Fall owl background

Monday, December 12, 2011

Latest updates

Yesterday Daniel clicked on the link for our blog, then proceeds to tell me that I need to update our blog. I've known this for a while now. It's been hard to find time when there are other things I should be doing like cleaning or working. Of course the excuse that I gave him was that whenever I have time to write a blog he is usually on the computer. So today I put all other responsibilities to the side and am updating our blog.

Looking through our pictures I came across a short trip we took to Julian, CA in late October. I thought it would be nice to just get away and be able to walk and talk with Daniel. We stopped at a place called Mom's and got a caramel apple crumb pie. It definitely demonstrated why Julian is known for their apple pies. We had fun splurging on some sweets and walking through such a little town.

Now just this last year I became a huge fan of the band America. They are a 1970's folk band with many hits such as "Ventura Highway" and "Horse With No Name" to name a couple. Last year I made a Pandora playlist for the band and discovered that they sang a lot of good songs that I already loved, but had no idea that they sang them. Since then I have been anxiously waiting for them to perform a show in San Diego so Daniel and I could go. On November 4th they came to the contemporary art museum in La Jolla so do an interview and then to play an acoustic set. I begged Daniel and he said we could go. It was such a great experience to hear how the band started, the inspiration behind their music, and how they have been making music for so long. Their set was amazing. I'm ma
d at myself for not recording more of their performance. They are great live performers and listening to them has re
minded me how people who make music now a days just don't do it the same. Here are a couple of men in their late 50's and they sound great! I can't wait to see them again when they come into town.
On November 22, 2011, Daniel's best friend Ben g
ot married to a wonderful woman named Maggie. We were able to witness their marriage in the Salt Lake City Temple. That was our first time inside that temple and what an inspiration it truly is knowing the time spent and the details that went into such a sacred place. We are very excited for Ben and Maggie to be starting their lives together and can't wait until we buy our house so that they can come visit us. The wedding gave us an excuse to take a trip to Utah. We were able to visit some friends and eat at a lot of places that we missed. Although we ran out of
time to go to the BYU Creamery, I was a little sad about that. Thanksgiving day we spent on the road to Vegas. We did eat at a sports bar, not our first choice. We wanted to eat at Cracker Barrel for some traditional Thanksgiving food, but the wait was an hour and fifteen minutes and our stomachs did not want to wait that long.

We made it to Vegas that night where we were able to stay at my Aunt's condo. In Vegas we had tickets to go to the Las Vegas Basketball tournament because guess who was going to be playing??? University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (UNC). The Tar Heels were the high light of the tournament and we were able to watch them play live for the first time. Daniel was so excited and I was glad to finally watch the team in person. The first game they played was against University of South Carolina which was an easy win. The next night was against UNLV which was basically a home game for them. The game had a great atmosphere, but UNC played weak. UNLV won 90-80. We did find out that UNLV fans are horrible drunks.
They threw things at the UNC fans and a few even tried to hurt Roy Williams (UNC's Coach). Although they weren't able to pull it through the second game it was still a lot of fun to watch them. The trip we had was exactly what we needed and I'm glad that Daniel and I could have some alone time!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Daniel's Birthday and our summer summary

So my sweet husband just turned 26 on Wednesday. We are now officially 1 year apart for the next 6 months. For his birthday he wanted to go to a basketball tournament in Vegas that the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill (UNC) basketball will be playing in. For those of you who don't know Daniel very well, he is all about UNC sports.The tournament is not until Thanksgiving weekend so since I am a wonderful wife I surprised him with a couple of small gifts. First I had been putting money away for about a month to use on a present for him. With that money he bought a watch, something he has been wanting for a while. According to him, women have jewelry and men have watches. I had also found a t shirt online that said "property of the catahoula leopard dog", which would be the breed of dog we have.

I figured it would make a good workout shirt. We cooked dinner together, me making side dishes and Daniel grilling the steaks on the grill. For the cake he wanted German Chocolate Cake which my mom made for him with frosting from scratch. The day was great and filled with a Lord of the Rings marathon as per Daniel's request. We are excited to enjoy his main gift coming this November in Vegas. It will be a nice little vacation doing something that we enjoy.

Although the summer went by quickly I feel that we made the most of it. Thanks to the gift I got for my birthday (season passes to the San Diego Zoo and Safari Park) we made lots of trips to the Zoo.

We also spent a lot of Sundays at the beach, soaking up the sun and playing in the waves.
Since Daniel was very busy during the week we found Sunday to be the only day we could actually make plans to do something. We are both very grateful for having work, but we do look forward to the time that we can spend together.

Now that the summer is over it's football season, so every Saturday night that I am not working I am staying in with Daniel to watch multiple college football games. At least I get to spend time with him. And having to sit through hours of football has made me realize that I do enjoy watching football and the rivalry among different teams. I'm learning new terms and am happy to report that I know what a pick 6 is as well as what different flag calls mean. I still personally enjoy watching basketball more.

With Halloween around the corner I have been trying unsuccessfully to convince Daniel to dress up with me this year. I only want to dress up for when we meet at our church for trick or treating. I told him to be Peter Pan and that I could be Tiger Lily, even Keif could dress up as captain hook, but he won't go for it. We found the funniest dog costumes while browsing the internet. One of my personal favorites was a monkey that you strap onto your dogs back. There was also a headless horseman that strapped onto your dogs back that I got a kick out of.

They don't have one big enough for Keif, otherwise I would have ordered it for sure. If I end up winning the battle for dressing up this Halloween I will definitely post it on here.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Colorado Vacation

We've been spending the last couple of days getting back into our routine of work, gym and, well, more work. Sounds depressing, but it is nice to get back to a schedule. Our trip was a great trip! A lot of traveling aka driving, I calculated it out to be about 38 hours of traveling in the car. No wonder why Keif slept the entire time in the car.

Our first stop was Gilbert, AZ. That was a 6 hour drive from my house in Valley Center, CA. We stayed with my Aunt Rose and her family there. I hadn't seen them in years so it was really nice to visit with her. We met my cousins' daughters ages 2 and 6. The two year old, Sariah, sang her ABC's for us and the 6 year old, Breanna, demonstrated how much better she could say her ABC's. Daniel got a kick out of how much Sariah talked, we couldn't understand her, but she was so expressive with her hand movements and facial expressions.

Next we drove 10.5 hours to Sanford, CO. Sanford is home to my mother's parents and siblings. Daniel has never met my maternal grandparents, so this was quite the treat for him. I'm sure the many stories I told him of my grandmother's little frame and spitfire attitude did not disappoint at the initial greeting. Daniel was surprised at how tall my grandpa was, probably because all of us are such shorties compared to him. He really enjoyed meeting them and only called them grandma and grandpa. My grandma was her usual self with trying to feed us all til we were stuffed; she made us breakfast the whole time we stayed there as well as dinner. Grandma was a bit intimidated by Keif, but he is an intimidating looking dog. Keif was able to hang out with my Aunt Regina's 6 year old dachshund Sugar. They did fight over his food, but other than that they enjoyed each other's company.

2.5 days are what we spent in the Valley. We filled those days with trips to the dunes, hiking Zappata falls, 4 wheeling and shooting in the mountains, and visiting lots of people. My cousin Nakayla gave us an exclusive tour of the Adam State College campus with the thanks of my Aunt Berna letting us borrow her key to see the rooms. I met a few new members of the family which made me wants kids even more, but that will happen someday. Daniel was impressed with how much he enjoyed being in the Valley and is definitely excited for the next time we go.

The third leg we drove 4 hours to Denver, CO. There we had a family reunion on the Martinez side. My dad had 5 siblings he hadn't seen since he was 8 so as you could imagine emotions were high. My mom and dad had already met up with everyone prior to the reunion, but now it was time for all the kids and grandkids to meet. What an amazing experience to meet people for the first time who are your blood relatives! There is definitely a lot of regret in not being able to have grown up knowing each other, but everyone was so happy to meet each other, so friendly and open. It made for an absolutely incredible journey. I look forward to getting to know more of my family from here on out. On this trip I was also able to meet my nephew Noah for the first time. He is so cute and was so easy going. I kept stealing him from people and he was good to go with me. I miss not being in closer range to where my sister lives. I love her family so much and enjoy the time I spend with them.

Next up, the drive to Provo, UT, the total time...7 hours...and a few minutes here and there. We missed a turn off on one point, but luckily we noticed it early on so it only delayed us about 20 minutes. I was able to have lunch with two of my favorite people, and it was much needed girl time, while Daniel spent time with Ben and his boo Maggie. After lunch we headed to the Creamery on 9th and got our stomachs full of delicious creamery ice cream! Too bad we couldn't travel with the icecream back to CA, we love that stuff. Our stay in UT was very brief. I wanted to see so many more people, but just didn't have enough time. We stayed at my cousin Branden's new house. It was very nice and made me more antsy to get our own place. His wife looked beautiful being pregnant and their son Ty is getting so big. Crazy how we grow up to start our own families.

Finally we drove 10 hours back to home sweet home. I probably will try to avoid a trip like that again for a long time, unless we had an RV to do it all in. The trip was wonderful and I already miss everyone we saw, but it's working hard that makes those vacations so much more sweet to go on.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Busy Month of March

March was so busy, that I didn't even have time to blog about it. Luckily I am able to take the time to blog today about just all that we did. It began with our two year anniversary on March 14th. Daniel actually couldn't remember when it was, but at least he remembered the month and since he is so cute I'll let it slide. We didn't do too much since we were taking a trip at the end of the month. We went to Old Town San Diego to eat Mexican food, then went to the La Jolla cove to explore the cove and watch the sunset. We also got frozen yogurt from Golden Spoon, yum! It was a great day and I enjoyed spending time with Daniel. He is my best friend and I'm excited to spend many, many more anniversaries with him.

Now for our trip, it was a great trip! We started out flying to Raleigh, NC where we stayed with Daniel's friend Jeff at his place in Durham. While visiting him for the day we checked out UNC's campus at Chapel Hill, visited Duke's campus and Daniel even ran into Reggie Bullock, who plays on the UNC basketball team. He was able to take a picture with him.

The next couple of days we traveled down to Charlotte to see where Daniel grew up and to visit friends of his from high school. He showed me the schools he went to, the church building he attended, and the homes he had loved in. There were tons of trees, just like he had said. He was sad that there were no leaves on them at the time we were there, but I did get to see a lot blossoms on trees. The people were friendly and said yes ma'am and no ma'am. Daniel's friends were nice and even told me how he was on high school...which was exactly what I thought.

After a couple of days in Charlotte we went up north to Frederick, MD to attend Daniel's sister, Amanda's, Baptism. We met up with Daniel's parents, brother Dustin with his family, and sister Becky with her family. The baptism was a sweet, intimate gathering to support Amanda with her decision. We also were able to meet Fiona and Duke, Daniel's niece and nephew, for the first time.

We were also able to visit with Daniel's Uncle Bryan and Aunt Kathy. Getting to know Daniel's family made this a wonderful trip and has definitely made me feel more part of the Joyce family. Along with Bryan and Kathy we toured Mount Vernon which is where George Washington's mansion as well as tomb are located. We also got to walk around DC with them and thanks to the place they were staying in DC, I got to see some picket line action going on.

Going back to DC made me realize how much I liked being in that city. It has lots of free museums to attend, great public transportation and so much history. It was really cold though, but if that city had the same weather as San Diego, lets just say I would be trying to live there.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Daniel and Tiffany's Day of Fun!

Today I had the day off!! Ok, may not sound that special, but I had worked 10 days straight and I was definitely feeling overworked. I had originally planned on running errands since I figured Daniel would be working, but he surprised me with the news that he also had the day off. I was ecstatic to say the least. Last night we came up with a few different game plans for the next day, to makes sure we could fit in everything we wanted to do and also alternatives in case the weather didn't cooperate. When we got up and noticed that there was no rain we decided to go with our first plan.

We both have been feeling that our sweet dog Keif has been getting neglected lately. So we decided to take him and Dolly, my mom's toy poodle, to the beach. It was so sunny and beautiful at Moonlight Beach in Encinitas. Keif ran around the sand and water with Daniel while Dolly was my little shadow and stayed by my feet the whole time. My mom recently gave Dolly a haircut so we bought her a little sweater to keep her warm while we were out.

After running at the beach we decided to give the dog park at Balboa Park another chance. Keif did fine there the first time we took him. The second time he was being a bit too Alpha for his own good and was coming across as a bully. We hoped the third time would be a charm. Balboa park was bustling with tourists and children on field trips as it usually is. We didn't see too many dogs being walked around which worked out well for us. At the dog park there were about 30 dogs of all different sizes and ages. Keif did really well. He wasn't acting aggressive towards any dogs and he even won over some of the people who were their with their dogs. All in all it was a successful trip to the dog park.

In the afternoon we returned the dogs home all tuckered out. Daniel and I were then able to enjoy the rest of the evening together. The day was a great one and it helped to refuel me to be ready to work tomorrow. Only 27 more days until our trip to North Carolina so we can have a real vacation. But until then I'm just focusing on getting some work done.

Monday, January 24, 2011

When we first met...

Today while on facebook I came across a link to a blog. The blog belongs to a mother (Joanne) of a friend of mine (Allison). I'm thinking it would probably make for some good reading seeing as how my friend is hilarious and she had to get it from someone. I was so right. I read through the blog for about an hour when I decided I needed to save some reading material for another day. I guess what makes the blog even more interesting to read is that my friend would always tell me stories about her mom, so this blog just reinforced the stories I had heard. One of the blogged inputs was about how Joanne had met her husband. I've decided it would be a good story to share since not every one knows how we meet. And in a strange twist of coincidences, one of Joanne's daughters (Charley) was a helper in how Daniel and I met.

It was the weekend after Valentine's day in 2008. I was already annoyed from the holiday because all of my roommates had received Valentines from boys, some even multiple (Khealynn). On Valentine's day itself I went out to dinner with some friends of mine who were also single and called it an early night since I was under the weather. Amber had come out for the weekend since she liked to visit often, being only four hours away in Rexburg, ID. We went to a play that weekend too, Jungle Book at BYU, which is initially why she came. Sunday came and Amber and I slept through my church time which was 8:30 AM. We decided to hit up church when our cousin, Branden had church which was 1:30 PM.

We got to church a few minutes late and sat in the back. We happened to be sitting on the same row as Charley so after church I said hello and had a quick chat. Daniel was sitting with Charley, she was pretty much one of the only people he got along with at church. While Charley and I were talking, Daniel was trying to get her to introduce us, but she just brushed him aside. After chatting Amber and I went into the lobby to wait for Branden who was running late. About 5 minutes later this guy came up to me and said, "Hey, you're Charley's friend". I said yes and he then introduced himself and his friend Ben. While talking we found out that Ben was going to the same school as Amber so they started talking. Apparently Ben was fulfilling his wingman duties as Daniel explained to me later. Daniel then started chatting with me. My first impression I was just some guy at church who wanted to talk. Amber had to tell me that Daniel was hitting on me because I was so oblivious. He invited me to Sunday dinner, basically just a bunch of coeds hanging out. I told him I'd think about it, but decided to hang out with my sister instead.

A couple of days later Allison gave me a call. She asked me if I remembered Dan from church and if it was ok if Charley gave him my number. I thought about it for a minute, I was a little hesitant because he didn't really catch my eye, but then Allison said something that made me decide to give the ok. She said, "He just got out of a relationship and that he didn't want anything serious". She also said, "Hey if you're not interested you can just tell him you got serious with the guy you are dating". I figured it was worth a shot. I was dating someone, but it was not exclusive and the guy was a little flaky.

A few days later I received a phone call from Dan. I think I let it hit the voicemail first because I didn't recognize the number. I listened to the message and called him back. I was on my way home from tanning. At the time I used a tingler tanning lotion which if anyone has ever used knows it burns. It makes you feel really itchy so I was looking forward to getting home so I could shower and get ready for a date, with the other guy I was dating. We chatted a moment and he invited me to another Sunday dinner at Charley's. I figured, why not, and I accepted. When I walked into Charley's apartment that Sunday and saw Daniel, I realized he was a lot cuter then I had remembered. Dinner was fun and we were able to talk a bit. I remember being bugged that he didn't offer to walk me home (we lived in the same apartment complex), but it was a fun evening none the less. A few days later he called me. I was in the computer lab so I resorted to texting. He then asked me out on a date via text. I was annoyed that he asked me out through text, but seeing as how I lived at school that semester I figured it was probably the only plausible way he could ask me out.

Things went well on our date obviously and here we are 3 years later. Almost to our 2 year anniversary and we even have our our addition to our family...Keif. I guess my story is not as cool as Joanne's who can add in 20 something years later to her blog, but I look forward to being able to share this story with our kids and even grandkids. For now it's a story for the blog.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Good start to a new year.

So far this new year we are experiencing has been good. We just welcomed a new nephew into the family from my sister Anissa on January 9th. This is their last child, and their first son. She already has 3 girls so this birth was pretty exciting. This is also the first grandson for my parents. They named him Noah Thomas Elias Smith. He is named after Noah's grandfather, and after himself. I haven't met the little guy yet but I am looking forward to seeing him for his blessing next month.
Last Friday Daniel and I took a little trip to L.A. My mom and Amber were both flying out of the Long Beach airport so we decided that since we were up there we would make the most of it. We first decided to find the house that was used in the movie "Father of the Bride", and we found it in Pasadena, CA.
It is such a beautiful house! Daniel says that's the kind of house he wants someday. After we walked around the neighborhood we decided to stop by to see the Rose Bowl. After turning around a few times thanks to the ever so reliable directions from google map, we finally found the place.
It was in a pretty open location and it was a popular spot for people to go running and to walk their dogs. After our little driving adventure we decided to go to UCLA's campus. However by the time we got their it was dark so we didn't see very much. Then we went home which took us a total of 3 hours thanks to L.A. traffic. Probably won't take any more trips up their soon, but it was a fun day none the less.

Something pretty exciting is that Daniel and I will be taking a trip out to the East side. I just booked our trip yesterday. We are flying into Raleigh, NC to spend some time in Chapel Hill and Durham, visit his Aunt and Uncle in Greensboro, NC then we will head to Charlotte, NC and Fort Mill, SC so I can see where Daniel grew up. After that we are going to Frederick, MD to spend time with Daniel's family as well as attend his younger sister's, Amanda, baptism. And of course while we are there we will be spending a couple of days in D.C. to enjoy the museums. It will be a very busy trip, but I look forward to spending time with Daniel, seeing his family and meeting new family members. I'm just hoping the weather will cooperate with us the last week of March so that our flights won't get canceled.