy! this grown almost rm elder baby bro always there for me mr amazing is COMING HOME!!!!! in 5 days and a few hours!!!!!!!!!!!!
i have missed taylor sooooooooooooooooo much.
so much has happened for us both in the two years he has been gone and i can't wait to have late night talks, late night game nights, late night fun and early night fun and midday fun and afternoon fun and fun fun fun fun!!!
taylor and i have always been close- well except when we were babies.... you know how it is when your older siblings pick on you. i admit at one point (i was 4 years old- don't judge me) i did turn on taylor  because i'd rather have been with shelby and garr then against them. but still!!! that just strengthened our siblinghood.... or taught taylor forgiveness early in life. what a stud!!!! besides those early hiccups- we've been at each other's sides playing nicely our whole lives!
some of my greatest blessings for having tay as a bro. (1) kentuckiana. enough said (2) fall 2009. enough said. (3) chase left on his mission. aka he became my replacement bf (4) all our inside jokes (5) his good character is always inspiring me to be better (6) good genes (7) his many comments and snide remarks and entertaining voice (8) super talented and teaching me always (9) his mission service AND THE LIST GOES ON!!
i cannot wait! i'll be seeing him and the whole schroedter clan with their spouses, kids, etc. and my ross grandparents next friday!!!! it's going to be epic!
you're welcome mom
we just love! just love!
"idiot, pull up" at the exact location of NAME THAT MOVIE

taking him to the mtc. he's so courageous and valiant! he's grown a foot or two and he's ready!
the hardest moment. but worth it!

oh i cannot wait!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

now for the rest of my thoughts!
i take way to many pics of millie. i need to get more diverse in my pics. but i love her and her face!!
she was outta control yesterday (in a good way). just SUPER hyper and all over the place with a tinge of attitude and i was exhausted. i was just not in the mood to be catching her and throwing her in the air and what not. i did it, but i wasn't having fun. sacrifice right :) hahahah i guess it's a little window of how motherhood can beat you up. still good times though. 
also yesterday (even when i was "exhausted") i was thinking of how i get the same amount of sleep if not less than what i did on the mission, yet i'm healthier, less stressed, and have more energy. strange! there is not exhaustion comparative to mission exhaustion. well so far in my life. i'll let you know if newborn babies compete! that terrifies me! those first three months. after that- i think i'll be more in my element and comfortable! anyways. the mission is such a unique experience that i am so grateful i got to experience it first hand. not to mention all the blessings and serving you do for others, too!
she's a diva! and a cuddly machine! love spending time with her! i take pics like this everyday of her. millie pic collages. and she's perfecting her many faces! 

another day.... look familiar? need to get a hold of myself!

been catching up with lots of friends this week! 
this is us at kelly's. reagan and her were working out their sharing issues. the whole trip was a great time! even when lance shut down my picture taking wants. hahaha. 

also spent time with sam and aud. 
watched the debate with some varvel crew. 
got to spend much needed time with mary and myles :) 
and future friend dates to come. what a blessing! 

blogging was good. it helped me forget a disturbing dream i had last night about Chase. high school. Indiana. Mom. Etc.
yes, mother- look forward to a phone call. i'll be calling you with tmi and deets of the dream!
ok that's all for now. you know you'll hear from me sooner than later!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

baby echols

the beloved becca had a healthy perfect baby boy yesterday in the early mornings! 10/10!
how exciting!!!

he is so healthy. beautiful. and perfect.
i can't wait to see him again tonight.
me and millie will stop by their house (not hospital) today! baby jimmy is two days old and going home! that's quick! everything was ideal for her delivery and i'm so happy jimmy is here and they're both healthy!
yesterday chase, millie, and i went to the hospital to visit them. annie was already at the hospital! we all were just amazed at how perfect this little baby is! i am so fascinated and full of questions when it comes to my friends having babies! i'm learning a lot and some of it is terrifying. hahaha but worth it. what a MIRACLE of life! 
i'll miss becca as a walking buddy in the evenings and as someone i can hang out with at the drop of a hat- since she lives just down the street! but it's worth it for this amazing addition to her household! let's be honest- all of my friends that have babies- i end up becoming bffs with their babies and just say i want to see them as an excuse! (jk kelly and mary and now becca.... sorta) xoxoxoxo

love these dolls! 
so much love in that room! 
life is about progression! 
and oh boy (pun intended), we have all progressed oodles already!

hw break

I am stressed out of my mind for a big project I have to give at 3 today. aka in two hours. With graduation being around the corner, I take school with a thousand grains of salt! I cannot screw up a single class this semester! Anyways- so I just fried my brain practicing my presentation and I need a 10 minute break before i go back to more practicing! So hence! i love blogging. I feel like blogging is the perfect invention for me- i love to write and give tmi. blogging is therapeutic.

so today i had to go to a business lecture for one of my classes.
the VP of walmart (who got her masters at the byu Marriott school) was speaking. i was excited to hear from her about her journey, juggling a career and motherhood, and what not. i thought she was going to say how she always had these goals and nothing would stand in her way (like many corporate women have.) but instead she surprised me with her manner. She didn't go to school thinking she'd get a masters, work here, do that, etc. She didn't plan her every move and plan on not being a stay-at-home mom. she saw every chapter as something God gave her to grow. if she needed to stop working she would. she wasn't a controlling planner (something i could learn more about.)
i was humbled a lot. she works full-time and her husband is a stay at home dad. she is a woman who loves to work and her husband didn't enjoy working. they saw their kids needed them- they made a family personal decision. they found what worked best for their family.
they have a strong testimony in the doctrine of Jesus Christ. but that doesn't mean everyone in their wards have approved of their lifestyle. it's a blessing they (her husband and her) found each other so they could both find happiness and still have a happy united strong growing family. no one's situation is cookie cutter by the books. they are a cute couple with a cute story who truly love God.
now i must repent a little- i would like to improve my opinion about feminists. it's not the feminists that i dislike- i just dislike the common aura and connotation of the word feminists. I've met a lot of whiny, unhappy feminists.  They go on and on about their feminists' efforts and what's so wrong with the world.  They can be so close-minded to any other lifestyle than that of being publicly involved in worldly recognized success. On the flip side: non-feminists can be just as close-minded. They can be judgmental (guilty), naive, or complacent.
So i've come to a knew opinion from the inspiring andrea thomas: be a hardcore feminists or be a content non-feminists, either way just be open minded and care about the individual and their personal journey. That's the way Christ cares :)
generalizations are hardly ever appropriate. i'm guilty in many aspects of generalizing. it's human to generalize. this blog is for all my thoughts! my journal! my growth! my change AND my solidified consistencies! i'll get older, wiser, and better while still being me!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

i'm lovin' it.

duh duh dah daaah dah (yes that is the melody for mcdonald's) that's not what i'm lovin' though. i'm lovin' the conference memories. 
also mcdonalds is the opposite of what our household is lovin' because me and chase got a personal trainer yesterday (6 month contract) and i can't lift my arms. good thing the keyboard is below me and not above my head. thomas reminded us that 70% of our weight and health is what we eat. it was good for us to hear it from a professional. so don't come over to our house for delicious treats- unless you consider yams and broccoli a delicious treat- cuz that's what's up! we have one freebie day a week so you can come that day. it was pretty scary how much of risk i am for cancer and chase is for diabetes. i know they try to scare you and stuff like that but the family diabetes thing for chase is legit and me with cancer- esp colon cancer- um yeah that's happening. thanks family genes. 
but anyways. that will be more in depth for another post in a few more weeks when we have some baby results. we're excited and very sore. apparently lifting weights ( with a little cardio)  is better for your health and muscles and skinny-desires than just running and doing hard core cardio. i wasn't optimizing my gym time. also- i don't know how to do weights- so these training seshes will be good and educational. weights are way harder for me. i'd rather run three miles straight and fast than do the weight-sets i did yesterday! but i'll get better and improve my attitude starting today :) why am i still talking about this? moving on.

so being in the conference center saturday morning was such a blessing. what a moment in history!!
some personal spiritual moments for me and my life hit me hard this weekend and especially saturday morning. i was streaming tears on and off like crazy all weekend. I've had some pretty intense prayers with Heavenly Father lately and He (through Conference) spoke to me strongly.
1. When should I be a mother? How can we have security? What kind of mother should I be? 
2. How can my little fragile broken heart cope with my perfect niece Millie's life and all the drama? What is God's plan for her? What would He have me do? in the long run? on this very day?
3. When will I not have sorrow when missions or missionary work is mentioned? Will this hurting & longing ever go away in this life?
Those are some pretty intense questions and some pretty personal issues laid out there. But it's important to know that God knows each of our personal issues and each of his children.
Other things I got from Conference:
  • Can you see Christ running around with a to-do list?
  • Is a busy life a sign of success?
  • Hold your tongue and forgive unconditionally
  • Know you have hard times ahead in life
  • The spiritual immune system of civilization is wounded
  • God will hold men accountable for every tear that their wife sheds
  • The Holy Ghost can be in a room of thousands and still comforting each individually
  • I need to stay close to God. For myself and others. As I'm close to God this will help me cope with this world and give me strength to help his children.
  • My life has a purpose and plan- it began before birth. And this applies to every child of God and I need to trust that more.
This weekend was amazing for my Spirit. Also, Chase and I really got over some bumps in the road. and I got some great time with family. Let's share some pics now.

at conference. didn't even get a pic with thornley and his date. crud!

is that a protester sign down there? no zoom in closer.

"marry me summer" it was hard to get a clear pic. and yes we wasted 30 minutes on the roof to get a glimpse of the proposal. how exciting and presh! even if i don't prefer public proposals.

 this little angel knows how to chow down. she loved being at the andersons and lauryn's. she was a hoot with her fascination/fear with dallin.

 this is the face of angel. she was just reprimanded for hitting me in the face (on purpose). her shame face. she won't look you in the eye and pouts her lip. cute!!!!!!! and it's hard to keep a straight face and be stern when she comes at you with this face! 

artistic photo by lauryn :) we're loving fall

and now.... i found this new group "mormonprobs" on instagram and i'm loving them.

some can do it! many are waiting and few will marry! holla!

this sunbeam one is my fav! 
what the?! hahahahahaha just intimidating and terrifying for little a 3 year old! fantastic!

and i will end with this one. amen. amen.