September 18, 2013


peace out, georgia.
so it's likely that you've noticed the fact that i took a three month hiatus from blogging. i did try to keep everyone updated via instagram though. so if you don't follow me on instagram (which you totes ought to be doing-you can click here to make that happen. and get ready. because i take some awesome pictures of my dog.) then you missed out on a lot of what happened this summer. 

so, in an effort to pretend like that 3 month blog hiatus didn't happen, i'm going to sum up this summer David Letterman style. ish. 

top ten best moments of our utah summer:

10. the internship. true, i did not participate in the internship myself, but i did see my husband leave every morning excited to go to work and come back with lots of things to talk about. i met his boss and some of his co-workers and i got to witness the magic of Super Top Secret  a few times. and if not for the internship, we never would have been able to spend our summer in utah. and i got a sweet new t-shirt. so. win.

9. arriving at the house we were to live in for the summer at 3 am and setting off the loudest house alarm known to man. the alarm company called, i had to convince them i wasn't breaking and entering. it was an ordeal. luckily the people we were staying with were out of town. but i'm sure they still heard it. i'm pretty sure i cried when it happened. but it's funny now. gilly is still not over it.

8. food. food. food. utah has some good eats. that's really all you need to know. living in a basement apartment with only a partially working mini fridge and a hot plate (if you don't know what a hot plate is, do yourself a favor and google it. it's pathetic comical.) cooking was a more than difficult task. it took (at very least) twice as long to make a meal, and since our mini fridge (emphasis on the mini) could hold about 3 things at a time--we ended up eating out. but come on. costa vida. zupas. j dawgs.

7. the outside stuff. yes, it was hot. but it wasn't humid. and that was a beautiful, wonderful, glorious thing. we went on walks. gilly would lay under a shady tree with her belly on the cool grass. garrett would go to skate parks with friends. it was pretty great. we also frequented the hiking trail dog park. it was lots of fun for all of us. especially gilly. she gave it two dewclaws up. (cheesiest joke i've ever made. but it's actually sort of funny because, fun fact, gilly has four dewclaws. ) 

6. the trips we took. because driving 2,000 miles (3 whole days in the car) to get to utah wasn't enough for us (or for gilly- the car ride induced anxiety ridden wonder) we took additional road trips, too. 
they were:
Newport, California: for our friends' wedding. you can read more about it here
Rexburg, Idaho: for my sister in law's graduation from BYU-Idaho. we also got to go to Bear World. it was a wonderful, wonderful thing.
Yellowstone National Park: we drove from Idaho to Yellowstone with all of garrett's family for a day trip to see Old Faithful and some of Yellowstone. for the record, Old Faithful was about as faithful as Tiger Woods was to that Swede of his. 35 minutes late? come on.
Jackson Hole, Wyoming: we drove from Idaho to Jackson Hole with all of garrett's family for another day trip. actually, we drove there so garrett's grandpa could go to a fancy restaurant that he read about.  ...i don't even. anyways, it's a weird town. and get this, i ran into a friend of mine from high school. HIGH SCHOOL! 2,115 miles away-and we run into each other. Naturally i was wearing no makeup and i looked like a troll. anyways. it was nuts.
Reno, Nevada: my aunt and uncle live in Reno. my uncle is a dermatologist. garrett had a rash that only got worse after 6 months of dealing with it. so we took a trip to Reno. and we went on the boat and we went to the beaches of Lake Tahoe and garrett got his rash checked out. best dermatologist visit ever, right?
Pine Valley, Utah: my parents live in Pine Valley. so when we left Salt Lake we drove south a little bit to see them for a few days. we also went to St. George, Utah and i got to visit the grave of my biological grandma. it was a good day.
Palm Springs, California: we left Pine Valley and drove to Palm Springs to see Garrett's family. garrett also got to go to a plethora of doctor's appointments. like 5 of them. people with health insurance. who do they think they are? anyways, it was crazy hot there, and i pretty much lived in the pool. also, garrett was officially diagnosed with Celiac Disease. so..gluten free it is!
San Diego, California: we took a weekend trip from Palm Springs to San Diego to see more of garrett's family. San Diego is a beautiful place and it was nice to get out of the desert heat for a while. 


...and then we drove back to Georgia. it was a lot of sitting. i might have bed sores.

5. the train ride. it's kind of a long story, but we drove my uncle's truck to Reno from Salt Lake-which left us with no car to get back to Salt Lake. this was all part of the plan though. because we took the train from Reno to Salt Lake. and my life was changed forever. you guys, it was amazing. it was a bucket lister and it was amazing. i seriously would solely travel by train from here on out if i could. it wasn't the Hogwarts Express. but it was still the best traveling experience of my life. so..trains for the win!

4. learning to drive stick. when we were 18, garrett and i were driving somewhere and he pulled over, got out of the car, grabbed my hand and attempted to pull me out of the car saying 'i'm teaching you to drive stick. come on, get out. i'm teaching you to drive stick. you can do it. come on. come on.' 
i didn't get out of the passenger's seat.
and for the most part, i've continued to sit in that passenger's seat. i learned the basics of driving stick (in case of an emergency) but doing it by myself or for any extended period of time was not going to happen. i was terrified. and people always yelled at me or threw crude gestures my way that would usually make me cry or panic. driving stick was not for me. but after 6 months of not having my car running and a month spent in a basement apartment in utah, i snapped. and i convinced myself that i could do it. come hell or high water, i could do it. and i did it. i stalled a few times. okay, maybe i stalled more than a few times. but i did it. i mastered the hills and everything. at one point i got stuck at a red light at the crest of a hill so steep it was worthy of a roller coaster. the SUV behind me crawled up into the backseat of the car and just waited for me to roll backwards into their bumper. but i didn't roll back into their bumper. i did go into shock. i did cry. but i didn't roll backwards. holla!

3. friends. (this one has a double meaning.)
we were able to see a lot of our friends while we were in Utah. living 2,000 miles away from your best friends is rough and seeing them made my heart so happy. it's so good to know that no matter how weird i am, no matter how poor i am, no matter how far i am-i will always have some wonderful friends. sadly, i did not get pictures with all of the friends i saw. because i am lamer than lame. (i'm looking at you, Kelsey.)

the second meaning to this is that garrett and i would go over to our friend Kaycie and Alex's house and have Friends nights. we were all friends. and we would watch several episodes of Friends (you know, the greatest tv show. ever.) together. it was friends and Friends. and i loved it. 

2. temples. in georgia we are about 3 hours from the closest temple. and it's rough. so i was determined to go to the temple frequently while living in Utah for the summer. we were able to go to quite a few of them. they're all so gorgeous and i'm so, so thankful that i was able to go. 

okay. technically this one is in Newport, California. but whatever. it counts.

(not pictured is the Draper Temple. i'm lame and forgot to get a picture before i left.) blake and baby kam. i could write several posts about these two babes. and maybe i will. but right now i will let you know the basics. 
my two best friends from high school (brittany and kaycie) both delivered their first babies over the summer.
brittany's baby, blake, was born a few weeks premature and after a not so ideal delivery, he became very sick. he spent a month in the NICU. and we all spent a month worrying and hoping for the very best. when i've met each of my nieces and nephews for the first time, i loved them immediately. it was instant. it didn't have to grow or form. it was just there. i loved them. and the same thing happened with these two babies this summer. without even meeting blake (as he was in the NICU and i wasn't able to visit for some time) i loved him. i prayed and wept for him. my heart ached for him. my heart ached for his mama, my best friend. and for some time i worried that i would not have the chance to meet him. i feared his time on this earth would be short. and i grieved at the thought. i grieved for my friend. i grieved for that sweet, sick baby. 

when i was finally able to meet him, i struggled to hold back my tears. he was so small, so helpless and so sick. i wanted him to be better, i wanted him to go home, i wanted to hold him and kiss his face. it was hard for me. and brittany was a rock. she was so strong through the whole thing. i admire her strength so much. 

while blake was in the NICU, kaycie went into labor. her labor and delivery wasn't ideal either and i panicked and worried that something scary or sad would happen with her and her baby as well. fortunately, all was well with both kaycie and baby kameron. i was able to see and hold kam when he was only a few days old and again, i loved him immediately. he was so perfect and sweet and he slept so soundly in my arms. i loved it.  

blake's health improved as time went on, and i was able to visit him and brittany more often. i was able to hold blake and kiss him and i swear he smiled at me one time. seeing him get better, seeing prayers being answered was an amazing thing.

i love those sleeping babes and their chubby cheeks and pouty lips. and i love their mamas so much. watching them become mother's was an incredible thing for me to witness and my words could never express how grateful i am that i was able to be in utah this summer to be with them and to meet their babies. 

so that's that. that was our summer in a nutshell. and a lot of pictures. it was hard to leave. it was hard to say goodbye. because it was a really good summer. 
like, a really, really good summer.

peace out, summer.

lyrics: and if i had the choice yeah, i'd always wanna be there. 


  1. I am seriously kicking myself that we didn't get a picture together. What were we thinking?! I'm so glad I got to spend some time with you this summer. You have been such a supportive loving friend. Thank you! xoxo

  2. you're so right when you say friends is the greatest tv show ever.... but more importantly, i am so happy you enjoyed your summer. hope getting back into the groove is easy for you!

  3. I'm pretty sure the reason I didn't get to meet you this summer is because you were never actually IN Utah ;) jk, but seriously, were you here for an internship or for your trips?! :)

  4. Glad you're back to blogging and glad that you had a good summer!

  5. You LOOK frickin UH-MAZING! Seriously! Gorgeous! I'm sad I didn't get to see you in Utah but I'm glad you had a fun stay! Love you!