Monday, December 30, 2013


I love to read!  I love to dive into stories that take me to far away lands for several hundreds of pages.  I love when I cannot put down a book until the very last page.  My goal this year was to take at least 25 adventures.  I did not accomplish my goal but I did experience 21 of them.  YAHOO!!!  21.   Some were ones that I loved the entire adventure and others were ones that I just couldn’t wait to finish so that I could start a new one that brought happiness and a lot of smiles.  So for 2013, I read:

1.  Shopaholic Takes Manhattan by Sophie Kinsella

2. Shopaholic Ties the Knot by Sophie Kinsella

3.  Funeral Potatoes by Joni Hilton

4.  Her Good Name by Josi Kilpack

5.  Austenland by Shannon Hale

6.  Sisters in the Mix by Joni Hilton

7. Bah Humbug! by Heather Horricks

8.  Luck of the Draw by Rachael Renee Anderson

9.  The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman

10.  Divinely Designed by Rachel Renee Anderson

11.  The Reluctant Bachelorette by Rachel Renee Anderson

12.  Peculiar People:  An LDS Comedy by Gideon Burdn

13.  Prank Wars by Stephanie Fowers

14.  Seventeen Second Miracle by Jason F. Wright

15.  Blind Side by Clair M. Poulson

16.  Mafia to Mormon:  My Conversion Story by Mario Facione

17.  Cover Up by Clair M. Poulson

18.  Working It Out by Rachel Renee Anderson

19.  Pumpkin Roll by Josi S. Kilpack

20. Fair Catch by Cindy Roland Anderson

21.  Attachments:  Why You Love, Feel, and Act the Way You D by Tim Clinton

Lots of fun and interesting adventures!

Next year, my goal is 30 books!!  I can do it!!  Yes, I can!


Tuesday, December 3, 2013


This morning as I left for work, I did not grab a coat, nor did I grab any gloves, nor did I wear decent shoes…when I looked outside my window at work…I could not believe what I was saw.  Seriously?  At that moment, I realized that I was not dressed for the weather outside.  I was dreading going outside after work.  The thought came to me…hmmm…maybe I will just stay the night at work.


When I walked outside, I looked at my car…20131203_172332I noticed that I my car had been cleaned off.  I had a SNOW ANGEL.  I looked at Vieve’s car and it was cleaned off too.  She had a Snow Angel!!   I am so grateful for the Snow Angel that rescued me from being frozen too death.   I am truly blessed. 

When I arrived home from work, my drive-way had been cleaned off too.  I had a SNOW ANGEL at home too!!  WOW!!!  I am so grateful!



Monday, December 2, 2013


Guess what?  Dominos sells gluten-free pizza!!!dominos_pizza

I know that you are so excited when I find something that might be able to eat.  HA HA!!  Just know that I am loving this adventure (ok…not loving it at all) that I am experiencing.  It has been tough but I am learning lots.  So, tonight when I tasted this pizza it wasn’t exciting or something that I will want to have very often but it is something that I can turn to when everyone else is eating delicious pizza.


A special little treat…



This morning when I arrived at work, sitting on my desk was a special little treat.  I was so excited.  My dear sweet friend, Vieve, found some sugar-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, and soy-free treat. Seriously, I was so excited.  I have wanted a treat so bad and had been dreaming of any type of deliciousness. HA Thank you Vieve for thinking of me.  You truly are a great friend and I treasure our friendship.  Thank you for the treat but most of all thank you for the sweet card.  It truly touched my heart.  You are amazing!!


Sunday, December 1, 2013

Mom’s tree (well, one of them…she has many)

When it comes to Christmas time, my mom goes all out.  She decorates every room in their home and within each room, she has a Christmas tree.  I love going to their home because it is so magical.  She is very…hmmm…how should I say it?  She is so picky when it comes to her trees.  In fact, when we were little, she would announce that it was time to decorate the Christmas tree.  In most homes, the little ones would help decorate the tree but in our home, it was much different.  We snuggled on the couch and watched Mom decorate the tree.  She loves her trees and everything has to be placed perfectly in its place.  Well, I had the opportunity to decorate her tree (I was nervous the whole time).  When I placed the last ornament on the tree, I breathed a sigh of relief.  FINISHED!!! 

20131227_22055720131227_22060320131227_22061120131227_22061920131227_22063120131227_220658 I think that I did a pretty good job.  What do you think? I love Christmas time!!!


Saturday, November 30, 2013

He is a blessing to me.

20131130_101145 I am so grateful for my brother, Shad. I am not that fond of heights…ok, the real story-I am scared to death of being up in the air.Knowing this fear of mine, he comes over and puts up my Christmas lights. This year, he not only put up my Christmas lights, he cleaned out my rain gutters. Thank you Shad for being so awesome!! You truly are a blessing to me.


Friday, November 29, 2013

The light parade…an annual tradition.

Every year, our family attends Spanish Fork’s Light Parade.  It doesn’t matter if it is raining, snowing or freezing cold, we are there. Tonight, it wasn’t too cold.  YAHOO!!!  Anyway, we sit in the same place all bundled up in warm clothes and plenty of blankets. I love this tradition but what makes it even more incredible is watching  it with my sweet niece.  Brylie gets so excited about everything and anything.  She absolutely loves Christmas lights.  She screams and cheers…it is so fun to watch.  I love experiencing Christmas through her eyes.  Her laugh and excitement is contagious,





20131129_193212I simply love this tradition!!!  The most amazing time of the year is approaching and I am so excited.


It is Black Friday!!

It is Black Friday!!!  I wanted to go shopping and hit the sales but I chose to stay home snuggled in my bed.  Mom and I did end up going to Home Depot to pick up some Poinsettias.  We should have remembered that my car doesn’t hold a lot of stuff…


We had plants everywhere.  Sorry Mom…she had to hold them  (the ones in the front seat) all the way home.  She definitely was a trooper. 


Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

I hope that you have had a fabulous Thanksgiving.  I have so much to be grateful for and as I sit here and type this sentence, my heart is filled with so much peace and gratitude.  I hope that you take a moment and reflect on your many blessings.  It is powerful. 

After eating, napping, cleaning up and eating again, our family headed to the movies.  We watched the new Disney movie, Frozen.


It was simply fabulous.  We laughed, we cried and we laughed some more.  If you haven’t had a chance to watch it, I 100% recommend it.  After you watch, I have a question for you…at what length would you go to to save a loved one’s life? 


Our special Thanksgiving day gift.



Every year, my mom gives the girls in our family a special gift. It is usually a Christmas decoration of some sort. She has done this for years and years. I look forward each Thanksgiving for my special gift. This year our gift was a Santa Claus, a reindeer and a snowman. I love it and I am so excited to add it to my Christmas decorations. Thanks Mom for being so awesome!!! I truly treasure these gifts.


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

a bunless hamburger

While getting my massage today, the subject came up about my new adventure. I told Ashley, Allison and Billie (our massage therapists) that I was craving a delicious hamburger. They told me that Carl’s Jr. makes a hamburger wrapped in lettuce. Interesting? I did not know that. They also told me that Jimmy John’s makes a delicious sandwich called an “Unwich”. I am intrigued and excited to try out these interesting no gluten, no soy, no flour and no dairy foods.

After work, Mom and I decided to take Dad dinner at work. We stopped at Wendy’s and I remembered what the girls were saying at work today. So, I asked the little girl at the window if they make a “bunless hamburger”. They do!! YAHOO!


It wasn’t as exciting as I wanted it to be but it was something different. 


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Monday, November 25, 2013

Seeds…my new treat!

A few days ago, my dear friend showed up with some delicious treats for me to have. I am so grateful that I have people in my life helping me through this little adventure (I am trying to remain positive while trying to stay alive) that I am experiencing.  Vieve brings me delicious treats that are right in line with the doctors orders.  Dalene sends me link after link that lead me to finding new recipes to try.  While my parents, try their hardest to be upbeat and be my cheerleaders when ordering out seems so difficult.  I am grateful for good people in my life.  I am truly blessed.

So when I saw…



20131203_164550and PUMPKIN SEEDS happiness filled my heart!!

I might just feel like a bird when all of this is over…ha ha!!


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Trail mix

Yesterday, I took a trip to WINCO. It really isn’t my favorite place to shop but I decided that I was going to create a trail mix of some sort that will be delicious and will stay within my new guidelines. They have an amazing bulk section that lists all of the ingredients in each of their food items and they are not overpriced. 

Look how delicious it turned out to be…


Aw…it is delicious!!  Want some?  I will share.


Saturday, November 23, 2013

American Crafts Warehouse Sale!

Guess what today is? It’s the American Craft Warehouse sale. Rows of paper, ribbon, embellishments and so much fun stuff—I was simply in heaven as I stepped into the building that would bring so much sunshine into my life.  I love it!!   I look forward to this sale every year and I am never disappointed.  Ok…I love all kinds of sales, no matter where they are or what they are for.  HA HA

Look at what I purchased?

american craft

Aw…I love this annual sale!! It truly makes me smile.  I love scrapbooking and card making supplies!!!  LOVE IT!!!


Friday, November 22, 2013


So every morning, I usually have yogurt and oatmeal but since my change in my everyday diet, I have to figure something else out.  So, as I was walking aimlessly through the store, my eyes fell upon some delicious looking grapefruit.  I decided that I would try eating them in the mornings for breakfast.  Well, I have found that they are kind of messy to eat while sitting at my desk, trying not to get juice everywhere.  HA HA 

So…I have an important question for you.  How do you eat your grapefruit? 



In a bowl?


Or do you peel yours like an orange?

Hmm…I like them both ways…they still are messy but…oh, so delicious!!


Thursday, November 21, 2013

It feels like Christmas morning!

Aw…tonight we had the final card swap of the year. I was in charge of treats so we had a delicious nacho bar and delicious cookies (Vieve brought the cookies-Chocolate Crinkles).  The evening was awesome. We had lots of fun-eating and laughing.  It was great!  For our final swap of the year, we chose to make a Christmas card and  a neighborhood gift.   It was like Christmas morning—so many wonderful treasures.

cards and neighborhood treats

Would you like some absolutely darling ideas?  Here you go:

You’re getting “muffin” for Christmas!

(attached to a box of muffin mix)


We “tissue” a Merry Christmas and a “chap” free New Year!

(attached to a box of tissues and a chapstick)


Wishing you a holiday season full of Peace, Joy and Hope Soap!

(attached to a bottle of soap)


Elf Kisses

With little elf eyes watching you,

There’s not a lot that Santa misses.

So to help you be good today,

Here’s a bunch of Elf Kisses.

(attached to Hershey kisses)


“Twiz” the night before Christmas

and all through the house they were

munching on “Twizzlers” with very happy mouths!

(attached to a bag of Twizzlers)


Snowman Soup

When icy fingers, nose and feet

Are wishing for a warming treat,

Don’t let your frosty spirit droop,

Make up some tasty Snowmen Soup.


First, pour the packet in a mug,

Add snowball marshmallows too.

Now throw in chocolate kisses,

That are special just for you.


Next, stir with the candy stick,

Then sip and it will do the trick.

Even though it may be snowing,

Your insides will be warm and glowing!

(attached to marshmallows, hot chocolate and a candy cane)


and The M&M Christmas Story attached to M&M’s

mandm christmas story

Aren’t these gifts simply amazing?  Aw..tonight was awesome!!! I am so grateful for amazing friends and family (and their creative minds).


Wednesday, November 20, 2013


How many times have you had a prompting to do something and you just ignore it? I have always tried to act on every single prompting that I have received. I know that I am not perfect at it but I know that I try really hard. Well, last night I was writing in my journal, reading some old letters, pondering (you know…multi-tasking) while I was snuggled in my bed watching a Christmas show and texting a friend. I was getting tired; I just wanted to turn off my computer, turn off my TV, put away my phone and drift off to sleep when I received an extremely important prompting.

“Michelle, back up your files and move them to an external drive.”

Like I said, I was tired and just wanted to go to sleep. I powered down my computer, said goodnight to my friend, plugged my phone into the charger, turned off my TV and snuggled deeper into my blankets.

“Michelle, back up your files and move them to an external drive.”

So, what did I do…I drifted off to the most unpleasant sleep (that is another blog entry in itself) that I have had in a long time. I ignored the prompting completely.

Now…many hours later, the regret of not heeding to the prompting that I felt so strongly has made my heart, soul and mind ache. As I booted up my laptop this morning, I received some sort of strange error. After several attempts from my co-workers, I was not getting anywhere other than deeper and deeper into regret. One my dear programmer friends came and checked out my laptop. The only solution…



I lost pictures, journal entries, lessons, talks, letters and the list goes on and on. **SIGH** If only…

But…on the bright side, my laptop is squeaky clean and works as if I just opened the box from the UPS gentleman. I know that I should back up my files on an external drive more often. I know it but sometimes that doesn’t work.

How about a short story…Two weeks before the biggest event of the year, where you bring 250+young women and leaders together to build testimonies, to laugh, to endure bugs, eat dirt, receive no sleep and most of all to feel of our Heavenly Father’s love, I needed to put the final touch on some amazing projects so I attached my USB to my computer and...ZERO FILES! What? Yes!! A pure anxiety meltdown happened. Maybe that is what my USB did---it had a pure anxiety meltdown too. Things that I have been working on for the past year…completely gone!! Projects and more projects that have been a part of my young women leadership for the past many many years…GONE!!


Sad day…very sad day!


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Sometimes we just a need a reminder of what others see in us.

Have you ever had one of those days that you just feel like…well, that you really aren’t sure who you are anymore?  Or why you are even here?  Or what purpose you have on this earth?  Well, my mind has been going through this type of thinking for the past few days…weeks…months.  Sometimes I wonder if I chose the wrong path or made some critical error or something of that nature to lead me to this type of thinking. 

Anyway, while thinking all of these thoughts, I happened to glance at my bookshelf and noticed a framed picture. 


One of my dear friends created this for me for a Christmas gift one year.  She told me that these are the words that she would describe me. 


Tonight I needed to read and ponder it.  I think everyone should have one of these within their reach…just for a reminder of what others see in you.


Monday, November 18, 2013

Not a fun day!!


I had a follow-up doctor’s appointment today. The past few weeks have been simply HORRIBLE when it comes to digesting food.  Following some unwanted blood tests, the decision was made to include the following orders:

No gluten

No flour

No wheat

No yeast

No soy

No corn

No dairy products (except for a little bit of cheese)

No sugar

…for the next 10 weeks.

Not a happy girl!

What do I eat now?

Any suggestions?

Any thoughts?

I am not liking this at all.

I am hungry! Sad smile


Sunday, November 17, 2013

It is a heart potato!

Tonight, Brylie and I made dinner at my parent’s home. It was so much fun. She truly was the perfect helper. As she was getting the potatoes out of the bag to prepare them to be baked, she came upon a potato that was shaped like a heart. All of a sudden, I heard this little giggle and “Aunt Michelle, look…it is a heart.”


She told me that I needed to eat it because it was special. Aw…I love this girl!!!


Saturday, November 16, 2013

It is Hannah’s wedding day!!


Last night, Hannah and I had dinner. It was so awesome to sit and visit with her as she shared so many thoughts and emotions. We chatted about the first time we met and the many many experiences that has led us up to this very day. It was awesome to reflect back on the growth of this sweet young woman.



We talked about that in less than 24 hours she would be married and sealed for time and eternity in the Provo Temple. I felt so much happiness in my heart as I have watched this young woman grow into the person that she is today. Now, today I had the opportunity to attend the beautiful and sacred ceremony and witness the beginning of an eternal marriage. I am so excited for them. They looked so happy.

Hannah, I am so proud of you!!!  Love ya!


Friday, November 15, 2013

These two…have a special place in my heart!!

Tonight I was looking through the pictures on my phone. It was a moment of looking back on some awesome memories. I realized that I really miss these two girls. They have gone off to college creating wonderful memories. I am so excited for the exciting adventures that they are having and will have. These two are incredible. They are simply amazing and adorable. I know that I am blessed for having them a part of my life.

The last time they were in my home they put on a performance that truly made me smile. I love these two. They definitely have a special place in my heart. I miss them.

2013-08-18 20.21.412013-08-18 21.09.172013-08-18 21.10.332013-08-18 21.11.132013-08-18 21.12.03

Aw…I just love these girls!!!  They make me smile!!

I miss them!


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Thursday thoughts…goals.

Today is a perfect day to share a thought…


I love this quote. If you think about it, it is so true. How many times have you decided that you would not finish out a goal because you have one set back? I know I have. When I read this quote, it made so much sense. We need to keep going. I need to keep going. I need to endure to the end. I love these little simple reminders.


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

letters…love them!!

Today I opened my mailbox and what did I see…


a letter written to me from one of my favorite missionaries. Sister Tayla is doing amazing.  I am so proud of her.  Aw… I love receiving mail…cards, notes and letters in the mail.  It brings me so much happiness to my heart. I love it.

Aw…what a delightful day!!


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

I love to create cards!!!

First of all….CHECK OUT THE DATE!! Isn’t that the coolest?  11-12-13!!  Aw…I LOVE IT!!

Anyway, I absolutely love the second Tuesday of each month. It is Stamp & Chat night. What does that mean? Well, it means that some of my friends get together to eat treats, chat and create cards. I love it so much. I am so grateful for friends who love to learn how to create but most of all I love how they show their excitement when they finish one card and move on to the other.  They make me smile!!! 


(picture courtesy of Vieve)

Aw…I love my passion for creating cards!!!


Monday, November 11, 2013

Disneyland…in two days!

photo 2

Hello, Michelle’s readers! My name is Vieve and I’m here to guest blog! Michelle asked me to tell you all my secrets…regarding Disneyland. I am
here to let you know how to get through Disneyland in two days. I know some people know how to do this better than I do, but I think my way is pretty efficient. First of all, pick a good time to go. The best, and slowest times to go are definitely not summer. Summer is a great time to go because everyone is out of school, but that’s the downside, everyone is out of school, so everyone is there. The 2 best times of year are in March (it is warm!) and November – the first two weeks only, then it gets pretty crazy. A good tip also is to go during the week. Yes, it’s easier to get the weekend off, but there are more people there.

After you’ve picked the best time, and gotten your tickets, go early. I’m not saying like, crack of dawn be there, but as soon as the park opens (usually at 9) you need to be there, in the park already. You can be in the park for about an hour before it opens, just not on any rides. Bring water. No matter the time of year you’re going to want to stay hydrated. During these two times, March and November, bring a jacket. Yes, you’ll just be dragging it around all day, but when it gets dark and the sun goes down, you’ll be so glad you brought it.

When you enter the park, immediately get a fast pass for a ride. There are only a few fast-passable rides there, and they’ll have the longest lines. It’s up to you which one you want to do, but I usually do one for Space Mountain. Then, if the line isn’t too long, ride the ride. If it’s too long, go find a shorter line ride, and ride that. If there’s another one close by without a line, do that as well, and then return to do your fast pass. Keep this going all day. Fast pass the rides with the longest lines (Space Mountain, Thunder Mountain Railroad, Splash Mountain, Indiana Jones, Space Tours) and then ride the other rides at your leisure. You’ll get a lot more done, and the lines won’t make you want to give up.

The issue of food at Disneyland is a hotly debated one. Myself, I like to save myself up a little money, and use it to splurge on Disneyland food, because I really enjoy it there. Plus, the meals are so big, that two people can eat them. The reason you wouldn’t want to eat so much, also, is because DLand treats are so good. The one thing you MUST get is a churro. SO GOOD. Also, I recommend a frozen banana, and the Tollhouse Cookie Sandwich. They do sell them everywhere, but for some reason, they are really good there! And for food places, hit up the Stagedoor Café, the Pizza Port, and if you want to spend a little extra, the Blue Bayou (which you need a reservation for, so plan ahead). To end the day in DLand, watch the fireworks. They are awesome, and the best fireworks I’ve ever seen.

Now, after you’ve spent all day in Disneyland, if you follow my formula, don’t dilly-dally, you can definitely finish all of DLand in a day, which means, for day 2, head over to California Adventure, you won’t want to miss it. As soon as you get there (opening time, guys!) IMMEDIATELY get a fast pass for World of Color. Trust me – this is something you won’t want to miss. After you get that fast pass, head over to Cars Land and get one for that ride. Usually, you can’t have two fast passes at the same time, but these 2 are special ones, so it’s allowed. Then, get a fast pass for either Soarin’ Over California (I recommend) or Tower of Terror, or Screamin’. Then, follow the same formula, fast pass a ride, ride the shorter lines. Over here, I recommend eating at the Corn Dog Castle, Pacific Wharf Café (Soup bowls!) and to end the day, grab some ice cream at Burrrrbank. After all that, end the day with World of Color, I love that .


photo 1
That, my friends, is a great way to Disneyland in two days. I will warn you, by day two, you will be tired, and after that day, you’ll be glad for the break. If you do a longer trip, you can take your time, and really enjoy the sites, but sometimes, it’s nice to get away just for a couple of days. I hope you can take a trip soon, and enjoy yourselves! Thanks for reading – and thanks to Michelle for allowing me to guest on here!

photo 3

Thanks Vieve for being my guest today on my blog!!  You are an awesome friend and know so much about Disneyland!!


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Lesson changed at the last possible minute.


I woke up this morning (you are thinking that is probably a good thing since I am writing a post for my blog) with no voice. Yes, indeed. NO VOICE!! Not a big deal, right? WRONG! I had to teach Sunday School today. YIKES!!!  I was so excited to teach this lesson because it was on missionary work but with not having a voice…well, it just wouldn’t work  What to do….what to do…


My voice was slowly coming back by the time Sunday school started but the head and the body was not doing as well.  I was getting frustrated with how I was feeling…but as I took a moment and gathered my thoughts, I knew that everything would work out how it was supposed to work out.

Anyway, I have this cool story to share with you. 

I have been visiting teaching this lady in my ward for many years.  She has not been active in quite some time.  Each month (ok…almost each month) we show up on her doorstep and usually end up handing her husband a thought and a treat (or some sort of handout) and then we go on our way.  Well, today as I walked into church, she was sitting on a bench next to her husband.  I was so excited to see her today—in church.  I talked with her for a few minutes and then asked if she was planning on coming to Sunday School.  She said that she was going to go home.  I invited her to stay but she said that she wasn’t going to stay.  I was sad but on the other hand I was kinda of glad that she wasn’t staying.  See…I was going to share how each month we go to this sweet lady’s home and we rarely see her but as we are serving the Lord He is softening the heart of those that we are trying to serve.  So…WHEW!!!  I don’t need to change the direction of my lesson.

Guess what?

She stayed.  In fact, she stayed for all three meetings. 

Guess what?

It wasn’t a big deal to rewrite my lesson at the last second because when we are on the Lord’s errand, He provides.

Happy Day!!!


Saturday, November 9, 2013

Boxes of tissues needed.


UGH!! It is cold season and I wanted to participate in it 100%...well, not really but something inside my body said, “Hey, come and join me!” HA! So off to the local pharmacy to pick up on tissues and some cold medicine I went. Oh but wait? I can’t have normal cold medicine, I have to have the kind that has ZERO ALCOHOL which means that it is behind the counter and the line was incredibly looooooooooong!! I think that everyone in the county is sick with a cold of some sort. GAH!!!


Friday, November 8, 2013

Puzzles to pass the time.

In the waiting room at the clinic where Mom receives her IV antibiotics, people pass the time of day by putting together a puzzle. We arrive before many patients so we get to have our turn at the table. I love puzzles. I love how the pieces come together to make a beautiful picture.

puzzle Right now, we (all of the cancer patients, antibiotic patients, infectious disease patients, and friends and family of the patients etc.) are putting together “Thomas Kinkaid’s Flags Over the Capital” puzzle.puzzle2

I cannot wait until it is finished. Every day someone has added a few more pieces waiting the day when it is completely finished.


As I think about all those pieces, I marvel at the many hands that have touched them—those that will be passing on to the next life, those that are fighting infections, those that are overcoming a major trial in their life where they have been given hope and all of those that have loved ones going through these moments in their lives. We are all coming together and working hard to create a beautiful masterpiece. Isn’t that what this life is all about—working together to achieve that beautiful place where we can live for eternity.