Monday, December 14, 2009

Christmas Towne

Yesterday we made gyoza and gingerbread houses with Jake and Sylvia and our friends Jeff and Shasta. Of course my house was the best of them all.

You can see the rest here:

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Our Christmas Tree

On Saturday, Angela and I picked out a small tree to set up in our equally small home. We then spent the next few hours making ornaments to decorate it with. I made the popcorn garland and star while Ang made the assorted ornaments. As you can see, it ended up being perhaps the greatest tree ever made by humans.

Yeah. We rock the holidays.

Monday, November 23, 2009


This past Saturday I went to my nephews very first wrestling match. It was fun, sad, violent, exciting, and skillful all rolled into one. Granted, these were 5 year old boys wrestling, so the skill level is still developing, but still. There were several little kids that were just good at wrestling and you could tell they had a natural ability for it.

But do you know how sad it is when a little boy loses, or knows he's losing, and he starts to cry! Oh that made me want to cry.

My husband and his brother wrestled in highschool and they both loved it. Loyd told me how it is harder to lose when you wrestle as opposed to team sports because it is just you that lost. So I felt even worse for those cute little kids.

When I mentioned how violent the sport was, Chris said "Yeah...well, these kids aren't as suave as highschool students". And that is true. I remember watching wrestling during the Olympics and thinking it was really cool. I don't remember thinking it was violent. Ofcourse I was in highschool.

And wrestling is one of the oldest sports around...I suppose if it has lasted this long it must be ok. I also think that it can help focus a hyper and aggressive kids energy, and teach them the correct places and ways to use that aggressiveness. Because its not like it is cage fighting or just free for all scrapping. There are rules and techniques to follow.

Even though I see the benefits I can not help but be concerned with the unhealthy habits that also come along with the sport. Making weight for instance. I have heard from more than one source about making weight. Starving and sweating yourself, trying to get every ounce of water out of you so you can be the heaviest in a lower weight class. And then after wards binge eating. Not healthy habits. And I have to say, a little unfair and unethical as well.

Also, RINGWORM! That is sick. Those mats are germ invested fungus farms. Kid after kid rubs his sweat and spit up and down that mat and then the next kid laps it up. UGH! That is sooooooo nasty.

My final qualm...the unitards. They are not attractive.

So I still don't know what I think about my kids wrestling. I won't stop them, and if they want to do it I will be there biggest and most supportive fan. But I really hope they will want to do something else.

*Loyd edit*

Here is the video of our nephew's matches. He won all three with pins.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Macy Leona Green

As many of you know, my sister Sylvia gave birth to her beautiful, healthy second daughter on November 12 at 5:19am. This birth was extra special for me because Sylvia let me be there! I was the historian: journaling, taking photographs, and filming. I arrived a few hours after Sylvia and Jake left for the hospital. I started journaling as soon as I arrived at about 4:30am. I just sat to the side recording what the nurses and midwives said, when Sylvia had a contraction, if it sounded like an extremely difficult one, little conversations between Sylvia and Jake, and other observations.

Sylvia asked me to take photos (she breathed it between contractions :) so then I positioned myself in a corner next to the bed. I was right next to the "action", but still on the periphery of it. Sylvia is amazing to me. She makes natural childbirth look easy. Yeah I wanted to cry once because she sounded like she was in so much pain, but she was so controlled. I couldn't believe it. She breathed through the contractions, and knew exactly what was going on with her body. She told the nurses and midwives what she wanted, and how fast she was going to go. She was in control of her experience and that was awesome.

So I had the video camera ready for when the baby was coming. That was funny because I didn't know when Sylvia was really going to push, so I felt schizophrenic taking a step to video, then instantly retreating back to my corner to wait. I did that for 5 minutes I'm sure. Well, it was finally time. I was able to record and see Macy being born. And WOW!

I was afraid it would be gross and I would vomit everywhere, but it wasn't bloody or oozy or anything. It was beautiful. As I was recording I became overwhelmed with emotion. I was getting all choked up over how amazing childbirth is, and how strong Sylvia is, and how the whole thing is just CRAZY! How is all that possible? How can women really do that and survive? The combination of strength and fragility is amazing. Beautiful.

It was such an honor to be allowed to record the events for Sylvia and Jake. It was such an honor to be allowed to experience that special event. I asked Sylvia and Jake if it is less special with the second. They responded that it wasn't. And I got it on tape, from their reactions you would think it was their first baby. The magic of childbirth only gets stronger.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

An Adoption Story

I received a distinct impression to write about a very sacred and personal life experience. I am not necessarily a guarded, secretive person who believes that mistakes or off color life moments should be buried away in the back of some long forgotten closet. On the other hand, I do think it wise to practice discretion regarding the time and place and people to whom one shares such experiences. With that said, I am choosing to post one of the most spiritual and heart wrenching moments of my life on a very impersonal and indiscrete blog. What a paradox.

On March 15, 2006 I signed away my parental rights to a beautiful, healthy baby girl that I would have named Hannah Elizabeth. I placed her in the arms of her new mother along with all my hopes and dreams for that little life. What trust I had in this good women to love her new baby as much I did, and to be willing to sacrifice her own desires to give every opportunity to that little girl. I was a mother for 2 days, and it was beautiful. I made one of the most difficult decisions a mother can make because I firmly believed that it was the best decision I could make as her mother.

Before I continue my story, I want to impress upon everyone reading this that my narrative is not an endorsement of adoption, but simply my journey, my decision, and the lessons I was able to forge from the whole process. The decision to place a child for adoption will always be so extremely personal, and it will not be the right decision for everyone regardless of the similarities of their situations. It is a decision that must be made with a combination of cold and hard logic, steady and meaningful prayer, as well as self interest and selflessness. It is not a decision to be made lightly or to be offered as a “solution”.

I was 24 years old and I wanted a baby. For my culture my biological clock was ticking and I didn’t have much time. So, I wasn’t careful and tadah! biology did its thing. Very soon after discovering I was going to have a baby after all, I understood that it wasn’t ONLY the baby I wanted but the whole package. I wanted a husband, a family. I didn’t know what to do. I wanted to be a mom, I wanted my baby, but I did not want to be a single mother.

I began searching couples on an adoption website, reading their profiles, looking at pictures, emailing several. I also began figuring out how I was going to pay for a child. I didn’t have insurance and didn’t qualify for aid. I couldn’t live in student housing with a baby. Where would I live? Would I move in with family? The questions swirled as I worked on two different scenarios simultaneously: keeping the baby or placing the baby.

Long story short: I found a family with a mother that was the kind of mother I wanted to be. In essence, I found the closest resemblance to me that I could, to be the mother of my baby. She was great. I would have doubts about placing my baby and then I would read a new email from her and I would instantly feel at ease again.

She never made false promises. She was always honest and open. She was secure in her place as a mother and never threatened by my status as “birthmother.” She was my friend; genuinely interested in me and not just in “getting my baby.” I felt loved and respected.

My reasons for choosing adoption were largely influenced by my beliefs. I can not pretend that ones belief systems could not or should not play a key role in a decision as crucial as adoption. I believed that the best place for a child is in a two parent home. I wanted my baby to have a daddy. I wanted my baby to be able to be enrolled in sports, art, music, dance, and any other activity she wanted. I knew I would not be able to provide everything I wanted for her as a single mother with out an education or career. I also knew that it would be difficult for me to ever obtain my education while being a single mother.  I wouldn’t be the example I wanted to be for my baby.  I wanted to be the one to raise my child; I didn’t want to have my baby in daycare for 8 or 9 hours a day.

As the months passed, and I felt her kick, and saw her in the ultrasounds I cried almost every day. I didn’t know what to do. I wanted to keep her! That was my baby, how could I just give away my baby that I had wanted so much? She was growing inside of me! I cried almost every night for several months. There would be days that I was too depressed to get out of bed and I would cry and cry.

The day before I gave birth, I still did not know what I was going to do. I drove to a place where I could feel God’s presence and hopefully gain inspiration of the right thing for me and my baby. I cried, and I prayed begging God to help me know the right choice to make. (This was one of many many prayers). Surprising to me, I felt that I could make either decision and we would be fine. My success and the success of my child were not contingent on this choice. I still didn’t know what I would do…but I knew that either way I wasn’t going to ruin her life or mine.

The day after giving birth I called the family and set the wheels for adoption in motion. The social services agent that I had been working with came to the hospital to give me a car seat and to fill me in on the paperwork process. My best friend was on the other side of the room holding my baby. I tried not to cry, but just hearing that I would sign my rights away, that she wouldn’t be mine anymore, that this decision was the final one that would severe all ties to my first baby, to the most wonderful thing I could ever create forever and completely was too much for me to handle. I could barely listen to the social worker because I couldn’t stop crying.

We drove to the agency to end my parental rights and severe the familial bond that had grown and gained strength over 9 months and for the 2 days in the hospital. The closer we got to the agency the harder I cried. I couldn’t stop. My heart was breaking and I was choosing this pain for myself. I was choosing to never hear her little sounds again. I was choosing to not see her grow, to not hear her voice, to not be in her life, and it hurt. It hurt me more than I ever thought I could hurt. I thought “I should have had an abortion. I should have ended it before I ever felt this.”

I think when we experience such deep, terrible, and unavoidable emotions the instinct is to reach for anything, any thought, any alternative that could have made it disappear. I had never once considered abortion. It is not in line with my personal beliefs, but I know I was reacting to the overwhelming pain that placing my child for adoption was causing me. At that moment in my agony I was reaching for any alternative, even one I would never have chosen, to create an illusion of comfort. But in reality, my only option was to face my decision, which meant accepting the pain my choice was causing. Even though I was driving to the agency and could have ended my suffering simply by changing directions, my mind was set. I do not remember making a conscious choice “I will place my baby for adoption,” but clearly the decision was made. It is not easy to place your child. It ripped out my heart to say goodbye to that precious little girl, to my beautiful little baby girl.

As I signed the paper work, I wept the entire time. I could barely see; the tears wouldn’t stop. The sobbing was coming from my belly as I read line after line telling me that I was no longer this baby’s mother. I was no longer a part of her life. I was a stranger. I had given her life, I had allowed her in this world, I was giving another couple the opportunity I had wanted! And yet I was signing my name that I would be nothing in my baby’s life…in that baby’s life….in their baby’s life. But that is the reality of it which can not nor should not be sugar coated. By placing my child for adoption I was agreeing that any part I played in her life would be dictated by her parents. If they chose to include me, great, if not, then that was great too. Being a birth mother to an adopted child does not and should not guarantee me some special set of rights. I knew that. I knew I was at the mercy of strangers to include me. I am at the mercy of the future desires of a someday adult if she wants to cultivate a relationship with her birthmother. But there are no guarantees. I have no rights to that relationship, I have no right to demand or expect it. I only have a hope.

Oh and how I hope! I hoped so many things for that little baby. I hoped and I prayed that she would be strong, smart, beautiful, funny, courageous, inquisitive, athletic, and creative and so much more! How I hoped that she would care to know about me when she was older, that she would care to make me a part of her life. But I knew that I might never realize any of those hopes. And that made me cry.

I spent a few minutes alone with my baby, saying goodbye, crying goodbye. Reminding her how much I loved her. How I would always love her, How it was my overwhelming love for her that gave me strength to say goodbye…forever. I assured her that her family would love her, that she would be happy with them, and that no one would love her more than her new mommy. I told her to never forget those things.

Somehow I stopped crying. I walked into the room where her new parents where waiting and as I placed their baby in the mothers arms, we embraced. It was the most beautiful experience for me. We were both holding her baby, and we were holding one another in a hug of love, compassion, gratitude, and a shared faith in a plan of salvation that bound us as family. I didn’t feel the need to cry anymore. The moment I saw the woman I had chosen to be the mother of my baby, I knew I made the right decision. I knew she would fulfill all the prayers I had for my baby. I knew she would be the kind of mother I wanted to be. I knew that the little baby we held together was safe with that woman as her mother.

Oh I still missed my baby. I did. I went home, laid my head on my mothers lap and said “oh I miss her.” Even though I was comforted in my decision, and even though I had confidence in her new mother, I really really missed my baby. I missed her little noises, her little ears and hands, I missed the way her long baby neck extended when she cried, I missed her sweet little mouth. I missed her so much. But I wasn’t sad. I didn’t cry anymore. There was emptiness, but it didn’t ache. My heart was healed by my wonderful experience with my baby’s new mother.

I have been a lucky birthmother. My family and their family met together for lunch the day after the adoption (baby not present). It was comforting for me to know that they were open and inclusive to their baby’s birth family. They were not scared, or intimidated. They were loving and understanding, and they were always grateful for the gift I had given them.  My luck continued, my mother and I were invited to visit with the baby and her mother a few days later before they traveled back to their home state. I was able to hold her again, and feed her, and snuggle her, and hear her little noises. That was a blessing for me and my mother. It was sweet to say goodbye one last time.

I remained in contact with the family. I told them of my life, they told me of theirs. 3 months later, they made a special trip to visit me and I was able to hold and play with that precious little girl that I had given life to. I no longer referred to her as “my baby.” She was their baby. That was a reality that I had come to terms with before I even signed the paperwork. I believe that is one reason why I could not stop crying, I refused to lie to myself about the situation. She was not my baby any more.

Now 3 and ½ years later, my friendship with her family, especially her mother, has only become stronger. My own family has been able to build bonds of friendship with their family. They have visited one another on several occasions. We send gifts. They traveled to celebrate the birth of my sister’s baby. They came to my wedding and dressed in the colors of my immediate family. I gained more family from the adoption, I didn’t lose anything. Because my birth daughter is the age of my nieces and because I have a sisterly bond with her mother it felt natural to refer to her as my niece. I am lucky.

I do not believe my experience is typical, I think it is the ideal. But my experience is what is possible when we care about the feelings of others. When we are honest with ourselves and the position our choices place us in. I believe that that couple loved me for me, not only because I gave them a child. They cultivated a relationship with me because they cared for me, not simply as a means to get a baby. They never let my biological bond with their baby affect their knowledge that they are this child’s parents, and no amount of genetics can outweigh the love and sacrifice that they give as parents. They know that she can look at me as her birthmother but always know who her real mommy is. They are confident with their relationship with their child. It is their security, charity, confidence, and humility that has allowed our two families to cultivate and maintain a loving relationship. I can see all my hopes coming true because they are amazing!

Do not base a decision to place your child for adoption based solely on my experiences. Do not think it is easy. Do not expect to be a part of your child’s life. The realities must be faced with cold logic. The decision to keep your child will not be any easier. There are pains, struggles, and sacrifices in connection to motherhood. Neither decision will keep you from tears, or will guarantee happiness. Which is why such a decision should never be made lightly. It is not the right choice for everyone. I really believe that it could be more harmful for some people. This is a moment in ones life when brutal honesty is the only answer. I had to be brutally honest about my goals, my desires, my beliefs. I had to really look inside myself and deeply evaluate the course my life was one, where I wanted it to go, and how I thought it could get there. I had to honestly determine if a child would harm my goals and then I would become a hindrance in my own baby’s life. I had to think about all these things and so many more!

Adoption is not nor should it be considered an easy or fix all decision. It is a heartbreaking and painful process, one that I could never repeat, and yet it allowed some of the greatest blessings to come into my life. There are pro’s and con’s. I was very lucky to be guided to the perfect family for me.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


I think that it is so great to share friends with Loyd. I thought that once married your single friends just kind of disappear. And I guess we do hang out with ourselves more than our friends, but it is so fun to hang out with our friends.

Halloween we ate at Red Robin with Loyds two best men - Jack and Jack Sparrow(Najib) and it was great. I am so happy that I get along with his friends.

This past Sunday we hung out with Aubrey. She made us this potato pasta dish that is a favorite from Olive Garden. oooooh it was good! And that was fun too. We are able to just be normal like 3 friends and not be AngelaLoyd and other person. I am happy about that.

I guess the real test will be to see what our friends think. Maybe we are one of those annoying couples and that is why we hang out with ourselves so much. hahahaha.

Anyway, I love hanging out with our friends.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Another niece

My sister Candida Bennett just gave birth to her 5th child, and my millionth niece Sunday morning at about 1am. YEAH! I love babies! When I talked with Candida yesterday she had not filled out paperwork yet, and the baby has not been blessed yet, so the name is tecnically still undetermined. But the consensus about their household is that the name is Estella. AAAAH! So cute. I love that name. She was 8lb and about 8oz (i think). And who knows how long.

But...Candida is doing great. Just relaxing in the hospital, taking her much needed break. Apparently Estella cried for the first two hours of her life. She swallowed ambiotic fluid. After they pumped her tummy she was fine.

So the next one is Sylvia in about 2 weeks. She is hoping for earlier than that. heehee. And then in February it is Camillas turn! WOW! 3 new babies in a few months. So much fun!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

I love my kitchen appliances

Loyd and I bought a food processor online a few weeks ago and I love it. It is one of my favorite kitchen appliances so far. I thought I loved my chopper (and I do) but the food processor cuts and mixes your food! it does it all for you. Its a blender and a chopper all in one. WOW!

So my new favorite things to make are hummus and salsa because the food processor makes both super fast and easy. Salsa used to take me forever with all the chopping chopping chopping. And the hummus! Forget about it! I made it in the blender and it was too thick for the blender to work. Not to mention Loyd was worried I would break it.

Get this, the cuisineart ones cost 40bones for a 3 cup one. We got our 4 cup refurbished one online for 19dollars and that included the shipping. Its one of those Bucky Lasky ones or whatever the chefs name is. Woolfgang Puck, thats it. Now I know how people can be such great chefs - they have amazing kitchen appliances!

I have to be honest. My all time favorite kitchen aid is my griddle. I can cook 8 large pieces of french toast at one time on that thing. I never realized how annoying cooking two (maybe 3 if I was lucky) pieces of french toast on a pan was. Ok, i realized it, but I had no choice. I knew griddles existed but I wasn't going to spend 40 dollars on one.

I came across mine as a freebe left over from one of my apartments and crazy enough, it sat in the shed unused for years. After Loyd and I were married I decided to whip it out for some reason. Fell in love after the first use. You can ask Loyd, I was telling everyone that would listen about my amazing griddle and how it made breakfast and grilled cheese etc so fast and easy!

We kept it on top of the fridge. We have a small place with lots and lots of stuff, so we make use of every single square inch of available space. Well I wasn't paying attention when I was putting it back, and it slipped between the fridge and the wall and it broke! I screamed... a lot. And of course I blamed Loyd for pulling the fridge so far from the wall. (There is a light switch right there and if we want to have access to it we have to pull the fridge out.)

I repented for blaming Loyd. About a week later, he said "Lets go shopping for a new griddle" hahaha like we were going to Six Flags or something. heehee. And yes, I was that excited. We went to BB &B, Target, and Wallie World and nothing. I had fallen in love with my specific griddle that had a certain surface etc. I didn't like any of the others. Loyd would ask how I liked this one or this one. I would look at them without any enthusiasm and say "Its ok. Get it if you like it" No No. Loyd knew I loved that griddle so we kept searching.

Loyd went online and found the new and enhanced version of the one we had had. Oh I love it. It still sits on the fridge but I am way more careful when putting it back. And yes, we have pushed the fridge back a little closer to the wall.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Loyd is sick

Loyd has been sick for the past 7 days. Today is the 8th day. He thinks he has swine flu, I think he just has a bad cold. Regardless, he is still sick.

Last night he had a high fever that made him hallucinate that he was a giant machine that needed massive repairs. heehee.

Luckily, I haven't picked up what he has. I am knocking on wood and crossing my fingers and throwing salt about to continue my good luck and ward off Loyd's bad luck.

I never knew how boring Loyd could be when he is sick. He just wants to lay in bed and sleep all day. He occasionally makes a trip to the bathroom or to eat. I got him to play a game with me twice in the last week, so he is trying to not let his illness keep him totally down and out.

So pray for my baby. He needs his health restored so he can do his husbandly duty and entertain me. Seriously, I have been sooooo bored with him being sick. :) hahaha

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Building the Kingdom of God

I have been thinking what the phrase "Building the Kingdom of God" means. Instantly the thought of bringing people into the fold, sharing the gospel and having people baptized and then recieve all their saving ordinances was my answer. The natural course of my pondering led me to wonder HOW do we do that. Well, we proselytize, hoping that the spirit will be carried through our words. We also talk about being an example. We hold the family in high regard and we encourage family unity, love and support regardless of religious beliefs. So what else is part of this example we should be setting?

I have been thinking about President Monson's talk from Sunday first session General Conference. He talked about service, and serving in love. So when I think of how to be a good example and how to build the kingdom of God, I think I've got to practice what my religion preaches. I have to serve, I have to give, I have to support ideas and legislation that support love, equality, sharing, giving, and service. I have to truly reach out to the world (not just members of my church) and give.

Our church has an amazing humanitarian aid program that helps people all over the world regardless of their religion. Our local stakes, wards, and members should follow that example and reach out to our communities regardless of religious affiliation. We were reminded during conference to bare one anothers burdens. What does that mean, and who does it include? To me, it means we help shoulder the load that others carry whatever that may be. Whether it be financial, emotional, physical, or spiritual, etc. Of course what people need will be different, which is why we were also reminded several times during conference to seek the guidance of the spirit. It is not what we WANT to do for people, it is what THEY need. We no longer live in a cloistered community. We are and should be active participants in our society's and communities. We should be expanding our circle of influence and serving and bearing burdens and mourning and comforting ALL who stand in need of those things, not just the LDS.

I find it so easy for me to say "I paid my fast offering, now I am done." or "Well the Church helps its members" etc. No, fast offerings are not enough and we should care to help every person who needs help and not just pawn our responsibility off on the church as an organization. We should want to lift all up so that they may see what we believe. Pretty words and sentiments are hollow and pointless without our concerted efforts to make true on those promises of brotherhood, love, service, equality, and charity. As Elder Bednard pointed out, we should not be hypocrites. And I believe we should be examining our lives and actions constantly so that we do not fall into that trap.

Recently, the association for foreign exchange students at UVU was trying to raise money for a Mongolian girl who was diagnosed with lukemia. Luckily the hospital was willing to provide one month of chemo, but after that she would have to come up with the money. She could get a bonemarrow transplant that would give her a 60% chance of survival, but she has to pay the $350,000 up front. She went to the Hunstman cancer Institute, but they can not (or will not) help her because she is not an American citizen. She can not get help from Church because she is not affiliated with one. (For more information go to

The Savior told us that when we serve, feed, clothe, etc THE LEAST OF THESE, that we do those things to God. Who is "the least of these"? Does that refer to an amount or status? I believe status. What kind of status? The least being the poorest or the less well known or the weakest? Sure, I think it could be looked at like that. But I think it also means the least of those who we think deserve it.

The least repentant, hard hearted, angry person needs love and forgiveness. The laziest or drunkest or drug abuser needs to be fed and clothed and given medical attention even if they put themselves in that position. The person who broke the most laws still needs to protected by the law. The person who gambeled away his house needs to be sheltered. Those who are not citizens need to be cared for and given all the assistance that citizens expect to receive.

I think of Gods warning that by the same judgment we cast on others we will be judged accordingly. What does that mean? yes, it means don't judge people, be charitable in thoughts etc. I think it also means, if we are willing to deny people ANYTHING because we do not agree with them or because we claim they do not deserve it, we stand in great jeopardy of that same thing happening to us one day. And I don't mean in the next life. If we are willing to pass judgment that a person or group of people is unworthy of healthcare, legal services, marriage, or choice ... then we must be aware that at anytime those tables can be turned where we are the ones that are no longer worthy.

I can only follow Gods commandment, love my neighbor as myself. Follow the Golden Rule, and NOT do to others what I DON'T want done to me. It doesn't matter what side of right I sit on, I can only love, give people their choice, and then catch them when they fall, love them more if they fall, and do all I can to heal their wounds. I don't want to be the one judging or deciding who is worthy of help and who isn't. So I will try to give it to all, to the very least of them. I will support ideas, movements, and legislations that promote love, giving, sharing, service, and charity. That is how I will build the kingdom of God.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Happy 3 Months! at Joe's Cafe

Saturday September 19th was Loyd and my 3 month anniversary. To celebrate we went to Joe's Cafe on 1126 S State Street in Orem. This is a brand new diner, and it is good! They serve burgers and breakfast foods from 8am to 4pm Monday-Saturday.

Loyd had Joe's Ultimate burger and I had the biscuits and gravy and grits. OH MY! It was soooo good. I have had buscuits and gravy at several other restaurants while living here in Utah and I have never been satisfied. These mamajammas were AWESOME! And the grits are sweet and just the right thickness. Grits are a complex delicacy that can easily be ruined, but Joe's does a great job. I have also had one of is omelets! WOW!

Loyd's burger was great as well. My own personal rating on burger deliciousness is what I have termed the "Messy Scale". If while eating a burger you never have juices dripping from the burger, or over your knuckles, or down your chin, then you've just got scammed. A good burger leaves you wiping up after yourself. Joe's Ultimate Burger is a thick, juicy, messy delight!

But what is good homecooking without soul? without conversation? without atmosphere? Boring is what it is. Joe's wins again! Joe is a hilarious gentlemen who welcomes everyone in his diner. If there are people inside you will hear jokes and laughter! It is a laid back place with a small town feel where you don't feel rushed to eat your food or move out of the way. It's a great place. Loyd and I like to find any reason to eat there, hence our 3 month anniversary.  haha

After Joe's we went to the mall specifically to find a photo booth. We took some great pics to record our fun day. Its great being married!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Wedding Photos!

Here are a select 'few'. If you want the larger jpg images of any email me at loydo38 [at] ericsonhome [dot] net. There are also many images that we have not posted, if you have any family pics or others that you think we might have send me an e-mail as well, and we'll send you all that we think you might want.


(Warning, there are a lot)

Monday, July 13, 2009


Ang and I spent the weekend in a little campground east of Kamas where I went nearly every summer growing up, but had not seen in a dozen years. Angela will write more about the trip later.

Enjoy the photos.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The also-rans

After we received our engagement photos back from our photographer, we spent over three hours trying to narrow down a favorite to use in for our invitation. Eventually we were able to narrow it down to seven or eight photos and made invitations with each of them to figure out which worked best. Out of the 9 drafts we made, we picked two to send mail out to our friends and family. Here are the also-rans which didn't win:

Monday, June 1, 2009

Engagement Photos

Angela and I got our engagement photos back from our photographer today. Needless to say, we were VERY pleased with her skills. We tried to make the album smaller, but there were just too many that we liked.

katherine loveless photography

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Less than 3 weeks

Crunch time is coming in.

Angela caught a ride to Claremont a week and a half ago to attend my conference presentation and help me get all of my things back to Utah. I couldn't have done it without her. While I was attending most of the conference, Angela stayed in my apartment packing up all of my things and cleaning up--which I guess she owed me, since I have helped her move and clean on a couple other occasions. On Sunday, we packed up my car and a rental van, and set off on our ten hour return drive back to Utah.

This last week has been super busy, but productive. Even though I've got my seminar almost every day and Ang has school three days of the week, we have been able to get a lot of things accomplished. We finally fixed and registered my car, figured out how I am going to look at the wedding, renewed my drivers license, had a nice dinner with my fellow seminarians and their families, finally took our engagement photos, and a few other things.

The best part of the week though was a surprise birthday party Angela threw for me Thursday night. After looking for some of my wedding-day clothes, we went back to where Angela is staying and there were all of my closest friends to celebrate my big 3-0. Wow I'm old. I can't say it was a total surprise, as Ang apprently isn't the best at hiding this sort of thing, but I was surprised by how many of my close friends were there. It was great.

We should hopefully be getting some of our engagement photos back today so we can design our invitations and get them out soon. Getting them into the mail will be a huge relief.

It's great to be back with Angela permanently this time. I hated only getting to see her for a week or less at a time.

Gift Registry

We are registered at both Target and Bed Bath &Beyond. You can access our registry at the links below:

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


Today marks our negative one month wedding anniversary.

I'm still in California after having just finished my semester, and am trying to pack as well as write a paper which I'm presenting at a conference this weekend--all before Angela  arrives here tomorrow to help me get all of my things back to Utah on Sunday. With as busy as things have been for me these past couple weeks, they are only going to get busier when we get back. Angela is still in school three days a week and I begin a seminar at BYU on Tuesday which will occupy four days a week for me. Between all of that we still need to get our engagement photos and invitations sent out, find me a suit, register for gifts, get a marriage certificate and a dozen other things that we have yet to do--as well as a myriad of other things that I must do upon moving back to Utah.

Luckily, I've got a great special someone do to this all with. It's going to be great not having this 600 mile divde separating us anymore.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Reception Info

Our reception will be held Friday June 19th from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m. at an outdoor pavilion behind an LDS Church building located at 9260 S. Quail Run in Sandy.

Directions to the reception can be found using the map below.

View Larger Map

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Wedding Cake

This is the idea for the wedding cake. Mine will be three tiers with a little bit of gold thrown in and the icing will be cream colored cream cheese icing. Delicious right? I am so excited! I think it is funny that I am really not that into flowers but I will more than likely have them on my cake. Hmmm....well i love icing roses!

A great week so far

I flew into Utah a week ago to visit Angela and take care of some of our wedding plans. While our plans were a little hindered by Ang's heavy school load, we managed to to get at least two major things accomplished. As Angela has already written about, with the help of her sister Angela got the wedding dress of her dreams. I know I'm not supposed to see her in it before the wedding, but she couldn't stop herself from stepping out of her room to show me how she looked in it.... and let me tell you, she looks AMAZING.

Another big item we have been able to check off on our list was picking out a photographer. This has been a difficult choice as Angela and I do not want to have the standard wedding photographs that most couples get and were trying to find a photographer with the right eye and creativity that we had in mind. Unfortunately most photographers who fit that bill also cost a lot of $$$$. Luckily, a friend of mine had a friend who recommended Katherine Loveless to me. After looking over her photos, I was praying that her costs would at least be below $2500, to my utter surprise, she was well below that, and was actually less expensive than most other photographers we had seen. On Thursday, we drove out to Mapleton to meet Katherine and left VERY excited to have her as our photographer. Driving back to Provo afterwards, Ang and I both commented to eachother about how much of a weight it felt like had just been taken of our shoulders.

Beyond those things, our week included picking out a family friend to help make our cake; single-handedly mixing, wrapping, and cooking five dozen gyozas for Ang while she studied; all you can eat animal flesh at Tuscanos with a couple of friends; sneaking in to see Robert Downey Jr. and Jamie Foxx;  post-poning a bunch of other wedding demands until I return in a month; a delicious puu-puu platter; and a lot of cuddling.

I'm not looking forward to returning to California in a couple days to slave away at my own studies before my semester ends.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Wedding Dress FOUND!

Remember when I was having "wedding dress blues", well my sister Camilla found my dream dress on E-bay and bid on it for me. I told her not to worry too much about it, as I had found another dress. Well, today I got a package from some unknown person. Camilla got the dress for me! It fits PERFECTLY! It is about 90% ready to wear. It needs to be brought up just a litte in the front and a bit of fabric added under the armpits, but other than that it is perfect! I love it so much! I wish I would have recorded myself because I was jumping all over the house! hahahaha! It is so true that having the perfect dress makes all the difference in the world!

Bridesmaids Bouquet

I put together this bouquet for my bridesmaids. This is the rough draft. My sister Candida will put the rest of them together. I purchased everything at Micheal's. The flowers are pinecones! and then dried baby's breath and some cute little dried plant.

My First Dress

Months ago as I was searching for my wedding dress I saw one on the Dillards website. I wasn't sure about it, but ordered it anyway. I was getting so excited to open it! This is a recording of me opening my first dress...

As you can tell I was not excited about the dress, but I continued to debate whether or not to keep it. I knew I did not want the dress after I found Loyd's tie. His tie is AMAZING! When I saw how the dress clashed with the tie I absolutely knew I had to keep looking for a dress because I wasn't about to return Loyd's tie.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Marriage preparation

Every day I make a conscientious effort to put both the seat and the lid of the toilet down after using it.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Dress Blues

A few weeks ago I received an email from JCrew telling me that my dream dress will not be available until mid-July.

At first I thought "ok, wedding is getting postponed!"

But after only a few seconds I came to my senses. So the hunt for my dress continues. I have a few options, but the fabric is heavy. I am going for light and flowy. I do not want stiff or puffy or too shiney. **big sigh** i really did like that dress.

Sunday, April 5, 2009


Well based on the reactions of some of the Ericsons, I pronounce the preceding post an astounding success. I must especially give a small apology to my grandmother and aunt Angeles who we gave a bit of a scare to. As funny as the joke was, I have to share with you a little what happened the day after we posted the joke.

Rachel is a real person and a good friend of ours. When I was conjuring up the joke, I asked her if it was alright that we named and used a photo of her to provide more realism to the joke. She was cool with it.

On Thursday I sent her a short text message to let her know that the joke worked, however I didn't word it quite as I should have. My text read:
"Some of my family freaked out that angela and i were serious."
She unexpectedly responded:
"I am so so SO sorry. I didn't realize you were actually serious. I thought you were just looking for reactions. I'm a little lost for words right now."
"Oh. I misunderstood. I thought you were saying that you were serious. Haha. I got scared for a second. Sorry I'm and idiot!"
"Haha I know! I just paused (when I read your message) and said crap. Haha. Phew! Love you two to death, but not that much!"

While freaking out some of my family was awesome, for Rachel to briefly think that she unknowingly agreed to be our second wife made this April Fools joke perhaps one of the best ever.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Why Angela and I have decided to live a celestial marriage

Some of you may already know this, but for the rest this is probably going to come as a big surprise. We spent many hours discussing how we were going to tell you, and thought it best to perhaps to do it on this blog and give you all time to take it in before personally discussing it with any of you. We realize that probably most of you will have strong feelings against this and don't want this to fracture any relationships with our families. At the same time, we feel that we need to be honest and open about this decision. Living this as a secret and/or lie will ultimately rupture our relationships even more.

In the second book of Nephi the prophet Jacob says that the Lord, at times, directs his people to live plural marriage in order to raise a righteous generation (2:30). Through much prayer and fasting, Angela and I believe God has extended this call to us. Compared to many of our friends, we are a getting married at a much later age, making it difficult to safely build the large family we hope to raise. By bringing in another wife into our marriage we will be able to increase our posterity and have the type of celestial family we have always dreamed of. Also, with an extra spouse both Angela and I will be able to have still have kids and continue our higher education without having to leave our children in the hands of caretakers.

With that in mind, we are happy to introduce you all to Rachel.

Rachel has been a great friend of mine that I have known for several years now. When Angela and Rachel first met a couple years, they quickly connected and seemed as though they had been friends since birth. When the call came to Angela and I to enter into celestial marriage, we both instantly saw Rachel in our minds and knew she was the one that was meant to help us expand our family. Now I'm sure that you can all easily understand how nervous we both were to approach Rachel and tell her what we both knew in our hearts. We were both scared of rejection, certain that she would find us absolutely crazy. If Angela and I hadn't felt so strongly about it ourselves, we would probably think that the other was crazy! However, when we met with Rachel and told her how we felt, she felt the call at that moment as well and didn't hesitate to give us an excited YES! - though we still told her to think it over and make sure she felt it was right and that it was what she wanted to do.

Angela and I are still planning on getting married (just the two of us) on June 19th. This will give us some time to make up for the long separation we have had to endure over the last several months. We will be adding Rachel to our marriage later in the fall. We hope and know that once you get to know her you will love her just as much as we do.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Save the date - June 19th!

Ok. It is official now (well it was a while ago, we just forgot to post something). You can all feel safe to mark your calendars, reserve tickets, or whatever it is you need to do. Angela and I will be getting married on Friday June 19th in the new Draper Utah Temple which was just dedicated this last weekend. Our temple ceremony will be at 9am and there will be a reception that evening in Sandy (just a few miles north).

For all of our family and extended family, we would like to hopefully have a barbecue the night before in Sandy so that our families could get a chance to meet eachother before the wedding.

As it gets closer I will be posting more information and maps for all of the wedding events.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Chillin' in Utah

I flew into Utah on Thursday and will be here until Friday the 20th. This time around we don't have as much wedding stuff to plan and do, so it's going to be a little more relaxing and fun. So far we've had some birthday fun with Chris and his family, rock climbing, a disappointing movie at the theater, a ward pot luck, and five episodes of the office. It's nice to know I'll be here for another five days, so I don't feel sad yet about leaving.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

My Dream Bouqet

I was contemplating foregoing the bouquet because I am not that into flowers. But, I thought that might be going against tradition just a little too much. I thought about silk flowers, but nothing just grabbed me. And then I saw this little beauty. Not flowers, but flower ish. So pretty.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

My Favorite Dress

This is the dress I want. I love its simplicity and elegance.

The Proposal...

For those of you who follow Loyd's blog or are on facebook this will be repetitive, but a wedding blog wouldn't be complete without the proposal.

On November 26th at about 10pm Loyd knelt (on both knees) and asked me to marry him. But the proposal started the moment i saw him at the los angeles airport on November 24th. As I was coming down the escalator wearing my "I love Loydo" shirt, he smiled up at me holding a single red rose. With the rose was a note card with a picture of him printed on it. Written on the card was the line " An angela(a) twinkles in the evening sky."

I thought... "How sweet".  When i got in the car there was another card sticking out of the glove compartment with a picture of us and the second line "Shining among many, but unique in my gaze." Now I knew it was a game, and i was excited!  Over the next two days little notecards printed with pictures of us and another line to the poem would spontaneously appear in random locations. it was great fun. It was so much fun leaving the room, and finding another card in my book, or under my pillow, or in some place where I was sure to see it. Once I left for about an hour taking a shower and getting dressed that I thought for sure i would find another card. I was searching everywhere I went back into the room, but nothing. I turned pouty and said "Are there no more cards" hahaha.  I loved reading the poem over and over as I would add the next line.

Then the night before Thanksgiving, after my disappointing loss at our favorite game Settlers, Loyd knelt down, told me how much he loved me, read me his poem all the way through then put his mothers ring on my finger and asked me to marry him. I said "maybe" :) the next night i gave him a resounding YES! here is my poem Loyd wrote for me:

An angel(a) twinkles in the evening sky.
Shining among many, but unique in my gaze.
A constant fixture in the celestial deep
Providing direction and purpose,
Though separated by distances wide.
How long have i desired to reach out and hold her,
To catch this monarch in my silk-woven net.
To be with her. To be with you.
I n my dreams, in sleep and wake, I jump
And reach for the heavens
Taking this star by the hand, pulling her to me.
Wingless and haloed in beauty,
She leaves me speechless and awed.
Can I, just for a moment, or a lifetime
Be blessed with her condescension
To hold her, to feel her touch, her kiss,
Her kindness, her love.
Can I share in the light she gives.
Can this dream be lived, to open my eyes
And witness the angelic before me.
Would she take my hand and lead me,
To guide and help me.
So that together we can shine in the heavens,
A constellation of two.

Monday, March 2, 2009

I'm glad I didn't propose to Angela with a milkshake

"Harris did his part, hiding the ring in a Wendy’s Frosty milkshake.... Harris and Whipple had attended an LDS Institute class last Tuesday at San Juan College in Farmington, N.M., where they live. Afterward, they and a group of friends went to a Wendy’s for Frosties.... But the other women in the group, eager to hurry the discovery process, made the mistake of challenging Whipple to a race..."

Well it should be pretty obvious what happened next.

Sunday, March 1, 2009


Here are some candid shots from our little shoot a few weeks ago with Nancy.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

So maybe it wasn't as set in stone as I thought

May have hit a little snag. Hopes are still for the 19th, but we may need to reschedule for the 12th.

Frustrating, I know.

Monday, February 23, 2009

June 19th Draper Utah Temple

Okay. The date remains the same, the location has changed. We will now be getting married in the Draper Utah Temple. We have the time reserved, so it is a set and solid date.

We interrupt this broadcast...

I just went to the website for the Jordan River Temple to get the number to schedule our wedding and discovered that the temple will be closed from June 15th to June 29th for maintenance. So it looks like our options now are to either move it up to our original date of the 12th or move it to another temple (possibly the new Draper Temple?).

The Jordan River Temple had some sentimentality attached to it for me, but frankly, I just really want to marry Angela, so wherever we do it is good enough for me. I prefer not doing it at the Salt Lake Temple because of the rushed aspect of it (not too mention it is overdone now).

More news to come when we figure things out.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

June 19th

Okay. We have a solid date set finally.

Angela and I will be getting married in the Jordan River Temple on Friday, June 19th. We will be having a reception that night in Sandy at either Chris and Nancy's backyard or in the church pavilion across the street from their house.

There will also be a reception in Ruston, LA in one of the following weekends after. No date has been set for that yet.

Hope you can all be there.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


One of the nice things about having a longer engagment is that it gives us more time to plan and enact things. However, as I am a terrible procrastinator, having more time for me is usually more detrimental than it is beneficial. Last night I had a dream that began about 3 weeks before our wedding. As dreams rarely make chronological sense, in the next moment of my dream it was the morning of our wedding and we had almost nothing ready. We hadn't even sent out invitations yet!

I think this was meant to remind me (and Ang) that while we have plenty of time, if we don't use it wisely, we'll have none left before it's too late. With me being in California at times, it makes some of the planning much more difficult, and I'm probably not as involved as I ought to be. We are trying to have me fly back to Utah once a month so that we can plan things better, but after being away from Angela for a few weeks, I think we'd much rather play and enjoy each others company than sit down and plan more things. Luckily, I'm starting to enjoy planning things more (I had a blast taking photos on Monday) and hopefully we'll be able to kill two birds with one stone (such a violent - and awesome - image) by having fun while we plan things out.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Planning A Wedding

This wedding thing is exhausting! I am excited to be married, I am excited to introduce Loyd as my husband, I am excited to lock him out of the bedroom during a particularly heated disagreement, but can't I have all that without planning the wedding?

As a little girl, teenager, young adult, and all the moments in between I have thought and rethought, planned and re-planned my perfect wedding. What I failed to understand is that...yeah! ya actually do have to make the plans and make the decisions! And pay for them. Somethings just don't work out, ideas constantly change, and much to my chagrin, the perfect wedding was not one of Loyd's first and favorite day dreams.

Luckily, I am not overly picky about what will and will definitely not work, I have amazing family and friends and future in-laws that help and want to help with everything, and I have a fiance that honestly is trying to think about our wedding as much as I have always thought about it. And we have more time than most couples (in this area).

Here are some of the basic things that i have thought about and the decisions are pretty much made. but like i said, it seems like things are always influx!

Theme: antique
Colors: brown, cream, gold
Dress: WHAT? no idea!
Temple: Jordan River June 12th (we think!)
Reception: outside at my future sis and bro-n-laws backyard
Cake: red velvet with cream colored cream cheese icing
Grooms cake: his childhood favorite: mud pie
Food: ??? that's up to Loyd
Center pieces: vases with prettiness inside with candle
Music: that's up to Loyd
Photographer: have an idea of who we want, but not booked yet.

so there are a ton of things i haven't even considered yet, but luckily I have a great crew that is helping me out! Planning a wedding is tiring, and with being in school, and Loyd being in Cali, it is challenging. But I am excited to celebrate our big day with everyone that we love and care about. Its gonna be a party!

How We Met - Angela's Version

All thanks must go out to Bobby, Loyd's brother, because Loyd was such a hermit and recluse that if it hadn't been for my friendship with Bobby, Loyd and I would have never met. So...

Thank you Bobby! 

I went over to Bobby's place one day because i was bored , but the only person there was one of the roommates sitting in an easy chair, reading, and wearing an orange beanie (in the summer), turns out it was Loyd. I immediately thought he was cute, and I thought he was half Samoan, which made him that much cuter to me. So, I stayed and we chatted for a few minutes about school...ya know small talk.

I never talked to him again after that.

I remember us disagreeing on something in church, and me getting the last word, but thats it. I did go by his apartment once ( to see him, not Bobby this time) but he wasn't home and since he was such a hermit and recluse, he faded out of my mind.

Then like 3 years or so later, I saw him at UVSC and I thought, "Hey, i know that guy." So one day while I was on the phone with my mom he walked by me and i said, "I know you from Raintree. Aren't you Bobby's brother?" And  yes, he invited me to his office, he asked me on a date, and after a 2 year rollercoaster ride, here we are.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Thanks Nancy!

Angela and I went up to Sandy today (with the help of Angela's sister Sylvia) and took some photos together with my sister-in-law Nancy so that we could get some ideas for our engagement photos, as well as have some nice photos of us together.

Here are a few that Nancy quickly touched up today.

Thanks Nancy!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

How we met (Loyd's version)

So technically... we met in a singles ward.

Yeah. So cliche.

About five years ago, we were both living in the Raintree apartments in Provo. However, we only spoke to each other a couple times. Once was in church where she was trying to disagree with a comment I made in Sunday school (she was soooo wrong). The other time was at a small gathering in my apartment. I remember her telling me that she was studying history and thinking, "Wow. Smart and beautiful... Way out of my league." I dejectedly decided to not pursue her.

What I didn't realize was that she was totally infatuated with me after that moment, and even came over to my apartment to see me, but gave up as I was never home (I was both going to school and working fulltime and turned completely anti-social at the time).

We soon both moved away and a year went by.

And another year.

In the fall of 2006, I noticed someone flagging me down in the hall at school. It was Angela - apparently she had not been able to get me out of her mind after a few years. We chatted for a few seconds before her class, and then she came by my office to talk with me some more later. After those few minutes, I knew I had to take her out. I asked her for her number, and then called her the next day to take treat her to some dinner and a late-night walk (she rejected the latter, and instead exchanged it for a movie at my place and some late night... talking).

That date led to another, which led to another, which led to another, which led to us breaking up 3 months later.

We unsuccessfully tried the friend thing over and over again for about 8 months and then decided to just make a complete break from each other.

Well... Angela just couldn't say goodbye, and in January of last year (after a few awkward encounters), she sent me a little text to talk. We had a lunch at school, played catch-up for the previous four months, and left with the decision that it was best to just part ways again.

Well, it turned out neither of us wanted to say goodbye, and a few days later we decided that we just enjoyed each other's company too much. A few weeks later we were dating again. A few months later we were in love and strongly considering a life together. And here we are now planning a summer wedding in the Jordan River Temple.

A crazy ride, but I don't know if I would have it any other way. I love her so much and am excited to have our story continue on forever.


Angela and I are getting married! We've set up this blog to share our experiences as we plan our summer wedding, and to provide information and keep everyone up to date with our ever-fluctuating plans and ideas.