Wednesday, February 22, 2012

have you met jessica?

Oh how I love 4 day weekends. Why, I'm not sure. Without being enrolled in school this semester or anything, it doesn't really make a difference to me either way. Every day is like a 4 day weekend. But this particular 4 day weekend was extra special because my dear friend Jessica came to visit from Ut. We met in 7th grade and have been inseparable ever since. Well, minus all the growing up that involves being separate. I've been here in California recovering from heart surgery, she's been in stinky Utah going through a break to say we needed this is an understatement. We had a blast, and well...took way too many pictures!

Another post soon to come!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

the vow

Matt and I have been celebrating Valentines Day all week by eating delicious heart shaped things, watching every kind of chick flick lifetime has to offer, along with a few favorites from our own collection (i.e. The Notebook and Ghost,) a small Valentine party with some friends, lots of lovin...and yes...this is the longest run-on sentence known to man.
Then yesterday we enjoyed the day together and saw The Vow before going out to dinner.
Dinner was fabulous. The movie was aight. Have you seen it? I'll just put this out there, let me know if you agree...

Rachel McAdams: Perfection.

Channing Tatum: Gorg.


Not so much. They have absolutely no chemistry. None.
I'm sorry but after her and Ryan Gosling in The Notebook? Forget about it. I was disappointed. But maybe I need to give it a second chance before I make my final decision.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

happy valentines day

If getting old means crying at sappy love movies, choking up over cheesy Valentine cards, and over-all emotional bawl-bagness...

God help me.

p.s. Aren't my flowers and Valentine just lovely? I don't care how cliche red roses on Valentines Day might seem. They're perfect for me and I love them.

Monday, February 13, 2012

over the river and through the woods to grandmothers house we go...

After writing this point I realized I got distracted going down memory lane and didn't write about any of the adventures we had during this most recent trip to see my grandparents.

It was definitely way too short but we packed it full of wonderful memories. I love my grandparents so much. We went down Wednesday early afternoon and spent the rest of the day visiting with Medzmire and Medzhire and taking pictures and videos of everything. Everything about their house and yard makes me so nostalgic. Then we had a delicious Armenian meal called Kufta and enjoyed the night with some stories from the Bible and Book of Mormon (my Medzhire has a theory that they speak Armenian in heaven...and he's ready to prove it to you) and lots and lots of ice Matts dismay. Haha, Medzhire kept insisting he needed more and more: "When I was his age, I ate twice that!" Medsmire was horrified by her husband and kept proclaiming, "Moses! He doesn't want that much!" to which Medzhire would reply, "Meada!" And that would end the discussion. Watching them bicker is so cute and at the end of the day they're still so in love with each other. But I guess Matt proved himself with the ice cream because soon after that Medzhire said: "Matt. Come to my shop tomorrow and I will give you 2 rugs."

The next morning we woke up at 5:00AM to do a session at the New Port Beach Temple with Medsmire. It's the smallest temple I've been to (so far) but it was beautiful! It was, as always, an amazing experience and I'm glad Matt and I got to be there with Medsmire. Afterward we went to Medzhire's last shop (he's finally retiring and sold all his others) and he gave us 2 of the most beautiful rugs! It was such a treat for so many reasons. Their not just rugs but a part of my heritage. My grandparents make me proud to be Armenian, even if it is 1/4, and I'm excited for my children to get to know them and their family history. After that we visited for a while and then went back to their house. Matt helped with some technical problems they were having with their computer, we ate some a ton of lunch, visited some more and then we had to head home. I already miss them so much and can't wait for our next trip... Which will hopefully be sooner rather than later.

memory lane

This last week Matt and I had the opportunity to go down and visit my grandparents on my mothers side. Now, when I say we had the opportunity what I mean is we decided that if we didn't just do it we'd never find a good time to see them. One of the downsides of living in California. Living a measly 40 miles or so from someone isn't measly at all...depending on traffic it can be the longest, most vomit-inducing day of your life. And my grandparents live farther than 40 miles away. But we love them and I'd been missing them. Plus I can't deny the fact they're getting old and every moment with them is not only a hoot and a laugh but precious.

My grandpa, or Medzhire, is Armenian and grew up in Syria after the Armenian genocide. He is basically the most hard core and knowledgable grandpa you'll ever meet. He's retired now but use to own several antique oriental rug shops. I remember being small and my Medzmire (grandma) taking us all to the beach. It was tradition that we'd always stop at Medzhire's shop and he'd stock us full of goodies and treats and then off we'd go. His shop was amazing! It was completely covered with the most beautiful rugs. I think he loved having all his grandchildren there because he'd let us climb and play all over them. (And these rugs are not cheap!) My older brothers and sisters were tall enough to climb onto of the rugs that were rolled and standing. Me on the other hand... They'd tease and taunt me and laugh while I scrambled and scratched at the rugs trying to get on top where they were. Eventually I gave up and resorted to climbing the piles of rugs laying flat on the ground. Sometimes the piles were so high it felt like I was flying on a magic carpet. So...guess who became Jasmine every time she went to Medzhires? Yup.

One time, I was visiting my grandparents during the summer and I begged and begged Medzhire to let me go to work with him. He'd smile at me and say:

Medzhire: "You'll get bored!"
Me: "No I won't! I promise I won't! Pleeeeeaaaaase?"
Medzhire: "I love you too much. You'll have more fun here with Medsmire."

For the longest time he held his ground and said he loved me too much to let me sit around, bored at his shop all day. But finally he caved! The next day I woke up while it was still dark outside and got ready as fast as I could. I walked into the kitchen and saw him sitting at his end of the table, his books stacked all around and his pumpkin seeds right there. He smiled at me as I told him I was ready and I promised again, I wouldn't be bored. I remember sitting nervously in the passenger seat of his car. Probably because I had wanted to go for so long and suddenly here was my opportunity. I did not want to screw it up and make Medzhire regret bringing me. I was going to show him how big I was.

We stopped at Albertsons on the way and he told me to get some of my favorite treats. After much debate I went with a 5 piece pack of the wrigley doublemint gum. I thought that was a big kid treat. Then when we were in line to check out my Medzhire saw the gum and was surprised. "That's all you want? Go get some more!" I told him firmly no thanks, the gum was enough. I think he knew better because he suddenly remembered a few more items he needed and proceeded to get cookies, crackers and a few other things. By this point I was so excited. I got to go to work with Medzhire!

After 5 minutes of being at his shop...I was bored. I'd already chewed all 5 pieces of my gum. Spitting each piece out when it lost it's flavor and quickly replacing it with another. I remember Medzhire watching me out of the corner of his eye as he sat repairing a rug for one of his clients. I was sitting on top of the tall rugs that were rolled and stacked on their sides. I'd taken all of the pillows and made a fort and without anybody there to try and knock it down or commandeer it my game ended. I laid back and must have sighed because Medzhire stood up and asked if I was bored and wanted something to do, a game to play. I quickly lied, "I'm not bored!" And went back to my fort, restacking the pillows. I think we'd been there only an hour (which felt like a life time.) I'd started a new game and was talking to myself, someone had to talk for my imaginary friends, when Medzhire asked again if I was bored. Glad to tell him honestly that I wasn't bored he laughed and said:

Medzhire: "I don't believe you."
Me: "No, I swear I'm not bored. If I start to get bored I just talk to myself." Knowing this solution works for me and kept me un-bored, I thought it was a very mature thing to do. My Medzhire found it quite hilarious and bust up laughing even harder.
Medzhire: "If your talking to yourself you must be crazy. Only crazy people talk to themselves."

I thought about what he said and decided I wouldn't mention talking to myself again. I didn't want him to think I was crazy. Later, after we'd gone home for the day everyone was asking how the day went at Medzhire's shop. I was beaming with pride after having stayed the whole day and not having complained once that I was bored...even though it was far from the truth. At this point Medzhire decided to tell everyone about me talking to myself. Everyone laughed and giggled and thought it was the cutest thing. I didn't find it so funny and burst into tears. I remember Medzhire quickly scooping me up and hugging me tight, kissing my cheek with his prickly mustache and beard. He told me he loved me and that I could talk to myself whenever I wanted.

I have so many wonderful memories of Medsmire and Medzhire, their house, the smell of oriental rugs, their big yard and orchard of delicious fruit trees. It was so wonderful to get to go back and revisit all my many memories. It made it even more special having Matt there with me. It was such a sweet reminder that family really is all.

Friday, February 10, 2012

he went to jared's

Is it possible that 2 years have passed and I still haven't shared my engagement story? What's up with that? Today, only in 2010, Matt proposed. And it was the most exciting and happy day I'd had in my life...up until that point, anyway.

CAUTION/WARNING: If your cup o' tea isn't cheesy-mooshy-love-goo, then just go ahead and skip this post. It's for my own personal memories sake.

Jumping back... Matt had been asking me to marry him for months and even though we did everything together and spent every second together, I really wanted to make sure that he was the right one for me. So in January Matt went to California to give me some time to figure things out. But I ended up needing a lot less time than I thought I would. The day after he left I was driving home from work and it really hit me how much I missed him. How he was the highlight of my day. The first person I wanted to see and talk to in the morning, and every other time of day. I thought about how much we'd grown together in the last year and how far we'd come together and suddenly for the first time I got an answer to my prayer. I wanted to marry him!

I called him right away and just remember bawling and telling him how much I loved him and how I was ready to give up everything for him. He cried too and we knew we had to see each other. That night I flew out to California and we began the steps of getting engaged. We prayed together about whether we were ready and it was right. My second answer came immediately. This was it! We were getting married! The ring shopping began the next day.

A few weeks of ring shopping and I felt so discouraged. I didn't like anything I was finding. None of it felt like me. I told Matt to tie a twig to my finger and that was all I needed, but he ensured me we'd find it, we just had to look more. Well my man is wise, soon after we found the ring, my ring. When I put it on I looked at it for a while and said,

Me: "I think I like it..."
Matt: *Looking at me intently* "You think?"
Me: "Yeah. I think I like it...I think I really like it...I love it!"

Waiting the next couple weeks for them to set the diamond and size the ring was torture. I didn't know when it would be finished, so I didn't know when he'd propose. Every once in a while he'd say things like, "I can't wait anymore! I just want to do it!" And then he'd think for a second and say, "No...I have to wait." Little did I know he had something amazing planned and it was worth the wait.

So back to today, but in 2010, it was my day off and Matt called around 9 and said "Get ready! I'm picking you up at 10 and we're going on an adventure!" He said to dress warm and that was the only hint he'd given me. At first I didn't suspect anything. Who proposes at 10AM on a Wednesday? It wasn't until we got to Aspen Grove, up Provo Canyon, and the only other car up there was Zack's (Matt's brother) that I became suspicious. I teasingly said, "Oh, it's Zack's car! What's he doing here? Where's he hiding?" Matt laughed and said, "No, no. That's not Zack's car."

Because it was February the ground and trees were covered with fresh white snow. There was a perfectly clear, blue sky and it just made the snow sparkle. It was breath taking and a shame that the only pictures we have are from Zack's iPhone (which is better than nothing, so thank you Zack!) The second thing I noticed, after the gorgeous scenery, was a trail of rose petals leading into some trees. Matt pointed at them and said, "Oh huh, look at that? What's that?" I couldn't help but laugh and reply, "Oh weird..." Even though, by this point, I knew exactly what was going on.
As we followed the trail of roses we just talked and laughed. I remember asking if Zack was going to pop out and scare us. But Matt had something much more romantic in mind. As we entered the small cluster of trees I noticed a present up ahead. When we got closer Matt picked it up and told me to open it.

Before this moment, I always thought the last thing I'd do is cry when Matt proposed. I wasn't one of those girls that fanned her face as her eyes shimmered with tears. It just wasn't me...

Until Matt handed me the present (which was wrapped in a deep maroon fabric) and my heart started racing. It was a beautiful glass plaque with the beginning of a love note etched on it that Matt wrote himself.

Yes, I cried...and that wasn't even the proposal part yet! After we hugged and kissed, I couldn't imagine anything more sweet after something like that, Matt put the plaque back down and said, "Let's keep going..."
I honestly don't remember what we talked about after that. All I could focus on was watching him, looking at him and how handsome he was. And he loved me! He wanted to marry me and wanted me to be his wife. And I wanted him to be my husband.

Soon we came to another present that continued the love letter, and then another and another.

Each one made my heart race more and more but we kept following this beautiful snowy trail sprinkled with roses. Finally we came out of the trees and into a clearing where there was a huge circle of rose petals on the ground and in the middle was the last present.

It was perfect. The moment was perfect.
I couldn't have planned a better "adventure" (as Matt put it) myself. When I unwrapped the last present, Matt got down on one knee, pulled out the most gorgeous ring I'd ever seen, and asked me to marry him. We had a special moment, I never wanted it to end...but then I remembered Zack's car. He was somewhere hiding during all of this!

Now Matt and Zack have a brothers-bird-call that they do. It's like a signal for the other. So Matt gave Zack the signal and he and his girlfriend-then/wife-now came running out of the trees where they'd been hiding the whole time. Zack shouted, "Victory!!" And Matt shouted back, "She said yes!!!"

And then we all went to PF Changs to celebrate! The next day Jim and Karen flew out and we continued the celebration all week. It was seriously better than I ever imagined it would be. And the best part was that I knew I'd get to be with my best friend for the rest of eternity.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

waves be crashin

Well, February is here and Valentines Day is getting closer and closer. Last year I declared my everlasting love for the Valentine season, so I'll just ditto that post, mention the awesomeness of Ghost and Patrick Swayze (your husband likes that movie and When Harry Met Sally, You've Got Mail and Sleepless in Seatle too? It's totally normal. I guess he is as mooshy as me!) and move on to an update.

My recovering is going well, but alas it is still going. I was surprised that it's almost been a month and I find my left shoulder and chest still extremely sore. For some reason I thought by now all the healing would be complete and, minus the limited range of motion instructions given to me by my doctors, I'd be feeling fine and back to my normal self. After whining about this to my husband he explained that it probably takes a while for the body to form scar tissue around the ICD and that's why it's still sore. I guess it comes down to playing the waiting game and trying to stay as busy as I can, without being able to raise my left any higher than my shoulder or lift more than 2 pounds, HA! Wish me luck...I feel insanity knocking at my door.

Ever since I was called to a position in the Activity Days Matt and I have been subbing for the nursery or primary almost every single week. I don't think I've been to relief society since before my surgery and quite frankly, I miss it! And no, I don't think that's a mean thing to say because let's be honest....every parent that came to drop off or pick up their child looked at Matt and I, laughed, and said, "I can't believe they put you in here...your never going to want to have kids now!" It's fun to get to play with the little kids and all, it's just a handful and can be a bit overwhelming. It's so much easier to sit at home and talk about how you'd raise kids than actually babysit them and have to test those theories out. Is it just us or is it the most awkward thing trying to discipline or take care of a screaming child you're not related to? Especially when you don't know that child, or their parents, that child is old enough to completely understand you and talk back, but instead continues to scream and glare at you right in the eyes as if trying to shoot laser beams at you. At the end of the 3rd hour this last Sunday Matt grabbed my arm and said, "I think we can go! Let's get out of here!" And as soon as we got the go-ahead, I was right behind him.

Matt has been doing well, but I think it's safe to say he's caught my craziness. It was bound to happen seeing as I am basically a 1-armed cripple (only for another 2-1/2 weeks!!) and he is sweet enough to worry about me overexerting myself. So on top of conquering all my "chores" and "major lifting" that includes vacuuming, laundry, bathroom cleaning (And I mean the works. This man pulled out the bleach and went to town on the master bath!) Matt's been going through some business changes that can be/are stressful. He's staying optimistic though and looking at these changes as a way to improve his company as well as his quality of life. It's a blessing and a curse to have a husband that owns his own business. I love that he has this passion and drive, that he's in charge and works the hours he wants, that he loves what he does and gets excited about his work. But it's definitely not for everyone. There is a lot of stress and trials that come with the territory and I'm glad that Matt and I make such a good team and are able to work through those times together. He also just got a call, as I was writing this, from the 1st counselor in the bishopric about a calling so I guess we'll get to see what kind of blessing the Lord has in mind for him.

As for Sawyer, that puppy is just a rock star at what he does: play, eat, and sleep. He continues to
baffle me every day. I don't know another dog that gets grossed out by his own poop and pee. Especially coming from a dog that use to not just play with his own poop but eat it! Taking him potty is becoming more and more difficult because the pup doesn't want to step on ground that's been marked before and I'm sorry but our back patio is only so big (or so small I should say.) Finally Matt has to pick him up and place him on the wood chips or grass. Sawyers gets annoyed and by touching the ground as little as possible, by balancing on as few paws as possible, starts his business. Then when he finishes he jumps, no...leaps from his spot onto the pavement where he's safe from the germs. On the bright side at least I know he's not one of those dogs that's rolling around in other animals feces and other sorts of grossness.

All in all life is good! I've noticed that things happen in waves. There are times of complete peace and happiness where all is right and perfect. These times are so wonderful and blissful but they eventually end and trials come so we can grow, hopefully becoming stronger and wiser. But hope is never lost. It won't be long before this wave crashes and we'll have that peace and still before the next wave comes.

So might as well enjoy the ride...
and these photos.