Friday, January 30, 2015

unplugged.

Do you ever stop and think about how cool it is that we can connect with millions of people all over the world in less than a second? Do you ever think about how cool it is that we can jump onto our Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter sites and know what our friends and family are up to? Do you ever think about how cool it is that we can get news updates the second something big happens? I do.

On the flip side, do you ever stop and think about how emotionally and mentally taxing it can be to be constantly plugged into it all? I definitely do! I've noticed being attached to my phone, TV, or computer affects how I interact with others, how much sleep I get, and how many items on my "to-do" list get done. In addition, I've noticed that I'm much more concerned about clothes or makeup or going cool places when I'm constantly bombarded with all of the images, statuses, and blog posts others are posting. Because of this, I feel that it's important for me to take breaks from social media and sometimes completely unplug myself from the outside world.
 ^^pardon our sweaty, post-bike ride faces ;)^^
With Ben's crazy long school days*, it's a real treat when we have a whole day together without any obligations or things that we absolutely have to get done. Last Saturday was one of those rare days for us and I decided that morning that I didn't want social media or technology to get in the way of our time together. We began Saturday with a slow start - sleeping in, making waffles and homemade syrup, and talking about what we wanted to do that day. It was decided that we needed to do some early spring cleaning before getting to the fun stuff. Ben turned on some music and we each tackled our chores, one of which included (finally) taking down the Christmas tree and moving holiday boxes to the basement. Our hours of cleaning were productive and fun as we worked side by side to tackle the mess. :)

Once the chores were out of the way, we decided to get our bikes out of storage and put some air in the tires so we could take them for a spin. Fortunately, St. Louis has a giant park (even bigger than Central Park!) and we were able to enjoy the fabulous 60 degree weather for a bit.

After coming home and getting ready for the day, we spent our afternoon making this treat, working on our church lessons for the next day, listening to this audiobook, paying some bills, and putting up some Valentine's Day decor. That evening, friends came over and played games with us late into the night. ;) Our favorites for multiple players include: this, this, this, and this.

At night when I get into bed, I usually think about what I was able to accomplish that day and I realized Saturday night that our day had been a bit different than most. I had enjoyed not picking up my phone every 15 minutes and feeling like I had to keep it on me at all times so others could reach us if needed. Because I was focused on Ben and getting stuff done, I didn't feel the need to scroll through Instagram or Facebook and I didn't feel like I was missing anything important. It was a breath of fresh air. I decided right then and there that I wanted to turn off my phone more often so I could refocus on the important things and give those around me my undivided attention.

Hip, hip, hooray for fun and productive days, and the chance to unplug from everything!

*we call it work since he's been done with the classes portion for over a year now, and has been focusing on research. ;)

Unplugged shirt generously provided by Creative Expressions, a Utah business, specializing in promotional products. They offer in house screen printing, embroidery, digitizing and art services.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

adam levine crashing weddings? perfect.


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

3 day weekend.

I can't tell you how nice it was to have an extra day off of work this past weekend! I tried to convince Ben that we needed to go on a road trip to somewhere warm (my vote was Georgia - lots of MLK sites to visit there!) while gas is so darn cheap, but unfortunately, he had to work and isn't a giant fan of road trips. ;) So instead of migrating toward warmer weather, we stayed home, hung out with friends, discovered a new favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, and I de-cluttered our apartment while Ben worked all of Saturday and Monday. It definitely wasn't as warm as Georgia would have been, but it was productive and fun and wonderful.

I know, we're terribly interesting people. Haha.

Friday, January 16, 2015

sister, sister.

While growing up, I feel like my little sister and I simply co-existed while I lived at home. We shared a room (and later a bed!) for 14+ years, which led to plenty of silly fights and arguments. During our teenage years, we stole clothes out of the other person's closet, and that didn't go over so well either. Ha ha. Fortunately, once I moved away for college, we became better friends and got to know each other better little by little. Now that we live over 4,000 miles apart, there isn't a day that goes by that I don't get a text, Snapchat, or a meme from her, and I'm so lucky to count her as one of my best friends. Happy 19th birthday, chica!!!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Christmas break in Salt Lake City.

I wrote about the first part of our Christmas break here, but I should probably write about the second half of our trip before February rears her pretty little head.
Our Utah trip consisted of:
  • Comedy Sportz with family
  • exchanging gifts
  • playing board games
  • eye appointments for Ben (he got PRK while we were there...it's like LASIK)
  • Netflix binges
  • shopping and running errands
  • visiting Temple Square and doing baptisms with everyone for the first time!
  • meeting up with family and friends
  • family pictures
  • touring my dad's new office building
  • reading by the fireplace
  • face masks & fingernail polish
  • trying new restaurants
  • Cafe Rio pork salads
It's never fun to say goodbye, but fortunately it usually isn't for very long. :) Until next time, Utah!