29 August 2010


So this summer hasn't quite been what I expected. Per my "fool-proof plan," I was supposed to graduate at the end of April, have my license in hand by the end of May, and work full-time all summer, raking in LOADS of kiz-ash (cash), pay off Phil's tuition, rent, and the works, and be on our way to financial independence and freedom from school-loans-debt.
Sigh. It was quite the dream.
Started out strong. Worked part-time until the 4th of July, when, as most of you know, I got fired for not being "perky and bubbly enough." I know. But what's done is done. But the plan was definitely frustrated.
Spent the second half of the summer job-hunting. Not very productive. Did some temping, but nothing sustainable.
Started feeling kinda depressed and useless. Then depressed and useless. Then REALLY depressed and useless. I began to realize that I desperately needed something to take up my time, help me feel useful and productive, but still available to drop off resumes and answer my phone as often as possible. Crafts? Possible, but can be expensive, and not too long-lasting in the "fulfillment" category. Temple? Great idea, great experiences, but not available to answer my phone, which is CRITICAL. Then, during a very enlightening conversation with my cousin Jillian, it hits me.
Hold it right there. Anyone who knows the Packards knows we're HUGE, and pretty much every line has been traced back to at least the 1500s. And I'm an amateur. Like REALLY amateur. So to pick up where other experts left off in the 1500s is pretty discouraging. Ugh...what to do, what to do...
Light bulb.
Oh yeah, I married into another family, and I'm just as responsible for their work as the family I was born into! Done.
So I went to Mom-in-law's house, rummaged through the scarce records she had, and started in-putting names into the computer. Googled Phil's long-lost aunt's name, found someone, ALSO found her on Facebook, and sent her a message. Not Phil's aunt, but still a distant relative. She sent back the name and email address of an even MORE distant relative, who sent a HUGE email list of names. Like 10 generations back, we're talking, and all I had before that was the 5th generation. Needless to say, I was excited. I definitely got hooked to research. Found some more information on some people, and printed out my first family ordinance sheets with 6 names. First in the Leue family too! Phil's great-grandpa and great-grandma, great-grandpa's two brothers, and Phil's great-great grandma and great-great-great grandma.
I took them to the temple, had some youth to the baptisms and confirmations, and Phil and I did the initiatories, and then some other family members got to help us with the endowments while we were all there for Jillian's first time through. Needless to say, it was an amazing and special day in the temple for our family.
Already, the next day, I've got 15 more names to print!
Dental hygiene work is picking up, and volleyball season is just starting as well! I can't wait to resume the "plan" and stick to it a little more closely, but as I'm typing this I'm starting to wonder if one of the reasons Heavenly Father needed me to not be working this summer was so I could realize this need to find our ancestors who have been waiting for their work to be done, and to be the one to get the family started on doing it! It hasn't made our finances any easier to deal with, but I'm sure looking back we'll be grateful for the challenge we were given, and the eternal blessings that we and many others will gain from it!

17 August 2010


So...We're moving. Don't freak out, we're not crossing the plains or any oceans. We're moving about three blocks away from our little one bedroom apartment to a three bedroom duplex, still in our ward boundaries (cuz I have attachment issues). I am so excited to redecorate, get creative, and STRETCH a little!! This little place was perfect when we were first married, but after a year of learning, acquiring, and growing, it's definitely time for a change.

It's been a real learning experience, this move. I really wanted to move in April, and we had a place to go and everything, and all we had to do was sell our contract. It would be a jump financially, but I was about to start working as a Dental Hygienist, and things were looking good. We posted, and advertised, and begged all our friends, and nothing ever happened. I cried and cried out of disappointment and frustration, and we prayed and prayed every day that someone would buy our contract so we could move. Nothing. For weeks we felt so much anxiety and frustration, and we finally kinda realized we might not find someone to take our contract. So we started changing our prayers that Heavenly Father would help us know what He wants us to do so we can best serve our ward and those around us. Then we waited, but kept our ears open. We decided to wait out our contract until August (now) and move at the end of the summer. Tough decision, considering I already had a bunch of packing done (true story). But turns out, I lost my job, which pretty much would have been devastating financially, and we ended up finding an even BETTER deal in our ward! We love our neighbors-to-be, and can't wait to haul in groceries without having to climb up three flights of stairs, and park in our own driveway, and play in the yard, and HAVE a yard, and take the next step in preparing for our future family. Phil's excited for his "man-cave" and I'm just excited to have a place to put everything! I can't wait to put up pictures of my projects!

Oh, and if anyone knows someone who's trying to get rid of a queen mattress/box spring and/or washer/dryer, we still need them!

Oh, and if you're bored on Thursday morning around 9:30, please come help!

08 August 2010


So lately I've been doing my girly stuff.
First girly activity: Phil went on a campout with the scouts
so I got a weekend to do more job hunting and have a dinner/reunion with my dental hygiene class!! I'm so mad - we took pictures, but I don't see them on my camera so I don't know what happened to them! But anyways, it was SO good to see everybody again and catch up on each others' lives! It's still weird not seeing them all the time. It was a good refresher getting some of Summer's stories, talking about babies, trips, and of course work.
I can't wait for the baby/bridal shower in September!

Then my mom and sister and brother surprised us with a last-minute trip to Utah, and we had tons of fun with them too! Lunch at Red Robin=always good!
(that's right, Addison's looking at me)
Aside from the car breaking down on their way home, it was a perfect little vacation, and SO much fun to spend time with Addison, especially in the pool!
Boy does that baby love to swim!

My next girly "activity" was actually really difficult.
Something I haven't done since high school.
I like it, but it's not exactly what I wanted, so I'll try it out for a while and see what happens.

Next girly activity: DATING
Yes, I'm dating again. Phil said he wanted me to plan our Friday night date this week, so I busted out my coupons and got working! First we hit Wallaby's, where I officially decided I DON'T LIKE BLUE CHEESE (don't worry Dad, your steaks are the ONE exception) Gag. Plus we ran into my cousin Lachelle and her husband Nate while we were there! Go figure, Packards. :)
After some grubbin' Phil took me to Barnes and Noble to get a crossword puzzle book (cuz he loves me), and then we hit... dun dun dun...
The QUARRY! I have officially discovered a new life's passion. I LOVE ROCK CLIMBING. Neither of us had ever been before, but...I'm hooked. We got trained, demo'd, and warned, and we obeyed! (this picture is of us testing our hooks and knots before climbing) We took turns climbing and belaying, and I just loved it!
If anyone in Provo wants to go with us, I'm totally game! We hit Sub-Zero ice cream on the way home (Raspberry-Lime with citric acid...WARNING...don't get it!) and called it good! Pretty dang good date, if you ask me! :)

Last girly thing: Wife Duties. I woke up at 6:00am and drove with Phil and his friend Nate to watch them play in an Outdoor Volleyball tournament in Park City. ALL DAY.
They placed second in their division, and it was so fun to be that "Supportive Wife" cheering on Phil (plus I got to work on my crosswords book that I just got). By the time we got back, it was 6:00, and I was SO SUNBURNED on my legs! I wore long-sleeves, so my arms were okay, but holy smokes. It's hard to walk.
Or stand. Or sit. Or lay down.

But I love my baby! And I love being a girl!

04 August 2010


This was a crafty project Hailey and I thought of to use up her old baby food jars
just getting ready for Christmas
and Halloween
and of course I have to slip in a few NEICE pictures
Yes, it's upside down