Saturday, February 28, 2015

So...Andrew's Sweet Mixes

These two mixes I made for my older brother.  The first was made around the same time as my Mother Mixes.  The second was made quite a bit later.  I think I made it about five years ago?  Anyway, they're both really good, more of my favorites, and pretty sweet tunes.

Hope you enjoy!


Andrew's Sweet Mix 1
3am::OAR
Grace is Gone::Dave Matthews Band
Miss Misery::Eliot Smith
A Plain Morning::Dashboard Confessional
Let Her Cry::Hootie & the Blowfish
Headlights::Dispatch
Window::Guster
Bubble Toes::Jack Johnson
Fa Fa::Guster
Hey Girl::OAR
Flying Horses::Dispatch
Your Body is a Wonderland::John Mayer
Nightingale::Norah Jones
If Only She Knew::OAR
Cover This::Dispatch
X-Ray Eyes::Guster
Say Yes::Eliot Smith
Walk With You::Dispatch


Andrew's Sweet Mix 2
I Don't Wanna Be::Gavin DeGraw
Dream Girl::Dave Matthews Band
I'll Do Anything::Jason Mraz
About Mr. Brown::OAR
Rehab::Amy Winehouse
Crazy::Gnarls Barkley
My Love::Justin Timberlake
Too Late to Apologize::One Republic
How Many Words::Blake Lewis
Love & Memories::OAR
The Sweet Escape::Gwen Stefani
She Will Be Loved::Maroon 5
I'll Be Here Awhile::311
Geek in the Pink::Jason Mraz
I'm In Love With a Girl::Gavin DeGraw
Waiting on the World to Change::John Mayer
Santeria::Sublime
Gots to Get Her::Blake Lewis
On the Way Down::Ryan Cabrera
Boston::Augustana
Out of My Hands::Dave Matthews Band

I love my brother lots.  I hate living so far away from him - I don't nearly have enough of him in my life.  But I love that no matter how long it's been it always feels awesome talking to him or hanging out when we can.  He's wicked awesome.


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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

So...The Mother Mixes

So...obviously I never finished my Christmas memories.
Oops.

Blogging doesn't seem to be my strength these days.
So I thought I would stick with something I am good at - making mixes :)

I've been cleaning out the nooks and crannies of my house and basically have been trying to generally declutter every aspect of my life for the past two years.  In the process I have come across many many mix CDs.  Most are badly scratched and some aren't even playable.  But I do not want to lose these mixes - they are each a part of my past and hold precious memories.

So...I'm documenting them here on my blog and share them with you because really, it's great music.

These Mother Mixes are the mothers of all mixes.  These are college to me!  Back in the day of Napster and illegal music downloading and burning CDs was awesome.  I would find and download (for free!) every song by my favorite artists, which back then were mostly Guster, Dispatch, OAR, Dashboard Confessional, and Dave Matthews.  I also loved finding acoustic versions and covers of my favorite tunes.  My computer had a playlist of over 500 songs (probably more actually) that would play of shuffle all day long.  Each one of these songs are on the soundtrack of my college life. 

Feels like studying for the next mid-term, writing a paper, eating vending machine food, and waiting for my boyfriend to call while lounging in high school soccer sweats on my bed up on cement blocks in my poster-walled dorm room.
Seems like a lifetime ago, but when I put on this music I feel like I'm right there again.

If you're looking for some chill music - check these out.

Mother Mix 1
Mouth (acoustic)::John Mayer
Two Coins::Dispatch
So Long::Guster
Another Lonely Day::Ben Harper
Don't Know Why::Norah Jones
It's All Understood::Jack Johnson
Day By Day::Five For Fighting
Typical Situation::Dave Matthews Band
Evaporated::Ben Folds Five
I Feel Home::OAR
Brilliant Dance::Dashboard Confessional
Sleep::Phish
Angry Anymore::Ani Defranco
Alright::Five For Fighting
Waiting on an Angel::Ben Harper
Lullabye::Ben Folds Five


Mother Mix 2
Crazy Game of Poker::OAR
Bang Bang::Dispatch
Drink the Water::Jack Johnson
Both Hands::Ani Defranco
Burn One Down::Ben Harper
Drowning::Dashboard Confessional
Angel::Dave Matthews Band
How::Lisa Loeb
Air::Ben Folds Five
Creep (acoustic)::Radiohead
Perfect::Guster
Hangover::OAR
No Such Thing::John Mayer
Drive::Dispatch
Not A Pretty Girl::Ani Defranco
My Beloved One::Ben Harper


I hope you enjoy!



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Tuesday, December 30, 2014

So...12 Days of Christmas Past::2006

Live Nativity::Christmas 2006::San Jose, CA
 
In 2006 we were back to San Jose for Christmas.  I was large with child, expecting Second Daughter a few months later.  Christmas Eve we got together with family (that's Brother In-Law in the background and Cousin as Joseph) and did a living nativity.  We did not do that in my family when I was a kid so it was really fun for me to watch!
 
First Daughter was Mary, Husband was the donkey, and First Daughter's first doll (cabbage patch) was Baby Jesus - you can see her (him) in the purple crib (manger) in the lower right corner.
 
Christmas "shopping" was easy that year.  First Daughter was very excited about certain things and had very simple expectations.  I ended up wrapping some of her favorite toys, and her favorite movie (Wizard of Oz) so she could open them on Christmas morning and get excited.  She didn't have any expectation for new toys so she was so excited.  It actually was the best.
 
But we weren't complete cheapskates that year - we did buy her new stuff too.  She was into princesses so she got a couple dress up dresses and shoes, a crown and play jewelry.  We just multiplied her stash of presents by wrapping already owned gifts :)
 
That is the only memory I have of that Christmas.  My pregnant brain must have forgotten everything else :)
 
 
 
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So...12 Days of Christmas Past::2005

First Daughter::Christmas Eve 2005::Orem, UT
 
Christmas 2005 was our first Christmas alone, in our own apartment in Orem, UT, just the three of us.  It was different, much more quiet, but wonderful.  It was the beginning of creating many of our own family traditions.
 
1::Christmas jammies - both Husband & I had this tradition in our families growing up, but this was the first year that we bought them for our own little family and for our own sweet daughter.
 
2::Christmas bear - this tradition kind of created itself and it started this Christmas with First Daughter.  First Daughter's nickname has always been "Bear," so I was so excited to get her a Christmas bear for her first Christmas.  Husband's family had a tradition that they each had a Christmas character (Husband's was Santa) and they had a stuffed animal/pillow with that character and then got ornaments that went along with it.  Getting the Christmas bear was my attempt to keep that tradition continuing, but it ended up just turning into Christmas bears for all the kids on their first Christmas.  The bears have the year embroidered on their paw so we can always remember when their first Christmas was.
 
3::Baum's Christmas trees - we bought our Christmas tree that year at Baum's, a local tree lot that was recommended to us by a friend.  We bought our tree there every year since.  (Actually, this was our first year not getting our tree there - it was kinda strange - especially since I am definitely a creature of habit/tradition).
 
4::Christmas book - we get a family Christmas book every year.
 
5::Christmas movie - we also get a Christmas movie.
 
6::Christmas card - this was our first official Christmas card.  Well...I think we sent out Christmas cards that first year after we got married...but this was our first take-a-family-picture-for-a-Christmas-card experience.  It made us feel like real grownups :)
 
Having a baby made Christmas morning a little different.  First Daughter had no anticipation waiting to see what Santa left her, and she was a champion sleeper, so we didn't get up until after 9 or so (which was normal for her).  We had a wonderfully relaxing morning opening the few presents that we had.
 
Family memories are the best, and the first memories of our sweet little family feel magical.
 
 
 
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So...12 Days of Christmas Past::2004

Well...I know I don't really need to say the obvious, but blogging doesn't seem to be my strong suit these days...my attempt to do the 12 Days of Christmas Past leading up to Christmas obviously didn't happen...BUT - I've never been good at letting a "goal" stay unfinished/open ended, so I'm just gonna do it anyway, even though Christmas is over.  Hopefully I get through them before the next holiday comes around...well, New Years doesn't count cause that's, like, tomorrow...or the next day...
 
Christmas Eve with Husband's side of the family::San Jose::2004
 
Christmas 2004 was with Husband's family in San Jose, CA.  I was pregnant with First Daughter and we had just found out she was a girl days before we arrived.  We brought a video (yes, it was a VHS) of the ultrasound with us so that everyone could watch and see if they could guess the gender.  Of course nobody could because ultrasounds don't really look like anything.  We thought it was such a clever way to reveal the gender, but looking back it was a little silly :)
 
This was my first time being somewhere relatively warm for Christmas.  It was different, but fun.  It was my first Christmas not being with my own family.  But being there felt like home, as it always did, and we had a wonderful Christmas.

Mother In-Law got us all matching jammies.  The sweatshirts were GDI (Husband's dad's company) sweatshirts, and I still wear it to this day.  I love that sweatshirt. 

All of Husband's family was there except one of his younger brothers who was serving a LDS mission in Washington at the time.

Christmas Eve dinner was at Husband's aunt's house who also lives in San Jose.

It was my first Christmas experiencing the traditional Christmas Brunch that Husband's extended family does every year.  It was fun and yummy and it's a tradition that we still look forward to every year.  We have one out here in Utah with his family members that live here.

I remember that we were there for a really long time.  Perhaps the whole two weeks of our winter break?  We watched lots and lots of movies, and I learned how to knit. 

My memories of that Christmas are pretty sporadic, but I do remember it being wonderful.  I have always loved being with Husband's family.  I am a very lucky woman to have married into such an amazing family. 



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Sunday, December 14, 2014

So...12 Days of Christmas Past::2003

Brother & Sister In-Law::Christmas::Boston::2003
 
Sadly, I don't have very many pictures (two, to be exact) of our Christmas in 2003.
I actually don't even have any of Husband and I :(
But those were the days before we owned a digital camera, so we 1) didn't take very many pictures, and 2) have probably lost a lot of the pictures we actually have.  In fact, this picture may have even been taken with a disposable camera (remember those???)
 
Christmas in 2003 was at my parents' home in Needham, MA.  It was our first Christmas as a married couple, and the first Christmas for my brother and sister in-law (shown in the picture) as a married couple too.  We both were married in 2003 - them in May (right?) and us in October.  Christmas that year we all gathered together in MA.  This is the last (and only) Christmas we have all spent together.
 
My mom got us all Christmas jammies like she did when we were kids.  It was fun :)  My other brother and sister in-law had just had their second baby only three weeks before.  Now that I'm a mom, I understand how amazing, and probably difficult, that was for them.  My sister was living there with her family and she had one daughter that was 1 1/2.  My younger brother was 13, but didn't look like it - only months before he was mistaken to be my fiancĂ© :) 
 
I can hardly remember our family like this.  It really seems like a lifetime ago.  All of our families have grown so much - sister::2 kids, brother::5 kids, brother::6 kids, me::5 kids, brother::married - we've dispersed across the country, and have had many different life experiences. 
 
Our extended family was so new at this Christmas.  We were still getting to know each other and still trying to adjust to our new family members - four of us got married in three years, and Husband and I had just been married 1 1/2 months before this Christmas.  Everything was still new. 
 
Thinking back to this time and our family experiences through the years since, I wish that I had done better to connect with my in-laws and establish a better foundation for our relationships.  11 years later we could all be a lot more close than we are.  We could have loved and tried to understand each other better as we made different life decisions and had different experiences and trials.  But - we were all very young when we got mashed together in one big family, and I can't speak for everyone but I sure know that I have learned a whole lot and grown up a lot in those 11 years.  Back then I really didn't know much and was really still a kid and was pretty selfish.  I have learned a lot (and am still learning) about family relationships and how to love and accept people for who they are no matter what.  Sometimes I think I am doing this, but I have learned that actions/words can be interpreted very differently by different people and family relationships are the most sensitive and the most important relationships.  And I am learning how to say sorry and how to forgive.
 
Family is all about showing love - no matter what - and forgiving each other for being imperfect - and being there for each other no matter how far away you live and no matter how long its been since you last saw or spoke to each other.  Family is family.  Always.
 
I love my family so much.
It has been a very long time since we've celebrated Christmas with anyone in my family, and every year I miss them.  All of them. 
 
This year my parents will be here with us and we are very excited about that.
And thanks to online shopping and Facetime, we can feel a little closer to the rest of the family even though we are thousands of miles apart.
 
 
 
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Saturday, December 13, 2014

So...12 Days of Christmas Past::2002

Me & Husband::Boston::2002


This year marks 12 years of Christmases together, Husband and I.  This first one, we weren't engaged yet, but we were a short 1 1/2 months later.


That Christmas marked the end of a long 7 months living apart from each other.  We dated for 4 months, I went home to Boston for the summer, he went home to San Jose for the fall semester, then we were reunited in Boston for Christmas and headed back to Provo together.


This was a very interesting/trying time in my life and in our relationship.  I knew that I was in love with Husband and wanted to spend the rest of my life and eternity with him, but not everyone was as enthusiastic as we were about the idea.  That fall semester, I knew that we were getting close to getting engaged and was desperately seeking a confirmation that marrying him was the right thing to do.  I knew I wanted it to be the right thing, but I wanted some divine confirmation.  That holiday season - Thanksgiving with his family and Christmas with mine - was when I received my answer.


It wasn't anything grand and glorious or even really that obvious.  It was just a peaceful feeling of being at home when I was with him.  Even though I didn't have a whole lot of support from my family, I knew that it was right because I felt that he was now my family and I couldn't imagine a life without him.


This picture was taken in downtown Boston.  Our whole family went into the city together on the T.  Mom made matching red fleece scarves for all of us.  Husband had given me that winter hat for Christmas (and the Harry Potter box set!!)  I don't exactly remember what we did in the city - probably went out to eat and probably shopped - but I do remember it being ridiculously cold.  And I remember not caring one bit because I was so happy to be reunited with my man and having fun holding his hand and strolling through the city. 


My other memory of that Christmas was staying up late with Husband, cuddling on my parents' living room love seat, looking at a Christmas version of an "I Spy" book.  We did the entire book, which I think is the only time in my life that I've completed one of those books in one sitting.  It was easy because I loved every second with him, especially being close to him, and I was so happy to be with him again.  It really didn't matter what we did as long as we were together.


I loved the end of that trip because we didn't have to say goodbye to each other.  We got to fly back to Utah together!  We had had our fair share of weepy goodbyes at airports that year, and I loved that this visit didn't end the same.  In fact, we didn't ever have to say goodbye again because we were engaged the following February and married the October after that, without any time apart in between.


I don't remember many details about that Christmas.  I really only remember all the excitement, anticipation, and twitterpated-ness I felt that year being so in love with my husband-to-be.  This picture brings back some hard memories, but mostly the wonderful, giddy feelings and memories. 


I love being in love with Husband.
He's my favorite.






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