Star Wars Episode 7!

Greg loves Star Wars! He is probably a better candidate to write this post, but I'm the one who loves documenting - so here I go! 

On our honeymoon (Nov 2014) the first teaser for the new Star Wars came out. At this point, I knew that Greg really loved Star Wars. I had seen the lego collections in his room and he made sure we watched the entire series before we got married. But when the teaser came out, I saw a whole new side of him. We watched the teaser clip several, several times. I didn't mind, but I knew that I probably needed to get on board with Star Wars and learn to love it as much as him. I mean, I know that I'll never match his level of enjoyment- just check out this video I took of him when he watched the official trailer of Episode 7 for the first time. 

After this, we got serious. We bought tons of tickets that night, and began our marathon the next day. We watched every free moment we had and we even enjoyed a few meals as a "picnic on a blanket" in front of the T.V. We cut it real close. We finished episode 6 on Thursday night with only an hour to spare until we needed to leave to the movie theatre to catch the premiere of episode 7. 

Here is a little video of us on our way to the theater for the premiere!

We loved it! Greg was especially giddy and I had to keep reminding him to breathe while we were watching. It was really fun. So this was all on Thursday night. The two of us just went alone to an 8:30 PM showing. 

But then we also bought 13 tickets for Saturday morning so that both of our entire families could enjoy it together. We all met up at the Jordan Commons megaplex where we had reserved the entire row for the fam. It was pretty fun to all be together. My little sister hadn't seen any of the other movies, so Greg gave her a quick recap on the phone while she was driving to the theater. Ha! 

Here we have Michelle, John, and Logan. Michelle is Greg's aunt. They came all the way from Tooele!

Here's Greg with his dad, Megan (his sister), and mom. Sadly Megan's husband had to work so he couldn't come. 

Woolston clan!

Snyder clan! 


Snowy Drives

Last weekend, we traveled down to Lehi on a Sunday morning. We wanted to change it up a little bit so instead of going on the freeway, we went down Redwood Road and then up past Camp David and the new security data center (I now know what that big building is thanks to Edward Snowden!). It was crazy foggy as we got into the mountains. As in, we could barely see 100 yards ahead of us. We went to Greg's uncle's church in Lehi because he was giving a talk. And then our extended family all gathered at his house for a luncheon because he is going to be working in China for the next year. They decided to have a Mexican themed meal- and it was delicious! I made this tres leches cake, from Smitten Kitchen and I must say, it was really really good. She serves hers with maraschino cherries, but I added strawberry slices instead and it really was a crowd pleaser. Sadly, I only took one picture right before our last bite. So I guess that's just an excuse to make it again so I can take a better photo! 

After the family dinner, we went on a little drive near Fairfield, Utah. This area might be one of Greg's very favorites in the world. His favorite place to dirtbike is a little more south of here at a place called 5-mile pass. It is just open dirt and hills and trails for as long as you can see- a dirtbiker's dream! He goes there all the time but I had never been out there, so it was good to see where he loves to ride. 

I made Greg stop the car so I could take some of these pictures on the snowy road. It was just so beautiful with the lake, the mountains, the foggy sky. It looked like someone had taking a paintbrush mixed with white and blue and just covered the canvas in long, wide strokes. I love the snow. I love how magical it makes everything feel. It's like putting a big, beautiful white formal tablecloth on the whole valley. 

I'm also loving the truck. Greg has always loved the truck, of course. But the more we spend time outside and get to go to places that we could only visit with a truck or AWD, it makes me more and more grateful for this car he loves. 

New Years Cabin Trip

One perk of marrying Greg has been becoming friends with his friends. He has a group of high school friends that get together every Thursday night for dinner and games. They've kindly welcomed me into their fold, even though I didn't go to Olympus High. :)

Over New Years, we all went to Ashley's cabin at Bitner Ranch near Park City. They don't plow the roads up there, so we had to rent cross country skis and ski in. And goodness, what a workout! I have had only been cross country skiing once before, and I forget how difficult it is- especially going downhill! We fell quite a bit, but it was worth the fabulous views (even when we were buried in snow)!

We had a lovely time playing games and chatting. In the morning, Michael and Sarah made the most amazing breakfast. Bacon, hashbrowns, homemade biscuits, and a lovely vegetable egg scramble packed with vegetables and avocados. I'm a big fan of a big breakfast and this one was top notch!

Good times all around! So glad we live in such a beautiful place that we can really experience all of the four seasons.


The Ultimate Snow Storm

About a month ago, we had our first major snow storm in Salt Lake. I knew snow was in the forecast, but not how much. I woke up at about 5:30 am on the Monday morning and I was so excited about the snow! I woke up Greg and then pulled out my snow boots and ran outside with my camera. 

There's something special about the first big snow storm. It's like I've forgotten all year how magical it is when there is snow everywhere. The street is so quiet and everything is still. I was inside by the window when the first snow plow came through and everything looked so covered like a blanket of white had just toppled over. I think my favorite thing is the trees, all decorated with snow. 

We didn't worry too much about traffic and left our house the same time we normally did to get to work. But then we were both stuck for an hour and a half trying to get in. It didn't even occur to me that I could have stayed and worked from home instead. 

Dinner that night was a creamy chicken rice soup near the fireplace. 


Holiday Season 2015


I'm back at work today, but still wishing the holidays were in full force. We had such a lovely holiday season this year. We shopped and designed our holiday stockings together. They took me forever to make, but I really loved them in the end! It was so fun having a little more space to decorate this year, and having a fireplace has made everything especially charming.

My friend, Martha, and I attended the holiday display workshop at Anthropologie back in October and we made the fun star tree topper that we have. It's made for thin pieces of tin that we cut and corrugated. And as always, I put up the sweet little olive wood nativity that I got in Jerusalem 7 years ago. I love that the stable is a hollowed-out olive tree.

One of the photos is of our dining room that has an extra table and chairs around it. We borrowed those from my parents for a fun holiday dinner we had with Greg's friends.  Everyone contributed and it was such a delicious spread: an Italian salad, cheese and crackers, homemade rolls, mashed herb potatoes, grilled pork tenderloin (Greg gets major props for grilling with his head lamp in the bitter cold!), roasted carrots with feta and parsley, and peppermint ice cream sundaes for dessert. We had a fun little white elephant gift exchange too.

The day after the party we hosted, we had back to back parties the rest of the weekend. The next up was Greg's holiday party for Skullcandy up in Park City. It was a really lovely event. They had a live jazz band, a photo booth, and a bunch of food truck vendors. I even got a fancy drink with fresh ginger, mint, and lime. It's always fun to be up in Park City on Main Street in the evening, it's so fancy up there!

The next day we had the Woolston family party. I didn't grab any photos but we had a great time at Greg's aunt and uncle's house.

We had to leave the Woolston party early to get home and change for my work party. We dressed up and went to Sundance. It was so beautiful up there. Greg is always a champ to drive up the canyon in less than ideal conditions. The food was so good. Seriously, Sundance hits it out of the park. The appetizers were amazing and both Greg and I have been dreaming about the braised short rib with the horseradish cream sauce. I've spent quite a bit of time trying to find a recipe that is similar, but with no luck. (Feel free to send over if you have a recommendation!)

A few other fun things:
- We went to our neighbor's house and he played the organ that literally takes up their entire first floor. So cool!

- Two of my sisters came home for the holidays so we met up at City Creek to do some holiday shopping.

- On Christmas Eve, we had the Woolstons over for breakfast and games. Then Greg and I opened up our gifts to each other. Once again, Greg rocked the wrapping. Then we went over to Greg's grandpa a bit later for a big dinner with the Heaton extended family. Then we had some Woolston family time with matching PJ's and opening gifts.

- Late Christmas Eve, Greg and I drove through the craziest snow storm to get to Alpine. The next morning we opened gifts, made breakfast, shoveled the driveway, had a great meal with my extended family, played games, and tried out our new selfie stick!

All in all, a fabulous holiday! It's so fun to have two families and two companies to celebrate with. Merry Christmas!