hi, my name is kelli, and i've been MIA

oh, hi there!
sorry for being so MIA--things have been crazy!
such is life, right?

a quick update on what's been happening lately!

+the first week of school is over and we are into our second week!
i don't know what it is about the first week--but it is absolutely and utterly exhausting.
i'm not sure if it's because of the lack of sleep (compared to sleeping in every day in the summer), or being on my feet all day, or using my voice all day, or having a million things run through my head all day---or maybe a combination of everything.
but MAN it's so exhausting.
I literally came home every day and crashed on the couch.
and then was super grumpy when taylor came home and woke me up! haha
but I did make this flag at back to school night last week, and I'm pretty proud:

OH, and a blog reader asked me a couple of weeks ago how I manage to work out every day--and I will tell you this:
last week I worked out TWICE. TWICE!
I am a 6-day-a-weeker, pretty religiously.
but then there are weeks when life happens.
like the first week of school.
and I just could not find the motivation.
and the two times I ran were only because taylor dragged my butt off of the couch and forced me to go running with him. ha

SO, when that happens, don't beat yourself up.
there's always a new day and a new week!
and yesterday, when I told myself "no more first-week-of-school-excuse-crap," I went on my regular route and it felt GOOD. so horrible. but good.
and when I finished, I told myself, "good job, kel!"
and I can't express how dang proud you should be of yourself for working out!
so verbally praise yourself! and do it proudly!
so, yes. i'm back to the grind.
(see my running tips, here)

and it is so ironic how over the summer when I had NOTHING to do, I was soooo lazy.
and now that I'm back to work, I'm suddenly so productive with every minute of my day.
like last night, taylor and I deep cleaned and threw out SO much stuff.
and I'm currently halfway through cleaning/vacuuming out all of the kitchen cabinets and drawers.
and I just think to myself, "why didn't I do this during the summer?"
but eating cookies all day and watching netflix and reading and sitting by a pool---ahhh, no regrets.
none at allllll.

OH and we love our friends.
and how happy they make us.

taylor planned the coolest date night on friday.
we rode the trax down to salt lake with some of our friends.
went to dinner, and then went to the leonardo museum (animal bodies!).
^the only picture I took that night. ha^
and of course, the day we choose to take public transit, it poured all night.
so we walked all over SLC in the rain.
but thank goodness for friends who have brains and umbrellas. ha!
but seriously...such a fun time!

and as much as we love summer, we are pretty excited that it's getting cooler.
the summer thunderstorms are just about the coolest thing here.
I think we've been out on the grass almost every night watching the lightening (my all time favorite thing).

see taylor jumping into the pool!? ha!

oh, and I must share our conversation last night,
me: "i think that was a sign that you're supposed to birth all of our babies instead of me."
taylor: "if science figures out a way for men to birth babies instead of women....I would still say 'hell no.'" hahahaha i died.
taylor, I love you!
even though your refuse to birth our babies! 


first day!

let's talk about how i woke up at 5 in the AM today.
I am the new Sophomore/Junior class advisor, and I got a text yesterday saying they were practicing their assembly skit at 6:30.
I threw up first, punched myself in the face, and then told them I would meet them there.
Because seriously. 630!?!
I set my alarm for 5:45, but Taylor woke up at 5, so naturally, I laid in bed for the next 45 minutes trying not to think about how much longer I had left to sleep.
ugh. i seriously get the WORST insomnia when school starts.
my brain starts turning, and I can NOT turn it off
thank goodness for lavender oil--my only saving grace!
(and if you don't have some lavender oil, we need to talk. it will change your LIFE. i'll tell you just where to get it and how to get it the cheapest you can!)

so today was sophomore day (tomorrow is the first REAL day), and everything was dandy except for the fact that:
a. kids had my room number with another teacher's name
b. kids had my name with another room number.

so that was fun.

then I went to target after school--mistake.
it was MAYHEM.
everyone trying to get their school supplies.
and I ran into like four new students.
and it was so awesome that they shouted my name from across aisles.
but at the same time, I wanted to run.
because I was sooo tired.
and guys, i've seen you for 10 minutes so far--and I don't remember your name. 
and it embarrasses me that you know me and I have NO clue who you are.
so let me get my cookie dough (HA...serious cookie addiction over here...I think I've mentioned it in every post this summer hahah!) and get outta here!

and basically.
i'm ready to crash until bachelor in paradise comes on.
please tell me you are watching.
immorality and immaturity at its finest.
it is SO dumb but ohhh so addicting.

also, taylor is the sweetest husband and treats me like royalty on the night before the first day of school.
he's such a gem.

alright, time for a bite of cookie dough.
and then a power nap.
ta-ta for now!


last day of NYC + the last day of summer break

on our last day in NYC we headed over to the famous city bakery for breakfast.
the mixed berry scone was to DIE for!
oh, and taylor got the hot chocolate, which was pretty much chocolate soup.
it was soooo rich. ha. 
and we heard they have THE best chocolate chip cookies.
and as a HUGE chocolate chip cookie fan, I will allow them to keep the title!
just a tip...cookies don't come out until 11am, so if you go there for breakfast, plan accordingly!
but yes. that cookie was SO good.

afterwards, tay and i walked over to union square park to sit and read.
such a nice way to spend a sunday morning!

after making a quick stop at grand central station, we headed over to the met.
p.s. if you didn't know, the met is "pay as you wish."
the tickets say they cost $25 for an adult, but you can give them $1 (or even nothing!), and get in!
just a friendly tip ;)

tay was WAY more into the met than I was.
but i followed him along and really tried hard to be entertained.
i just didn't get that art gene that he has...ha

oh, and I don't think I meant to snap this picture on my phone, BUT it made me laugh when I saw it, because it reminded me of what happened when we were sitting on these steps.
I had just leaned over to tay and said, "man, i've got the biggest wedgie."
and right as I went for it, a worker came up behind me and told us that we couldn't be sitting on the steps.
tay just laughed as I turned bright red.
so sorry, worker man!

for lunch, we headed over to BRGR for a second time. 
and then to serendipity!
(p.s. make reservations in advance...they fill up 3 weeks prior. it technically says you can't make a reservation for just dessert, but they wouldn't really know...so I would just do it.
OR, go check in, and have something to do for an hour and a half while you wait.)
oh and a word of warning, EACH person has to spend $8.50, so you can't split a frozen hot chocolate.
which was kinda a bummer, because none of us could finish it. 
but whatevs. they were sooo yummy.
and get the peanut butter one! it was even better than the plain chocolate!

 afterwards, we sadly made our way back to the hotel to pick up our luggage.
and after another long flight, we were finally back in our own bed!
seriously SUCH a fun vacation.
since we pretty much saw every touristy thing, tay and I are excited to go back and just sit in central park and spend our days reading, people watching, and relaxing.
because we kinda felt like we needed a vacation from our vacation after this trip! ha!
there was just sooo much to see and do in so little time!

and GUYS. today is it.
the very last day of summer break.
yesterday, I did nothing.
nothing. absolutely nothing.
and i did it on purpose hoping I would get bored and excited to go back to work.
i think it kinda worked.
because by the evening, I was antsy.
it kinda seems surreal that summer is already over.
but i'm pretty glad that we got to end it with a bang in NYC!

looking for some serious good vibes about being able to wake up at 6:15 tomorrow morning. 
and sit through all of my teacher meetings without falling asleep.
fingers crossed for a good school year!


another day in NYC

we started our third day in new york by going to breakfast at sage general store in long island city.
and get the french toast! it was soooo yummy.
the restaurant was actually featured on the foodnetwork on diners drive ins and dives!
oh and the orange juice is freshly squeezed and so good!

then we headed over to the 9/11 memorial.
we had the opportunity to go to the new museum that just opened in may.
the museum was incredibly beautiful.
it was so well done.
and yet, so, so incredibly painful.
it is so emotionally powerful.
i'm not sure if it's the fact that it still seems so recent, or that I actually remember it happening, or that you are literally standing in the exact spot of where so much fear, heartache, shock, and faith was experienced 13 years ago (the museum is directly under where the towers stood), but it was almost too much to take in.
we spent five hours in the museum--you could literally spend a good 15-20 hours in there.
taylor left after three hours because he was emotionally spent.
and within the next two hours, our group slowly trickled outside when each individual felt they had reached their emotional limit.
I honestly don't know what to say about it, other than to encourage every one to go sometime in their life.
there are so many stories of heroism, faith, love, fear--it is so beautiful.
there were no dry eyes in the museum.
there were many times when I would meet a stranger's eye, both of us with our cheeks wet and eyes overflowing, and we would share a small knowing smile--because WE are americans, and this museum and this event tied us all together in an inexplicable way.

to be completely honest, the next day, I was a little emotionally damaged.
it was hard not to think about what you took in the day before, and yet so much of you didn't want to think. because to think about the things you felt and saw hurt so much.
It was a little haunting for me--but it seemed even more real than it ever has before.
I have a hard time reliving those five hours that I spent in the museum.
this is the "survivor tree" that now sits in the plaza.
it was the only tree that was still standing after the towers collapsed.
the tree was moved to a park in NYC while it was nursed back to health and strength.
then, it was moved back to the memorial site and still has stakes and anchors to help it grow.
there was so much beauty and symbolism in this tree.
make sure you find it when you go to the memorial!
this is the freedom tower.
newly built.
on the twin tower plaza.
it is currently the tallest building in the U.S.
and it makes me think that america is just awesome.
we built a tower in the same spot.
a taller tower.
to prove that we are not afraid.
to prove that we will grow.
taller and stronger than we ever were before.

a few tips if you are planning on going to the memorial:
+buy your tickets online!
there is a LONG line to get tickets, so you can save yourself time and just buy them online.
+arrive 15 minutes AFTER your ticket time (a worker told us this tip!).
people start lining up for their ticket time way in advance.
if you arrive 15 minutes after, you don't wait in line, but just walk in!
+allow some extra time before/after to sit on the memorial grounds/look at the reflecting pools
+do NOT limit yourself time wise in the museum (don't go on a day where you are scheduled to be somewhere else).  I really think it is best to give yourself as much time as you need/want inside the museum. and make it a personal thing.  if you're with a group, or even with just another person, just explore the museum independently and meet up outside of the museum when you are each done.  be willing to accept that you may be done at 3 hours, while someone else may need 5. (even though the museum is underground, there is cell service, so you can stay in communication with your group!)
+when you get inside the museum, go upstairs first! there is a 15 minute video that is so powerful.  a great introduction to the rest of the museum.  a lot of people skip that.  DON'T!

moving on!

some food recommendations from the day!
we went to the yummiest cupcake shop! sprinkles!
(just across from the memorial)

i'm not even a cupcake fan, and these were SO good!
i got the dark chocolate banana, and man! it was the best on the table.

prosperity dumplings in china town!
I was a little skeptical when my mom wanted to go here.
she had heard all about it.
and china town is SKETCH and dirty and smelly.
and so I was reallyyyy not feeling it when we got there.
in fact, taylor and I didn't even order anything because we are...well, germaphobes. BIG TIME.
but after they came out with their sesame pancakes and dumplings (4 dumplings for $1, $1 for the pancake!) and they gave us a few bites, we went in and ordered our own! haha! 
seriously SO good!
and the only cheap food we found in NYC!

one of my favorite things we did was walk the Brooklyn Bridge.
we walked across the bridge to the famous julianna's pizza, and she did NOT disappoint!
neither did the views on the way!
and my pictures really suck--i kept walking into the "bike lane" to take them and taylor would freak out and pull me back into the walking lane because I wasn't very good at looking both ways...
a bicyclist swerved and nearly crashed because of me...whoops.
so all of these pictures are of me snapping as quick as I could without getting a chance to get everything perfect.

(we got the #4 at juliannas--so good!)

and will you allow me to post once more about NYC?
we've got one more day to share!
coming tomorrow!

and uhhhh school starts for teachers on thursday.
what the heck. 
where did summer go!?
but i'm excited.
i miss my students.
i did all of my errands/chores today so that tomorrow and wednesday I can be SOOO LAZY for one last time. hahah!
waving hi to my couch, the cookie dough in the fridge, my pantsless/braless self and taylor's BYU sweater (quite oversized on me)--my favorite article of clothing EVER.
guys. summer was so good to us!
but i'm kinddaaaa excited for FALL! am I crazy?

and alsooooo.
we may or may not be booking a cruise tomorrow with two of our best friends.
we could NOT be more excited!!

and tay is desperately trying to get my to join him on the living room floor and watch modern family.
how can I resist?
and he just asked, "did you write anything about you being pantsless right now and how much you love being pantsless, yet?"
OH YES, yes I did.
you know me so well, taylorray.
i love him.
and hate pants.
peace out. 


NYC day 2!

our second day in NYC was dear taylor's 25th birthday!
I had already given him his gifts before leaving for NYC (i'll post about that later!), so we mostly celebrated by divulging in yummy food, saying/singing happy birthday to him one million times, and by going to WICKED on broadway!
I surprised him with the tickets a few days before--something he had been wanting to do for years.
and it did not disappoint!

such a magnificent story and a talented cast! taylor and I were in heaven.

after the play, we headed over to the "original soup man" (from seinfeld, on my brother's bucket list).
we walked a few blocks over to central park to sit and eat the soup. it was pretty yummy.
we took our time strolling through the park, and I wanted to punch every runner going by out of pure jealousy.
I would looove to take a jog through central park every day!
taylor told me, "kells, don't worry. for your birthday, I got you an apartment on 5th avenue overlooking central park."
perfect! can't wait.
so yeah! we are moving to NYC in april!? alright!

we walked through central park until we arrived at laduree.
i'm not a huge fan of macaroons (i know, slap me), but these ones weren't too bad!

after walking down 5th ave, seeing some street performers, touring st. patrick's cathedral (SO pretty!), we headed over to the rockefeller center to go up on the observation deck.
and this (along with wicked), hit the top of my list.
such great views.
even if they did charge us $29 a person.
I told taylor I had our million dollar idea. we just need to build the tallest building and charge people $29 to get to the top.
the rest of the building can be completely empty!
so i think once we move to NYC, we will start building. great plan.

 our group of six had split up at this point, and so it was just me, taylor, and jamie.
I was dying to try BRGR so we made our way over there for dinner.
buuuut first my phone died.
and then taylors.
and then jamies.
and so we had to find it without any phones.
it was quite the adventure.
but guess what?
we arrived!
and i think this might have been THE best burger I've ever had.
and that's saying something--because I am a huge hamburger fan.
I was brave and ordered the "fresh morning" which had a fried egg on the burger.
sound gross? don't worry, it sounded gross when i ordered it, too.
but I figured I would go all out.
and WOWW i could rave about this burger all day.
in fact we went back the next day! ha! 
that good. seriously.
afterwards, we decided we wanted to find dessert.
our phones were all dead, but we figured if we walked a few blocks, we would stumble across something.
wellll...5 blocks.
then 10 blocks.
then 15 blocks.
then 20 blocks.
then 22 blocks later.
and we still hadn't found a single ANYthing. ha!

and of course, it was taylor's birthday, so that made me feel bad. ha
but we finally gave up (our feet were crying), and so we made our way back to the hotel.

so for those of you going to NYC soon, splurge on the ticket for the top of the rock, get a broadway ticket in advance (i searched forever, and finally found decent priced tickets with GREAT seats!),  GO TO BRGR and order the fresh morning, and bring your phone charger!
(because there were definitely five million outlets at BRGR, which was really depressing when we looked at all of our dead phones)

oh and hey, guess where I am again?
you got it.
an airport terminal.
the last five times i've blogged, I feel like I've been in an airport terminal.
and i'm reallyyyy tired of flying.
i want to be home and enjoying my last few precious days of staying in bed.
because SCHOOLSTARTSONTHURSDAY (for teachers, at least). ugh my face is crying.
but at least i'm headed to sacramento, the second best place to be in the world.
but you better believe i'm going to take a nap first thing. 
i had to wake up at 4am to catch my 6am flight.
I have no idea why I booked a 6am flight...
taylor wasn't super happy when I woke him up to take me this morning. ha!
and then we missed the exit, and he swore, and we both laughed so hard we finally woke up, so there's that.

I really hope everyone else is still in bed right now!
but when you awake--have a happy thursday!


august 6, 2014

three years ago today, taylor got down on one knee and asked me to be his forever.
we celebrate this day every year, by hiking up to where taylor proposed to me--at the top of stewart falls.
it's so fun to talk about that day as we hike up to the falls--I always ask him the same questions about that day three years ago:
"where you nervous when we were hiking up?"
"where you afraid I would say no?"
"what were you thinking while we hiked up?"
"how did you keep such a good secret!?"

since our day was jam-packed, we decided to wake up at 5:30 and do our traditional hike at sunrise.
and OH MY...it was sooo beautiful!
not to mention that we didn't see a single person on the trail!
just us two and the world.

 it's kind of amazing how just a few days ago we were awe struck at the beauty of new york city--and this morning we were surrounded by a completely different type of beauty!

after reminiscing for a little bit at the top of the falls, we tried our best to take a picture.
the only bummer of being the only ones on the trail, was that no one could take a picture for us!

then we decided to precariously place our camera on a mountain of rocks while we tried to get a picture together that was less of a selfie.

and then! we got even smarter, and decided not to stand in front of the sun.
it's a good thing you can't see the fear in my eyes.
the camera was teetering!
august 6th is such a special day to me.
it's the day that we made the decision to become one.
i can still remember hiking back down that hill three years ago and being the giddiest girl on the planet.

we actually have the proposal on video and it is the cutest thing ever.
i just need to figure out a way to upload it, because it's in a weird file format...
hey taylor! you have homework tonight! ;)
and i guess the hike really took it out of me this morning, because it's 11:30am and I'm currently eating my fourth bowl of cereal. uh whoops.

but look!
here are pictures from the actual day three years ago!

so, dear taylor:
thanks for putting a ring on it.
because you are just about the best thing on this planet.
and i'm so glad I get to call you mine.
(and how ironic is it that I have the EXACT same chipped nail polish on today that I did on the actual day! haha!)

if you ever want to stalk me, go hike stewart falls every august 6th.
i'll be up there even when I'm using a walker.

to see past august 6th posts, see here and here (<--actual proposal story in second one)