grumma

My First Elkins Christmas


Last year, Nathan and I shared our first Christmas, but we were a few days short of being married so I slept at my parents, then drove over to our condo to exchange gifts. It was so nice this year to wake up next to him for our first married Christmas.

I could go on and on about everything that we did to celebrate, include all sorts of details and go off on tangents, but then this blog would be too long for Nathan to read 🙂

Instead, here’s the summarized list of a beautiful Christmas:

  • Having a real pine tree in the house smelled festive.
  • Dinner on Christmas Eve with Ryan, Laura and Bears was tasty, relaxing, and fun to open gifts from them and Mom & Dad.
  • I’m really blessed to have such wonderful in-laws (besides giving great gifts, they’re also just great people that I love spending time with).
  • Christmas morning, Nathan and I opened gifts from each other and everything was just what we needed.
  • My favorite part of Christmas was going to church–Nathan spoke in our ward and brought the spirit to the meeting, then I had the chance to accompany my Mom who was a special guest playing an arrangement of Silent Night on the violin. Mom, Dad, Grumma, Pete, Genny, and Cat all came to our ward with us so we shared the meeting with family as well as ward family.
  • After church, we went home to wrap gifts and call Mom and Dad Elkins to wish them Merry Christmas in Texas!
  • Sunday afternoon was the traditional lunch at Grumma’s where she served lil’ smokies on an orange because we all told her it wouldn’t be Christmas without them! The great grandkids had a blast with a white elephant and then the grandkids (which includes me and Nathan) received a special book this year that Grumma made for us. I love it.
  • Christmas evening was with my parents and the entire family where we spent a long time opening presents because of the number of people exchanging gifts we got for each other. Good thing we draw names so we’re not opening even more gifts. Grumma would just love that.
  • At times, the get togethers would get really loud with so many people in one room and so many excited children, but it reminded me of something Nathan told me he’d been thinking about in preparation for his talk: that when Jesus was born, we sing about it being a Silent Night, however, it probably wasn’t silent at all up in heaven. I don’t know about you, but I’d like to think that I at least tried out for the choir of angels who sang at his birth 🙂

Thanksgiving Confession: I Ate Sugar


You knew, didn’t you? You knew that I couldn’t quit sugar during the holidays. But you didn’t say anything. You just waited… knowing.

I ate sugar on Thanksgiving. So kill me. And do you know that it tasted delicious? Deeeeee.lish.us.

It is NOT physically possible to turn down Grumma’s pumpkin pie.

And Maren made pear pie. That’s just fun to say. Try it. Pear pie. Great. Now, EAT IT. Yum!

This year, we celebrated at my parents’ home, even though Mom was dealing with some major jaw/tooth pain and swelling. We had no idea until we showed up at the house, though.

Nathan and I walked in, bearing food, the house smelled like a feast, we waltzed into the kitchen and surprise, Mom’s face is swollen.

And yet, the turkey’s nearly done, the table’s set, and the buffet of goodness is spread in bowls along the kitchen counters. This is where you look around, holding your measly one appetizer and one bowl of mashed potatoes and say, “oh, we could have helped if we’d known.” Thankfully Grumma helped them.

Here are a few pics of the tasty event:

Prosciutto-wrapped crudités as an appetizer. And it’s my fault the olive oil isn’t nicely drizzled, but looks like it leaked out of random stalks of broccoli.

Mern and Dustin eating very small amounts (don’t you think?) at their first of two Thanksgiving dinners.

Check out the purple plates—more appropriately they should be called platters. The larger the more food you can pile on. And so many pretty colors, Margie King would be proud!

Yay family! Me, Nathan, Grumma (hiding), Mom (hiding her swollen jaw), James, Grandma, Dustin and Mern. Dad took the pic and look, his plate’s already been licked clean, he was THAT hungry.

Larrie’s DEEP Thoughts On Phones


I just read an article summarizing some info on a published report from a bunch of scientists regarding their findings on cell-phone radiation risk. (Wow, that sentence was chalk full of prepositional phrases.)

This is the article, for any inquiring minds: Details emerge on possible cell-phone radiation risk.

Basically, they say that there is a link between cell-phone use and brain tumors, but not sufficient study to really prove it. Or something like, “it might kill you, it might not.” Well done, scientists. GROUNDBREAKING report.

After reading it, I started thinking about phones in general. I realize that I have a lot of phone memories. Ah, the good ol’ days.

It all started, as far as I can remember, when I was in preschool. I had a handful of phone numbers memorized: Grandma Campbell, Grandma DeeDee, Aunt Jane and Dad’s work number. I remember one time climbing up on to the kitchen counter so that I could call one of those people for a chat. Apparently, I liked chatting on the phone at a young age.

We moved into a bigger house when I was in kindergarten and one of my favorite new features there were the BUZZERS. There were these tiny buttons by all of the phone jacks in the house and when you pressed it, it buzzed. For however LONG you pressed it. BUZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ. I can’t imagine why my parents had those removed. Why wouldn’t you want buzzers all over the house when you have six children and all of their friends coming and going? I vaguely remember that before we had them removed, we were assigned a number so you could tell somebody that the phone was for them. If you answered and it was one of Pete’s friends, you buzzed 5 times. Then nobody picked up because Pete was in the middle of conquering The Legend of Zelda.

One day, we had a new feature on our phones and the world opened up to more prank call options. We could make three-way calls. What a beautiful thing. We would call up a friend’s house, their older sister would answer and we’d bumble through an intro, “Hi, how are you? I was calling for… oh wait… sorry… the other line is beeping… one second.” Then, we’d call up another friend’s house, wait for them to answer—“Hello?”—and then connect them to the first friend’s house. “Hello?” “Hello?” “Can I help you?” “What? You called me.” “No I didn’t.” “Yes, huh.” “Nuh, uh.” “Yes WAY.” “No WAY.”

We were so funny.

And then they invented caller ID. Game over.

On to college, my freshman year we had to set up our phone in the kitchen so the voicemail had all 6 of our names on it. Each week we would record a new voicemail message, trying to be funnier than the previous one. Apparently though, none of them were memorable because, well, I don’t remember any of them. I do remember our “Kissing Wall” though. It was rather blank.

Maren and I both got our first cell phones for Christmas in 2000. Mine was blue, hers was red and they were the awesome, bulky Nokia 5100 phones. They came with a game, too… I was SO good at snake after an incredibly boring Astronomy class at SLCC. But I used the phone too much. When I’d call my friends, we’d chat for an hour or more and then make plans and then call more friends to add to those plans. One month, I went WAY over. I didn’t have a clue, though, because I didn’t see previous phone bills and never knew how much I was talking.

So I painted the basement and the laundry room to “pay back” my Dad for the phone bill. I think it took me an entire month. The basement family room alone is practically the size of mine and Nathan’s condo. And there were some precarious balancing acts to get the walls above the stairwell leading up to the laundry room.

Okay, I’ll stop there. Well, maybe I’ll add just one more. Eventually, I had this phone that would talk to me. Meaning: it would announce who was calling or texting. “Me-ssage frooom Kas-ey Chi-ild.” My favorite was when it would say either a call or a text from “Nathan.” I really should have used that phone to make those texts or calls even better like, “Me-ssage frooom hot-t-t boy-friend,” and “Call frooom hott-ie mc-hott-ie feee-ahn-say.”

Dear November, Oh How I Love Thee


I am quite certain I’ve never had a better week in my life than I did last week—from winning soccer games, to good things happening at work, to a hot date, to lots of delicious food with family, to not getting enough sleep, to seeing some good friends from high school, to being DONE with loads of laundry. Makes it easy to be thankful, which was rather appropriate for the holiday.

Over on my good friend, Katie’s blog, she made a nice little list of some of her recent thoughts. I like lists. I like to read them. I like to write them. So here you have a list from me filled with random thoughts and things that made me smile this weekend:

  1. I’m counting down the DAYS until you can call me Master Larrie. I will be finished with school for good. I’m very certain I don’t care for a Ph.D. That sounds exhausting to me.
  2. Remember how I REFUSE to use the painfully overused and abused acronym, LOL? So today I typed it in an IM conversation with a coworker. She responded with, “WHAT?!” I would never really, intentionally use it, so obviously, it was a facetious use. I told her, “it’s like a mormon swearing.” And THAT, my internet friends, is how dorky humor is in the IT department.
  3. Took my niece to New Moon this weekend. Just so you know, I’m not on Team Edward or Team Jacob. Since those men/boys don’t exist. But my niece liked Jacob much more than the skinny, moody, pale vampire.
  4. My leg muscles are killing me from a gym workout. If there was a fire in the building at work, I’d probably die because I wouldn’t be able to physically walk down the six flights of stairs to safety. Oh wait, YES I COULD BECAUSE WE HAVE THESE!
  5. I really like brushing my teeth at work. I also really like visits to the dentist and if I could convince my insurance to pay for it, I’d go once a month.
  6. Number six is one of my favorite numbers. When I was little, I really liked 2, 4, and 6, but eventually swapped 6 out for 8 because they’re part of an infinite series based on the power of two. I used to skip stairs so I only stepped on 2, 4, or 8 stairs in the flight. I’m not OCD.
  7. Last night, after dinner at my parents, we went around the circle and shared something new that we had learned in the last year. I love my Grumma’s comment. She was happy that my younger brother, James, taught her how to text.
  8. My little niece Kate doesn’t usually give out lots of hugs like her older siblings do. But last night as I was saying goodbye to the kids, she put her arms up to me so I picked her up, she put her head on my shoulder and squeezed me, then she gave me a wet kiss. The best.
  9. This is Max Hall’s last season. Hooray. Although that means that next year, Kirk and I can’t text our complaints about him. (And yes, I am a cougar fan, but that doesn’t mean I’m a fan of Hall.)
  10. Does anybody know what the definition of crazy cat lady is? Just for debate needs, I could use a good reference.
  11. My sisters-in-law wrote me some letters on Thanksgiving. They like me. How cool is that? I have fabulous in-laws. You’re jealous.
  12. I like bubble baths.
  13. This will be my first winter with 4WD. Nice.
  14. I’d happily trade sleep for the company I had Friday night anytime.
  15. Saturday was excessively busy, but it felt great to start the day off seeing Sabrina, Shannon and their little families. Plus, we won our soccer game against the girl who scores the most in the league. We won by a lot, too. Go my team.
  16. I taught the Relief Society lesson. That means I don’t have to do it again for another four months.
  17. Did you even make it to the end of this list? You deserve a prize then.

Happiness is a Day off Work


I had an amazing weekend.

Amazing.

I had an amazing day today.

Again, amazing.

I don’t want to go to work tomorrow and ruin my high.

Aren’t you wondering why I’m on such a high? Many reasons:

  • Men*
  • Girlfriends
  • Siblings
  • Nieces/nephews
  • Food
  • Sleep (kind of)
  • Grandma’s Garden
  • Grumma’s laugh
  • Funny RomComs**
  • Carnival games
  • Not working
  • Cockroaches
  • Music
  • Hot tubbing
  • Haircuts
  • and Food. Mmm, food.

So I’m in pretty awesome spirits and I didn’t even play soccer this weekend (or for 5 more weekends). And now, I’m watching the Bachelorette. Gotta love reality TV with oodles of handsome men.


*Intentionally plural. I do like men in general.

**A.k.a. Romantic Comedies, in particular The Proposal this weekend. Good movie and good company.