Friday, May 28, 2010


Every May my audiology group typically does a humanitarian trip. In past we have gone to Mexico, Dominican Republic and Costa Rica. This year, the trip ended up falling through due to all the turmoil in Mexico-- so we opted to do audiology-volunteer work at a school in Moab for a couple days. Truthfully, the volunteer work only took us a matter of hours. So the rest of the time we played!
The first day we all hiked to the famous Arch (my first time seeing it actually!).

Some of the students in a rock window, the famous arch on Utah's license plates and more of the group as we worked our way up.

The next day we chose whether to go regular hiking or canyoneering. I am so happy I decided to go canyoneering with Liz and all the boys. It was ridiculously fun! In case any of you don't know what canyoneering is (as I didn't)- let me tell you... it is a riot! Basically, canyoneering is getting through a canyon by walking, scrambling, etc. and using rappel gear to descend once you get to the top. Beau and Chris were our "secret-taking-the-backroad-trail" guides, and they fulfilled their promise to get us home in one piece. With the help of the men as an occasional step stool for the girls (hey- I'm only 5'3!), we all hiked/crawled/boosted/jumped/lifted our way up to the highest point in Arches National Park-- Elephant Butte.

Liz and I were pretty proud of ourselves. We were the only girls to brave the 4 hr hike!

The canyoneering group (minus me, the picture-taker, of course).

The view from the top of the world (or at least the top of Arches National Park). Us signing the register to proclaim we made it to the TOP!

Me rappelling down-- woo! I'm the tiny pink dot so look closely. Wow, what an amazing rush!

On the second rappel, we decided to flip upside down half way. Some of us (Liz) had some great shots!

Others struggled a little to get all the way upside down, not naming any names (Beau and Dr. Larsen). It was quite the hilarious scene to observe.

I highly recommend canyoneering to anyone that gets the chance. It was a blast and hope Mike and I can do it together soon!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Sometimes it's the little things...

...that make a home yours.

The permanent mark on our linoleum floor where Mike and I (still under debate who is personally responsible) accidentally leaned on the stove knob while putting away groceries, caught our groceries on fire, realized I have not been trained how to appropriately react to a fire and Mike running in and knocking the flames onto the ground. Resulting in above.

The hole under our porch where one, two, possibly three snakes resided. You never know when a snake is going to completely ruin your ice cream cone on the porch.

The pink (debatably mauve by some people's account) carpet. I cried the first time I saw you (not the happy kind). Yet it's amazing how your horrid color seemed to fade and be less important to me as the years went by. I think I actually accepted you as if you were a nice, pleasant beige. Now that's growth on my part.

The cheesy glow-in-the-dark stars on the ceiling of our bedroom. We made fun of them but somehow never had the time in two years to take them down. So they will happily pass to the next resident and they will think that those tacky stars were my fashion faux pas.

The "flame" key. Also another thing to pass to the next lucky resident who will think that we thought the key that looked like fire was cool. No, definitely was not us.

The shelf that Mike built me to store all the cleaning and laundry supplies due to the paucity of storage space. And the amazing labels he made to organize cleaning supplies vs. food storage vs. laundry materials (yes, I'm very much in love with him).

The extra security measures, the motion sensor alarm and second door lock that Mike bought and installed for me to make me feel safe while we lived those three long months apart. Ironic that I felt I needed these on our little lane in Logan after we left our keys in the door for an entire night without being robbed, killed, etc.

Even if it was the little imperfections that made it perfect. It was ours.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Just Call Him Master Mansfield

Bring on the accounting jokes, jests and jabs... cause he's an accountant baby!
(And soon to be a CPA!)

I am incredibly proud of my fantastically intelligent and hard-working husband! At his young age, he's accomplished so much. On May 6th, he graduated from Utah State with his masters in accounting. Now he's anxiously awaiting starting with Deloitte next week (4-6 months earlier than previously expected!). You can almost taste his relief of putting school behind him. Although he's not a huge fan-- he graduated with his MAcc, at age 25 with an outstanding (hope he doesn't mind me sharing) 3.93 GPA. I know, he amazes me as well. Again, it's hard to describe how proud I am of him as well as grateful for his dedication to provide for us. I know very few people who work as hard as him. I'm attributing that to some seriously impressive parenting and role models throughout his life.

Graduation was a whirlwind of a weekend with Mike's family coming out to stay from Vernal. On Thursday, Mike's sister Megan and her husband Mike (yep, you read that correctly. There are two Megan's and two Mike's in the family. We just like to keep it interesting.) came to stay with us at the new house. It was so fun being able to host someone finally. It's been our hope for a long time now that we would have a home where family would have room to come and stay with us. Thankfully, we now have at least one room with a bed (nothing else really in it) for just such visitors. Anyway, Megan, Mike and Chloe all came and stayed Thursday. On Friday morning, we all drove to Logan to meet Mike's parents, sister and niece. It was a long graduation ceremony but so worth it to see Mike get hooded. Below are his pre-hooding picture (waiting in line) and post-hooding picture (notice the presence of a smile here!).

Afterwards, Mike's sister and brother-in-law threw this wonderful BBQ for Mike as a gift. We went and had great food, our fill of laughs (my body actually hurt) and played some competitive games of HORSE. It really was an awesome day. Plus, on top of that, Mike's sister, brother in law, niece and parents all came back and stayed at the house. It was a great weekend and a monumental step in Mike's professional career. Thank you to all the family and friends who supported Mike not only on this day, but every day he worked towards his goals!

What's next, you ask? CPA exam here we come...