Wednesday, February 23, 2011

I just LOVE going home!

Last week at this time Julian and I were rushing around doing our last minute packing for our trip back to Indiana! We left for the airport Thursday morning at 4:30 a.m. as soon as Julian got home from work (he has a midnight shift). We landed in Chicago around 1:30 p.m. and our busy weekend started!

To start I would like to talk about the real reason for our visit to Indiana...

Tyler and Mary
On Friday, February 18, Tyler Brock and Mary Johnson became...

Mr and Mrs Tyler Brock!!!!

These two people are separately and together two of Julian and I's dearest friends.
Mary and I go way back. We have been friends basically since her family moved back to the United States after being missionaries in Mexico. If I remember correctly that was in the 4th or 5th grade. 
Throughout Jr. high and high school Mary and I were very very close!! She is one of those friends that never changes. She is constant and she has such a sweet heart and is just an all around selfless person! 
Tyler and Julian didn't meet until college and even then didn't really have a close friendship until the end of our sophomore year. When Julian and Tyler are together they are something else...they can constantly make you laugh! I know that Julian is very thankful for the friendship that Tyler and he's one that I know will last a very long time!!

As couples, Tyler and Mary and Julian and I did A LOT together. Especially during our last two years of college when our relationships were heading the same direction and our relationships were both getting to be serious. When we went on group dates, Tyler and Mary were always there...we had countless lunch dates together in the school cafeteria. They were the couple that we always paired up with...

So, we just HAD to come to Indiana to see our dear friends married off!!
Plus, my handsome husband had the honor of standing by his friend at the altar as his Best Man! 

Here are some pics from the special night!

Us with the happy couple!

Mary was a beautiful bride!

Feeding each other the cake at the reception!

Nice Tyler..just rub it all over her face!! :)

Going in for another Kiss! aww..

Leaving the reception!!

The Bridal Party looking on as they kiss!

Groom and his Groomsmen!

Bride and her Bridesmaids!

Like I said before, Mary and I were very close in high school but we weren't the only two in our little group! 
Sarah, Michelle, Mary and I were a foursome!!! We all have grown up and it's so hard to believe that three out of the four of us are married!!! Where does the time go? But it is so nice to know that although we aren't as close as we once were, we are all still friends!! I know the four of us will always have a special friendship!!!
Michelle was not able to make it to the wedding..seeing as we teach in the same school out here in CA...they couldn't let both of us get off for the trip..:( but she was in this picture in spirit! :) are the three of us that are married women! Now, we just need Michelle to join us! ;)

Here are some other random pictures from the wedding I thought you may enjoy!
 Having fun with the Swangims!

Getting ready to finish up these pictures!!! Can you see it on their faces?? They were ready to be done!

Love this one of Mary with her nephews and niece!!!! 
Soo adorable!

And this is too precious...Mary saying bye to her ring bearer!


One more of the sweet newlyweds!

Although the main purpose for the visit was the wedding...we were also able to fit several other fun things in!

Friday afternoon, while Julian was doing Best Man things, my dear best friend Nicole and I spent the entire afternoon together! I miss her so much way out here in's really not fair that we live SO far apart!! Over the past, (almost 8 months..can you believe it?!?!) since we got married, Nicole and I have stayed very close! I am thankful for that!!
We decide to spend our afternoon traveling to IL to check out a store that one of our other best friends had discovered and raved about!!! Let me just say....this place was AWESOME!! 
Actually you can read more the store at Nicole's blog!!
 We had a wonderful time doing what we do best....TALKING and SHOPPING!!!! :)
I miss my in person time with Nicole..she is such an incredible friend! 

Here's a little peak at the store!

Happy to be shopping and doing it had been too long!! 

Another part of Nicole and I's friendship that is great is that our families have become very good friends as we couldn't be in Indiana without spending time with the whole fam!
After the wedding on Friday night the LaBate's came over to my parents house and we had a wonderful time with them!!! 
LaBate girls and I! 

Last (but far from least) was the great time we spent with Dad and Mom!!!!!
I love them so much!
 We had such an awesome time with them!!!
Eating / Shopping


Just being together again!

I love them so much!

We spent our last evening, Sunday after church, out with some great friends!!!
here are a few pictures that I snapped!
Us with Andrea and Dustin (another couple that Julian and I were college friends with)...with Mr and Mrs the background! 

Here are the Leslie kids...leaving an empty space for Sharon...:)
We missed you Sharon!

I am so glad that we were able to take this little trip back! I love seeing all the people that I grew up with and that all had a part in my those years! I love my home church and even though it hasn't been extremely long since I have lived at is so refreshing to come back and visit!!! 
So....I am definitely looking forward to next time....
Hopefully soon....unless.....ALL of you back home just want to come see me!!! :)
It's only fair......we should take turns!!! 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

I heart my Valentine!

I am the luckiest girl in the world.
I get to celebrate my Valentine's Day with the sweetest, handsomest, most loving man on the planet!! 
I love him! :)

February 13th and 14th are both very special days for us! 
Because... on February 13th - four years ago - is when our relationship officially started!! 
It was not a planned "date" but it was definitely the start so we consider it our "anniversary!"

But back to him.....
I could go on and on about him...
here are a few things I would like to share with you about MY VALENTINE:

...he is funny (in a corny way, which I love)...
...he is very very sweet...
...he is selfless (ALWAYS thinks of me before himself)....
...he loves the Lord with all his heart...
...he leads me in the right way (when my stubborn self might not want to do that certain thing)...
...he is so smart in handling financial things ( I know that may sound small...but I know I am lucky in that area...there are many guys that are not like that)...
...he gives GREAT hugs! :)...
...he gets interested in the things I am interested in (b/c he knows they make me happy)... of his best friends is his 16 year old sister (I love that he cares for her so much despite the age difference etc...this is something I know will be passed down to our children)...
...he is so close to his family...
...he talks about having kids all the time (I think it is so cute when he refers to our kids!)...
...he takes me to the mall whenever I want!!!! :)...
...he loves my family! (WHO WOULDN'T"T!?!?) lol...
...he is very dedicated to our church...
...he knows how to help me get my mind off the stresses of teaching kids all day long when I come home at night...
...he works so hard at his job...
...he LOVES to cook (which if you know me..that's a very good thing! :)
...I could go on and on...:)

but last of all and most importantly....

...he loves me with all his heart...
...he tell me he loves me all the time... Valentine is not perfect...
...but he is perfect for me!! :) 

Happy Valentine's Day, love!!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Science/History Fair

Bethel Christian Academy had it's annual Science/History Fair recently!
The lower Elementary, Jr. High and High Schooler's all do a science project and display the results on this night. While the 4th-6th graders do history projects.
The younger grades don't make individual projects (b/c of the obvious reasons like...they can barely color in the lines let alone come up with a science project and then make a display showing it off). No, what happens is....
The teacher makes it!!!!!!
That's the way! :) 
I was a little nervous about my first science project (as a teacher)...but it turned out great!
Since the "theme" of my classroom this year was flowers...I decided that our science project would go along with it! 

All during the month of January I took Science class and taught on plants.
Anything and everything about plants.
The first week back I went out and bought pots, dirt and grass seed (I didn't want to grow flowers...I was just a little scared that they might not grow in January) 
They painted their pots and we planted their grass seed and we waited......
I was just slightly worried when almost two weeks into it....there was no sign of grass!
But one day, it happened!! It started growing and by the time our Science Fair arrived....
our grass was SO tall!!!

I have never been accused of having a "green thumb" but I can grow a pot of grass!!!! 

The kids were so excited about showing their parents our project! I was excited to get it over with....:) 
This was the after noon before the big night! We set up our project together before they got out of school!!

Here is our board!! 
The main thing that they learned was all the different parts to a flower and the reason for each part!
I made it so that the labels to the different parts could come off and on. We had major girl/boy competition matching the the label to the correct parts!! The kids learned a lot and had tons of fun in the mean time!!

I do have to give the kids credit on their awesome job making "grass" with construction paper to go along the bottom!! I was very proud of how it turned out..and of course so were they!!

Their very own pot of grass was of course the MAIN highlight!! 
You see, unlike the Midwesterners, California people don't have huge lawns filled with nice green grass.
Actually, some of the kids were in all seriousness telling their parents that they wanted to replant their pot of grass at home out side their house!! :) 

Of course, the rest of the school had some really great displays too...but having the bias that I do...
I still think ours was the best!! :)

Some of the highschoolers..

5th and 6th graders room

Here is one of my favorites...second of course to ours..:)
but seriously, I thought this was an incredible replica of the Golden Gate Bridge!!
Check it out!!

It was an all around great night at Bethel!
I love these open house nights that we have....
its such a great time with the families....
even though I see them every day it's just a more relaxed setting when you really get to talk more and get to know more about each other!! I'm so blessed with the children I got this year!
They were so excited and most of them came "dressed up" to the Science Fair...well, seeing them in anything other than their school uniform is dressed up to me!! :)

This is mischievous cutie that really took the dressing up thing seriously!
So cute!! By the way, for those of you that have heard the "Seashell in the Ear" story...
That is him...:) 
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