I'm really blogging right now because I wanted to show some of the cute Danny and Rachie pictures I've been sitting on since Switzerland:
My personal favorite of Rachel:

... and to show ya'll where I live now (as promised).

This is the new kitchen table... square and countertop height. We kind of love it. The spacious kitchen... definitely a three- or four-bum kitchen.Our apron (and stocking) hooks and tote bag hook. Our living room with Meg's oversized chairs. One day I will learn to reupholster.
My bedroom... one day I will buy a bed skirt.My great little room-saving desk.

Jordan and I are off to Florida in the morning (I still have to pack) and then to Salt Lake for Christmas and New Years. Can't wait to see snow. For a little while. And then come back to temperate North Carolina!


and the oscar goes to.....

Here are my two favorite videos from the Switzerland trip:

Rachel discovering what spaghetti is really for...
she's quite the character.

Danny telling it like it is.


Who would've guessed...

I realize I still have pictures and videos that need to be posted from my wonderful Switzerland trip. And although most of my family members who read this would much prefer seeing footage of Danny and Rach, I have some great news to share... I'm getting married! My sweet Jordan proposed last night.

He popped the question at the Duck Pond in Durham, where we took our first Sunday walk.

The Duck Pond, as seen on March 9, 2008.

I really don't love broadcasting the details about this sort of tender thing over the interweb, but I just wanted to post a few pictures taken by our dear friends Janet and Steve after I said yes.

happy photo#1

happy photo#2

cheesy photo#1

cheesy photo#2

We are both pretty thrilled to have found one another, and are thankful to have such wonderful family and friends with whom to share the great news.


on octogenarians, craftiness and churchiness...

Just a few things:

- Jordan and I watched a great documentary last Saturday night about a senior citizens chorus turned rock band. It's called Young@Heart, and is one of the sweetest films I've seen in a long time. Here's the trailer:

While I was out renting the movie and getting poor Jordan some NyQuil, he was at my house trying hard to stay awake studying for a host of tests he has this week.

- Most of you know I'm not very crafty or decor-oriented. It's not because I don't care. If the volume of design blogs I read on a daily basis is any indication, I care a whole lot. I just don't seem to have/make the time. For instance, Jordan gave me some beautiful framed pictures for my birthday. In April. I just hung them up last Sunday. One could argue it's because I moved out of my apartment in May, and then lived in Dr. W's home (where I didn't feel like I could just start banging holes into the wall), but still. It's just sort of what I am. But I decided to shake it up a bit and made a 'memory board' using some beautiful fabric BRuch gave me. I followed instructions on a craft blog and I think it went rather well. But, knowing me, I probably won't get around to hanging it on my wall until next spring.

- A few churchy things. I'm attending an institute class all about the temple as found in the Old Testament. It's being taught by the same guy whose classes I've attended pretty consistently since I first moved here. He's also taught Isaiah, Hebrews&Revelations, and the Writings of Paul. I generally like the classes because our teacher, who's working towards his PhD at UNC in archaeology (I think), brings quite a bit of academics into the mix. I took a class at BYU called Texts and Ancient Temples by a really brilliant guy, so a lot of the stuff we're going over is a bit of a review from my college days, but Matt (our 'prof') has mentioned a few new things I thought were pretty interesting. These might sound a bit random taken out of context, but I thought I'd throw one or two out there:

Matt's take on symbolism in the Garden of Eden: Adam in Hebrew means mankind. Which is apt, because Adam (and Eve)'s story is our own story. Adam represents the whole of humanity. Adam's fall from the presence of God is symbolic of our own fall (or separation from His presence). Upon partaking of the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden, Adam & Eve discovered they were naked (Genesis 3). This nakedness represents the fact that upon 'falling', they became subject to the effects of sin and to the temptations of Satan... a spiritual nakedness of sorts. Later on in the same chapter we find out that God made Adam&Eve coats of skins and clothed them. In order to make these protective garments, an animal more than likely had to be killed. So something had to die in order to protect them from their state of nakedness. Read: Christ had to suffer the atonement so that we/mankind could be protected from the effects of sin.

- I promise to post some pictures of my new place, but right now I think it's time for bed.


... and more waterfalls

This will be a quick post because it's bedtime and I have another three-hour drive ahead of me tomorrow afternoon. But I wanted to put up some pictures from our camping trip two weekends ago. The Melonaki planned a great little campout/hike for us and some other friends in Pisgah National Forest in western NC...

We got up there Friday night and hiked a few miles the next morning into the waterfalls at Harper Creek--two charming waterfalls that feed into swimming holes. The fun is sliding down the waterfalls to get from one pool to the next. The water was rather cold, but it was just hot enough outside to have it be refreshing instead of bone-chilling. 
and yes... Jordan knows Mitt's not in the running anymore. 

Stay tuned for pictures of my new dwellings.... as soon as I get my desk cleaned off. 


scheme of the month: waterfalls

I thought I'd provide some stimulating reading material for Mariah, since she missed her first 4/5 days of school.

Last week Jordan and I took a quick trip up to the Rochester, NY area to visit Gillian, my best friend from college, and her great little family. Her husband Jonathan is in school at the Eastman School of Music, ranked the Hottest school of Music in 2008 (take that, Juilliard!). We were really excited to see Gillian/Jonathan, but I have to admit that the highlight of the trip was definitely meeting their darling, perfect little baby Peter.

We were excited to see some of the Palmyra-area church history sights, a first for both JLO and me--the Smith Family cabin#1, the Smith Family cabin#2, the Sacred Grove, the Palmyra temple, the Hill Cumorah, and E.B. Grandin's printing press.

And although we hadn't even considered it as an excursion for our quick trip to NY, Gillian and Jonathan took us to Niagara Falls via a beautiful drive along the shore of Lake Ontario -- there were fruit stands in every driveway. We didn't bring our passports, but no need, as Niagara from the American side is pretty breathtaking, and you don't have to go to Canada to go on the Maid of the Mist, which takes you about as close to the falls as you can get (unless you're Iagara the cat or the crazy lady Annie Edson Taylor who went down in a barrel in 1901 as a publicity stunt - she was hoping to make her fortune from a future lecture tour, but as it turns out, her manager "decamped with her barrel" and she spent her life savings hiring detectives to recover it. Should have just stuck with the Maid of the Mist).
And we also had a perfect day at Stony Brook, a state park improved upon in the 30's under FDR's CCC and the WPA - there are lots of hiking paths, bridges, and beautiful waterfalls. Gilly and Jonathan swam in the rather frigid water while Jordan and I were very content babysitting Peter.
Thanks to the Bowmans for a great trip, complete with lots of delicious home-cooked meals, and impromptu piano and violin recitals. We can't wait to host you guys in NC.


two new recruits to NC

I know people don't come to my blog for the fancy words. Just for the pics. So here they are. Mariah and Matt both came to visit me in North Carolina during the past month. Mariah has already been to visit once, so we had to be creative and take her out of the state to show her a good time. And Matt was in town for a quick trip. We had no fun. No fun at all, Erin (you're welcome, Matt).
M and Me at the Carrboro Farmers' Market

Mariah preparing herself for the Olympic trials at Duke's pool. Marco.

Turns out Duke has a lemur center--
home to the world's largest colony of endangered primates.

There were also walks through the woods...where Mariah met lots of friends...

We also headed up to UVA, Thomas Jefferson's university. I'm apparently not quite as smart as TJ. The rotunda at UVA.
Michie's Tavern, home of very, very expensive fried chicken & mashed potatoes. But they don't have those fancy hats at KFC.Me and M squinting in front of Monticello.The beautiful garden at Monticello, with Charlottesville in the distance. Matty and me at K-ville after a rousing game of tennis.


Happy Birthday to the girl with a Life Uncommon

It's still technically 11:55pm Pacific time, so I am officially posting this before the birthday girl's birthday has come to a close. Liss, I'm glad I've gotten to be a pretty integral part of your first 23 years. Thanks for the friendship, the love, and the example of a life uncommon! Cheers!