Hristos Voskrese, radost donese!

While I was looking online for Paschal/Easter music, I ran across this video of a Serbian Orthodox Easter song being sung by celebrities in order to raise money for the reconstruction of a medieval Serbian monastery. You might find the video creepy, but most foreign stuff is…well, foreign to us. But the lyrics to this hymn are fun and joyful.

People rejoice, all nations listen:
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!
Dance all ye stars and sing all ye mountains:
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!

Whisper ye woods and blow all ye winds:
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!
O seas proclaim and roar all ye beasts:
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!

Buzz all ye bees and sing all ye birds:
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!
O little lambs rejoice and be merry:
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!

Nightengales joyous, lending your song:
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!
Ring, O ye bells, let everyone hear:
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!

All angels join us, singing this song:
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!
Come down ye heavens, draw near the earth:
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!

Glory to Thee, God Almighty!
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!
Glory to Thee, God Almighty!
Christ God is risen! Let us rejoice!


This was on my good friend Stephanie’s blog. And I just had to post it. Enjoy!

Homeward Bound

I promised to tell a little bit of my journey home to Dallas, and so I will, although now it might just sound like whining. But really, how hard is it for air travel to be at least halfway decent?

I was destined to leave on the 9:18 flight from San Luis Airport. Normally, checking in my luggage has been the biggest hurdle when I travel. There have been a few times where we didn’t get our bag in before the “1 hr. time limit”, causing us to miss our flight. On our way back from Christmas, they discovered that we had a wine bottle in our luggage and forced me buy bubble wrap, causing me to have to re-pack my already stuffed suitcase to accomodate 3 thick inches of wasted air space. Just imagine 50 people watching you re-pack your suitcase at the Southwest counter…you get the idea.

This time, Continental decided they were going to fine me $125 bucks for being 9 pounds over the weight limit. Mind you, 50 lbs. seems like a pretty stringent requirement, especially when they are already charging $15 bucks to check the stupid thing. So I had to fit all I could in my carry-on purse and leave behind all of my shower stuff 😦 Luckily, my Matrix shampoo was Buy2 get 2 free, so I knew I had spares back in Texas. But still. I had to leave behind $50 worth of shampoo, and it did not make me happy.

Our plan after checking in my bag was for all of us to go out to breakfast in between. However, putting my suitcase on liposuction took a while. So we decided to sit at the airport’s only coffee shop and have breakfast there instead.

We did not anticipate that the college student working on Sunday mornings would be entirely incompetent. Sure, she tried to move fast, but 45 minutes later our bagels were still not ready. It was epic, watching her, like Dateline doing a special on overpaid coffee shop workers. She banged plates, broke microwaves, and still could not manage to toast a bagel.

And then, at 8:30, they started the first call for passengers aboard my flight. I thought to myself, “Boarding isn’t supposed to START until 8:50. What are they doing?” So I ignored the loudspeaker, attempting to squeeze out every single remaining minute with my family.

And then I heard MY NAME called over the loudspeaker. Apparently, I was the only passenger not on the plane.

So I had to take one bite of my newly arrived bagel, and run to security (which only had 2 people in line, luckily. This is about the ONLY thing that is advantageous about a small airport). It was here that they proceeded to throw away half of my purse. Apparently, CHAPSTICK is a gel. I felt indignant, all of these things were in my purse the last 3 times I flew, why should now be any different?

In tears over being “ripped away” from my family and getting half of my possessions thrown away, I ran out and got on the plane. It was tiny. Like one seat on each side, 5 rows deep tiny. And I was smooshed in between 6 army guys returning to base.

Luckily, they didn’t try to talk to me much. It might have had to do with the fact that I was crying (tears make men jump from bridges). Or maybe it had to do with the fact that I looked about to throw up due to all the turbulence (small planes don’t fly above the clouds). The stewardess served everyone their drink, all except for me. It was too bad, Diet Coke would have helped with all the turbulence. It also would have helped me stop crying. I mean, who can cry when they are burping carbonation?

Once I got in to LAX, I waited for 2 hours in California Pizza Kitchen, attempting to eat the only thing that I could find that was semi-Lenten friendly. Unfortunately, tuna sandwiches do not cure the nausea I was still experiencing from my flight. Then I re-purchased a few of the things that the friendly SLO airport had cleansed from my purse. Who knew chapstick costs $4 dollars at the airport? I swear, security is in cohort with Hudson News to make more money.

It was on my way to my gate that I decided to check the monitors once more. My flight was flashing.

“2 hour delay” it said.

So I resigned myself to wait for a few more hours and looked around for a seat. Unfortunately, there were none to be found. I walked around and around until I finally found a seat about 10 gates away.

Low and behold, about 30 minutes later, I heard them call my flight over the loudspeaker. Apparently, the 2 hour delay was a computer glitch!!! They were boarding…NOW. I began to panic.

And that’s when I realized that although all airports do, in fact, hate me, God, still loves me. The gate # for my flight had been changed to the exact gate I had randomly decided to sit at. All I had to do was stand up and rush onto the plane.

So, here are few things I learned:

1. Tuna burps are a great help with motion sickness.

2. Do not expect to know where or when your flight is leaving. The time they say is never the actual time. Just run around looking for an empty plane. Keep an open mind and do not worry about where you are headed.

3. Do not wear clothes through security. They might try to take them away. Instead, just save yourself the trouble and wait to buy a sweatshirt with the city name written on it.

Essence of Spring

Don’t these clouds look awesome? I can totally see this sky making a guest appearance in Courtney’s tornado dreams.





Here's a cheery note to end on. Flowers from our school courtyard!

St. Peter’s in the News!

Today, a CBS news crew came to our school to do a special about our online auction. Take a look!

Spring Break in California

This last week was Spring Break for me (but not for Jesse 😦 ), so my mom bought me a ticket to come to San Luis Obispo for the week. Because so much happened, I do not have time to go into detail about everything. But, in case you are interested, I will give you a day-by-day rundown of what occurred. If there is something that you would like to hear more about…say so and I will consider writing about it. Maybe. Perhaps.

I left Wednesday morning and landed in LAX at around 9am. My brother picked me up and we met my mom and dad for lunch in downtown San Luis Obispo. That evening, my aunt, uncle, and cousins came over for chili. Since Heidi is getting married in 3 months, we talked “wedding stuff” until Julie was about to run away.

On Thursday, I met my mother-in-law, Esther, for coffee and brunch. I then sat in on Janelle’s violin lesson (she is getting really good!) and took her for icecream and a “Selena Gomez” haircut.

Later on in the evening, we all went through all of my old high school memorabilia. It was…interesting, to say the least 🙂 Earlier this year, I made Jesse an “I Love Me” wall. It is comprised of all of his MVP sports plaques, of which there are many. There are also a couple about him, say, being the Valedictorian and all. As we were going through my sports “treasures” however, I found my shameful contributions. The first plaque I pulled out said, “Best Attitude”. The second, “Most Improved”. The third, “Most Inspirational”. And I thought to myself, “There is NO way I am putting this up next to all of Jesse’s stuff.” The only one I ended up bringing home was my one MVP plaque for Volleyball. It was pathetic, to say the least.

Friday was comprised of eating lunch with my father-in-law Norm, shopping with my mom, and going out to sushi and clubbing in downtown SLO with Tess, Brooke, Linda and Laura. I had one drink. And I was toast. I am so glad Tess was there! And NO, I will not say more about this 🙂

Saturday morning, my mom, Janelle and I woke up early and followed our 10-year tradition of getting donuts and going to garage sales. It was fun, although all we got were some cute boy clothes for Topher.

When I got home, my dad and I went to Thai food and talked for 5 HOURS. On our way home, my mom sent us to the store to buy Olive Oil. Boy, my dad and I are the WRONG people to ask. We sat there for 15 minutes, analyzing the whole wall of choices, comparing, contrasting, debating. In the end, we had to pick randomly, because there was no way we were going to come to an educated consensus without research on the internet. Later on in the evening, the Trinidade family came over for yummy falafel pita bread sandwiches and apple tarts.

As for my trip back…it was pretty epic, so I think it deserves a post of its own later…..

All in all, I can’t think of a better way to spend Spring Break. I was able to have great relaxing conversations and hang-out time with everyone in my family and some.

Praise God for wonderful parents, in-laws, siblings, and life-long friendships!

Neat Alternative

Since I am averaging about 80 views per day on this blog (it must be all the real estate posts…) I have to keep up with my posts.

Today, Jesse and Courtney and Michael are at a Lenten Retreat. I, however, heard the alarm go off at 7am and part of my soul died. I am SO in need of a break from all the craziness that my life is. Just to recap: Currently, I am working full-time teaching at St. Peter’s, teaching private piano lessons to 25 students, taking an English grad class at UD, taking voice lessons, and singing in the choir 2x/week. I also try to make it to Curves 3-4x/week.

The nicest part about being a teacher, sad to say, is not the students:) It’s their looong paid breaks. We get a week off at Thanksgiving, 2 at Christmas, 1 in the Spring, 1/2 of one at Easter, and then 3 day weekends whenever there is a holiday. And don’t forget, 2 1/2 months of summer.

This next week is Spring break, and BOY DO I NEED IT. This last week, I graded all of my students papers not once, not twice, but 4 times, mainly because I had them do so many rough drafts. By the time it came down to assigning them a grade for their Final Draft, I felt like I could have quoted their paper verbatim, bad grammar and poorly proven statements and all.

So, as I am sitting here, punking out of what promised to be an amazing retreat hosted by the man who is most likely going to become our future bishop, I am getting a sense of satisfaction. Yes, I have thrown off the bonds of obligation. Yes, I have claimed for myself ONE SATURDAY to sleep in until noon. Yes, I am stating that I would rather sit around nursing my headache than be spiritually fed.

Of course, when you say it like that…

Moving on. As I was surfing the internet over my bowl of soy milk and Life cereal, I decided to read Cameron Ingalls’ Blog. For those of you that don’t know who he is, Cameron Ingallas is still, in my opinion, even after all these years, the best wedding photographer in the US. Seriously, I haven’t seen anyone who knows how to capture people the way he does. Sure, now that he’s famous, he comes with a hefty price tag- I think it’s up to $7k/wedding. But still, his photos and the artistic talent behind them often leave me dumbfounded. I love our wedding and engagement photos, and would not trade them for anything. In fact, Jesse and I have talked about doing a “pre-baby” photo shoot with him someday when we are out in CA <Disclaimer Pre-baby does not mean we have a plan. Well we do. But this plan does not include you>.

On his blog, he has this thing called “Super 8”. Now, when I was planning our wedding, I remember being distinctly put off by “videographers”. I intentionally decided not to have one (which is why I only have video of me walking down the aisle- nothing more. The battery of our handheld ran out. You’d think the wedding was all about me, or something 😉 ). To me, they seemed cheesy and overdone, like the bride and groom are movie stars with a camera and photography crew following around, capturing every sneeze.

However, this “Super 8” thing looks pretty darn cool. I’ve never seen anything quite like it. If it had been around 3 years ago, I am pretty sure that I would have done everything in my power to have this (and Dad, if you’re reading this, I also would have done everything in my power to not go thousands of dollars over budget, or invite 200 more people than we had room for..!). Instead of the typical wedding video where they narrate it or put the Father Daughter Dance to “Butterfly Kisses”, they make it like an old vintage movie. The bride doesn’t look “perfect”, she looks classic. Like the couple is taking their place in history, side by side with billions of other couples.

Check it out. Go the bottom and click, “Super 8”. If you want, you can even swing by the Engagement Pictures section and find the one of Jesse and I 🙂 You’ll recognize Jesse, because he still has the same shirt, 3 years later. You won’t recognize me though, I had long hair.

And while you’re at it, take a look at this adorable picture of Clarabelle sleeping. Can you tell that we are totally in love with our dog?


Family Heritage

Someone is currently selling one of our long-lost relatives on Craigslist. Apparently, he’s useful for many things.

Also, check out the T-shirt I made for the family.


Clarabelle the FLYING Dog

Really, this is why Jesse and I shouldn’t be parents yet.

Clarabelle the Acrobatic Dog

Some of the games that Jesse and Clara like to play are tame. Others are not. Here’s one that they invented, wherein Clara sinks her teeth into a toy and Jesse raises her into the air.